Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (February 9, 2015)

This issue includes chapters for Food Wars!, My Hero Academia, Toriko, World Trigger, Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment, Bleach, and Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign. This issue also includes the first chapter of Kagamigami, which is the first title being introduced as part of the next wave of Weekly Shonen Jump‘s “Jump Start” initiative. In addition, there’s also a My Hero Academia catch-up feature included.

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.

I only started reading Weekly Shonen Jump back in late February/early March of 2014, which means there’s a number of series published in the magazine that I jumped in the middle of. Since then, I’ve been able to start reading older chapters of some of the titles, but I haven’t managed to do this for all of the titles yet. Because of this, there may be times I might inadvertently include incorrect information in the write-ups. If you see something in a write-up that’s incorrect due to my having not read earlier chapters of a series, please feel free to leave a comment and let me know. Not only can I correct the incorrect information in the write-up, it will also help provide information for me to have when reading future chapters of a series in Weekly Shonen Jump.

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

Kagamigami CH:001

Kagamigami is the first title to be included as part of the next wave of Weekly Shonen Jump‘s “Jump Start” initiative. This series is based on a one shot titled, Shikigami Twilight Days, which ran in Weekly Shonen Jump last year.

Mako was born with an ability which allowed her to see a thread of light that led to an item’s owner whenever she touched it. Everyone kept praising her as a great detective, so she grew up and became a detective. Unfortunately, she has lost her ability, so she currently has no jobs and no clients. When she hears about a murder case where the police investigation has come to a standstill, and she decides to see if she might be able to solve it. However, a police officer on the scene refuses to let her in. She witnesses a boy releasing kodama. From talking with him, Mako learns that he’s Kyosuke Kagami, a Shikigami user who was sent by the Shikigami Association to investigate the crime. He travels with a creature called Hakuten-Maru, who is from the celestial fox tribe.

Mako asks Kyosuke what he’s looking for, and he replies a yorishiro that the murderer may have left behind. The kodama find the item and bring it to Kyosuke. Mako insists on joining Kyosuke in his investigation. As they walk, they discover that the police officer who had been standing guard at the scene has been attacked. They also encounter a razor shikigami. Kyosuke summons a creature called Rashomaru to deal with the murderer. During the fight, Mako, who holds the yorishiro, discovers that her ability has returned, and it leads her to the shikigami user. Mako goes to confront the culprit, and as things go wrong, Kyosuke and Hakuten-Maru come to her rescue after Hakuten-Maru possesses Kyosuke’s body. Between the possessed Kyosuke and Mako, they are able to bring down the culprit. The culprit is taken away by the Shikigami Association. Afterward, Mako invites Kyosuke to come stay with her so she believes that with him around, she can become a great detective for real.

When I read the one shot last year, I remember liking it a lot and thinking that it would make a good starting point for a series. I’m glad to see that Weekly Shonen Jump thought so, too, and are now launching a series based on that one shot. This chapter pretty much tells the same story that appeared in the one shot, although I think there were some minor changes made between the one shot and what appeared in this chapter. I’m very interested in getting to read the next chapter to see if the series can continue to be as strong as either the one shot or this first chapter.

Food Wars! CH:105

Several days have passed since the end of the close of the fall classic. As some of the students cook together and talk at the dorm, it’s revealed that Soma is hanging out with Akira and Ryo. It turns out they’re getting together to try each other’s dishes from the finals out.

It’s then revealed that in just a few days, Stagiaire Week is going to begin. This is when all of the first-year students are assigned to work in various real-world culinary environments. Some students make a big impression during that week that they’re hired right on the spot. However, if a student does anything to harm the school’s name, they will be punished. The requirement to pass the week is to make at least one visible accomplishment while they’re at the environment. Then, the story jumps ahead to the beginning of Stagiaire Week. Soma discovers that he’s been paired with Hisako Arato. They discover they’ve been assigned to work at Mitamura’s Western Cuisine, which appears to be a restaurant that’s not doing well.

