New developments in Deadman Wonderland.
Story: Jinsei Kataoka
Art: Kazuma Kondou
Translation: Joe Yamazaki
What They Say:
Framed for the brutal murders of his classmate by the mysterious Red Man, middle school student Ganta Igarashi finds himself sentenced to death and sent to the bizarre and fatal theme park / prison that has risen from the ruins of the Great Tokyo Earthquake—a hell on Earth known as “Deadman Wonderland.”
Despite the loss of their leader, Scar Chain manages to defeat the Undertakers and escape, but Ganta and Shiro stay to fight in. Tamaki, the insane mastermind of Deadman Wonderland, initiates his next plan—the development and deployment of the Ninben, artificially created Deadmen—and Ganta’s friend Azami is one of his first test subjects!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
In the moment when Scar Chain should be the closest, they are the most divided. Whether this is all part of Tamaki’s plan or not, it is possibly the best case scenario for him. The leader dead and one of its strongest members ousted, Scar Chain might as well not exist anymore.
This volume was very split in its emotional tone. In the first, there’s a void of anything as Ganta is trying to register everything that just happened in his head. He wasn’t given the chance when his classmates were killed and he was very much a third party observer in that matter. This time, he’s much more involved with the people in Scar Chain and he now has the power to be able to stop it and just wasn’t. Survivor’s guilt to an extreme for the gifted in shonen fight manga.
It quickly brings everyone together only to split them apart. There’s a logical progression for everything, but it feels like it’s moving so fast. I suppose them’s the rubs. A friendship can be broken as easily as its made and Ganta isn’t exactly guilt free this time around. He constantly says he’s on the side of justice, but he felt guilty—or perhaps lost is a better word—for the death of Nagi. When he actually causes the death or injury of several of his Scar Chain friends, he doesn’t feel guilt because he was in the right. He was protecting his other friend from the savages. Ganta’s demeanor feels fairly inconsistent in the volume as a result. But that feels like the fickle nature of man. Even worse, he’s a kid.
I am kind of sick of the Ganta hates Shiro but then Ganta loves Shiro thing that’s going on. I rolled my eyes when he said he hated her at the end of the volume, which is like the third time it’s happened through six volumes and they always make up. Shiro comes in to save the day and he realizes that he was mean to her or something. They’re friends, just accept it. There doesn’t need to be artificial drama when the actual drama, between Ganta and Scar Chain and the Deadmen and the prison, is actually compelling. It speaks to his character that he cares about something as superficial as her being a Deadman being that much of a make or break factor.
Deadman Wonderland, in both story and art, took a dive this volume. I think what’s coming next is going to be a lot more exciting, but the execution that made the mass killing of innocent-ish (even though they’re inmates) criminals fun was absent here. It’s too into the politics of it all to slow down and have fun with the fights.
Art Grade: B+
Packaging Grade: A-
Text/Translation Grade: A
Age Rating: 16+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: December 9th, 2014