Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (September 29, 2014)

This issue includes chapters for World Trigger, Naruto, Sporting Salt, Toriko, Nisekoi: False Love, Hi-Fi Cluster, and Bleach. In addition, this issue includes the first chapter for eIDLIVE, the fourth title in the Weekly Shonen Jump “Jump Start” initiative.

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.

World Trigger CH:076

This chapter opens with Shuji going up against Commander Hyrein as Osamu watches what’s going on. Osamu is asked what he wants to do, and he decides to fire one last shot; unfortunately, Osamu’s asteroid is blocked. As Osamu runs away, he encounters Mira, the wormhole user. The scene then changes to another area of the battlefield, where Yuma is fighting against the Black Trigger that looks like an old man. Unfortunately, not much happens during this fight before the chapter comes to an end.

The purpose of this chapter was to try to progress Osamu’s actions a little more and lay the foundation for another battle that’s just getting going. I had been hoping to see a little more progress for Osamu, but that was probably too much to ask for, since the previous chapter had focused so heavily on him. At the end of this chapter, there’s a note that says, “About 199 seconds until the future crossroads”; I really don’t know what this is referring to, since I jumped into World Trigger in the middle of this particular story arc. I’m afraid that the author is going to try to stretch those 199 seconds out as much as possible in order to make the story last longer.

Naruto CH:693

In this chapter, Naruto stands up to Sasuke and says he won’t let any harm come to the Biju. Sakura tries to convince Sasuke not to do what he’s planning to do; his response is to put her under genjutsu. When Kakashi tries to break things up, Naruto reminds him that he promised Sakura that he’d bring Sasuke back. Sasuke and Naruto head off to fight somewhere else, where the Sage of Six Paths talks with Kakashi. We see where Sasuke and Naruto end up: at the Valley of the End.

This chapter relies a bit on recalling events that happened much earlier in the Naruto series. In a lot of ways, it almost feels like we’ve come full circle. And with a battle between Sasuke and Naruto at the Valley of the End, it really feels like history is trying to repeat itself. But can Naruto be the one to defeat Sasuke this time around? And how long is Kishimoto going to stretch out this new battle at the Valley of the End?

Sporting Salt CH:002

This chapter sees Hiroyuki at his first day at Tachibana Harbor High School. When Hiroyuki sees how many sports the school has, he gets very excited. Unfortunately, just like in Chapter One, when Hiroyuki sees athletic bodies and wants to touch them, people think he’s a pervert. The student council president decides that she needs to test Hiroyuki. A boy named Osamu comes in; he’s the captain of the tennis team and says that if the team doesn’t win its next tournament, their team will be dissolved. This week’s doctor’s placebo item is muscle reinforcement braces. Like in Chapter One, the person he offers it to points out a flaw with it and turns it down. Hiroyuki comes to the tennis club’s room and puts a special leg bind onto Osamu; he sees that Osamu has shin splints. We then see it’s a week later, and Osamu still has the leg bind on. It turns out that this does the trick, and Hiroyuki passes the student council president’s test.

The “Hiroyuki gets excited over an athlete’s body and wants to touch it” gag just doesn’t work as well, especially when it shows up three times within a few pages. Hopefully, this won’t become a recurring gag throughout the series. And it looks like the “doctor’s placebo item” will potentially end up being a running gag, too; unfortunately, neither one of these gags is terribly funny. And after reading this chapter, I really get the feeling that this series is going to be rather formulaic. Hopefully next week’s chapter, which will be the final chapter in the English edition of Weekly Shonen Jump, will prove me wrong.

Toriko CH:294

This chapter jumps right into the battle with Neo, and it includes appearances by a Horse Turtle and an Angler Bird. We also learn that some of the members of Neo are former allies of Toriko and the others who are now under Joie’s control. Toriko battles with Teppei, and after their fight, Teppei disappears so he can report to Joie. Daruma tells them that Teppei passed through the “back” channel. Meanwhile, Komatsu’s not recovering from his injuries, because it appears that the place where his heart was vanished into thin air. There’s only one food that can save Komatsu, and that’s Acacia’s Soup.

So it appears that the new enemy has some connections to Toriko and the others after all. It was interesting to learn that Teppei knows Toriko and the others and that Teppei can vanish into thin air. And poor Komatsu! It looks like his injuries will be forcing Toriko and the others on a new journey in order to find Acacia’s Soup and save their friend.

