Slam Dunk 19

September 24, 2012

Takehiko Inoue – Viz – 2011 – 31 volumes

I need to catch myself up on the series I follow, this summer has wreaked havoc with my habit of reading a ton of manga. Slam Dunk is good, but admittedly not one of my priorities. I can’t deny the fact that I get sucked into every volume, though.

The Ryonan/Shohoku game enters the second half in this volume, and lots of stuff goes down. Actually, not a whole lot does go down, but the moments are stretched so masterfully that it feels like every volume is packed. One of the key characters on the Ryonan side of the equation nearly fouls out, so he is benched until later in the game. Meanwhile, Sohoku rallies and begins outscoring Ryonan in an unexpected turn. Ryonan is the better team, but Sohoku begins trouncing them. One of the key strategies is that Rukawa, one of their aces, saves his strength for the second half, so this volume is the start of his time to shine.

And… really, I’m not sure how much more there is to say. The appeal lies in just how exciting Inoue can make all that seem. There’s still a little humor mixed in, and it’s easy to like the characters as they struggle along with their game. It’s great for teens, since it is an excellent series and there’s nothing even remotely objectionable. But I love it too, and as I’ve said before, I have zero interest in basketball. That’s simply the skill of Takehiko Inoue. He can even make basketball an amazing ride.

This was a review copy provided by Viz.

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