Category Archives: Family Reviews

Reviews written by my daughters & husband

Jenny's Journal: Pokemon: Rise of Darkrai

Pokémon: The Rise of Darkrai

By Ryo Takamisaki
Publisher: Viz Media/VizKids
Age Rating: All Ages
Genre: Game/TV Tie-in/Action

Price: $7.99

Rating: ★★★★★

Storyline:

Ash and his friends have discovered that they’re walking toward the ancient Alamos Town after befriending a girl named Alice. Once they’ve arrived, they find out that the sacred garden of Alamos town has been ransacked, the mysterious Darkrai appears, appearantly not pleased and tells Ash and everyone else to leave immediately. Strange things have been happening as well…

What I liked about this manga:

Practically everything. The best parts were Brock (he’s so loveable) and the Palkia, Dialga and Darkrai battle scenes. Being that I’m a great Pokemon fan, that adds to the liking of this manga.

What I did not like about this manga:

Almost nothing. The great graphics and how it’s extremely alike to the movie makes it hard not to like the manga.  Although, the character’s scripts make it really obvious to what just happened. It makes me want to say “Dur da durrr.”

Nope, not even a script change. Baron Alberto is quite annoying, however.

Krissy's Korner: Pokemon: The Rise of Darkrai

Pokémon: The Rise of Darkrai
By Ryo Takamisaki
Publisher: Viz Kids
Age Rating: A (All Ages)
Genre: Game/TV tie-in/Action

Price: $7.99

Rating: ★★★★★

What is the story about?

It’s about Ash, Pikachu, and Darkrai.  Darkrai fights both Dialga and Palkia before he disappears into space.

What did you like about the story?

I liked the fight against Dialga and Palkia.  I also like the pokemon Dialga.

What did you dislike about the story?

I hate it when Baron turned into Lickilicky, because it is freaky.  I also hate the way they drew Infernape.

Would you recommend the story to kids your age?

Yes.

Krissy's Korner: Kat and Mouse Volume 1

kat-and-mouse-1.jpg
Kat & Mouse Volume 1: Teacher Torture
Story by Alex de Campi / Art by Federica Manfredi

Publisher: Tokyopop
Age Rating: 8+ (Tween)
Genre: Mystery
Price: $5.99

Rating: ★★★★★

What is the story about?

Kat moves in to a new city and a new school.  She meets someone named Mouse and makes friends with her.

What did you like about the story?

I liked Kat and Mouse’s style.  I liked the story.  It was ineresting.  There was a weird mystery going on.  I thought the experiment would be fun to do.

What did you dislike about the story?

There was nothing I disliked about the story.

Would you recommend the story to kids your age?

Yes.

Jenny's Journal: Pokemon Diamond & Pearl Adventure Volume 1


Pokémon: Diamond and Pearl Adventure! Volume 1
By Ihara Shigekatsu
Publisher: Viz Media

Genre: Action/Adventure
Rating: All Ages
Price: $7.99

Rating: ★★★★★

Storyline:
Hareta, a ten-year-old boy who has been living in the wild for four years, starts his journey with Mitsumi, who is Rowan’s assistant. Hareta accidentally woke a sleeping Onix and sends out Piplup, though not in a ‘friendly’ action. Onix calmed down after many attempts to stop Onix without Piplup. Then, the day after, it seems that Hareta has reached Piplup’s heart with his attempts to stop the same Onix, who seems to be under a spell. After bringing it to it’s senses, Hareta, Mitsumi and Piplup start their journey to reach the legendary Pokemon, Dialga!

What I liked about it:
Everything about it, actually. The way Hareta was eating Piplup on accident was funny and, all the chapters after it were hilarious, as Hareta throws Piplup’s ball far off, into trees, into a lake, and possibly more. Also, in the second chapter, “Hareta’s Very First Pokemon Battle!!”, he flings it into an uncomfortable spot for both the camera man and Piplup. It was pure funny, especially because of the fact that it’s on TV.

Could you make it better:
No, the manga is right on, there isn’t any mistakes. The drawings and the dialogue are what make this manga so hilarious.

Which chapter is my favorite:
Chapter two: “Hareta’s Very First Pokemon Battle!!”, because, as explained above, Hareta throws the Pokeball into an uncomfortable spot for both the camera man and Piplup, making Piplup very embarrassed and depressed. Also, his first actual battle was with Roark, and he also won it, winning his first badge (although it didn’t taste very good).

