I really wanted to get this up yesterday but school work was too taxing. I dont want to have to wait til next week, so I’m doing it today!
I read ReLife by So Yayoi and published by Earth Star Entertainment.
Right off the bat, I really enjoyed this and I’m happy to be reviewing it so be sure to check it out afterwards.
Okay here we go!
Spoilers- Meh. They hint at some future stuff we will discuss but nothing major.
Plot- So I checked this manga out because it seemed like a change of pace. I had just done One Punch Man(Check out my review here!) and I wanted something a little more deeper than OPM. Arata is a 27 year old loser. He does not have a job, his family has little faith in him, and he’s fallen out of the loop with friends. Honestly, this is pretty much how I felt a few weeks ago, so it was very easy to put myself in his shoes. Anyway, he is selected for the ReLife program. This program leaves him 27 but gives him the appearance of a 17 year old. I thought this program was going to put him in another body or something extreme, but alas it gives him a second chance at high school. Why is this important? Arata cannot find a job, and ReLife offers to help him once his one year trial is complete. This is his story in the life of a high school body once again.
Characters- Oh boy! Normally I can only talk about one or two characters, but there’s actually a few characters in here that we get a decent understanding of who they are.
Arata- For starters, our main character. He was denied another job and now his family is no longer going to support him. He tries really hard not to connect with any of the high school students, but due to his overwhelming compassion for others and his inability to stay low-key, he ends up having several interaction with the students. He is not very good at this being younger and adjusting to school. One of the many things he fails to recall is that he can’t smoke. Not only is he now technically 17, he’s also on school grounds. It’s quite humorous how the students and teachers interact with his hmm, “forgetfulness”.
Ryo- One of the funniest character’s to a manga I’ve ever read. He is the ReLife agent who offered Arata the pills to change him. He is also Arata’s overseer. He takes the pills with him. Ryo knows how to get inside of Arata’s head and push his buttons. He is always making jokes about how dumb Arata is, or joking about Arata falling in love with the students, and is just always making Arata feel embarrassed. This interaction between the two main character’s really makes this a special manga to me. Ryo genuinely is interested in Arata as a person and is truly captivated by Arata’s interaction with his classmates. This makes the dialogue exchange between the two so honest and so welcomed. Not to mention, it’s absolutely hilarious.
Hishiro- Hishiro is the silent type. Noted as not smiling too much or ever having friends, she normally keeps to herself. She has been class president every year beforehand and looks to keep that title headed into this year. She takes a liking to Arata(or so it is lead on to believe). Which is a concept I debated on how I felt for a long time. Ryo heavily suggest Arata give her a chance. Arata’s response is no because she is ten years younger than him, despite him looking like a 17 year old. Which i agree with Arata. He still has the mind of a 27 year old. But every since they begun “talking” Arata seems more happy and lively. There’s a scene where they flirt over business emails(Yeah, email). Which ends in Arata laughing so hard. This scene is really well done, because it’s two characters who do not fit in too well with their peers, but in this moment they are letting their walls done for each other.
Rena/Oga/And the rest of the bunch- She is another female student in Arata’s grade. She is eyeing the class president spot but first must dethrone Hishiro. She finds Arata as a disturbance due to him getting busted with cigarettes and not having a pencil, but she does lend him one. Oga so far as come off as a funny smooth talker. I believe he’s only had one scene, but I very much enjoyed his personality while he was there. Ms. Amatsu is here to make Arata look bad. She is a 25 year old who is already doing more with her life than Arata. She also busted him with the cigarettes and forces him to write an essay. The last character introduced was Honoka. I believe little has been revealed about her so far, but I’m sure we will see how she ties into the loop soon.
The World- This category does not so much matter with mangas like this. It’s your every day earth much like ours.
Romance- I do not think it’s come right out and said anything. If I had to guess, Arata could hook up with Hishiro. Rena and Oga might be a thing. They appear to flirt a bit.
Plot- It feels like it’s been done before(reminds me of Case Closed which is never a bad thing). But I like the spin of seeing him adjust to high school life
Characters- Such a lovely batch of characters.
The World- Bland. But it doesnt have to be anything more than what it is.
