Go West! Vol 1 by Yu Yagami Manga Review

Title:  Go West! Vol 1

Author:  Yu Yagami

Publisher: CMX

ISBN:  9781401220273

May Contain Spoilers

Yu Yagami is a pretty funny guy.  I don’t usually enjoy comedies, but after reading Hikkatsu and now the first volume of Go West!, I think that Yagami has a great sense of humor, and he manages to take ordinary characters and insert them into some incredibly extraordinary circumstances to give his stories a kick.  In Hikkatsu, it was all about the allure of appliance repair. In Go West!, the name of the game is family reunions.  What makes it funny is the heroine, Naomi, has never seen her parents and the only thing she knows is that they are somewhere in the west.  She thinks.

Naomi arrives from the Far East with one goal in mind – tracking down her parents.  That’s going to be pretty tough goal, since she’s never even seen them.  They were separated when she was an infant, and she hasn’t heard from them since. She has no clue what they look like or even what their names are.  With the only goal being to head west, she finds herself a horse and hits the road.

Now, to make things really hard on herself, the horse she ends up with has a few problems.  Red Bullet doesn’t go anywhere but in a westerly direction.  That’s it.  Backing up, turning, or heading off in any other direction just doesn’t do it for him.  He will only travel to the west, and he won’t even veer off of his path if there is something blocking it.  I have always been told that horses aren’t stupid enough to walk, trot, or canter into things.  Red Bullet has never heard that, because he goes through anything that’s in his way.  Buildings, cactus fields, mountains.  He gives new meaning to the phrase “Blazing a trail.”

Before too long, Naomi has another problem – two different men claim to be related to her.   One is white and the other is black.  Naomi is Asian.  Her potential father and brother both have fairly plausible scenarios for how they could be related, but Naomi is having a hard time buying into any of it.  Especially when the two men feel the need to try to blast the other, and everything about them,  to kingdom come whenever they encounter each other.

Yu Yagami’s characters will never be considered bright, but they each have a fierce determination that drives them forward through any situation.  Like Red Bullet, they can only move towards their goals – veering off path is unthinkable for them.   Mix in a series of silly events, and the results usually earn a few laughs.

Grade: B

Rated for Teen +