Story & Art: Yuuki Iinuma
Translation/Adaptation: John Werry
What They Say
Utsuho and his friends encounter a sect whose leader claims to use the power of a god to perform miracles. Could his power possibly be real–or is he yet another charlatan?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Utsuho and the others stumble upon a pseudo-religious sect in a small village. While the leader doesn’t necessarily push the worship of any god, he does claim to have the power to produce miracles. A little slight of hand, a bunch of small town bumpkins looking for any “miracle” that will make their life easier, and you get a group of people willing to fork over their money to an underhanded charlatan. Good thing Utsuho is smarter than your average villager.
Utsuho is determined to expose the charlatan, even risking his own life as the villagers lash out at anything that would question their chance at receiving miracles. This turns into another great example of the author’s ability to create an interesting mystery. It is quite enjoying to guess at what might be happening as Utsuho works his way through the mystery, usually with some fighting and explosions along the way.
While the focus of this series is usually on Utsuho, this volume is interesting in the way it examines his character through the eyes of Neya. She wrestles with liking what Utsuho does to help people, but she is less than enthusiastic with his methods. Time will tell if she becomes enamored with him or turned off by his apparent disregard for her and Yakuma.
After their run in with the charlatan, the gang makes it to a city full of fireworks craftsman. Utsuho needs some more bombs, but he lacks the money to buy what he needs. Lucky for him, he happens upon an old friend from the orphanage that lives with a firework maker. Tenka lived with Utsuho and the other kids until a nice old man adopted him. This is a good chapter as Utsuho reveals a different side of his character to Yakuma and Neya. Utsuho is at ease with Tenka, and Tenka really appreciates seeing his old friend. But tragedy quickly rears its ugly head when a murderer threatens Tenka’s dad. Can Utsuho help Tenka protect his new life?
I don’t normally seek out mysteries, but Utsuho’s detective style of unraveling mysteries with his own trickery is really entertaining. I love trying to figure out what is really happening as I read from panel to panel. But admittedly, I usually guess wrong, which is what keeps me reading and enjoying this series. If I could guess what Utsuho’s opponent was going to do, then it wouldn’t be any fun. So, if you like mysteries but not necessarily the murder mystery, then you should give this series a try as it’s a fun adventure.
Content Grade: B
Art Grade: C
Packaging Grade: A-
Text/Translation Grade: A-
Readers Rating: [ratings]
Age Rating: 16+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: December 13th, 2011