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Arata: The Legend Vol. #13 Manga Review

3 min read

Arata Volume 13
Arata Volume 13
Kannagi’s and Akachi’s long rivalry finally comes to a conclusion.

Creative Staff
Story: Yuu Watase
Art: Yuu Watase
Translation/Adaptation: Lance Caselman

What They Say
As Hinohara’s battle against his tormentor Kadowaki rages on, Shinsho Kannagi and Akachi continue their epic fight to the finish! Kannagi is determined to take his Hayagami back from Akachi and make him submit, but the price of winning comes at a terrible price… especially when Akachi reveals his shocking confession!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The battle between Kannagi and Akachi takes a turn as Kannagi finds out that his Homura has been bound to the little girl named Emisu. Theoretically, he can only retrieve the Homura if he is willing to kill her, but he is able to subvert Akachi’s ploy by enhancing her life force with his own so that he can retrieve the Homura, but it means that he is weakened for the final attack from his former best friend. Meanwhile, Arata ends his brief encounter with Kadowaki by seemingly breaking the Orochi, but the Orochi won’t be defeated so easily and uses Kadowaki’s rage to evolve.

I’m still pretty new to Arata, so to be honest with you, I’m still very lost as to the specifics of this world. On a surface level, I understand the general conflicts between Kannagi and Akachi as well as Arata and Kadowaki. The motivations for their fights are well developed. The issue for me is more the politics of this world. I gather that there are various people known as Shos who are masters of certain weapons (Kannagi, Akachi, Arata, and Kadowaki are all Shos), and those weapons have some form of mystical energy that guides their powers. However, I also feel like the issue goes deeper than that. There seems to be something along the lines of a Highlander battle going on between all the Shos in that there can only be one(!), but again, the specifics are a bit lost on me.

What I guess I’m trying to suggest is that if Arata sounds interesting to you, start from the beginning. Some manga is easy to pick up if you happen to join it in the middle, but Arata isn’t one of them—at least not for me. There’s just too many different things going on for it to be properly understood.

In Summary
While I am enjoying Arata: The Legend to a certain extent, I have to admit that my lack of knowledge of the first 11 volumes is really hampering it. It’s way too complex a story with way too many world specific details to jump in right in the middle as I have. The fact that I am still enjoying it speaks to its quality, but if it sounds like something you might enjoy, then definitely go back and start from the beginning, because right now, my grasp as to everything that is going on is very tenuous. I assume that’ll get a bit better as I go along, but we’ll have to see about that.

Content Grade: B
Art Grade: A
Packaging Grade: A
Text/Translation Grade: A

Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: March 12, 2013
MSRP: $9.99