Story By: Riku Misora
Art By: Kotaro Yamada
Character Design By: Sacraneco
Translation: Caleb D. Cook
Lettering: Brandon Bovia
What They Say:
Seven Japanese high school prodigies have taken the world by storm, exercising their mind-blowing abilities in everything from politics to entertainment. But when their plane crashes one day, these geniuses awaken to find themselves in a different realm – one that’s home to magic and beast folk! While such strange new surroundings might throw an average person for a loop, these prodigies take their situation in stride … and then some! With the greatest minds and talents known to Earth, this dream team is about to turn the other world on its head!
Content (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Seven high school prodigies have made their places in society and now plan to have a reunion: Aoi, a ruthless swordswoman who fights injustices, Keine, the most skilled doctor who does not allow sides to dictate who she treats, Prince Akatsuki is the greatest magician who entertains audiences with his amazing illusions, Ringo is a brilliant scientist and inventor who creates spectacular leaps in technology, Masato, a calculating businessman who is more concerned with making money, Tsukasa is currently serving as prime minister trying to make his country better for the people and finally Shinobu is descended from a great line of ninjas but is also the world’s greatest journalist. While there are those feared and respected them for their talents, many did not understand aside from the ones who knew them best – the friends who now attend this meeting. However as their plane was crossing the Pacific Ocean on the way to a distant destination, this was the day the world thought of them as vanished, but they were not lost, just misplaced in a different land … one in which they found themselves faced by new impossibilities.
As Tsukasa awoke from a frantic sleep, he was surprised to see a wondrous sight – a vivacious blonde who appeared to have pointed ears, leaning over his injured form. Concerned as to the extent and severity of his wounds, this attractive elf who introduced herself as Lyrule urged him not to move, but he would not listen until the status of his friends was addressed, all who were calmly sleeping in separate beds spread around the room. Now able to rest more comfortably, she urged his natural born leader to take in some nourishment, but their awkward moment was soon interrupted by a busty woman who also sported unusual features, canine ears, and a wagging tail. This buxom attendant named Winona asked where this group came from but both nurses were confused when Tsukasa told them of Japan, which neither had heard of such a land. As his intelligence began to decipher this anomaly and how he could understand this foreign tongue, a new concern came to light, leading to his a fervent insistence to see the wreckage of the airliner. Both knew he would not settle down until this request was granted, but even the sight of the crash sight could not ease his confusion, now being fueled by even odder observations. While the pieces of the jet were strewn over a wide area inside a nearby canyon, which their survival seemed implausible, what became ever more perplexing was what soared overhead – a great scaly beast which appeared to be a dragon. This is certainly not his homeland, and while his eyes could not dispute the facts, there was no other choice than to accept this was not Japan and they would have to find a way back home.
When I first heard of the title High School Prodigies Have It Easy Even in Another World!, of course, the initial thought seemed to be this would be another isekai manga, but I am pleasantly surprised to be wrong and it involves much more to the concept. Although with the element of geniuses being involved, it also gave the impression of an inevitability of having characters who were egomaniacs, too self-absorbed due to hearing peoples’ constant praise, thus causing their attitudes to overinflate and thus become unlikable. This became a wonderful twist from the beginning showing all of these prodigies were well adjusted and used their talents for the good of all, and this concept carried over to the other world, allowing them to repay the villagers who rescued these survivors. However there is one exception to this generalization and that is Masato who is introduced as being too preoccupied to care for his own date, conducting deals all to her obvious distress. Even as writer Riku Misora attempts to salvage this callous attitude, there still seems to be an underhanded stance which he keeps in check to manipulate others when he sees the opportunity; although he appears to be helping these suffering on the surface, you cannot but have the inkling he is formulating his next scheme, thinking ahead and jumping at the chance for another business deals in the near future.
Even with this lopsided personality split, you cannot but help to enjoy the narrative, thanks to mangaka Kotaro Yamada’s sincere caricatures, all based on Sacraneco’s designs. Each character’s personality is marvelously reflected within their initial appearance: Aoi, the forthright warrior, the caring Keine, self-assured Prince Akatsuki, insecure scientist Ringo, the determined Tsukasa, carefree Shinobu and lastly the manipulative Masato. With these personalities now well established, the reader knows what they are in for as the story unravels, each student doing what they can to help with their well-honed skills, allowing for the progression of events to become comical at times and stirring when events require a unifying front of momentum. And yet it is their interaction with the unknown which shows how well they adapt, each person’s strengths shining through, even as we watch in wonder to see what new surprises are hidden around the next corner – whether they be the undeniable joy for life in Elm Village or the pettiness and hostility of the humans within Dormundt. Each page is a visual treat to glance over as every panel reveals new highlights within the tale, allowing for readers to delight in the unfolding of determination as they attempt to survive in this new world.
High School Prodigies Have It Easy Even in Another World! is a straightforward story of geniuses trying to survive within a strange land … all while attempting to make their own impact on the people who saved them and those who are currently helping them prosper. The narrative wondrously blends lighthearted fantasy with elements which cannot but make you laugh, all gauged to provoke comical or meaningful reactions as exotic concepts of common day life are introduced as if they are magic or powerful talismans – all to moving effect. But as the friends attempt to adjust to this strange land, you cannot but hope they will succeed, all while teaching their saviors a new way to see with modern eyes.
Content Grade: A-
Art Grade: A-
Packaging Grade: A-
Text/Translation Grade: A-
Age Rating: Older Teen
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: October 30, 2018