Review: Weekly Shonen Jump #16

I miss all the Jump Start series, and there was no One Piece this week, so the issue felt a little empty.  But it's hard to complain after getting nearly 1000 pages in the past few weeks, and a lot of these manga are performing well. WSJ 16 CoverI am warming up to One-Punch Man.  At first I thought the gag was a little thin: not-so-impressive looking hero is actually completely amazing.  But the series can be damn funny even independent of this, and part of the gag is actually how detailed and epic everything looks in comparison to Saitama, so the art is constantly fantastic.  What has impressed me most about the last few chapters is how, despite the constant comedy theme, Saitama takes the hero profession way more seriously than many of his compatriots.  It makes him an admirable character and adds a level of satire where the series can poke fun at traditionally cliquey and selfish heroes.

I am also really enjoying My Hero Academia at the moment.  Though Shinso's mind control powers played a big part of that, the star of this series right now is not him or the main character Midoriya: it's actually Shoto Todoroki.  Todoroki is the son of the second-most famous hero of all time, who had the power of fire.  In order to have a son who could carry on his legacy (and become the most powerful hero ever), he mated with a woman with ice powers.  Long story short, Todoroki has the seemingly cliche power of fire and ice, but with a twist: spiteful of his selfish, glory-seeking father, Todoroki only uses the ice powers he inherited from his mother.  It adds a great amount of depth to his power and his personality.  Writer/Artist Horikoshi is no slouch at drawing these characters or these powers either.  And that’s good, because there are tons of them.

Gakkyu Hotei (School Judgment, for those following along at home in English), picked it back up this week with what I thought was a solid chapter.  There's just not enough praise to shower on Obata as a mangaka: go ahead and look at any page of this story and you will see that it is absolutely packed in the most efficient way possible with story information, details, and gags-within-panels.  There isn't another manga in existence that packs this much into 20 pages.  The end of this chapter set up an encounter for next week that really plays on the absurdity of the premise of this series, so it's a bit of an upswing from the last arc.

Score: 4/5

Weekly Shonen Jump #16 Writers: Various Artist: Various Publisher: Viz Media Release Date: 3/16/15 Format: Weekly; Digital