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Ranmna 1/2

I haven't posted anything anime-related in a long long time now, but then again I haven't picked up any new series in a long long time now. The only series I'm still following is One Piece. It's the one. It's time again today. The latest episode comes out each weekend, and the latest manga whenever I manage to buy the books... which since the 64th one was also... a pretty long time ago.

Ellipses for added length since I feel I'm going overboard with the longs, though I do long to get my hands on some of the newer manga...

There used to be Naruto too, but as of this year the show's over, and I am not picking up the new one. Naruto's kid? The show seems to be going the same way Dragon Ball did, and I assume I'd feel similarly if I watched this one: that it just doesn't compare to the original. Like they're building upon the story to sell, and keep people entertained, rather than tell the story they set out to tell in the first place from start to finish, and leave viewers with a lasting impression (not like they didn't get sidetracked from that mission anyway).

Not that the motivation behind a manga is probably to tell a particular, or meaningful story either, but the original stories somehow feel all the more original in their original form, as did Dragon Ball, as I assume will Naruto, and as is also probably the case with Ranma 1/2.

I started on this manga a couple weeks ago, after a long sick week in which I finally managed to catch up on what material I had yet unread of Death Note (wasn't super-happy about the ending there), Rebirth, Ragnarock and Detective Conan. It started GREAT. Ranma might seem a bit arrogant and carefree a character, but he/she's a strong personality too: kind, passionate and naive, and as with all of Rumiko Takahashi's work: he (as main character) really leads the story.

Akane and the rest join in quickly, and make a combined effort to entertain more than I've been entertained in a long time, all the while building upon relations that... suddenly get butchered down.

For a while it seemed to be going the right way, but new characters keep popping up, the main plot gets hijacked, Ranma doesn't develop as a character, relations stagnate and run into unnecessary issues because of excess characters and simply the stubbornness of the main characters. Occasionally they see the light and you start thinking it might go back to how it was, but it never really does, and the more characters jump into the picture the messier it gets, till there's little else than comical value to redeem the reading.

It's fun, it's fast-paced and ferocious, and I do love the creative elements in the plot, but 3-4 books in the atmosphere's gone. It's like Macross 7 turned to Excel Saga. Or Naruto turned to 2x2 Shinobuden. Or Hunter X Hunter turned into... Bleach? Dragon Ball to Toriko? I can't find the right correlation between similar series to show the example I intended to! But don't take my word for it: it's copyrighted.

I'll keep reading though, hoping maybe it'll jump back on track soon, though not so hopeful... (ellipses for long face)

I've known about this title a long time by the way, but for some reason never picked up neither manga nor anime, so it's about time. I always thought 1/2 meant a half, but if you see the show it'll make sense soon enough. It's not bad but... not consistent. If you don't go in expecting that (maybe you'd be better off skipping the first and flawless chapters entirely - just run straight into the random) it's not bad.


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