Continuing with tonight’s theme is the latest from the creators of “Death Note.” While that series was entertaining for a while, it jumped the shark with the death of its co-protagonist halfway through and then crashed and burned spectacularly at the end. I wasn’t too thrilled about the idea of reading another manga from writer Tsugumi Ohba and artist Takeshi Obata, but the premise of their new series “Bakuman” (two kids set out to become manga creators) was so substantially different that I figured I’d give it a shot.
While this series is different, it shares enough of its predecessor’s dense, wordy style that if you liked it there and have an interest in creating manga and seeing how it is created, then you’ll probably like this too. A healthy appreciation (or tolerance of) shonen manga cliches is also recommended as our heroes talk at length about their manly passions, and romance blossoms (kinda) for one of the leads. That stuff bored me to tears, but at the same time it’s still interesting to see the Shonen Jump formula applied to something that is so far outside its usual purview. For that alone, I’ll keep reading it but at this point I’m more interested in the characters’ manga than the characters themselves.