So this chapter starts out giving the reader a brief breather after the finals, but then jumps right into the next story arc with the revelation of Stagiaire Week. We already see that the location Soma has been assigned to isn’t doing well, and that he’s assigned to work with someone who appears to not like him. This could very well be a recipe for disaster, so it’ll be interesting to see how Soma will overcome these obstacles.

My Hero Academia Catch-Up Feature

Since we’re jumping ahead 28 chapters in My Hero Academia, Weekly Shonen Jump provides this catch-up feature to help readers learn what has happened in the intervening chapters so they don’t jump into Chapter 29 totally blind. This was a very helpful feature and it does a good job summarizing the story up to this point.

My Hero Academia CH:029

U.A. High is having its sports festival, and the second event is the Human Cavalry battle. The teams are going all out in order to get the headbands that the others wear, which have points written on them. The characters are using their various abilities in order to win the competition. The one in first place has a headband worth 10 million points. Izuki is currently the one in possession of the 10 million point headband, so everyone is targeting him. After a bit of action, someone manages to grab the 10 million headband. Izuka launches an attack to get the headband back right at the end of the chapter.

Since this chapter dumped me into the middle of an active storyline, I really can’t comment too much on what’s happening. Even though I read the catch-up feature, I still had some problems following what was going on since I don’t know most of the characters that appear in this chapter. Hopefully I’ll have an easier time following what’s going on in this particular story when I read the next chapter.

Toriko CH:311

The Monkey Martial Arts festival continues. As Zebra holds the Monkey King back, he catches a glimpse of the difference between the Monkey King’s small stature and the sheer magnitude of his presence. The group decides that rather than fight the Monkey King one on one, they’ll gang up on him. When Toriko smells the pair, his severed arm works at reattaching. Toriko manages to grab the Monkey King’s balls, and there’s an explosion. After the explosion, the Monkey King shows his true form.

OK, this chapter ended up being really strange. Yes, Toriko can be a strange manga, but this is the strangest that I’ve personally seen Toriko get. Just as it seems something is about to make some kind of sense, the ante is upped and the story just gets stranger. The objective was to grab the Monkey King’s balls, and now that that’s occurred, something unexpected happens. With the way the chapter ended, I don’t know what relevance the Monkey King showing his true form has, so hopefully the next chapter will help make this make better sense.

World Trigger CH:092

Everyone files out from the match. Several characters gather together and talk over what happened in the recent match. The chapter also introduces three characters: Shohei, Shiro, and Ryo. It’s also revealed that the Black Trigger, Fujin, will stay at headquarters and can be used by anyone compatible when it’s necessary. Jin will teach others how to use it. Later, Reiji and Shiori are talking about Chika.

We then see Yuma participating in a solo Rank War with Midorikawa. Right at the end of the chapter, we see Ko Murakami come into the area, and he’s from Suzunari, the next team that Tamakoma will be up against in the B-Rank Wars.

In a lot of respects, not a whole lot took place in this chapter. It was primarily a chapter full of talking. While some information is revealed, this still made for a rather boring chapter. World Trigger will be off in next week’s issue of Weekly Shonen Jump, so we’ll have to wait a couple of weeks to see if this story will progress somewhere or if the chapter is going to consist primarily of talking.

Nisekoi: False Love CH:157

The chapter opens with an announcement that Chitoge and Tsugumi will be leaving the school at the end of the week. Due to family circumstances, they are returning to the United States. We see a flashback of Raku’s which gives an explanation for what’s going on. Raku finds himself feeling torn. While he has wanted to be able to drop the false lovers act, he now finds himself feeling upset. We also see Chitoge have a flashback of talking with her father.

In the classroom, we see tearful goodbyes being given to Chitoge… except from Marika, of course. It’s revealed here that Chitoge and Tsugumi will be leaving that weekend.

