Manga Review: Katabami to Ougon

Details: This series is currently ongoing. Also known as 片喰と黄金

Score: 7/10

Katabami to Ougon is a Japanese comic book about two Irish immigrants in the middle of the 1800’s. I generally enjoy historical dramas and this one is no exception.

The story takes place during the Irish Famine in the 1800’s. An Irish girl and boy survive the famine, immigrate to the United States and seek to reach California, find gold and get rich.

This comic is primarily meant to give a glimpse of the experience of immigrants in the United States in the mid 1800’s. It does not shy away from a lot of the ugliness of that era. For instance, many immigrants died from illness on the trip from Europe to America and the story shows a bit of that horror. With that said, this is still a Japanese manga so there are bits of humor in it as well. You should also expect to see our protagonist bump into famous figures from history. Even though it is kind of ridiculous that two random people would conveniently bump into the famous people of that era, it is still fun to see.

The art is pretty good and fits the tone of the story well.

Overall, this is a great comic that I will follow along with. I’ve only read a few issues, so my opinion isn’t steadfast. So far, I really enjoyed what I read.

Manhwa Review: Max Level Returner

Details: Also known as 나 혼자 만렙 귀환자. Currently ongoing.

Score: 7/10

Max Level Returner is yet another isekai Korean manhwa about someone who dies and gets transported to a fantasy world.

Our protagonist is living in present day South Korea when him and like a million other people from around the world get transported to a fantasy world that is governed by the rules of a role playing video game. They fight for a few years, but all of them die off until only the protagonist is left. Then he dies and is transported back to the real world. He learns that when anyone dies, they get sent back. Now monsters are invading the real world and he and the returned people are the only hope.

It’s all fairly generic Korean manhwa. Like in a lot of comics from this genre, there’s an emphasis on international politics. In case you didn’t know, Korean and Japanese currently don’t like each other that much. That comes through in a lot of Korean manhwa because Korean comic authors love portraying the Japanese as bad and crapping on them in their stories. There’s a bit of that here (as in Solo Leveling).

The art is fine. It does not rise to the level of Solo Leveling, which is a comparison I make because the story is similar and in the same genre.

Overall, this is a generic Korean manhwa. I read it because I’m a sucker for this genre, but that doesn’t mean it is good. It means my standards are low.

Snack Review: Chobani Greek Yogurt Pomegranate on the Bottom

Details: More information can be found at https://www.chobani.com/products/fruit-on-the-bottom/cup/pomegranate/

Score: 6.7/10

This is a decent yogurt with actual pomegranate in it. If you’ve never had pomegranate before, you should know that the only edible parts of the pomegranate are the seeds inside. While tasty, chewing on these seeds is not very pleasant since they all have a hard core in them. Eating a bunch of these things is like chewing on sand. That’s basically what’s wrong with this yogurt. It’s not the yogurt, it’s the inevitable crunch you get from each real pomegranate seeds you chew on. It’s nice they have actual pomegranate in it, but pomegranate is just not that much fun to eat. They probably should’ve pureed it or something, but then the customer wouldn’t know the pomegranate seeds were real.

Comic Book Review: Giant-Size X-Men: Jean Grey and Emma Frost (2020) #1

A little history about Morrison and Quitely’s run on X-Men.

Details: This is a one shot. More information can be found at https://www.marvel.com/comics/issue/82527/giant-size_x-men_jean_grey_and_emma_frost_2020_1

Score: 7/10

Giant-Size X-Men: Jean Grey and Emma Frost (2020) #1 is basically a big homage to a story written by Morrison and drawn by Quitely, New X-Men #121. It’s in many ways a panel by panel copy of that issue.

In this comic, Storm has an illness and Jean and Emma must go into her mind to figure out what’s wrong with her.

Even though this is mainly a copy of New X-Men #121, I still enjoyed the issue. There is almost no text here. It’s just some pretty, trippy art and imagery.

Overall, I enjoyed the issue. It’s been long enough since New X-Men #121, so I could enjoy a comic that mainly copies that concept. I mostly forgot about that magnificent Morrison series until this issue came out.

Comic Book Review: Marauders (2019)

Details: This series is currently ongoing. More information can be found at https://www.marvel.com/comics/series/27555/marauders_2019_-_2020

Score: 7/10

Of the many X-Men books that spawned from House of X and Powers of X, Marauders is one of the books that best held my interest. I think it’s because of how they set up the protagonist of this story, Kitty Pryde.

All the mutants in the Marvel universe have united and formed their own country, Krakoa. From Krakoa, new technologies have arisen such as the use of gates to teleport from on location to another and the ability to resurrect any mutant who died. Kitty Pryde, a key member of the X-Men, is seemingly unable to use these gates and is forced to take the long way to travel around. Seeing as how she cannot travel quickly, the ruling council of Krakoa decides to make Kitty captain of a ship to ferry other mutant refugees unable to use the gates to reach Krakoa.

Kitty has always been a fan favorite character, even more so for me after Joss Whedon’s run on Astonishing X-Men. This new series seeks to portray Kitty as the badass she is while also shining a light on the politics of the fledgling Krakoa.

What I like about this series is the portrayal of Kitty and how everyone reacts to her. One of the technologies that came out of forming Krakoa is the ability to resurrect any mutant who died. However, since Kitty can’t use the gates, there’s a general feeling that she may also not be able to resurrect. This makes all of her friends and loved ones extremely fearful for her because if she dies, she may never come back.

Also interesting is the internal politics of this new nation. Specifically, Sebastion Shaw, formerly the Black King of the Hellfire Club is in focus and his machinations show that just because all mutants live in peace officially, bad guys can still be bad guys.

The art is great and fits the tone of the book well.

Overall, this is one of the only two X-Men books that I’ve enjoyed since House of X and Powers of X finished. With the developments in issue twelve, I look forward to the politicking and comeuppance that will certainly come in future issues.