Nisekoi: False Love CH:140

In this chapter, Tsugumi finds a perfume bottle in Claude’s room but isn’t sure it’s really perfume or a drug disguised as perfume. She decides to take it for safekeeping, and brings it with her to school. She’s startled when Chitoge calls out her name, and Tsugumi drops the perfume bottle. When Tsugumi realizes the bottle is gone, she panics. Chitoge finds the bottle and picks it up, sprays some of it on herself, and collapses. Just then, Tsugumi gets a call from Claude and learns that this is a perfume sleeping drug and whoever takes it will only awaken with a kiss. Tsumugi asks if there’s any other way to awaken the sleeper. Tsumugi tells Raku that he needs to be the one to kiss Chitoge. Unfortunately, Kosaki comes up at that moment, and Raku accidentally sprays her with the perfume. But before Raku can do anything, Tachibana approaches and is accidentally sprayed with the perfume. Then Tsumugi accidentally spritzes Raku with the perfume, but just as Tsumugi is about to kiss him, something surprising happens…

All right, I thought the “trading places with royalty because they look like a main character” storyline was kind of weak, but the story in this chapter was even more ridiculous. Overall, I have to say that Nisekoi: False Love has the occasional story that I enjoy, but a lot of them are either mediocre or extremely over the top. At least this story only lasted for one chapter! I know I keep saying this, but I hope the next chapter will return to the overarching story.

Hi-Fi Cluster CH:003

Peta is given sight assist goggles for label adaptation for an external compatibility extension device. Kandera, Peta, and Miri are approached by a man named Ekusa, another member of Special Unit Six, who has been called in for a case. The case has to do with robberies, with suspects that are a group of six. All four of them wait for the criminals, and when they arrive, Ekusa takes them on. We learn that Ekusa’s Hi-Fi ability is gravity control, which comes from Isaac Newton.

This is the last chapter of Hi-Fi Cluster that’s appearing in the English version of Weekly Shonen Jump. It’s too bad it’s leaving, because the chapter is just getting the next story going when it ends. So far, of the three Weekly Shonen Jump “Jump Start Initiative” titles I’ve read up to this point, I would have to say that this one is the strongest. I really hope that at some point, this series can either take up any empty slots that open up in the English version of Weekly Shonen Jump, or that VIZ Media would be willing to license this series and release it in book form.

Bleach CH:598

Before Urahara can launch Ichigo and the others, Ganju arrives and demands to know what they’re doing. He shows them a road map to Reiokyu and insists that they can’t get there without it. When Ichigo tries to explain that they’re going to a dangerous battle, Ganju insists on coming with them. They allow Ganju to join them, and Urahara launches the group. And right near the end, there’s a confrontation between two females in Reiokyu…

I definitely enjoyed the earlier part of the chapter more than the later part, because I got to see what happened with Ichigo and the others. And it was nice to see Ganju again and to see him getting in on the action. The later part of the chapter didn’t do anything for me, simply because I have no idea who either one of these characters are or anything about them. But at least Ichigo and the others are starting to get a little closer to Reiokyu. Hopefully they’ll make it there sooner rather than later.

eIDLIVE CH:001

This is the fourth title to appear as part of Weekly Shonen Jump‘s “Jump Start Initiative.”

A character named Chuta is talking to himself in class and ignoring his teacher; later, we see others talking to him and about him, making it clear that they think Chuta is a weirdo. It turns out Chuta has talent for cooking, and the Cooking Club asks him to join the club because they have a contest coming up. He refuses, and at first the girls say that’s why he doesn’t have any friends. Unfortunately, he ends up talking to himself again and cementing his reputation for being a weirdo. We learn that he hears a “voice,” he says this voice has been with him for as long as he can remember. Later when he says something rather embarrassing out loud, Misuzu (a girl he has a crush on) overhears him and this kills any chances he might have had with her. When Chuta goes to put his slippers in his locker, he finds something strange inside of it; we learn this creature’s name is Inspector Chips.

When Chuta returns home, he discovers that Chips has followed him there. Chips sends Chuta to a bureau where there are cat people. He learns they are Space Police eIDLIVE, and that Misuzu is among them; Misuzu has been observing Chuta. He learns that the force recruits people with the makings of good police and that they are chosen by consensus of the mothers computer; Chuta was chosen. Chuta is told that he has to take the qualifying exam. Misuzu objects, because all of Chuta’s talking to himself makes it clear that he suffers from delusions. Chuta learns that for the test, he has to capture a particular criminal alive. Chips transfers Chuta. Meanwhile, a thermography scan done on Chuta at the bureau show an unusual heat pattern for an Earthling. It turns out that the new home ec teacher, Ms. Saotome, is the criminal. Just when things look hopeless, something happens that allows Chuta to get the job done. Right afterward, something pops out of Chuta; it’s a Monitalien. The Montalien tells Chuta how their joint attack works. Together, they’re able to arrest the alien.

This is the first manga chapter that I’ve personally seen in Weekly Shonen Jump that was completely in color. Unfortunately, that was probably the best thing about this chapter. Overall, I thought that this story was on the strange side. Before the “voice” was revealed to be a creature inside of Chuta, I wasn’t enjoying the idea of a manga making fun of people hearing voices in their head. I know people who hear voices like that, so I have hard time finding any humor in that concept. I was relieved to see that it wasn’t truly “hearing voices in his head.” But even outside of that, there just wasn’t much to hook me into this particular story.

It should be noted that this title will continue in the October 13 edition of Weekly Shonen Jump.

Additional reviews of Weekly Shonen Jump:

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