Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Manga review- Magic Knight Rayearth

MKR is one of CLAMP's most popular mangas. Like CCS, it has prominent elements of fantasy with female protagonists. It has some romance but it is not serious. Themes of friendship, humanity and love are prevelant. A classic CLAMP manga set in a medieval empire.

Hikaru, Umi and Fuu are three girls from different backgrounds who co incidentally have a school trip at Tokyo tower on the same day. They look at each other and a blinding flash of light transports them to another world called Cephiro. It is a medieval world where the power of a person's will decides his/her ability. The three discover that they are magic knights summoned by princess Emeraude who has been captured by Zagato, the highest priest. She is the pillar of the world who has to pray for its peace. Since she has been abducted, peace has vanished and mosters have started appearing. The legendary knights have to find a mythical ore, free their knight spirits and save princess Emeraude. The second arc (vol.4-6) follows a different story of the second pillar and the candidates.

The first two volumes are hillarious with Umi constantly joking about Mokona. It takes a serious turn after that. The story was a sterotypical mahou shoujo manga. There is a clear distinction between good and evil. There's lots pf swordfighting and magic. It is a classic medieval fantasy. CLAMP tries to present some human emotions through princess Emeraude and Hikaru. The art is good but a little oldish. There's information about CLAMP at the end of every volume.

Themes, storylines and plotting, art , characters....the manga had nothing special to offer. It is just what you would find on reading any medieval fantasy. There are other better mangas with similar stories. The series was too conventional and offered nothing special. The story is a derivative of Lord of the rings or other medieval fantasies.

The only thing that was good about this manga was the comedy (especially Umi) in the first two volumes. The funny scenes made me read this manga furthur.

Overall, nothing special here. It cannot even be categorised as good since there is not one ounce of unpredictability or innovation in the manga. It is okay if you're a CLAMP fan but others can skip this one.

Art- 4.3/5
Overall- 3.8/5




Weak lead characters
Lack of plotting

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