Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (April 27, 2015)

This issue includes chapters for One Piece, Food Wars!, Bleach, World Trigger, My Hero Academia, Toriko, Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment, Black Clover, Nisekoi: False Love, and Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal. There’s also an excerpt of an interview with Masashi Kishimoto and Eiichiro Oda, as well as the first chapter of the Naruto: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring mini-series.

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:784

Chaos ensues as the birdcage is shrinking. We then return to Luffy and Doflamingo’s battle, where Luffy has declared that he will use Gear Four. Luffy begins blowing himself up until he becomes a “Bounce Man.” With this, Luffy is able to make his arm retract into his body as he readies his punch for Doflamingo, and Luffy is able to cause his enemy to go flying. Doflamingo ends up landing in the center of town. It’s then revealed that Luffy can use his newfound springiness to fly, which he uses to get a great kick in on Doflamingo. We see Luffy get a couple more powerful hits on Doflamingo before the chapter ends.

Go, Luffy! It looks like he’s finally turned the tables! Maybe now that Luffy has gotten the upper hand, we’ll finally start seeing the Dressrosa Arc wind down. From what I’ve seen of One Piece over the years, once Luffy turns the tables and can start beating up his foe, it usually means that it’s just about over for his enemy. It’s not that this is a bad arc, but it’s been going since I started reading Weekly Shonen Jump a little over a year ago; but even at that point the arc was already in progress.

Food Wars! CH:116

It’s revealed that the Stagiaire skills test lasts for four weeks, with a student featuring four different locations during that time. At this point, they’ve made it halfway through. Then we see some of the other students as they start being weeded out due to not accomplishing achievements at their assigned locations, as well as students trying their hardest at their assigned locations. But then, instead of seeing Soma at the remaining two locations, the story jumps ahead in time two weeks. When Soma returns to the school, he finds that he’s received quite a few Shokugeki challenges. Then a second-year named Tetsuji Kabutoyama approaches him and asks for a challenge. Soma decides to take him up on it and asks to do it now; he also declares that he’ll accept every single one of the challenge letters.

I was actually surprised to discover that the final two weeks of the challenge were basically glossed over. I thought for sure that we would have seen Soma going through the other two locations. All I can figure is that the author was getting bored with the Stagiaire stuff and wanted to progress the story to battles at the school. And now that Soma’s made a name for himself, he’s got a lot of challengers to compete against; however, I don’t think we’ll be seeing every single one of these being depicted in the manga. But the stage is definitely set for Soma to go up against Tetsuji, and I suspect that will begin in the next chapter.

Bleach CH:624

The chapter finally lets us see what happened to Ichigo, Yoruichi, Chad, Orihime, and Ganju. Since Ichigo passed out, we get to see through flashbacks what happened to them after Uryu attacked. It’s also revealed that Kon was hiding in Ichigo’s robes. As Ichigo is trying to figure out how to get back to Reiokyu, Yoruichi surprises everyone by what she does and who appears right at the end of the chapter.

This chapter ended up being an exposition chapter rather than a chapter to truly advance the plot. But considering that I’d been wondering what had happened to Ichigo and the others, I’m not too upset that this chapter focused more on explaining what happened to them. But I have to say that I was just as surprised as Ichigo was when a certain character made an appearance at the end of the chapter. It’ll be interesting to find out how this character returned, why they returned, and what they’re going to do to help.

World Trigger CH:101

The chapter opens with Yuma having a flashback of a discussion he had with Replica, and then we return to current time. Yuma and Murakami are battling it out. Meanwhile, Osamu orders Chika to support Yuma. We then see that Taichi from Suzunari is taken down by Nasu. We then return to Yuma and Murakami’s battle, which is heading straight for the bridge. As Chika fires, both Yuma and Murakami fall into the river. Yuma uses this to his advantage and causes Murakami to bail out. Unfortunately, since Kuga is missing one arm and one leg on his Trion body, it appears that he’ll be washed out of bounds.

Well, we finally reached the conclusion of Yuma and Murakami’s battle. It didn’t think it was too surprising that Yuma ultimately prevailed; in fact, I would have been more surprised if Yuma had been the on who had been forced to bail out. I liked getting to see the flashback of Yuma and Replica, because I have to admit that I miss having Replica around. But I guess having Replica leaving is showing how much Yuma has learned from him and how much he has grown and progressed. It’s going to be interesting to see how this particular Rank War will progress in the next chapter.

