The horror manga continues with the 3rd volume of Berserk, and the last volume of the Guardians of Desire, and the beginning of the Golden Age arc.

Title: Berserk Volume 3
Written & Illustrated by Kentaro Miura
Translated by Jason DeAngelis
Published by Hakusensha (Japan) and Dark Horse Comics (USA)
Publication Date: 2004

Available from Amazon.com & RightStuf

The Premise

Guts finally gets the upper hand over The Count, who summons the God Hand to his aid, only to be abandoned when the price they demand proves too high. The manga then begins the “Golden Age” arc, which tells Gut’s story from birth to the horrible state the world is in now.

High Points

The Revelation of what really caused The Count to become a demon really helps gives a better understanding of what causes these people to become complete (or near-complete) monsters.

Low Points

While Guts is not Gambino’s son by birth (instead being found underneath the dead body of a hanged pregnant woman), the manga makes it clear that once Guts is able to pull his own weight, Gambino treats him like the rest of the men in his mercenary company. This makes me wonder how Gambino treats the rest of the men when Gambino pimps out Guts to another soldier in the company.

Content Notes

Graphic violence, and explicit sexual content.

Scores

Originality: We now come to the God Hand, one of the more original parts of the setting. Guts’ childhood is also different from most of your standard Swords & Sorcery heroes. 5/6

Artwork: This volume really shows just how good Miura’s art can be. 6/6.

Story: See the high and low points. 4/6

Characterization: While The Count is fleshed out very well, and we get some characterization for Guts, Gambino’s characterization is mixed, and Guts adoptive mother gets none at all. 4/6.

Emotional Response: Guts story is set up as being very tragic from the beginning, and the end of The Count’s story has plenty of pathos to it, as he manages to regain some small piece of humanity. 4/6

Flow: 6/6

Overall: A good conclusion to the Guardians of Desire arc, and a similarly well done start to the Golden Age arc. 5/6

In total, Berserk Volume 3 gets 34/42.

October Horror Manga Reviews

October 1st – Domu: A Child’s Dream by Katsuhiro Otomo
October 8th – Berserk: Volume 2 by Kentaro Miura
October 15th – Berserk: Volume 3 by Kentaro Miura
October 22nd – Uzumaki: Volume 1 by Junji Ito
October 29th – Uzumaki: Volume 2 by Junji Ito
Halloween – Uzumaki: Volume 3 by Junji Ito