Manga Review: Pokemon Black and White Volume 10

Article first published as Manga Review: ‘Pokemon Black and White’ Volume 10 by Hidenori Kusaka on Blogcritics.

Pokemon Black and White Volume 10 is a manga based on the Pokemon Black and Pokemon White video games. The manga was written by Hidenori Kusaka, and the art was done by Satoshi Yamamoto. Viz Media released this manga in North America through its VizKids imprint in 2013. Pokemon Black and White is rated “A,” which means it is suitable for readers of all ages.

Pokemon Black and White Volume 10
Written by: Hidenori Kusaka
Publisher: Shogakukan
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: June 4, 2013

Volume 10 totally focuses on the character of Black; in fact, White does not appear anywhere during the story in this volume. The story begins with Black coming to the Driftveil Gym and wanting to battle with Clay, the Gym Leader; however, back in Volume Nine, Clay said he didn’t want to battle with Black until he’s no longer in a bad mood. When Black peers through a window of the gym, he can see that Clay is still in a bad mood. Discouraged, Black heads off to do some training with his Pokemon.

Meanwhile, Clay is thinking about a black stone he found and being bothered by what it means. He decides he needs Black’s help, so he has one of his men find Black. So Black ends up having his battle with Clay, and has to use a Pokemon he acquired that doesn’t listen to him yet. During the battle, Black learns about the mysterious black stone and its connection to a Legendary Pokemon named Zekrom.

After the battle, Clay tells Black about the plan of the Gym Leaders in the Unova region to take on Team Plasma, and they go to the Celestial Tower. For those why may not know, the Celestial Tower is a resting place for Pokemon that have passed away. Since this appears in the manga, I would assume the tower is also in the video games; I have to say that I appreciate this touch of realism in the manga and games. My familiarity with the Pokemon franchise is more through the anime series, which hardly ever touches on the possibility of Pokemon dying; there may be one or two exceptions, but it’s extremely rare for Pokemon to die in the anime version of the franchise. So like I said, I appreciate the games and manga including the Celestial Tower to add this aspect to the story.

Clay and Black meet up with the Gym Leaders that have assembled; Black and the readers know all of them except for one: Skyla from the Mistralton City Gym. She isn’t quite convinced that Black should be part of the Gym Leaders’ plan, so she wants to battle Black and see his style for herself. The volume ends in the middle of Black and Skyla’s battle, so you have to read Pokemon Black and White Volume 11 in order to find out what happens.

My favorite part of this volume would have to be Black’s Pokemon battle with Clay. Kusaka effectively has the tide of the battle turn on several occasions, and leaving the reader guessing as to who would ultimately end up being victorious in the end.

If you’re a Pokemon fan who has enjoyed the previous nine volumes of Pokemon Black and White, I think you’ll also enjoy Pokemon Black and White Volume 10.

I wrote this review after reading a copy of Pokemon Black and White Volume 10 that I checked out through the King County Library System.

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