Title:Superior ---> Superior Cross
Genres:Shonen, Action, Romance, Fantasy
Publication:GanGan Powered ---> GFantasy
Number of chapters at review:21
Number of chapters read by reviewer:21
General Overview:Superior centers around a demon queen responsible for the slaughter of over half of the worlds human population who is known throughout the world as Maou-sama and her travels with a hero, who is on a quest to destroy her. With no idea that one of his companions is the very one he's looking to destroy.
Category Ratings: (1-10 scale)
The art is not great. Backgrounds and background characters receive little detail and are pretty bland if they are drawn at all. The main characters get much more detail and are done well but the lack of effort put into the background and repeated use of characters designs for unimportant characters really hurts the overall quality of the manga. Superior does have some finely drawn comedy scenes scattered throughout, which are done in a similar way to the ones in Full Metal Alchemist.
The hero's goal is to create a world where monsters and humans can live in peace instead of fighting until only one species is left standing. So he won't kill anything, monster or human, except for Maou-sama whom he blames for the current state of the world. He has sworn to seek her out and kill her for the sake of ending this conflict, as well as other more personal reasons. Sheila(aka Maou-sama) becomes fascinated with his way of doing things and in short order she begins to realize, much to her own surprise and dismay, that she's falling in love with him. This manga uses the adventures along the way as an excuse to delve deeper into the emotions of the main characters, more than progressing toward an ultimate goal. Since the goal is standing right next to the hero all along, he just doesn't realize it.
Sheila is really the centerpiece of this manga and she is probably my favorite character ever. I can't really say much more without some small spoilers. The hero, however, comes out of his emotionally charged past as a virtual clone of "Vash the Stampede" from Trigun. The other main characters are entertaining and have a solid emotional base even if they do come straight out of fantasy manga stereotypes most of the time. The non-main characters have very little depth to them at all, they are simplistic cookie cutter characters that are mainly used as plot devices or scenery. So I have to take off some serious points for that.
The themes all revolve around the ongoing struggle between human and monster, with neither side being completely good or completely evil. The themes are prejudice, hate caused by fear of that which we don't understand, love, hope, the pain which killing leaves in its wake, and ending a cycle of hate through kindness and forgiveness. None of the themes really stand out as more important than the others.
The "bringing peace and understanding to a world filled with hate and desire for revenge" is nothing new but Sheila(aka Maou-sama) is. There is no training or building up strength for her, her power is absolute. She could have killed the hero from the very beginning of the manga if she wanted to. Her fear of him discovering her identity doesn't stem from any threat he might pose to her. What she truly fears is him hating her. To her that is far more terrifying than death could ever be. Through one small alteration of a tired old story line the author has created something fresh and new.
This is a good manga with one of my very favorite characters. It's both funny and has some excellent emotional heft to it. Sadly it does suffer a bit due to some not so well done artwork and some characters that are to obviously created off of fantasy manga stereotypes. I recommend this manga to anyone who is looking for a manga rooted more in emotion than action.
Spoiler: Manga's images taken from earlier chapters to avoid spoiler, generally the art improves show
Last edited by Jammin; February 06, 2010 at 09:18 AM.
It's a great manga I think. Well, the central theme is great which I find it absolutely wonderful. It gives it depth. Why kill monsters or why kill humans? Is it because we're "different?" One of the characters that I like is the first hero who quit as the first hero. (Did that made any sense at all? If not read the manga!) The design of the Hero is just great because he sees that humans are not better than monsters and monsters aren't lower than humans. Both humans and monsters could co-exist peacefully and that is the ideal world. Now the hard part is, could he bring about those ideals and live without betraying those ideals?
Anyway, I think the art is wonderful but it's odd that everyone seems to be so young and skinny. When I first saw the first King, I though how could someone like that have such a child for being so young. Yet, the King was actually old but so young looking. You could tell that the artist loves drawing beautiful people.
Ahem. Good review.
JanimeS, The only scanlation group that was doing Superior, may have dropped it. So anyone thinking about reading it may want to take that into account. I know, i hate an unfinished story.
The reason i say "may have dropped it" instead of "have dropped it" is because supposedly they said something similar before then decided to do it when the new volume came out.
I hope certainly hope they change there minds, as they have done a very good job with the previous 7 volumes(21 chapters = 7 complete volumes.), and have me quite addicted to the story.
Last edited by Jammin; January 23, 2009 at 06:08 PM.
Yea, I grew attached to the story. It was different from the normal monster killing heroes out there. Has Superior gotten licensed? It was getting good.
I'm not sure. I doubt it.
Superior is one of those odd things that somehow just doesn't seem like it has much of a broad appeal. As great as the story is, the art is in an odd area between shoujo(pretty boy art as i like to call it) and shonen. I can't help but think a lot of people that would otherwise really like the story take one look at the art style and decide it isn't for them. I almost did that...
As much as i love it, maybe this manga was doomed not to catch on enough to warrant scanlation. Maybe, if we're really lucky, Square Enix(it's publisher) will see it's potential as an anime. I think it would have much broader appeal in that format and the story would take well to animation.
Last edited by Jammin; November 27, 2008 at 06:13 PM.
I'm happy to report Superior has been picked up by some heroic individuals. You can find their website along with releases here at Superior Scans. With this much deserved reprieve for the series i would like to recommend once more. That people give this series a read. It's awesome and it seems to be getting better by the chapter.
Last edited by Jammin; January 23, 2009 at 06:11 PM.
It is a good series
shit this series is really good
Just finished the first 2 chapters..am really glad to have started it haha
Personally I liked the art for this manga, I'm not entirely sure why every one seems to think its so bad, maybe its just me
But the over all review for it was pretty good.
It seems that superior scans has stopped with the translation of this, with only a Volume and a half left!
Its very disappointing, the story seemed like it was just about to come together with the main plot they have been working around.
If anyone finds out that someone is going to translate the last Volume and a half, let me know!
The manga was good, but I agree that it would probably make a better anime, LOVE to see that in the future!
For those interested in the series, Superior has changed names and publications.
After volume 9 it's called "Superior Cross" and it's in the magazine "GFantasy". It's the same series and all it's just got a new name. The first volume of Superior Cross has been scanlated and can be found at ENXAME's website. This is the same valiant group that finished volume 9.
Last edited by Jammin; February 06, 2010 at 09:34 AM.
For those who may have not kept up with the series. It is now completed and fully scanlated.
I liked the ending too! Epilogues FTW!
Last edited by Jammin; March 08, 2013 at 09:23 AM.