Posts Tagged ‘Matsuena Syun’

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 389

[chapter link]

In contrast to last chapter, slight comedy in passing during the fight is acceptable. Ma asking for first aid, followed by Akisame’s stiff rebuke, is amusing.

A strong hint towards the outcome, if not the purpose, of the Eternal Sunset.

All out war forthcoming?

Tremendous display of simultaneous strength and agility from Akisame, in grabbing the spear and preventing its motion. This fight shouldn’t take much longer.

“I have a counter to your counter” is always such a silly line.

Interesting and unique finishing strike. I can’t recall vibration-based attacks being used often in battle manga.

Final Flash: Nice, short battle. Hoping next chapter is the same. These are fun diversions before the main event.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 388

[chapter link]

Oh, Ma. You silly perverted man.

Akisame, with a bit of menacing playfulness. He does it so rarely it’s almost uncharacteristic of him, but the few times it happens, it’s amusing.

Ultimate deadpan

Not the best moment for a comedic flashback. The Shigure fight was disappointing enough; these fights need to get the series back on track.

Rock/paper/scissors? This is going completely the wrong direction.

Finally, the fight begins, but with a handicap against Ma.

Final Flash: A completely out-of-place chapter. Unfortunate, as the anticipation built up for these fights had been excellent.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 387

[chapter link]

It seems this chapter may be exempt from the new, image-heavier review method, given Matsuena’s apparent desire to flaunt Shigure’s nipples at every opportunity.

Well, she had the decency to put on a jacket. Something tells me that won’t help much with the nudity.

The Knight somehow managed to pierce only the chain mail covering one of Shigure’s nipples. This is rather embarrassing fanservice.

Shigure is standing on the seat her motorcycle while it’s doing a wheelie on the front wheel. The fanservice may be plentiful, but so is the excellent action.

There goes the rest of the chain mail. Completely exposed breasts in a shonen magazine. The definition changes with the times, I suppose.

P14: You never attacked my mouse? That’s just a silly line.

Time will tell if this surrender is honorable or just a ploy.

Final Flash: The proportion of fanservice to action was way off. This began as a hugely promising fight, but (assuming it’s truly over) never fully satisfied.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 386

[chapter link]

Naturally, the “decisive battle” features Touchuumaru. He’s top tier, after all.

P2, top-left panel: For the first time, I find Matsuena’s art a bit off. Apachai’s posture looks rather awkward to me.

An uncharacteristic admittance of weakness from Niijima.

P5, top-left panel: Whoa, again. Maybe the screentone of Miu’s shirt is throwing me off, but her posture seems strange. I’d also say Miu’s chest looks ridiculously torpedo-esque, but I can hardly claim that’s a new transgression.

P6: Wow. Thoroughly impressive spread.

P7: Wow. Thoroughly impressive… yeah. Hello, ladies.

P11: Absolutely fantastic drawing of Shigure. Maybe my favorite page of the whole series. Excellent.

A gratuitous pole-dancing scene mid-fight. Matsuena must have a clear understanding of his fan base.

P15: Yet another excellent shot of Shigure. Not as great as p12, but still great. For the record, I’m judging this on serious artistic merit, nothing else. Honestly.

Final Flash: Promising setup for the main battles of the arc, and some wonderful Shigure action. Great chapter.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 385

[chapter link]

Garyuu X has muscles on his muscles. Ridiculous.

During all this insanity, it’s interesting to note that Garyuu X dodged the bullets instead of letting them bounce off him. Nearly all of this is completely unbelievable, but at least the author is making an attempt to keep this grounded in some semblance of realism.

Of course Niijima has night-vision goggles. Why wouldn’t he?

It’s Raoh! Wait, wrong series.

The fanservice as Shigure catches the lance is a little strong.

Someone willing to directly stand up to the masters? They lack serious rivals (or, those who have rivals rarely see them), so I’m enjoying this. That said, prepare to die, whoever you are.

Everyone will have an individual fight after all. Fantastic.

Final Flash: Fun chapter, and either the last or second-to-last setup chapter before the fights begin. It’s time.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 384

[chapter link]

Cover page: … oh boy.

These guys! They’re pretty fun. Hermit’s there, too.

Nice to see Hermit socializing a little, even if it’s technically with the enemy. These enemies are a special case.

P9: Toriko is supposed to be the series that makes me hungry. What are you doing to me, Kenichi?

P12, top-right panel: “Don’t worry, he won’t hurt them.” Brilliant line.

