Manga Review: Inuyasha VIZBig Volume Six

Article first published as Manga Review: Inuyasha VIZBig Volume Six by Rumiko Takahashi on Blogcritics.

The sixth volume of the Inuyasha VIZBig Edition combines volumes 16 through 18 of Rumiko Takahashi’s Inuyasha manga into one volume. In addition to putting three volumes into one book, the physical size of the book has also increased. In addition, the pages were flipped back to their original orientation; the original English pressings of these three volumes had the pages flipped so it read from left to right like an American book. Viz Media released this omnibus volume in 2011. Inuyasha is rated “T+” for older teens, due to the occasional panel of female nudity and for some violence.

Inuyasha VIZBig Volume 6
Written by: Rumiko Takahashi
Publisher: Shogakukan
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: February 8, 2011

Kagome, a high school student from modern-day Japan, travels back in time to feudal era Japan through a well at her family’s shrine. It turns out Kagome is the reincarnation of a priestess names Kikyo, and she has the ability to sense the Shikon Jewel, a powerful artifact that it sought by demons to increase their power.

In feudal Japan, Kagome meets a half-demon named Inuyasha. Together, they must search for the shards of the Shikon Jewel after Kagome accidentally shatters it and causing them to spread across feudal Japan. They are joined on their quest by a little demon fox named Shippo, a lecherous monk named Miroku, and a demon exterminator named Sango.

In volume 16, Kagome, Inuyasha and the others are in the middle of a battle with Kagura and Kanna. They are two “offspring” of Naraku, a demon trying to acquire the Shikon Jewel for himself. Inuyasha sustains some injuries during the fight; while he is recovering, he has an encounter with a resurrected Kikyo, the priestess he had been in love with 50 years earlier. Before Inuyasha can fully recover, Naraku unleashes a third “offspring” named Goshinki. Inuyasha’s sword, Tetsuaiga, is broken. Inyuasha needs to get his sword repaired, while his half-brother Sesshomaru begins working on a plan to defeat Inuyasha.

Volume 17 sees Sesshomaru unleashing his plan, and Tetsuaiga is repaired. Unfortunately, Tetsuaiga has become heavier than before, so Inuyasha has to re-learn how to use his sword. Inuyasha runs into Koga, the leader of the wolf clan who has feelings for Kagome; Inuyasha and Koga don’t get along with each other. However, they find they have to work together when Naraku unleashes a fourth “offspring.”

Volume 18 has a strong emphasis on the love triangle between Inuyasha, Kikyo and Kagome. While there is truly no “resolution” to this plot point by the end of the volume, it seems the air is cleared between Kagome and Inuyasha somewhat. The volume ends with Sango being reunited with her brother, Kohaku, who had been brought back to life by Naraku through embedding a shard of the Shikon Jewel into him. Unfortunately, Kohaku has no real memories of Sango.

This volume of the Inuyasha VIZBig releases adds a new challenge for Inuyasha through having his powerful sword destroyed, and getting a reforged one that causes him to have to essentially re-learning how to use his weapon. Also, the last third of the volume really focuses on trying to progress the relationship between Inuyasha and Kagome, as well as to bring about a realization for Naraku.

Takahashi effectively advances the story throughout the three volumes included in this book, which she accomplishes through both her writing and her art. To me, the most effective volume in this collection is Volume 18. While the action in Volumes 16 and 17 are important for progressing the overall plot of the story, I really like the more emotional focus in Volume 18. I also think the more emotional scenes in Volume 18 utilize some of the best facial expressions I have seen Takahashi use in her work. There are some panels of Kagome and Inuyasha that are very effective in that volume.

For fans of the Inuyasha manga, I think they will find that these VIZBig editions are a great and economical way to collect this long-running series.

I wrote this review after reading a copy of Inuyasha VIZBig Volume Six that I bought as a gift for my husband.

Additional posts about Inuyasha:

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