Monday, December 6, 2010

I Reads You Review: PSYCHO BUSTERS, VOL. 6/7

Creator: Akinari Nao (manga) and Yuya Aoki (story); Stephen Paul (translation and adaptation)
Publishing Information: Del Rey Manga, paperback-B&W, 400 pages, $17.99 U.S., $19.99 CAN
Ordering Numbers: ISBN: 978-0-345-51896-5 (ISBN-13)

Rating: “OT” for “Ages 16+”

Psycho Busters is a manga created by Akinari Nao from a story by Japanese novelist and screenwriter, Yuya Aoki. It follows the adventures of Kakeru Hase, a boy who discovers the world of psychic powers when a girl named Ayano visits him via astral projection. Soon, Kakeru is on the run with Ayano’s friends: Jôi, Kaito, and Xiao Long. Their adversary is Ikushima, the wicked and murderous supervisor of the “Greenhouse,” a laboratory where experiments on psychics are conducted. In time, Kakeru learns that he is also a psychic, a very powerful kind.

In Psycho Busters, Vol. 6/7 (which collects Vols. 6 and 7 of the regular series), the battle between Team Kakeru and Ikushima comes to an end, but not before shocking revelations in the origin story department. Ikushima manages to destroy the world, but there exists in a crack in time a place called the Tower of Time. If Kakeru and his friends can reach the top of the Tower and find the mysterious Akashic Records, they can restore existence. However, Ikushima has a mind-bending connection to one of Kakeru’s friends that will complicate the race to restore the world.

Psycho Busters is a like a shonen manga version of the X-Men. The characters here are essentially mutants, and they are hated and hunted for their powers. Like the X-Men, Psycho Busters has well-drawn characters in which the author provides enough details to keep the readers interested. Akinari Nao offers some visually imaginative sequences in the Tower of Time episode that propel this manga in a way that will keep the readers delightfully surprised. Too bad, this is also the end of the series. I enjoyed reading it, but these characters have more to say than what this relatively short series presented.


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