Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (March 9, 2015)

This issue includes chapters for One Piece, World Trigger, My Hero Academia, Blue Exorcist, Food Wars!, Ultra Battle Satellite, Toriko, Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment, Cyborg Roggy, Bleach, Nisekoi: False Love, and Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign. This issue also includes the first chapter of Claymore, which is the next title for Weekly Shonen Jump‘s “Jump Back” 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.

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.

One Piece CH:779

At the beginning of this chapter, the Smile Factory suddenly explodes. Princess Mansherry is brought to Kyros, and she offers to heal him; however, he tells her not to use her powers on him because they must have a limit. We then see Sabo trying to free some of the straggling prisoners of the coliseum, and he’s making a call to let others know that Luffy may be in trouble. We then finally return to the fight between Luffy and Bellamy that started several chapters ago. At the end of it, Luffy gets a punch in that takes Bellamy down.

So it appears this chapter finally whittles the fighting down to just two more major enemy powers, with Doflamingo obviously being one of them. And with Luffy now defeating Bellamy, it looks like Doflamingo will be his next target. But whether or not the next chapter will move onto Luffy and Doflamingo, or whether it will focus on the other major enemy power that’s left, is unknown at this point. Personally, I think the other major enemy power will be focused on next in order to leave Luffy vs. Doflamingo as the last major battle.

It should be noted that One Piece will be off next week.

World Trigger CH:095

This chapter opens with a flashback to eight months earlier, when Ko surpassed Arafune as an attacker and what Ko went through. He feels like he just steals everyone’s hard work with his Side Effect. Ko thinks he caused Arafune to quit as an attacker, but Arafune claims he had planned to quit when he hit 8,000 points.

We then return to present time, where Osamu, Yuma, and Chika talk about the stages that Nasu Squad are most likely to choose, and they also talk about their own team’s strategy. Then we see Nasu Squad talking about which stage they chose and their squad’s strategy.

And now it’s beginning of Round Three of the B-Rank Wars, and the commentators share their thoughts on Nasu Squad’s stage choice. The participants are sent into the riverbank stage, with a rainstorm for the weather conditions. The third round is just starting to get underway when the chapter ends.

So this chapter is basically setting the stage for the third round of the B-Rank Wars. However, we do get some brief backstory information on Ko, so that was helpful to understand why he acted the way he did in the previous chapter. Nasu Squad has definitely set up an interesting stage for this round of the B-Rank Wars, so it could be interesting to see how Osamu, Yuma, and Chika deal with this.

My Hero Academia CH:033

In this chapter, Shinso tells Midoriya that it must be nice to have everything handed to him, and then tells him to turn around and walk out of the ring. It turns out Shinso’s Quirk is brainwashing. We learn that Midoriya had been warned about Shinso’s quirk, and we see a flashback of what he was told. As Midoriya walks, he sees people and suddenly starts regaining his own consciousness. Midoriya turns around and faces Shinso again, and Midoriya can only think what he wants to say in return to Shinso in his mind because speaking to Shinso will activate the brainwashing again. The two end up getting into a physical fight, and Midoriya manages to win the round right at the end of the chapter.

So it looked like Shinso had found a way to make the round end easily with his Brainwashing Quirk. But somehow, Midoriya received some mysterious help. Midroriya does think a little about what this mysterious help could have been. Hopefully Midoriya and the reader can get some concrete answers for what happened to Midoriya in this chapter. And now that Midoriya managed has managed to make it past the first round, I wonder who Midoriya will have to face off against in his next round and what will happen to him.

Blue Exorcist CH:065

We see that the characters are back in school now, and Miwa thinks that he sees Renzo. Then we see a flashback to about a year ago, when Renzo was given a business card from The Illuminati. Director Shima was asked to have Renzo, his son, become a spy. The director is against it, but Renzo says he wants to do it. Rin comes to school, wearing a wif and and trying to pass himself off as Renzo because he feels responsible for Renzo leaving. But then the real Renzo shows up. Everyone is happy to see him, but they demand that he explain himself. He doesn’t give a real answer, so some of the others begin attacking Renzo. Right at the end of the chapter, Mephisto appears and tells them to stop punishing Renzo.

