Monday, April 28, 2008

Manga Monday: Nana (Volume 10)

Ai Yazawa

If I thought that the previous volume of Nana was amazing, this volume completely blew me away. About a chapter in, another huge event takes place, the ramifications of which are felt far and wide, and dealt with in the following chapters. I was on the edge of my seat for every single page I read - I couldn’t wait to see how things unfolded and how each of the characters reacted to the goings-on, even very secondary characters like Hachi’s sister and parents. I hate having Hachi and Osaki away from each other for such a long period of time, but it certainly makes for good drama and tension, and I’m really looking forward to the reunion between the two of them, and the sides that are slowly being drawn will make for some interesting decisions on the part of the characters involved, Hachi in particular. This is the best that the series has ever been, which is really saying something since Nana came out of the gate running, but it keeps relentlessly changing direction in interesting, utterly riveting ways that speak to the imagination and prowess of the creator. There was a moment where I paused while reading and thought to myself how beautiful Yazawa draws and how I kind of take it for granted, getting so caught up in the story and fervently turning the pages in awe. We are really lucky to have such a talent working in comics today and I can only wait longingly for the next volume of the series to hit stores in a few months.

Continues with spoilers!!

As much as I don’t like that Hachi is engaged to Takumi, I kind of enjoy their relationship. Nobuo is obviously the one that she’s meant to be with, as Takumi’s kind of a jerk, but I kind of like Nobuo and Osaki vowing to “win” Hachi back. It’s fun. Takumi isolating Hachi doesn’t seem to be affecting much, as the only problem Hachi’s had with connecting with a friend was when Osaki tried to come see her, but Hachi is free to go and has done so, having nice talks with several of her friends. I was happy to see Jun get some real face-time in this volume. I’ve missed her a bit. And as much as the scandal (of Osaki being reported to the media as dating Ren) may end up hurting Blast, the opposition with Trapnest is exciting, especially when Reira realizes that the debut singles between the bands are being released simultaneously. Nana’s fast becoming a book of the ultimate battle of the bands! Speaking of Reira, she’s a secondary character who’s really growing on me. I like her relationships to her bandmates and Yasu, and I can’t wait for her to finally come face-to-face with Hachi. I’m not sure what kind of a relationship the two will have, but I’m looking forward to finding out what they think of one another.

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