My Hero Academia CH:040

Midoriya and Shoto’s battle continues, and the two lunge at each other. After the explosion, we see that Midoriya is out of bounds, so Shoto is the one to move on to the next round. Afterward, when Shoto’s father is happy about his son has put his childish rebellion aside, Shoto tells him that what he did out there had nothing to do with his father; in face, he had forgotten all about him. We then see Midoriya recuperating and learn that his right arm is shattered. At the end of the chapter, we learn that Midoriya finished in the top eight.

The way the battle had been building up, I was so sure that somehow Midoriya would pull through and win. So I was genuinely surprised when he ended up losing. But I think this was the more realistic way to go with this match, especially with the character development that Shoto went through during it. Since Midoriya is out of the running and we learn that he finished in the top eight, I suspect that this particular story arc is over. It’ll be interesting to see where this series heads to next.

Toriko CH:321

Toriko and the others are partying. Toriko and the others are joined by friends who have come from the human world. It turns out that if you drink pair, you can see food spirits. Guemon and Maury, who are in a state of suspended animation, and Pukin works to get them out of it. It’s also revealed that Komatsu has awoken to his gourmet cells and that he harbors a gourmet cell demon. One of the people there, named Zongeh, seems to bear a spitting image of the Monkey King’s lover, Bambina, and the Monkey King seems to think he’s her.

Wow, this chapter was kind of a mess and all over the place. Yes, there was a lot of exposition, but I felt like I was being bounced around in several different directions. Hopefully this story arc with the monkeys and apes is truly just about over. I’ve been thinking it should be almost done for the past couple of chapters or so, yet it’s still going on. Personally, I think this story arc has just about run out of steam, and I’m hoping that we can move on to another story arc sooner rather than later.

Gakkyu Hotei: School Judgment CH:020

The classroom session gets underway. Information about the baseball bat that was found is revealed. Yui also works hard at trying to prove that Tento is guilty, as well as trying to remove the layers of mystery surrounding him. Abaku questions other witnesses and gets information about a noise. Suddenly, Sarutobi enters the room, who had been looking for something that Abaku asked him to look for. With this, Abaku has set his trap, and it appears that Yui has suddenly remembered something from the past.

This chapter is definitely building up to revealing who the perpetrator of the attack on Shiratori. And the end of the chapter also seems to indicate that the whereabouts of Red Ogre in this classroom will also be revealed. Since it appears a lot of major information will be coming together in the next chapter, that it could end up being the last one for the series. It’ll be interesting to see what ends up being revealed in the next chapter, and finding out whether or not this series will actually be coming to an end.

Black Clover CH:011

A new dungeon is discovered, and it’s explained that dungeons are like ancient tombs with relics and crazy magic traps. When dungeons are discovered, it’s the Magic Knights who are in charge of exploring them. It turns out the Wizard King has specifically asked for Asta to explore it. We then see Asta, Noelle, and another guy. With his anti-magic weapon, Asta is discovering several trap spells in the dungeon. The guy accompanying Asta and Noelle senses there are others in the dungeon and goes off on his own to find them. Just then, a trap spell is activated which uses high-level plant creation magic and captures Noelle; fortunately, Asta is able to save her. But Asta is caught by the trap in the process, and somebody saves him. It’s then revealed that Golden Dawn is also sending a few people into the dungeon, and that Yuno is the one who saved Asta.

Well, the good news is, Black Clover continues trying to move away from being a Naruto clone. The bad news is that this concept with the dungeons felt like it was lifted straight out of the Magi manga series. I hope that that borrowing or copying setups and concepts from other series isn’t going to be a running theme in this series. But I have to say that it was nice to see Yuno again, since we haven’t seen him in a while.