Brian’s Spot: Vampire Hunter D Volume 1

In 1985, there came Vampire Hunter D, an orginal video animation, adapted from a novel by Hideyuki Kikuchi, about a world overrun by vampires and the vampire hunters who sought to bring them under control. It became a classic, not just because it is one of the best animated vampire movies around, but because of the compelling story, interesting visual style and wonderful characters.

Now, Saiko Takaki is bringing Hideyuki Kikuchi’s novels to the printed page. To date, there have been 17 novels featuring D and the world of the far, dark future and hopefully, all of them will be manga-ized.

Hideyuki Kikuchi’s Vampire Hunter D Manga Volume 1
Adapted & Illustrated by Saiko Takaki
Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing
Age Rating: Young Adult 16+
Genre: Horror
Price: $12.95
Rating: ★★★★★

In the far future of 12,090 A.D., mankind has ruined the planet. Through nuclear attacks and pollution, mutants have arisen, including the return of supernatural creatures like vampires and werewolves. It is the vampires, incredibly, that actually save mankind and return order to the world where they reign as nobles for more than 5000 years. However, the nobles have largely become corrupt and decadent over the years, living in luxury and viewing the humans as little more than cattle.

Into this world comes D, half-human, half-vampire with a score to settle with the nobles. He is hired by Doris Lang, a beautiful farmer who has caught the eye, and the fangs, of the local ruling noble, Count Magnus Lee. He seeks to turn her and marry her, much to the dismay of his vampiric daughter Lamica. Can D save Doris from the final bite of Magnus Lee, the claws of the jealous Lamica and the swords of the townspeople who fear Doris bringing the wrath of the vampires down upon them all?

The first volume is basically a retelling of the 1985 movie with a few new characters and a few alterations. If you’re familiar with the original movie, this is going to seem very familiar, but that doesn’t make the manga bad. Far from it in fact, we get to see a lot of elements that either didn’t make it into the movie or were altered for the movie. The art style is very similar to that in the film which makes it easy for those who have seen it to feel at home in the vampire world.

I did say that there are some elements that changed and one of those is the inclusion of a lot more nudity and suggestive dialogue. When Doris hires D in the manga, her payment to him includes his use of her body and she shows it off several times in the first volume. While I shouldn’t have to point out that this is for an older audience and has plenty of blood and body parts flying, anyone who is seriously opposed to nudity may want to think twice.

If the movie was something you enjoyed, this manga is right up your alley. It captures the feel of the movie perfectly, so much so that I kept thinking about the Japanese voice actors as I read their lines. This is a manga for fans of the horror, fantasy and action genres who are looking for something a little different than the standard fare. Pick up the first volume, I can’t imagine you’ll be disappointed.

Krissy's Korner: Magical Pokemon Journey #1


Magical Pokemon Journey Volume 1: How Do You Do, Pikachu?
by Yumi Tsukirino
Publisher: Viz Media

Rating: All Ages
Genre: Game

Price: Only available used

Rating: ★★★★☆

What is the story about?

A new trainer named Hazel that started without a pokemon. Soon, she goes into the grass and finds a Pikachu. She trys to draw Pikachu but fails.

What did you like about the story?

I liked it when Hazel yelled at the Ekans. I loved how they drew the pokemon. I also loved how they made the Clefairy act.

What did you dislike about the story?

I hated when Pikachu was knocked out. I also hated the way Hazel drew Pikachu.

Would you recommend the story to kids your age?

Yes

Jenny's Journal: Hell Girl Volume 1

Hell Girl Vol 1Hell Girl Volume 1
By Miyuki Eto
Publisher: Del Rey Manga
Genre: Supernatural
Rating: Teen (13+)
Price: $10.99
Rating: ★★★☆☆

Summary:

Hell Girl is a girl named Ai Enma who has recently transferred into a middle school. She will come to people who want revenge on their enemies via a strange, eerie website named Hell Corresponce that appears only at midnight. She will bring those people down to Hell. The only price is your soul; you will suffer in hell after you die.

What did I like about it:

I liked the ever-so-beautiful Hell Girl’s looks and actions. Graceful and kills enemies with her phrase. The drawings and vocabulary were perfect as well. There was also one story I liked, which ups the rating.

What did I dislike about it:

The stories were interesting but it was disgusting because of what happened to the people that were about to be sent to hell. Also, the death of a puppy displeased me, as I like animals.

Could you improve:

No, you couldn’t improve on the manga. My reason why is because of said graphics and vocabulary. Also, by just looking at the pictures, you could somewhat tell what was going on. The revenge was funky and weird, but it was done because that person did something so that the one who wants revenge would get what they wanted.

