This week for Manga Monday I’m covering a series I read a few years back. It’s Gamaran by Nakamaru Yousuke!
Plot Synopsis: Middle Edo Period—One state becomes the gathering place for sinful martial artists, who believe in nothing other than power, knowing no other way-of-life than letting oneself go wild in battle. That powerful state is Unabara, the “Haunt of Demons”. Naosata Washitzu, the Daimyo of Unabara, is looking for his successor. Calling upon his 31 sons, he tells them to search for whomever they believe to be the strongest martial arts style in the land. Once these 31 styles have been chosen, a great competition called “The Grand Tournament of Unabara” will be held. Pitting themselves against each other, these fighting styles will battle until one emerges victorious. The winner shall be known as the ‘strongest fighters in the land’, and the son who sponsored them shall become the Daimyo’s successor.
Plot: The plot isn’t amazing and the series is essentially one long tournament arc of a battle series. It’s not the worst thing I’ve ever read, but it’s nowhere even near close to being the best.
Characters: Gama is pretty freaking arrogant, and that isn’t just a quality he has. Pretty much everyone in this series is arrogant, and Naoyoshi is pretty much the only person who has a shred of humility. I can’t say I enjoyed this cast of characters very much.
Art: The artwork is great though, and could easily be in Shonen Jump if not for super excessive amount of blood and gore. It’s a surprise that it was even published in a Shonen magazine, to be honest I think it would’ve done better in a Seinen publication.
Overall: This is a skippable series, but if you want nonstop action, than you might want to check this out.
For those who like: Action, Lots of Blood and Violence, Great Artwork.
Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.