Humor- One of the funniest manga’s I’ve ever read.
Verdict- Hilariously well done. It does not have action, which can be good. It does not rely on effects or being over the top like One Punch Man. The characters will have you in stitches. Easily one of the best manga’s I’ve read.
Score- 9.5 out of 10. Yeah. I love this manga. I did not know it existed two days ago, but much like how I fell for Food Wars, I’ve fallen for ReLife. You should too! Volume One ended hinting at the last subject before Arata who did not do so well, Volume 1 and 2 are available free on Crunchyroll, Volume 5 is coming out next week, and there is an anime coming out next month! What are you waiting for! You have no reason not to give it a try!
One Punch Man is written by One and illustrated by Yusuke Murata. It is published through Shonen Jump and distributed through Viz Media. It originally was a web based manga before the team brought it to paperback in 2012. It is famous for the anime that grew very popular last season(Which I managed to stay spoiler free from so far.
Spoilers: Meh, not really any huge ones.
Plot: Saitama was a man who had lost the will to live three years before the very first panel. In the first chapter he fights a piccolo looking character who is a manifest of earth sent to kill all humans for polluting. Yeah, manga takes a very “Defend Earth” stance early and does not really let it go through out the volume. Chapter two gives us back story about Saitama when he was a dead beat who killed a mutated crab(Yet again from pollution like some Fallout stuff). This is when we learn it’s been three years since he decided to train to carry on the Baldy Balds tradition(I love you if you get this reference). Early on this feels very western world comic style. By that I mean no apparent cohesive plot like tradition mangas. Most of the early chapters just feel like days-in-the-life kinda things where he goes around easily defeating villains. Combine that with almost a deconstruction of Shonen manga’s main characters and you have an entertainingly funny, but boring action comic. The volume does end on a high note as they introduce what I presume to be the bad guy organization.
Characters: Saitama and Genos seem to be our two main characters so i’ll focus on them
Saitama- Saitama could not get a job to save his life. He even commented he failed 3 or 4 interviews that day alone. When a mutated crab tries to kill a little boy, Saitama rushes to the rescue and discovers he wants to be a hero. For fun and all. Saitama is pretty much how you would expect Goku or Luffy to to fight. Saitama is so overpowered it’s crazy. Goku is crazy stronger than anybody in Dragon Ball but still struggles against folks he should not. Saitama, on the other hand, obliterates the opposition. Logically, this how I imagine most fights going. One Punch Man shows how, while very funny, just how dull these worlds would be. The cool part about him though is that he seeks a rival as strong as him and how he feels empty without the competition. The sad part, I do not think he will find that rival anytime soon.
Genos- Genos is a pretty cool character. He is an cyborg but is fully capable of emotions. He is seeking revenge and hoping Saitama can help train him(Sandy would be disappointed to learn this). He once was a young boy in a small town. A cyborg went crazy and killed everyone in the town except him(Like a synth. Man, I have Fallout on the brain). Anyway, a doctor for justice preformed a procedure on him to turn Genos into a cyborg that seeks justice.
The World: One of the first mangas I really get to talk about the world. The world is overrun by monsters and villains. Saitama hopes that by donning his cap(For fun) he would cut down on the monstrous behavior. He’s wrong. Most of the villains seem to be manifestations of science or the earth herself. Pretty cool world, scary to live in though.
Action: One punch worth
Romance: None at the moment.
Plot: It’s there.
Characters: We’ve really only done surface level scratching
The World: I feel this is going to be explored a little more. Cool for the time being though
Humor: The series does this right. It’s pretty funny.
Verdict: Seems the chapters are more western style than tradition mangas for now. It’s a funny read but it’s very fast pace.
Score: 6.5 out 10. One Punch Man is hard to buy into after just one volume. It’s a satire and deconstruction of a genre I’m just not sure how well it translates into manga form. The best part from the mangas One Punch Man seems to be inspired by is the rivalry between main characters and villains, think Naruto and Sasuke. One Punch Man does not have that, but it does have potential. A solid start, a good enough middle, and cliff hanger ending makes me at least want to give volume 2 a try(which I will when I can).