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review SPOILER ALERT! 2014-12-06 05:31
Durarara!! (manga, vol. 4) creator Ryohgo Narita, art by Akiyo Satorigi, translated by Stephen Paul
Durarara!!4 - Ryohgo Narita,Suzuhito Yasuda,Akiyo Satorigi

To be honest, the plot so far is kind of boring, and I'm pretty sure I dislike Mikado. What's he going to do if he starts feeling bored and has no outlet? He may have started Dollars as a joke, but I'm not sure it would have gone viral so fast without the occasional boost from Izaya. Part of me wonders if Mikado wouldn't secretly like to be just like Izaya, able to direct things from the sidelines and amuse himself by messing with everyone's heads.

I wasn't a fan of Mikado's efforts to overlook Anri's friend's stalking behavior. Just because she risked her life for Seiji's sake doesn't mean her past actions weren't stalking. Also, dang but Seiji and Stalker Girl were creepy. At some point, Seiji's going to try to kill Stalker Girl again in order go back to his beloved head. Stalker Girl is no better. Here's what she was fantasizing about: “I'll find that head, grind it into a pulp right in front of [Seiji], pour the remains into my mouth, and make it part of my flesh and blood.” These two make my skin crawl. And Mikado paired them up, OMG.

Anyway, I might continue with this series, just to see more of Izaya bringing on some chaos, but I'm only mildly interested in what's going to happen. I can't seem to connect with any of these characters...which is probably a good thing, since they're nearly all insane.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2014-12-06 05:28
Durarara!! (manga, vol. 3) creator Ryohgo Narita, art by Akiyo Satorigi, translated by Stephen Paul
Durarara!! 3 - Ryohgo Narita,Suzuhito Yasuda,Akiyo Satorigi

This volume is craziness. It also turns

Mikado, the naive country boy, into some kind of powerful and intelligent mastermind. How does Izaya fit into this, and what does he want from Mikado?

(spoiler show)


I enjoyed Shizuo's appearance in this volume, and that, in the midst of all this general craziness, he was at least sane enough to realize that a guy who says he loves a girl (er, girl's head) but doesn't know her name is probably cracked.

This was the volume when I realized that the series might end up skipping over many of the characters that the anime had covered in more depth. I was disappointed, because, quite frankly, I have zero interest in Mikado. I'd prefer to see more Shizuo and Izaya doing battle, or even more Celty and Shinra.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2014-12-06 05:26
Durarara!! (manga, vol. 2) creator Ryohgo Narita, art by Akiyo Satorigi, translated by Stephen Paul
Durarara!!, Volume 2 - Ryohgo Narita,成田 良悟,Akiyo Satorigi,茶鳥木 明代

The cast list in this volume includes 15 characters. That's a lot of characters to follow. While I found this volume to be a bit more interesting than the first one, it was still confusing and kind of screwed up. For example, we have Shinra. Given a choice between a declaration of love from Celty and a chance to vivisect her, I honestly don't know which option he'd go for. Then there's Seiji's sister, whose love for her younger brother has a definite incestuous bent. Seiji's got his own issues – the person he currently loves the most isn't a person at all, but rather just a head.

There's a bit of stalker humor in this volume. Anri, the girl Mikado likes, had a friend who tended to fixate on guys and stalk them. Seiji was one of her victims. On the plus side, I don't think it was presented positively. Everyone seemed to recognize that Stalker Girl's behavior wasn't healthy. On the minus side, no one tried to stop her.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2014-12-06 05:22
Durarara!! (manga, vol. 1) creator Ryohgo Narita, art by Akiyo Satorigi, translated by Stephen Paul
Durarara!!, Volume 1 - Ryohgo Narita,成田 良悟,Akiyo Satorigi,茶鳥木 明代

Mikado is a naive high school student who just moved to Ikebukuro hoping for adventure. His friend Kida shows him around and tells him about people to avoid. Mikado sees an urban legend, the possibly headless motorcyclist, and meets Izaya, a scary guy who had planned on shaking down a couple suicidal young women for money.

I'm kind of glad I saw a bit of the anime first, even though it's already apparent that the two differ. All the scene changes would have been much more jarring, otherwise. I at least knew in advance that the series flits between a large number of characters, each with their own larger-than-life stories.

At this point, all I can say is that Izaya is scary-crazy, Mikado is a naive idiot, and Celty is looking for her head and may or may not be in a relationship with Shinra, the doctor. There are a lot of characters to follow.

The art style seems a little odd – kind of skewed. Or maybe the proportions are odd? Anyway, it's nothing I can't get used to. Visually, I prefer the anime, though.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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