Pages 13 and 14: Wow. I know the Elder is strong, but I thought Kenichi was trying to maintain some semblance of realism. Clearly, this series takes martial arts concepts to ridiculous extremes, but it does so with the pretense of being grounded in some realism. Garyuu X basically performing a Hadoken opens up new doors for just how incredibly strong the Elder is.

Even more confirmation of Kenichi vs. Tirawit Kokin and Apachai vs. Agaard Jum Sai. Excellent.

Final Flash: It’s always fun to see the Elder give us a glimpse of his insane strength.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 383

[chapter link]

Cover page: Just in case last chapter wasn’t enough reminder that Matsuena is comfortable with fanservice.

(Speaking of which, just one page later…)

The full cast is here! Didn’t need the shallow foreshadowing, though. (“I wonder what everyone from Shinpaku are doing right now”)

Oh, Apachai.

P10, top panel: After reading Lock On!, I really appreciate the time Matsuena and/or assistants took to draw this hotel properly. The top-level balconies particularly look great.

P11-13: Have I mentioned fanservice lately?

Touchuumaru is adorable with that parachute.

Niijima with Kenichi and the masters should prove extremely interesting. The masters are brilliant, but Niijima is a completely different style of tactician. I think he would have come up with something better than breaking through the front gate.

Final Flash: Setup complete! Just in time, too. Ready for some long-awaited master action.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 382

[chapter link]

P1, top panel: Okay, I understand Kenichi‘s propensity for fanservice, but Miu’s chest is pretty ridiculous.

Excellent cover page.

P4, bottom-left panel: Excuse me, sir; your neck seems to be trying to devour your face.

“I would even beat up the President, but don’t make me get on a plane!” Great line.

Matsuena seems to use progressively more cutesy characters in lighthearted/comedy scenes these days. Not exactly chibi, but slightly deformed.

Some menacing scenes of the Setting Sun of Eternity, then a rather abrupt ending. Almost feels like a page is missing.

Final Flash: It’ll take a couple more chapters to properly set up the main fights, but this was enjoyable enough.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 380

[chapter link]

Cover providing a little fanservice for the ladies. Assuming ladies read Kenichi.

You’re in trouble, young man! I sentence you to House Arrest, starring Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Pollak.

Agaard Jum Sai finally has a name, and finally Apachai is aware that he’s moving. That’s a fight I want to see.

Cute scene between Miu and Freya. Amusingly, I pictured the narrative boxes being voices by those old action cartoon narrators. “USING HER INTUITIVE POWERS…”

Touching comments from the masters. Glad Kenichi got to hear that.

Final Flash: Good enough to overlook that nothing really happened.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 378

[chapter link]

I want to play Conan the Great. Where’s my copy, Sakaki?

I love the masters, but I hope Kenichi has time to properly find his limits, overcome them, and evolve at least a little before they come to help.

Center panel, p5: Whoa proportions.

Excellent short fight. Well-drawn, easily-followed action, with an obvious grounding in real martial arts (even if unrealistically spiced up a little).

There we go. We all knew the old man would break out soon.

Final Flash: Felt like a short chapter, but an exceptional one. The only worry is that Kenichi is now too injured to continue fighting. He’s solely responsible for the recent resurgence of quality.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 377

This week’s cover: In case you forgot fanservice was an important part of the series.

Excellent first page. Sets up the fight perfectly.

Wow, he actually got close. I’m hoping for some serious evolution in Kenichi in this arc.

Just a few pages in, and already a couple trademark “Kenichi sprinting” scenes.

I also want to eat some daifuku, sir.

The author’s hinting pretty seriously at the old man being very aware of his surroundings.

I wonder how injured I’d have to be to accept an old man putting chewed grass on me.

Final Flash: Good action and a good setup for next week.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 376

March 20, 2010 1 comment

Ok, the band-aid moment is excellent.

Niijima is… useful? This strange new world confuses me.

Keen-eyed car enthusiasts will note that Tirawit Kokin is driving a convertible Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione:

Tirawit Kokin's car

Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione

At what point is the term “fanservice” not strong enough?

This entire chapter could translate to some amazing anime.

With Kenichi still caught somewhere between disciple and master, this next fight should hopefully bring some needed development.

Final Flash: This series had been spinning its wheels for a while, but it’s finally starting to find its stride again. Good chapter.

History’s Strongest Disciple Kenichi 375

Still quite unfortunate that we’re getting Shigure fighting the Muay Thai master instead of Apachai.

It’s a relief that Kenichi is still afraid of blades. Don’t want him getting too badass yet.

The art always seems to stand out as exceptional when Kenichi is sprinting at something. Definitely one of the artist’s strong points.

Final Flash: Good fighting and an interesting setup for the next chapter.