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Hmm, Eyeshield deserves some more attention, so it gets to be next.
Name: Eyeshield 21
Genres: Shonen, Sports
Author: Inagaki Riichiro
Artist: Murata Yuusuke
Publication: Weekly Shonen Jump
Start Date: August 2002
End Date: On-going
Number of chapters at review: 264
Number of chapters read by reviewer: 264
General Overveiw: Kobayakawa Sena is your typical shonen loser; weak, no good in school, bullied. He somehow manages to get into high school and thinks his life is about to settle down, when he is spotted by the members of the American football club. Short on members, they blackmail him into joining, where they discover his secret; Sena is an amazing runner! Armed with their secret weapon, they aim for their goal - Japan's National Championship, the Christmas Bowl!
Category Ratings: (1-10 scale)
Basically the best art in shonen right now, in my opinion. The attention to detail is amazing, the character designs are memorable and unique, and the backgrounds are very well done.
ES21 is a sports manga, so that constrains the author somewhat, however, within those constraints, Inagaki creates an incredible story. The twists are many and unexpected, and a larger story lurks underneath the obvious one. The tone shifts between humor, action, and drama effortlessly.
The cast is easily the best thing about this work. Inagaki is extremely adept at building sympathetic and believable characters, and he spends the time to make even the supporting cast three-dimensional. Even the opposing teams undergo character growth, and become real characters in their own right.
Along with the normal sports manga themes, there are a few other, more original themes present as well. One of the focuses is on the existential idea of "presented appearance vs. inner self" and how actions influence thoughts and behavior. Another theme presented in a rather intriguing way is the typical "inborn ability vs. training". While this is a common theme in all shonen series, the way it's handled in ES21 is rather interesting.
It's a sport's manga, after all. The basic plot and characters aren't really all that original. However, as I said before, the author does very well at rising above that limitation.
Truly an example of a manga that transcends it's genre. Anybody that enjoys shonen with an excellent cast and interesting plot should really do themselves a favor and check this out. Regardless if you are a fan of American football (certainly, I am not), Eyeshield has a great deal to offer.
Spoiler: Manga's images taken from earlier chapters to avoid spoiler, generally the art improves show
Feel like discussing Eyeshield 21 further? Go here:
Eyeshield Discussion Forums
Last edited by Luckas; April 16, 2008 at 10:18 AM.
Well I guess I can't argue the originality score too much. I mean in my knowledge there is no other American Football manga so in that sense I disagree but sports manga always have the same patterns so I guess you are being lenient in your score.
Overall the manga is a 10 for me xD
As I said in another post, 10's in any category will be extremely rare from me For reference, ES21 is easily in my top 5, and yet it only gets an overall 9, so...
Anyway, thanks for the feedback
Yes I know that each person has their own personal preferance but I can't help but think that on a week by week basis Eyeshield 21 packs in more goodies than even One Piece. I'll take it a step further.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that every week Eyeshield delivers an excellent chapter, a category that I feel isn't represented.
Last edited by Mooncrow; January 04, 2008 at 07:07 PM. Reason: remember that this a spoiler-free forum :D
Well, the ratings are given for the overall, rather than for the most recent chapters. Eyeshield has it's slower moments as well, though I agree it shifts between major arcs very smoothly =)
And I would love to debate the merits of the most recent One Piece arc, but this isn't the forum for that^^
Ahh...! Thank you for the review, Mooncrow! =D Altho, if it were me, I'd definetly give Es21 a 12/10 in characters XD XD I'm not much into sports, but Es21's characters are what have me completely HOOKED on this manga! X3 Heheheh...
12/10?..i prefer 20/10..hehehe
as a American Football fan and a Shonen fan I can't give nothing less than 10/10 to this great manga...
after all, it has my favorite character ever *that fucking punk, Hiruma Yoichi =3*
This is one of my top manga of all time. It even got me into American Football. I love the characters to death and the presentation of the sport is engaging without being over the top. I might say the originality score is a little low but I can definitely understand your reasoning behind the choice and will agree with it. Still, it's hard to take such a stale idea and make it fresh and enjoyable.
Eyeshield <3 very much...
Here is some simple review from me :
Art : 9
Good art... it got a lot of detail ... you could feel the emotion of each character
Plot : 8
yeah typical shonen plot... you lose.. you win.. and dream... but you will never bored because after all its sport manga ^^ so win and lose is common... but they really got good plot besides when playing... i really love the joke
Character : 9
Very well developed... i like Hiruma story
Theme &Originality : 6
Nothing new.. typical shonen and its a sport manga
Overall : 8.5
Good manga,.. you should read it
Last edited by Obxist; January 15, 2008 at 09:47 PM.
eventhough this forum is suppose to let people know more about lesser popular manga.. but as it seem the big 4 (es 21) included get more attentions than others...
Es 21 is a great series but the weekly doesn't work for me.. It meant it may take 2 months or more to finished a game but each chapters has each own interesting points..
must read 10/10
I agree with 9/10. The manga has good characters, most notably Hiruma, and although the outcome of alot of matches are predictable, the matches themselves are full of many twists e.g.
The characters are excellent in this series, each of the backstories of the enemies are each original and gripping. From racism, genius v hard work, desperation for victory and rivalry this manga has it all. But it really shines with it's great ensemble of main characters in particular Hiruma.
Great manga, even if you don't know the rules of American football you'll enjoy this manga.
To me, the real strong point of this manga is Character Development which most Sports Mangas usually don't seem to be able to enrich. the only other sports manga aside ES21 that was able to showcase Character Development is Slam Dunk. Forget about the other mangas! All they do is make the main characters super human!
Overall, I think this is a 9/10 to me as well. But if this manga existed way before I read slamdunk, I'd rate it a 12/10! But for that matter that means ES21 would be a 10/10 and Slamdunk would be 8/10! EGAD!!!
Last edited by fluke32; March 07, 2008 at 03:54 AM.