Thursday, December 13, 2012

QUICK LOOK: Attack on Titan + anime trailer!

A manga which started out as a seemingly modest shonen series has gained traction to become a huge sleeper hit in Japan! Since winning the Kodansha Manga Award it has gone on to sell over 10 million copies as of its 9th volume! This manga is 'Attack on Titan' by Hajime Isayama!

Anyone looking for a manga series that's different from the mainstream norm really ought to try it! It's the rare 'indie' manga that has managed to grab mainstream appeal, avoiding practically all cultural trophes and pitfalls that are normally associated with manga & anime by paving its own path with something dark and unique!

While the artwork won't win any awards, and at times is definitely the weakest link of the manga, it is detailed and serviceable enough (and sometimes even providing excellent visuals) for the story it is unfolding; a time where humanity is on the brink of extinction due to numerous attacks by gigantic human-like creatures reminiscent of the Greek Titans of old who massacre and eat them! The story centers around two characters, Eren and Mikasa, who as children watched their parents die in tragedies attributable to the terrible titans, as well as the darker side of mankind! They grow up to join a group of infantrymen skilled for the sole purposes of protecting the last known remaining human city from the titans. A city whose only protection is a series of large walls that keep the titans out. Occasionally a group of scouts will risk going outside the walls to explore the world hoping to find supplies and other strongholds of humanity. But the outside world is so dangerous, they never make it far, nor do many of them make it back alive.

Attack on Titan's strength is in creating intrigue about the world we are seeing. There is a mystery as to where mankind actually is, what lies beyond the walls of the city, what is the political structure of the city, and what precisely are the titans and where did they come from? It explores both the thrilling dangers and military manoeuvres for dealing with the Titans, as well as the human side of the equation about camaraderie and competition, fear & hopelessness, tragedy & triumph. And hopelessness is the chief mood of this series, which makes it all the more uplifting when those few rare moments of courage & victory pull through! 'Attack on Titan' manages to be quite imaginative in its portrayal of human ingenuity against the might of the enemy they face, and there are always plenty of surprises in store! And it is precisely us wanting to see how this group of surviving humans, facing the Titans on one end, with the political forces of their own kind at their back, and the high strung emotions boiling amongst them, deal with this momentous task! Fans of games like 'Shadow of the Colossus' and 'God of War III' and the grappling wire of 'Just Cause' will get the idea right away of the kind of mentality and approach that is needed in dealing with the titans! Except that Eren, Misaka, and the band of soldiers they lead are more like Wander and not at all like Kratos, though they do possess some of Kratos' techniques within their weaponry and maneuverability which makes for quite a spectacle!

A Japanese live action film adaptation of 'Attack on Titan' is currently in production, and an anime series will be releasing in Japan in the Spring of 2013 directed by Tetsuro Araki who directed 'Death Note' and 'Highschool of the Dead'! A trailer for the anime has just been released and the quality of the animation is excellent for a TV series! Check it out for yourself below!

Anyone looking for the 'Attack on Titan' manga can find it available for the U.S. Cover Price at our store! The 3rd volume of the manga just released this week! Drop by and check it out!