Manga Review: Bakuman V 10 by Tsugumi Ohba & Takeshi Obata @shonenjump

May Contain Spoilers

Bakuman has become one of my favorite series. Like One-Punch Man, it didn’t wow me from the beginning, but gradually earned my love. By volume 4 I was hooked, after wondering if I should continue on with a somewhat boring series about two middle school kids who vow become famous manga artists. While there was a lot of info-dumping at first, the series has settled into solid storytelling, with solid character growth for most of the characters. The women still don’t have much depth, but I guess I can’t have everything.

Moritaka and Akito are desperate to come up with a new series that is better than Crow or +Natural. If they can’t come up with something that is a surefire hit in six months, they will never work for Jump again. Miura is eager to help them, so he asks Hattori for assistance. I love Hattori, and was so glad that he and Miura started working together to bring the best out of Muto Ashirogi.

The stakes are high as the guys submit stories and are rejected by the editors. When they are down to the final submission, Akito, who is still coming up empty with ideas, drags Moritaka along on a stakeout of Hattori. And from their tailing of the editor, a new idea is born, one that they are both certain will be their ticket to finally one-upping Eiji Nizuma.

This was just a fun volume. The guys have some hard times, but they are resilient and bounce back from the disappointment of rejection. Eiji makes a few appearances, and my new favorite, Ryu Shizuka, gets a little more page time. I used to think Yamahisa was a complete douche, but he’s working hard to get Ryu out of his hikimori shell, with great results. I hope we get more time with him as the series progresses.

Grade: 4.25 stars

Review copy borrowed from my local library

About the book:

By the creators of Death Note! The mystery behind manga-making revealed!
Reads R to L (Japanese Style), for audiences T.
Average student Moritaka Mashiro enjoys drawing for fun. When his classmate and aspiring writer Akito Takagi discovers his talent, he begs Moritaka to team up with him as a manga-creating duo. But what exactly does it take to make it in the manga-publishing world?
Moritaka and Akito will need to come up with an amazing new manga idea if they ever hope to get back into Weekly Jump magazine, and they only have six months to do it! But with Hattori, their former editor, helping behind the scenes, the duo might have everything in place to create the perfect story.