Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (March 24, 2014)

This issue includes chapters for All You Need Is Kill, Bleach, Naruto, Stealth Symphony, One-Punch Man, Nisekoi, World Trigger, Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal, and a special preview of Food Wars

For the series that carried over from previous issues I’ve read, I tried to put a little more focus in my write-ups about the progression of the story from the previous chapter. I will warn you that these write-ups will more than likely contain spoilers.

Of course, you can always check out Weekly Shonen Jump for yourself by subscribing to the digital publication at VIZManga.com.

All You Need Is Kill CH:009

In the previous chapter, the focus was on Rita’s backstory of what happened to her during her childhood and how she ended up joining the United Defense Force. The backstory continues in Chapter Nine, where Rita is transferred to a squad full of veterans six months after entering the United Defense Force. We see her interacting with First Lieutenant Arthur Hendricks. Rita encounters a strange-looking Mimic, and then she begins experiencing the time loops. Rita starts trying to find a way to break out of her time loop. She notices that every time she loops back to the battle with the strange Mimic, there are more Mimics protecting it. She then begins doing research on Mimics, and tries to find a weapon that’s capable of killing every Mimic on the battlefield. She’s determined to solve the riddle of the time loop.

Not only did this chapter provide more backstory for Rita, it also starts providing a little more information in regards to the Mimics and their involvement in the time loops. Now that I’m starting to get more backstory and information for All You Need Is Kill, I’ve come to like it lot more compared to the first couple of chapters I read.

Bleach CH:573

In the previous chapter, Kusajishi managed to get a hit in on “V”; however, the mysterious Gremmy appears and destroys “V” because he can’t imagine “V”‘s future anymore. Right at the end of Chapter 572, Kenpachi made an appearance. Unfortunately, Kenpachi is the bearer of bad news: Captain Unohana is dead, and he’s the one who killed her. Gremmy sets up a “grand stage” for Kenpachi so the two of them can battle each other. Unfortunately, Gremmy has an advantage since he can turn fantasy into reality. However, Kenpachi tells Gremmy that his imagination can’t create anything that Kenpachi can’t cut…

This chapter is basically setting the stage for a battle to take place between Gremmy and Kenpachi. For me, the only other thing of importance was learning that Kenpachi killed Captain Unohana. Since I jumped into the middle of this particular story arc, this revelation really caught me off-guard. I’m looking forward to reading the next chapter and I hope to see what kind of battle that Gremmy and Kenpachi end up having.

Naruto CH:669

In the previous chapter, there was a bit of time spent on showing backstory from Guy’s childhood. The chapter ended with Guy launching his attack against Madara by opening the Eighth Gate. Gaara asks Kakashi what Guy has done, and Kakashi explains that it’s the final stage of the jutsu that Rock Lee had used against him in the Chunin Exam. When Gaara hears that after the Eight Gate is opened and used that the person will inevitably die, he has a flashback to Lee and Guy at the Chunin Exam. Minato comes up with a plan for him, Kakashi, Gaara, and Lee to assist Guy. After opening the Eighth Gate, Guy starts launching a barrage of attacks on Madara.

This chapter was intense! There’s a lot of action going on, especially with Guy’s attacks on Madara. I liked seeing how Kishimoto was able to remind the audience about the Eight Inner Gates through the explanations and flashbacks to the Chunin Exam. Unfortunately, it’s looking like Kishimoto is setting up the stage for Guy to die. I really hope I’m wrong, but with the way the past couple of chapters have gone, it’s not looking likely that he’ll survive…

Stealth Symphony CH:005

In the previous chapter, the president of V&V shows Jig various dragon heirlooms, but the president creates a ruckus because he doesn’t understand an heirloom that he’s demonstrating. At the end of the chapter, someone was watching Jig from the shadows. Jig is still having trouble finding a job, and now he’s out of money. Troma has an idea of where Jig should be able to get a job. When Jig heads out to the place, the girl watching him from the shadows at the end of Chapter Four follows him. We learn that the place Troma suggested is an agency for cyborgs, a cyber soldier school where cyborgs gather to become hired guns. Jig has a run-in with the girl following him, and he learns her name is Raika and that she is part of the school. It comes out Raika was following him in order to recruit Jig to the school. Hank, the administrator, asks Jig if he’d like to work for them. Raika has a job to do, and she wants Jig to be a human shield. Right at the end of the chapter, though, we learn that a complication arises that could make the job rather difficult for Jig.

So it looks like Jig may have finally gotten a job, thanks to Troma’s suggestion and the fact that the school had been following him and intending to recruit him. It was rather amusing to see that those two elements ended up coming together, especially when Jig runs into Raika by accident. Unfortunately, with the complication that’s introduced at the end of Chapter Five, I suspect that Jig’s job with the cyborg agency may not last long.

