FIST OF THE NORTH STAR Manga

FIST OF THE NORTH STAR

Extremely influential—and infamously gory—in its time, Fist of the North Star is a 1980s adventure in violence influenced by The Road Warrior (hero in leather versus Mohawked bikers) and Bruce Lee (although the real-life Bruce Lee had more motion and facial expressions). In the year 199X, after a nuclear war has reduced the planet to dried-up seabeds and run-down skyscrapers, one man walks the Earth fighting for justice: Kenshiro, the only true heir of the martial art named Hokuto Shinken (Fist of the North Star). The Fist of the North Star can erase people’s memories, cure blindness, destroy buildings, and in the series’ trademark death scene, kill villains on time-delay by making their heads swell up and explode … usually right after he delivers his most famous line: “You’re already dead.” The overarching plot involves Kenshiro’s struggle against the other heirs of Hokuto Shinken, but most of the series operates like a Clint Eastwood movie, as Kenshiro wanders in from out of town, perhaps weeps at the pointless deaths of innocent little kids, and slaughters the ten-foot-tall goons who killed them. Since Kenshiro’s invulnerability is never in doubt, the reader keeps reading for “Ooh, he got what was comin’ to him” catharsis. Originally printed in black and white in Japan (Viz released four out-of-print volumes of this edition in the late 1980s and early 1990s), Gutsoon’s “Master Edition” is printed oversized in glossy full color, in a style similar to Chinese comics. attack on titan manga 1 amazon

FIVE STAR STORIES

A thoroughly unique sci-fi epic, very loosely based on a 1984 anime series named Heavy Metal L.Gaim that Nagano co-created with Gundam director Yoshiyuki Tomino. In Five Star Stories, Nagano expands the bare-bones L.Gaim premise into a vast saga spanning thousands of years, several solar systems, and multiple dimensions, and packs it full of knights, dragons, demons, immortal emperors, androids, battle robots, psychic warriors, classic-rock in-jokes, and whatever else catches his eclectic fancy. You’d need a scorecard to keep track of the ever-expanding cast and elaborate backstory, and one is helpfully provided in the form of the full-color cast profiles and background essays included in each English-language issue. The nonstop barrage of obscure cross-references and frequent jumps in time and space make it a challenge to follow the story, but Nagano’s finely detailed linework and obsessive world building are entertaining all by themselves.slam dunk manga read online  The first ten Japanese volumes have been repackaged into 26 large-format English issues comprising about 80–100 pages each and priced at $9–$10, and the typography and name transliteration choices are just as eccentric as the publication format.

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