Nisekoi: False Love CH:168

The beginning of the chapter shows the garbage bags from the locksmith being picked up by the garbage collectors. Raku and Onodera are surprised to find each other at the legendary fir tree. But just as Raku is about to confess his feelings, the tree lights up. After they get the stuffed animal, Onodera receives a call from the locksmith saying he found the pendant and key; it turns out his granddaughter liked them and took them home. Later, when Onodera returns home, she asks Haru asks about the pages of the book, and Haru insists she’s never seen any other pages besides these ones and would make up an ending for the story. Their mother then tells Onodera that someone had given it to her ten years ago. It’s also revealed that the locksmith couldn’t open the locket with the key without breaking it. Marika isn’t happy about the vibe she’s getting from Raku and Onodera, and decides at the end of the chapter that she’s pulling out the big guns.

It turns out I was right last week when I expected some kind of a miracle for the key and lock to be returned to Raku and Onodera. So Komi trolled the audience once again. Sigh. And it looks like the next chapter is shaping up to feature Marika. Double sigh. I can’t stand Marika, and I generally don’t enjoy the chapters that focus on her. So I’m not expecting much from the next chapter if she is indeed the focus for it.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal CH:53

The battle between Yuma and Astral begins. Astral has three Number Cards, and Yuma keeps using various Gagaga cards. As Astral attacks, we see Yuma’s life points falling from 4000 down to 400. When it’s Yuma’s turn, he says he’s going to hit Astral with all of the tactics that he taught him. With his turn, he summons Gagaga Girl, makes her level match Gagaga Magician, and creates an overlay. He now has Utopia, Messenger of Light. Yuma activates Utopia One’s effect, uses all its overlay units, reduces his life points down to 1, excludes all of Astral’s monsters, and inflict their amount of ATK as damage. But Astral activates his Rank Gazer trap card, which increases his life by 300 times the rank of the XYZ monsters on his field. Astral’s life points still end up getting knocked down to 300, but Astral activates Rank Gazer’s other effect. Astral summons Thunder Spark Dragon. But then Yuma activates Rank Up Magic-Shining Force. As Yuma tries to attack Astral’s monster, Astral activates a quick-play spell. Astral’s life points are knocked down to 100. Astral ups the ante some more, and the chapter ends with him summoning Utopia Kaiser, the Numbers’ king of kings.

After reading this chapter, it felt like my head was spinning. It was pretty much constant card summoning and attacks, with the ante constantly being upped throughout the chapter. Since it seems Astral summoned a major monster at the end of this chapter, I really hope it means that this duel will end sooner rather than later. I really need a breather after trying to follow this chapter.

Masashi Kishimoto & Eiichiro Oda

This is an excerpt of an interview with Masashi Kishimoto and Eiichiro Oda that appears in the official guidebook for Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto exhibition. This excerpt is about how Kishimoto and Oda met each other.

Naruto: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring CH:001

This is the first chapter for the new Naruto manga mini-series that focuses on Naruto’s son and his peers. At the beginning of this chapter, it’s announced that the academy graduation ceremony is coming up. We see that Sarada isn’t excited about the exam; in fact, she doesn’t seem interested in becoming a shinobi. Later, as Sarda is talking with Cho-Cho, we learn that Sarada doesn’t get to spend much time with her father. Then we see Naruto training with Boruto and Sai training with his son. Later, when Boruto is talking with Sarada and Shikadau, Boruto says that the Naruto he’s been training with is a shadow doppelganger. Sarada looks a little sad when she sees the fathers and sons interacting, and then it’s revealed that Sarada has never even met her father. Sarada starts pestering Sakura for answers, and the two of have a tense moment. Unfortunately, Sakura gets so upset that she manages to destroy their house. When Sarada digs through the rubble, she finds a picture of Sasuke that includes Karin and Suigetsu. Sarada is upset when she sees it.

OK, I really liked this chapter and how it’s started to expand on what we saw of the new generation at the end of the final chapter of Naruto. It turns out that not everything is going as smoothly as it appeared in that last chapter. A strong focus of this chapter was definitely on some of the kids interacting with their fathers and how Sarada doesn’t have this in her life. From what’s said here, it appears that Sarada has never even met Sasuke. Of course, now that Sarada has seen this picture of Karin with Sasuke, I’m sure she’s going to have a lot of questions for her mother by the time this mini-series is over. I’m really looking forward to seeing how Kishimoto is going to be progressing this story for the new generation.

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