This chapter sees most of the characters trying to return to their “nomral” life after dealing with Gedoin and rescuing Izumo. But the main focus of this chapter is on Renzo. The flashback we see explains how he became a double agent. Unfortunately, since it doesn’t seem Renzo can tell his friends about it, he has to act in a way that makes his friends angry with him. I suspect that Mephisto will probably end up being the one to explain the truth to Renzo’s friends. I wonder how they’ll react to Renzo after finding out the truth of what he was doing and why he was doing it.

Food Wars! CH:109

Soma and Hisako are told they passed, and that the paperwork for their next assigned Stagiaire location should arrive tomorrow. As Soma talks with Hisako, he learns that she doesn’t have a lot of confidence and thinks she needs to follow in Erina’s footsteps. Soma advises her that instead of trying to follow in Erina’s footsteps, she needs to make herself into someone who can stand beside her. After saying this, Soma realizes that he needs to follow his own advice, since all he’s done up to now is try to follow in his father’s footsteps.

We then see Erina giving Megumi a ride home in her fmaily’s fancy car. Through their conversation, we learn that they both passed as well. As they talk, Megumi gives Soma a lot of credit for how far she’s come, and Erina doesn’t like hearing this.

A chef on his way to receiving his third star is in the process of opening up his first restaurant overseas is not happy to hear that Chef Dojima wants to saddle him with “useless students.” But right at the end of the chapter, Soma suddenly appears at his door.

So the first Stagiaire Week assignment is completed, and both teams that we followed passed. There was also some great character development in this chapter, especially for Hisako. And it was good to see that Soma has a better understanding of the fact that he’s just as guilty as Hisako is when it comes to trying to follow someone else’s footsteps. But I admit I’m a little confused about the Stagiaire thing, because at the beginning of the arc, it was established as being “Stagiaire Week.” I had assumed they would stay in one location for the week, and it appeared this first assignment lasted 4-5 days. So if this is a new assignment for the week, they only get 2-3 days for this one. Hopefully this will be clarified a little more in the next chapter.

Ultra Battle Satellite CH:002

Jin discovers that his bounty went up after winning his battle against Hosuto and that he’ll get $7,000 for winning the match. The next day at school, Jin demands to talk to Sakura. He learns that she was watching the match, but then asks her who she is and what U.B.S. is. She doesn’t answer his questions, but asks him to meet her at the shrine by the station after school.

Porky accompanies Jin to the meeting location, and Jin tells her it’s time to answer his questions. She reveals she has a U.B.S. phone, and Jin asks Sakura if she’s also a fighter. After Sakura activates her phone, she begins attacking Jin. By activating her phone, the match will stream worldwide for the people who pay to view it. Subscribers bet a fortune on the matches. The chapter ends with Jin accepting Sakura’s challenge.

Surprise, surprise! It turns out Sakura isn’t just a fan of U.B.S., she’s also a participant. I had my suspicions about her interest in Jin and getting him hooked up with U.B.S., and this chapter proved that my suspicions of her weren’t off-base. While Chapter Two was a little better than Chapter One, I’m still not sold on Ultra Battle Satellite yet. Maybe Chapter Three will be better than Chapter Two.

Toriko CH:315

The Four Kings start unleashing several powerful attacks on the Monkey King, but nothing seems to faze him. In fact, it appears almost as if he can move at the speed of light. After some fighting, all four of them manage to grab the Monkey King’s balls, but they won’t come off. Unfortunately, Toriko acts recklessly, and they’re no longer in sync; this allows the Monkey King to start getting the upper hand. The four of them fall, and they are surrounded by a colony of wild Sundorikos and their deadly pollen. The Monkey King grabs them and is just about to eat them, and Toriko decides he’ll eat the Monkey King back. Right at the end of the chapter, Toriko swears he can see Komatsu, and something happens to the Monkey King’s balls…

Well, then. That was an… um… interesting chapter. But I have to say I’m getting really tired of this whole storyline with the Monkey King and his balls. I hope that the ending of this chapter is trying to tell the reader that this particular storyline is almost over. Please, let this almost be over. It’s starting to feel like it’s being stretched out for longer than it needs to be.

Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment CH:013

The chapter opens with Abaku recapping the evidence that Sarutobi has presented for the case. Abaku asks Sarutobi why there were only sketches for the first two similar works and not the third one that was exactly identical. Abaku has a theory that Ms. Van Gogh was not the one who painted the identical third paintings. Instead, the two boys painted their own paintings intentionally in order to bring about a lawsuit since rumors of plagiarism already existed at the school. Abaku also wonders what Ms. Van Gogh’s weakness was that caused her to paint for the two boys to begin with. He then asks Ms. Van Gogh if she is ghost painting for her mentor, Suenari Yamo. They ultimately wanted this school judgment in order to save Ms. Van Gogh from Yamo. The boys say that Abaku’s theories are right. By the end of the chapter, Sarutobi and Abaku seem to bring about an end to their rivalry.

When some of the information about Ms. Van Gogh was revealed in the previous chapter, I somehow felt that she was painting for her mentor in some way, but I didn’t know whether she was being forced to or what. I hadn’t anticipated that Da Vinci and Picasso had been forcing her to ghost paint for them, or that they were doing this in order to help Ms. Van Gogh. While they had good intentions for what they did, I’m glad to see the students were made to do some weeding for calling for a school judgment under false pretenses. And I was glad to see Abaku and Sarutobi start to get along now. While Sarutobi will probably still have the basic personality he has now, I’m thinking he’ll be working with Abaku now instead of against him.

Cyborg Roggy CH:003

Roggy and Dog are approached by an investor of the Baubul Company. The original of an augmentation unit has appeared, and he wants Roggy to destroy it. Roggy goes to Baubul and discovers that it’s a toy company. Roggy claims to be a co-worker of the guy who approached him about the job, and he meets with two people from the business division. As Roggy is being led on a tour, he finds an employee, grabs him, and takes his uniform without his guide noticing. By getting access to a storage area, Roggy is able to investigate. Unfortunately, he is found, and he gets attacked wherever he goes as he flees. But Roggy is able to get past everyone. Just as he thinks he may have found what he’s looking for, the chapter comes to an end.

This was probably the most interesting chapter Cyborg Roggy that I’ve read. Unfortunately, it ends on a cliffhanger, and we have no guarantee of being able to read more of this series since it’s currently part of the “Jump Start” initiative. While Cyborg Roggy wasn’t my favorite series from this set of “Jump Start” titles, I can say it easily comes in second place. If it was ever decided to continue Cyborg Roggy in Weekly Shonen Jump, I wouldn’t be too adverse to the idea.

Bleach CH:618

This chapter sees Shunsui communicating with Aizen, in the hope that Aizen will want to help the Soul Society during this time of crisis.

We then move on to Yhwach facing off against Ukitake, who has now taken Reio’s place. Ichigo tries to get in Yhwach’s way. Yoruichi does what she can to protect Reio and Reio’s arm. The chapter ends just as Ichigo and Yhwach are about to get into what should be a major fight.

This chapter was ended up being a very quick read. While the scenes do include some dialogue to help make some minor progression to the story, most of the panels focus on action. I just hope Kubo isn’t back to try to stretch this story out simply to keep it going longer.

Nisekoi: False Love CH:161

Tsugumi asks Raku for help to save Chitoge, and he agrees. Tsugumi gives Raku instructions on how to sneak in while everyone’s packing for the move. With Tsugumi’s instructions, he’s able to get a key to the room Chitoge is locked in, but he has to avoid traps in order to get to her. Tsugumi tries to distract Claude, but he catches on. Tsugumi tries to attack, but Claude thwarts her attempt. Raku makes it to the room, and Chitoge lectures him for being stupid because he could get himself killed by coming here. When Raku tries to unlock the door, the key doesn’t work. It turns out Claude has the real key. Raku tries to reason with Claude, but the chapter ends with Claude threatening Raku.

