My first Manga experience

Magic Knight Rayearth Volume 3 by Clamp

Okay, so it didn’t go that well really, my first Manga experience. For one thing, I haven’t read Volume 1 or 2 so I didn’t have a firm gasp on the story to start with. I just picked it ’cause I liked the cover and figured if I was going to understand graphic novels as a genre I needed to read at least one.

Then came the reading. I knew I had to read it back to front (at least by my normal standards) but I didn’t know the order of blurbs. After about 40 pages of barely piecing together what was happening  I talked to one of the fabulous circulation ladies who was reading a Manga on her lunch break and she explained that you read them in a “S” shape.

That helped a lot.

After that I started to understand the action at least. Not really the plot (although I have a general understanding of it) or the characters (there are so many!) but at least I got the point. In the future though I’m going to start at the very beginning (a very good place to start).

Because I don’t feel like I got a lot out of this one, I’m going to avoid talking about things I’m not sure I understand and instead talk about the somewhat didactic ending. I don’t really mean didactic in a heavily moralistic way like “The moral is don’t talk to strangers” or  a boring way like “So that’s why you plant your corn seeds in early May” but I still feel like it was set up for the main characters to have a revelation of sorts that they would then share with all the other characters, and by extension, the reader.

And it was a revelation that rang really true to me, one about friendship and love and how important it is to share your life with other people (this may have to do with me getting ready to move to an apartment very far away from all the people I’d choose to bring with me if I had to go to another dimension and fight evil). Still, it did feel very… pointed I guess, like the actions of the characters weren’t enough to get this across, which is unfortunate because I feel like their determination to be together DID speak louder than the conversation afterwards.

When I got to the end of the book I found a page explaining how to read the book. If I’d tried to read it the other way around, I would have read that and everything would have made more sense.

I feel like reading and enjoying Manga is a skill set I haven’t developed yet. But I’m working on it.

Last movie I watched: The new Conan the Barbarian. It was terrible. Thank God for Jason Momoa’s abs.

Last TV episode I watched: The last episode of the current Dr. Who series. It was amazing. And heartbreaking. I still want to cry about it.

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