Review: Weekly Shonen Jump (May 4, 2015)

Even though Japan’s Weekly Shonen Jump is off this week due to their Golden Week holiday, the United States edition of the publication released a special issue. This issue includes a chapter of Blue Exorcist, a chapter of Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign, and three chapters of a manga titled, The Right Way to Make Jump!

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.

Blue Exorcist CH:067

It’s revealed early on in the chapter that Bon doesn’t trust Shima, and that he just said they did to help bail him out. Meanwhile, Shima approaches Yukio with Lucifer’s offer of welcoming him if he wants to be saved. Yukio has a flashback of encountering Lucifer and being made an offer to join the Illuminati. Lucifer also claims that he can give Yukio power and awaken his true potential. Yukio’s response to Shima is to tell Lucifer that he doesn’t need saving. But after Shima leaves, it’s obvious that Yukio is having second thoughts. The next day, Shima tries talking to Bon while they jog, and Shima seems like he’s trying hard to convince Bon that he’s telling the truth. But in the end, Bon says that he still doesn’t trust Shima. Right at the end of the chapter, the reader seems be given a hint that Shima may not be entirely telling the truth after all.

This chapter has a strong focus on whether people believe Shima or not, as well as on Shima interacting with a couple of the other characters. I have to say that I’m having a hard time figuring out what’s true and what’s false when it comes to Shima, and I think that’s a testament to how strong the writing is for this story arc. I’m looking forward to seeing more with Shima and trying to unravel what’s really going on with this particular character.

Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign CH:033

Shinoa Squad begin attacking Crowley, but his two lackeys come in and intervene. Shinoa says they’ve failed and orders everyone to pull back and regroup. Yuichiro tries to go back into the fight, but he’s told to abandon Guren. The others in Shinoa Squad are ordered to stop Yuichiro. Guren also orders Shinya to go. It’s also revealed that Goshi has arrived and is in hiding. In the end, we see the others have to escape with Guren, and the vampires take Guren with them. Yuichiro keeps arguing that they have to go back and save Guren, and is followed by a flashback of Yuichiro from four years ago. In it, Yuichiro asks Guren why he saved him, and Yuichiro gets a conversation that he didn’t expect. Back in present day, Yuichiro declares he’s no good at teamwork and then proceeds to take two more curse stimulant pills. This means he’s now taken three in a short amount of time. Right at the end of the chapter, his body starts reacting to the pills.

This chapter really highlights the complicated relationship that Yuichiro has with Guren. On the one hand, Yuichiro can easily be frustrated by him, but on the other, Yuichiro does think of Guren as family. The flashback that we got in this chapter was a very nice touch, and it really touches on the complication of that relationship. But Yuichiro decided to act rashly when he took those two pills in an effort to try to rescue Guren, and now it looks as if there could be a very bad effect because of it. The next chapter should be showing the reader exactly what the effect is and how bad it’s going to be.

The Right Way to Make Jump! CH:027-029

This is a manga that is published digitally in Japan by Shonen Jump+, and it’s by Takeshi Sakurai. It’s a personal experience manga about how Shonen Jump is made. The manga focuses on two characters: Takeshi Sakurai and Editor MomiyaXX.

Chapter 27 opens with Sakurai and his editor coming to America. They have come to San Francisco, California to do some research on VIZ Media. At the hotel, they meet with a couple of people from the International Publishing Division of the Rights Department. Through interviews, they learn about the history of Weekly Shonen Jump in the United States.

Chapter 28 sees Sakurai and his editor visiting the U.S. offices of Shonen Jump. They meet Andy Nakatani, the editor-in-chief for the English Shonen Jump. Here, an explanation is given for how the English version of Shonen Jump is put together.

Chapter 29 shows them getting a peek at the content of the English Shonen Jump as well as issues that can arise in translations. Then Sakurai and his editor are seen being interviewed for the Shonen Jump podcast. Then they go to check out an American bookstore. On their final day in America, Sakurai and his editor do tourist stuff.

At first, I had wondered why three chapters later in the series were being featured, but after seeing that it focused on a trip to America and visiting the VIZ Media offices, I understood. This was kind of interesting, and I learned a little bit about how VIZ puts together this publication every week. This was a nice little extra to include in this special edition of Weekly Shonen Jump.

Additional reviews of Weekly Shonen Jump:

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