Just as it looked like Raku would be able to save the day, it turned out that he was unable to. At this point, I’m still trying to figure out whether or not the series may be wrapping up, or if Komi is simply creating a long story arc that makes it look like the series could be ending. But I have to admit that these recent chapters of Nisekoi: False Love have been some of the best that I’ve read in quite a while.

Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign CH:031

Yu and the others are at Nagoya City Hall, and they’re just starting to launch their attack on Crowley, Chess, and Horn. Guren and the others realize that even though there are 15 of them, they’re outnumbered by how strong the three vampires are. They have to decide whether to kill the hostages so they can’t be interrogated, or if they should split up their group to go after the vampires and free the hostages. Shinoa reminds everyone that their mission is to just be decoys so the vampires don’t notice their forces gathering in Shinjuku.

Meanwhile, the three vampires come up with their own plan to capture two of the commanders to take to Lord Ferid.

Guren orders that only his squad will go after Crowley Eusford, and that Narumi and Shinoa squads will use that chance to rescue the hostages. They are told they have five minutes to free as many of the hostages as they can, and that they must retreat right at the five minute mark. Goshi is ordered to create an illusion to make it look like there’s 200 of them. The squads move out to start into their respective assignments. Guren encounters Crowley, and the two of them begin to fight… but Crowley is able to take him down very easily. When Shinoa Squad sees that Guren is in trouble, they decide to abandon their mission and rescue him instead. We see Mika trying to get to Yu right at the end of the chapter.

This chapter sees Guren coming face-to-face with an enemy that’s actually leagues ahead of him when it comes to strength. Things are looking pretty bad for him at the moment, but I don’t think Shinoa’s squad is going to be able to help as much as they think they can. I’m predicting that while Shinoa’s squad might be able to slow the enemy down, they won’t be able to prevent Crowley and his minions from capturing Guren. I could be wrong, but I just don’t quite see a successful rescue operation here.

Claymore CH:001

Claymore is the next title being featured for Weekly Shonen Jump‘s “Jump Back” initaitve.

In Claymore, humans coexist with creatures called Yoma; the Yoma are sentient monsters that feed on human innards. A nameless and secretive organization was created out of half-human, half-Yoma warriors to protect the humans from the Yoma; however, this organization charges large fees for their services. The humans have called these warriors either “Claymores” due to the large, unsheathed swords they carry or “Silver Eye Witches” due to their appearance and cold demeanor toward others. The Claymores are created by the organization by implanting Yoma flesh and blood into humans.

At the beginning of the series, a small town is terrorized by a Yoma and a Claymore named Clare is assigned to take care of the Yoma in that village. Clare is a distant and quiet Claymore, and she occasionally has an impulsive side. While she is at the village, Clare meets a naïve and kind-hearted young man named Raki; his parents were murdered by a Yoma, and he lived with his brother and his uncle in the village. It turns out the Yoma who attacked Raki’s parents disguised himself as Raki’s brother, and was the Yoma attacking the village. This Yoma is killed by Clare, and soon after the Yoma’s defeat, Clare leaves the village.

My first exposure to Claymore came through watching the anime series first, and this first chapter was basically left intact in the anime adaptation. This chapter does a great job establishing the world this series inhabits, as well as what the Claymore are and how they came to be. While the interactions between Clare and Raki are relatively brief in this first chapter, the reader can already see that the two of them will end up forging some kind of relationship.

The art in this first chapter looks rather rough, though. I read a much later volume of Claymore a few months back, and the art definitely has improved over time and doesn’t look nearly as rough as this chapter does.

Additional reviews of Weekly Shonen Jump:

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