One-Punch Man CH:034.2

In the previous chapter, Saitama found himself face-to-face with Boros, the self-proclaimed dominator of the universe. The two begin to fight it out. This chapter primarily focuses on Saitama’s comrades and the fights that they’re having, with only a brief scene of Saitama and Boros’ fight. As Saitama’s comrades start defeating the enemy, Boros’ men begin whimpering and saying they want to go home. Another fight is just getting underway when the chapter comes to an end…

This was another chapter that was focused heavily on the action and not on much of anything else. Also Saitama, the main star of the series, doesn’t make much of an appearance in this chapter. So far, the only thing I’ve really picked up on since jumping into this portion of One-Punch Man is fighting, fighting, and more fighting. I hope this is case due to my jumping into the middle of an already established story arc. Maybe once this arc is over, I might start seeing something in the way of character development that will help me to better understand this series.

Nisekoi CH:115

In the previous chapter, Raku asks Ruri if there’s anything she wants to do for her great-grandfather and says he’s there to help if she needs it. When Ruri asks her great-grandfather why he insisted on meeting her boyfriend, he says it’s because he probably won’t get to see her wedding. Right at the end of the chapter 114, Ruri comes up with an idea, although the audience has no idea what it is. At the beginning of this chapter, Ruri wants to run something by him as something that she should do for her great-grandfather. They go to see Maiko, who has accompanied them on the trip, about photos he took of the two of them the previous day. The two of them go to see her great-grandfather and admit that they lied to him. Ruri starts showing him pictures of her and her friends. Everything seems to end well, but the ending of the chapter is a little on the sad side.

This has definitely been the best chapter of Nisekoi that I’ve read since I started reading Weekly Shonen Jump. I’m glad to see that Ruri was smart enough to realize that she needed to admit the truth to her great-grandfather. While the way the chapter ended wasn’t entirely unexpected, it was still a little on the sad side for me. But now that this story arc has ended, I’m curious to see what direction Nisekoi will go in next.

World Trigger CH:053

In the previous chapter, one of the Neighbors grabbed Kitora and ate her. Chika is frozen in place in fear, until she has a quick flashback. She grabs a weapon and tries to fight a Neighbor. Osamu makes contact with headquarters, he’s told that Border’s most powerful squad is headed their way. Chapter 53 switches focus to another squad at first, but the returns to Osamu and his group. A lot of action takes place with Osamu’s group as they fight against the enemy, and another squad arrives to help Osamu and the others out. The new squad will work on rescuing Kitora while Osamu is assigned to support the C-Rank trainees.

Admittedly, this is more of an action-oriented chapter than it is on developing characters. But considering that they’re in the middle of a battle right now, it makes sense to have a chapter that’s focused more on the action and the fighting than on anything else. And because the chapter is so focused on the action, it ends up being a rather quick read.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal CH:39

In the previous chapter, Yuma and Astral are dueling with Kaito, while Yagumo and Shark are dueling in an adjacent arena. Luna and the members of the Numbers are also looking for Dr. Faker and trying to find the controls in his lab to stop an interdimensional rift from destroying the world. A group of girls is also looking for Haruto. This chapter provides some backstory for Yagumo about why he became involved with Duel Monsters in the first place and what he hoped to accomplish. While Yagumo had accomplished his goal, but what happened afterward wasn’t what he expected. The group looking for Haruto finds him by the end of Chapter 39. He’s inside a device, and it’s revealed that Yagumo is using the duels to collect Numbers energy. It turns out the device is what’s keeping Haruto alive, so Yagumo insists on continuing his duel. Yuma also continues his duel. Just as it looks like Yuma might get the upper hand, Kaito manages to turn the tables.

Overall, this chapter was more of a backstory chapter than anything else. Any fighting during the duels took place right near the end of the chapter. Unfortunately, it was kind of hard for me to truly care about what was going on in the backstory since I jumped into the middle of the series. The backstory probably would have meant more if I had read some of the earlier chapters of the series and had a better idea of who the character of Yagumo is.

Food Wars! Special Preview

Soma Yukihira is the son of a man who runs a small family restaurant in a less savory part of town. Soma wants to surpass his father’s culinary prowess, and he spends time honing his skills. One day, Soma’s father decides to enroll him in a classy culinary school called the Totsuki Saryo Culinary Institute.

The chapter introduces the reader to the heiress of the school, who is domineering and strict. After this, Soma is seen heading on his way to take the transfer exam to the school. He meets one of the other students there to take the test, and quickly learns that everyone else there has parents who own famous restaurants or restaurant chains. Once the person he meets learns that Soma’s father only owns a low-end family restaurant, he is kicked away, called a peasant, and he’s treated rather cruelly by everyone. Erina Nakiri is overseeing the exam, and after she explains a few things, she gives a minute for anyone who wants to withdraw to leave. At that point, everyone except Soma runs off. Soma accepts the challenge of making a dish with eggs as the main ingredient. Soma makes the Yukihara Family Restaurant’s Secret Menu Item #8. It looks like the taste test will take place in Chapter 2.

So we’ve got a food-based manga story that also includes class differences; Erina comes from wealth and has the most refined palate known to man that’s called the Divine Tongue, while Soma is from a lower class family. I’m guessing that somehow, Soma will manage to impress Erina with his cooking and end up being accepted to the school. The setup is a little on the predictable side, but perhaps once the story progresses past the setup that it’ll become less predictable and more interesting. Admittedly, I’m not much of a foodie, so this particular title probably won’t do too much for me. But for manga readers who enjoy manga that has a focus on cooking and food, they’ll probably find something to enjoy in Food Wars!

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