Monday, January 3, 2011
I also found Ogami Ittō hard to like or relate to, he often seemed overpowered and smug. A few slip-ups or even a slight show of emotion now and then would make him feel a lot less wooden. I did enjoy the fact that he is not shown as noble and perfectly moral, but willing to sacrifice a good bit of his soul in order to keep his son and himself alive.
The incredible artwork does make up for a lot of the story's flaws. Reading these older mangas drawn in heavier, serious-looking, slow-to-create crosshatched pen and ink makes the relatively quick and easy modern process where the main artist creates what is basically a rough draft that is cleaned up by a team of assistants, before being swiftly screentoned and speedlined (if the whole piece wasn't done on a computer) look completely bland in comparison. Just think about how much longer and more care it takes to crosshatch all your shading than rub a piece of screentone against the paper and be done.
The artwork ranges from blocky and weighty to light and airy, without losing the artist's own style and the serious feel of the comic. The layout in this volume creates an amazing sense of space despite the fact that the book itself is very small.
Posted by Tompkins County Public Library at 5:40 PM