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Author:Hashimoto Izou Artist:Tanaka Akio
Number of chapters at review:226
Number of chapters read by reviewer:50
General Overview: Ryo Narushima is a student at the top of his class with a bright future and a solid chance to be accepted into the presitigious Tokyo University. One day Ryo wakes up and before the morning is over, murders his parents while his younger sister watches in horror. Tried and convicted he is sent to a juvenile detention where he is repeatedly bullied. It is during this time that Ryo joins a karate class, where he suddenly realizes that this could be a skill used to help him escape his fate.
Category Ratings: (1-10 scale)
To me, the art is slight reminiscent of Gantz. Lots of details, the faces are very well drawn. The characters are not beautiful in a conventional manga sense, but more on the realistic side. The art for the action scenes are fluid, and very easy to follow.
You're not going to find many plots along the same lines of Shamo. Very unique, and unto its own. The author based the plot on a series of real life grisly murders that took place in Japan, and as a whole this is not a manga for the squeamish. Shamo makes Gantz look like it belongs on Sesame Street.
Although we focus on Ryo and his growth, there are a slew of other characters that are shown, but not followed in depth. It seems there were points for the author to flesh out certain characters, but chooses not to. That being said, Ryo's inner struggles and growth are fascinating in and of itself.
There are many themes to Shamo, from Japanese culture to the brutality of the penal system. From just doing a lite Wiki search and reading a little of what the author said in an interview, my understanding is that Shamo is also an attack on the Japanese education. It's also a look at how someone who is granted a bright and promising future has a long, hard fall.
You might be hard pressed to find a manga quite like this. Read for yourself, this manga is as original as it gets.
Overall: 8 out of 10
The best way to sum up Shamo is one of those things where you know you shouldn't be watching, but you just can't look away. Fans of Gantz may find this one appealing, though I've heard others say that the violence is too senseless. Mixed with the fact that it is based on real life killings, Shamo may be too realistic for some readers, or an intense experience for others.
Spoiler: Mature Content. Manga's images taken from earlier chapters to avoid spoiler, generally the art improves show
Last edited by Luckas; April 16, 2008 at 12:15 PM.
Shamo is amazing and one of my favorite mangas. Very good review but I think it deserves a little bit more in terms of character because rarely do we see a character transform as a person in the way that Ryu transforms through out the story. I might have given the art an 8 because i love how the fight scenes are drawn. Anyway, its a great review thanks idlefingers!
Thank you, Gdup. Long time no see, btw.
The only thing that stopped me from giving Shamo a higher rating on Character is because Ryo is the ONLY character with any real development. Other characters of notable interest have been introduced, but no real progress was made.
That being said, Ryo's development is incredible.
you have a good point, Pansori, but yeah your kinda right. Up to the 50th chapter there isn't really another character who develops seriously, but more characters are introduced as the story goes.
It's incredible because he turns from wimp into the most detestable main character ever >_>
Great serie! Hope the wild fan project will (keep) scanlat(e)ing it!
Easily one of my favourite mangas, though I can't remember when I started to read it, either it's way back or I've just messed my memory up with alcohol, either way I hope they don't go and ruin it by turning it into an anime, that'd be evil.
^Does anyone know the current state of the manga? With the litigation that took place between Shamo's mangaka and the writer(?), I haven't heard anything new about Shamo in months.
It's just now very slow releases...Vol 24 came out recently. Manga-Sketchbook haven't picked it up yet, there a bit slow.
thanks for the review....
start downloading right now hehe...
it already have 25 volume right now