We then see Chitoge telling her father that she wants to stay in Japan on her own. When it’s argued she can’t stay on her own due to a security standpoint, Chitoge declares that Tsugumi could stay with her. Tsugumi has to admit that she hasn’t been protecting Chitoge single-handedly. The chapter ends with Raku looking at what appears to be his locket…

I have to say, I can’t believe how this story has been progressing. It feels rather sudden that Raku and Chitoge are suddenly no longer a fake couple and that Chitoge and Tsugumi will be leaving. I’m almost expecting a future chapter to declare that the readers have been fooled. But, if it turns out that all of what’s going on right now ends up actually happening, then I expect it will finally lead to what I’ve been wanting for a while… a return to the storyline with the locket and keys. I’m really hoping that what we’re seeing now is finally leading the series toward a conclusion and that the girl with the right key will finally be revealed.

Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment CH:009

Abaku calls a witness. After several objections are made, Abaku takes something down from a cabinet, and Tanaka asks Abaku if there’s Magical Powder inside and if he’s trying to trap him because it’s bringing out his withdrawal symptoms. Abaku removes the sheet and reveals that there’s a dog inside a carrying cage. Abaku asks Shiratori if she was in the phys ed storeroom because that’s where she kept the dog. Shiratori admits that the dog was why she was there and explains what happened. Abaku also points out that Tanaka’s “withdrawal symptoms” are actually allergic reactions to the dog. He also exposes that the Masked Dude also has a dog allergy, and is able to pinpoint which witness is actually the Masked Dude. The culprit is sentenced to be transferred to Onigashima Elementary at first, but since it really wasn’t drugs being distributed, the sentence is reduced to nine months’ probation until graduation. The very end of the chapter also gives a hint that something major will be going down in the next story arc.

I definitely hadn’t guessed any of the information that was revealed in this chapter. But that’s what I enjoy about Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment: the answers to the cases aren’t predictable. The stories may feature elementary school students, but they do make the reader think. It looks like the next story arc may finally shine some light on Abaku’s backstory, and I’m really looking forward to learning more about him.

Bleach CH:614

Urahara and the captains are getting ready to head to Reiokyu. Urahara tells Hiyori, Lisa, Love, and Macchi to change into Soul Reaper uniforms and join them.

We then return to Ichigo and the others confronting Yhwach, who tells them that he foresaw their coming to see him. They learn that they were too late, that Reio is already dead. Yhwach goads Ichigo into pulling out the sword in Reio and bring down the Soul Society. The sword does something that surprises everyone, and Yhwach reveals that Ichigo has Quincy blood in him…

This chapter was a quick read. It spends most of its time getting the Soul Society captains ready to go to Reiokyu, and the only important thing that takes place happens right at the end. Had the information about Ichigo having Quincy blood been revealed before now? Since I had to jump so far ahead in the story about a year ago, I could have missed that if it had been mentioned previously. So for me, at least, seeing Yhwach mentioning Ichigo and Quincy blood was a major shocker. But at this point, though, it does look like Kubo is finally trying to do something to progress this story arc. Maybe he’s finally making more progress towards ending the series?

Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign CH:030

Mikaela asks Aihara if she knows Yuichiro. She has a flashback of hearing his name, and Mikaela sees her expression. He demands that she tell him everything. When she doesn’t, he tells his comrades that she’s dead. The other vampires that are investigating the area discover that their comrades in this location are dead. When Aihara hears them mention Nagoya City Hall, she gets up and holds Mikaela at knifepoint. She manages to tell Mikaela that Yuichiro is there without the other vampires hearing her. Mikaela crushes her wrist and asks her where the rest of the humans went who attacked this place. In exchange for her life, Aihara tells Mikaela and the other vampires information. After the other vampires leave, Aihara asks Mikaela to kill her. After a brief argument, Mikaela does just that. After her death, Mikaela says he’ll check out city hall while his companions head to the automobile museum.

The scene then changes to Nagoya City Hall, where Yu and the others are. They try formulating a plan for what to do. They’re just about to start their mission when the chapter ends.

This chapter placed a lot more focus on the vampires than it did on the humans. That’s not a bad thing, though, because we haven’t seen much of their side. We also got to see Mikaela quite a bit here, and he’s someone we haven’t seen in a while in the story. It looks like he may soon come face-to-face with Yuichiro, and that could end up being an interesting reunion. The next time a chapter of Seraph of the End appears in Weekly Shonen Jump, it looks like we’ll see some major action going down… and hopefully this action will help to progress the story.

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