Title: Akira #4
Author & Artist: Katsuhiro Otomo
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Japan has collapsed. Russia has taken over the north. America is sniffing at the south, but is aware of Akira’s potential and so staying relatively neutral.
Tetsuo and Akira have created a New Japanese Empire in the rubble of Neo-Tokyo and are opposed by Lady Miyako and the remaining Special Children. Tetsuo is trying to grow his power but after a look into the mind of Akira he practically curls up in fear.
Akira, and what he wants, are still a mystery. But we now know that he is not some innocent little boy. He has ideas and plans of his own.
Kei and Chyoko are doing their best to protect the last 2 of the Special Children and to reunite them with Lady Miyako, who is herself a special child from an earlier experiment than Akira came from.
Kaneda is gone for 9/10’ths of the book until he appears with a building falling from space right at the end.
This is definitely a mature manga. There are several instances of male and female nudity and while they aren’t pornographic, they are graphic enough for any hormone driven teen.
The violence is another issue. One particular instance stood out to me. A man gets his face ground into glass fragments by another character. It was brutal and not for the faint.
But with all that, I was wicked impressed with this volume. I can’t really quantify why I liked this one so much, or even the whole series, but something just resonates in me when I read this. Maybe it is because men will always have that little boy inside who wonders if they are really cut out to be a Man. Or it might be the whole freaking nonstop action and superweapons and people doing incredible things with their minds.
I don’t know why. But I do know I like this.