Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Children Of The Whales Volume 2 Review

Continuing from the end of the first volume the emotionless warriors that have invaded Mud Whale go on a seek and destroy mission. Killing many of the residents of Mud Whale while some put up a valiant fight against the Harlequin masked shock troops. Ultimately it is only a call for withdrawal that seemingly saves Mud Whale from complete annihilation. Only to have the citizens have to not only bury the dead but go on living or resort to extreme measures to gain information out of captured soldiers. While the Committee of Elders makes its plans known in the face of what looks like the unavoidable annihilation of the island and it's residents. This volume is an emotionally pulverizing look at war, death, loss and the despair of losing those close to you and the death of your dreams in short not a "fun" read and still with all that even the chilling crafted scenes of slaughter that brought up The Third of May 1808 by Francisco Goya. This is not a despondent volume be it Chakuro comforting Lykos or Chakuro getting one last chance to say goodbye to Sami. Giving the series a wide emotional breadth while never really moving beyond an ethos of somber mourning. This volume also introduces Liontari a gleeful sadist that Umeda-Sensei draws with disarmingly innocent looks. Making for a chilling look at the right to kill being given to the obviously mentally unstable. Words come hard to describe this series as words like "bracing", "stark', or gritty while apropos feel too glib. For this series is unafraid to show some truly horrendous crimes against the defenseless. Yet these scenes of the impalement of small children by invading forces. The physical and psychological toll of survivors' guilt all expressed in art that is haunting in its portraits of inhumanity and the woundedness of the cast. This is a series that much like Fire Punch stays with you because it is simply that well executed and bleak. Yet Children Of The Whales is ultimately more hopeful or at least I desire it to be so even if it is not I'm willing to pay the emotional cost as this is a world really unlike any other in Shojo Manga.

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