So, to keep pace with the xxxHolic reviews, we’re continuing with volume 2 of Tsubasa. You thought I’d forgotten about this one, didn’t ‘cha?
Title: Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle – Vol. 2
Written and Illustrated by CLAMP
Translated by Anthony Gerard
English Lettering by Dana Hayward
Originally Serialized in Kodansha’s Weekly Shonen Magazine
Cover Price: $10.95 US
Sayaoran, Fai, Kurogane and Mokona (along with the still comatose Sakura) have arrived in the world of the Hanshin Republic (geographically located in our-world Osaka). There they must contend with various gangs or “teams” battling with entities called Kodan amongst themselves. Mokana is able to determine that this Sakura’s feather in this world is located in someones Kodan – but they can’t figure out whose.
Lots of really big, elaborately drawn battles in this one, and not entirely played seriously – which is nice. I feel like this volume was trying to really kick off the reality-jumping portion of the series with a bang, and they succeeded at this splendidly. Also, if you have any familiarity with shonen series, you’ll get a lot of the jokes here (though if you don’t there are some you should still get as well).
While, as I said in the high points, I feel this volume’s jokes still work some if you don’t know shonen series – if you don’t know shonen series, some jokes still will go over your head. The translators notes cover some of those jokes, but not all of them.
No nudity or graphic violence this time, which is nice.
Originality: Still very original here – the story owes some to shonen series, but it’s more a parody than anything else. 5 out of 6.
Artwork: Still great, though there are a few moments where I lost track of the geography of the fights because of all the energy lines and so forth. 4 out of 6.
Story: The story for this volume is pretty self-contained if you already know the basic concept of the series, but it’s still pretty engrossing in its own right. 4 out of 6.
Characterization: We get some expansion of the basic personalities for Kurogane and Fai, as some expansion on Syaoran & Sakura’s back-stories. 4 out of 6.
Emotional Response: Kurogane grew on me some with this volume, showing a bit more of a Jayne-esque aspect to the character – in terms of being a tough character whose a little impulsive, and a little dim in an endearing fashion, but whose combat competence makes up for it – and who isn’t a psychopathic nut ala Kenpachi Zaraki. 3 out of 6.
Flow: I did have a problem with the climactic battle at the end of this volume, but it otherwise it was fine. 4 out of 6.
Overall: A good second volume of the series, and I’m looking forward to continuing the series. 5 out of 6.
In Total, Reservoir Chronicles Tsubasa Vol. 2 gets 29 out of 42.