BEASTARS Volume 4 focuses on relationships, as well as on the tensions between carnivores and herbivores.
BEASTARS Volume 4
Written by: Paru Itagaki
Publisher: Akita Shoten
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: January 21, 2020
This volume begins by focusing on the relationship aspect of the story. First up is Haru and Louis, and we get to see how the two of them met and how they ended up together. It also comes out how they can never have a long-term relationship, due to Louis’ family. Of course, it also doesn’t help that the society in this series really looks down upon interspecies marriage and breeding.
This volume also sees Legoshi learning that Haru has feelings for Louis. This discovery makes things more awkward for Legoshi than they already are, but Legoshi still has feelings for her. At one point, as he’s trying to talk to her while they’re in town, he grabs her to try to get her to listen. Unfortunately, bystanders think that since Legoshi is a carnivore, he’s planning to attack her. Haru leads Legoshi away to safety. Later, when the power goes out while getting ready for the Meteor Festival, Legoshi goes looking for Haru. Since it’s dark and the herbivores can’t see, she mistakes Legoshi for Louis. It’s such an awkward moment for Legoshi, and I came to feel sorry for him in that moment. Near the end of the volume, Legoshi tries to confess his feelings to Haru, but it’s rather awkward. The ending of this volume seems to be setting up for the real confession to take place at some point in Volume 5. It’ll be interesting to see whether it plays out that way or not.
We also see Juno, the first-year gray wolf in the drama club, trying to win over Legoshi. During this volume, she also sees Legoshi with Haru and has put two and two together. Up to this point in the story, she has seemed to be so sweet. But we learn later in this volume that she plans to become the next BEASTAR and has made herself Louis’ rival. I can’t wait to see how this new dynamic will play out as the story progresses.
Louis also gets some character development outside of his relationship with Haru. First, it’s one of the carnivore drama club members threatening to reveal a secret he learned about Louis while at the black market. Well, this blackmail doesn’t go as planned, since Louis carries a gun on him and uses it to frighten the carnivore. Later, when Louis goes to pay his respects of Tem’s murder, a carnivore tries to attack him… but Legoshi stops him before he can do anything. At this point, Legoshi realizes that Haru won’t reciprocate his feelings, so he’s going to protect her and Louis. We learn through a conversation Legoshi has with this would-be attacker that the carnivores are planning an attack on Louis in order to prevent him from becoming the next BEASTAR.
Through a flashback, we learn the exact secret that the drama club member was blackmailing Louis with. This flashback helps to give the reader insight into Louis’ character, which helps to better understand him. With this new knowledge of his past, I have developed a better opinion of the character. Yes, he’s still arrogant and can be a jerk, at least I now understand why he acts this way.
BEASTARS continues to get darker as the story progresses, and I have a feeling it’s going to continue getting darker as it keeps going. Volume Four planted some seeds for future directions for the plot to go in, and I’m looking forward to seeing where the series takes its various threads.