Monday, April 4, 2011

Manga For the Comics Guy - Kuroshitsuji

I am not the fastest reader, but I can usually read at a decent pace. At the very least, reading 30 something pages of a comic shouldn't feel like it takes more than 10-20 minutes depending on how dense it is. If it feels like an hour and you doze off several times, that's not a good thing. And that's what happened here.

While I know better than to lump all manga into that stereotype, this was everything I always imagined manga was when I derided it all those years. Literally, nothing happened and I have no idea what the point of the story is. I don't even know that there IS a story here. Now, I understand it's the first chapter and things need time to cook, but you have to give me something. I can't imagine this ultra-popular series is all about this butler running a house and swiping table cloths. Then again, it very well could be. To be honest, I don't even care, and that's the problem. A first impression needs to make me want to come back. It needs to leave me with questions I must have answered. It needs to leave me wanting more. Instead, it left me wanting back the time I wasted reading it. I will now never find out why people love this series. 

I've been told this is the story of a boy who makes a deal with some sort of demon butler. The butler will serve him and help him get revenge on those that killed the boy's parents, an in the end, the butler will take the boy's soul. Now THAT actually sounds interesting. Maybe, that should come through, at least partly, in the first chapter. And, to be fair, I think it's sort of done, but it's just not very effective.

It would appear that the guest is being poisoned. But it's not very clear. Part of the reason for this is the back and forth between the art styles. The comedic, chibi type art with the little comments. . . well, let's just say that's not my thing and leave it at that. This shows that, just like with western comics, manga is only a medium and not really a genre. Sorry, but Black Butler is not something I'll be reading on.

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