My favorite story:

Chapter Four: The Inaudible scream. Why? It has cute puppies. It also increased my rating due to one death of a puppy named “Lucky” and a sort of “reborn” Lucky as a tiny puppy. Also, the revenge on the selfish and evil doctor was like heaven to the girl for killing the puppy.

Jenny's Journal: Dragon Drive Volume 6

Dragon Drive Volume 6Dragon Drive Volume 6

By Kenichi Sakura
Publisher: Viz Media

Genre: Fantasy
Rating: All Ages

Price: $7.99
Rating: ★★★★☆

Storyline

Kohei is pushing himself to the limit. His body can’t take much more training. Meanwhile, Silver is waiting as Reiji and Hikaru go on to the trials to get Shinsaber. Meanwhile, Maiko is captured and taken to Guan-Coo, who isn’t how Maiko expected it to be. Guan-Coo seems gentle, as it acts like a baby.

Review

Once again, it is pretty much hilarious. The battle scene at the end gets the reader tense. It’s quite a charm.

What I liked about it

Guan-Coo is very funny. He’s cute and acts like a child.

What I didn’t like

Once again, nothing. I like it all.

What you could do to make it better

I have no idea.

Is this suitable for children?

Yes.

Brian's Spot: Phantom Volume 3

Phanto Volume 3Phantom Volume 3
By Ki-Hoon Lee/Seung-Yup Cho
Publisher: Tokyopop
Genre: Action
Rating 13+
RRP: $9.99

Rating: ★★★★½
Reviewed by Brian Henderson

After K activates the untested Cerebus with the newly installed Aurora system, he takes on Kas Stein, the evil corporate warrior who has a mysterious past with Matilda the drill instructor in the skimpy outfit. We find that AIs like Cerebus aren’t very useful for fighting against experienced TC pilots, except this time when K and his mech sync perfectly and take out Kas at the last second. Everyone gets picked up just before the base self-destructs; K and Matilda are injured but will recover, but Kas, dragged out of his mangled TC, has lost his arm and likely his sanity.

Continue reading Brian's Spot: Phantom Volume 3

Krissy's Korner: Kingdom Hearts Volume 1

Kingdom Hearts Volume 1Kingdom Hearts Volume 1
By Shiro Amano
Publisher: Tokyopop

Rating: All Ages
Genre: Fantasy
Price: $5.99

Rating: ★★★★★

Storyline:

It’s about Sora, Donald and Goofy trying to destroy the Heartless. They go through space, and go through stories like Alice in Wonderland.

What did you like about the story?

I liked the characters Sora and Riku. I also liked it when this guy used a camera like the Kamehameha from Dragon Ball.

What didn’t you like about the story?

I was scared by Sora’s happy face. (Page 73) (Not really)

Would you recommend the story to other kids your age?

Yes.

Brian’s Spot: Phantom Volume 2

Phantom Volume 2Phantom Volume 2
By Ki-Hoon Lee/Seung-Yup Cho
Publisher: Tokyopop
Rating: 13+
Genre: Action/Mecha
RRP: $9.99

Rating: ★★★★½

Reviewed by Brian Henderson

K agrees to work for the anti-corporation organization Athena, mostly because they promise to help his girlfriend recover if he does. He goes off to their training facility in the middle of the desert to prepare to fight against the mega-corporations, still not quite convinced that the people he’s fighting with aren’t just as much terrorists as those they fight against. Unfortunately, the mega-corps discover their secret base and launch an all-out attack to cut off the head of the serpent. K and his fellow trainees are left to defend the base and allow the civilians to escape and finally, K is reunited with Cerebus, the super TC that no one but him can operate.

Continue reading Brian’s Spot: Phantom Volume 2

Jenny's Journal: Dragon Drive Volume 5

Dragon Drive Vol. 5Dragon Drive Volume 5

By Kenichi Sakura
Publisher: Viz Media

Genre: Fantasy
Rating: All Ages
Price: $7.99

Rating: ★★★★☆

Storyline

After Kohei brings the Jinryu Stone,his leader pushes it away, as it is fake. Meanwhile, Reiji is traveling on to find the dragon Shinsaber, to save the world. When he meets Koryu, after saving his life, Reiji and the mysterious Hikaru are locked up.

Review

Nice. It’s very funny in some points, and the cute pictures before the start of a new chapter are hilarious. “Look, time flies!”

What I liked about it

Three words: Hilarious and cute.

What I didn’t like

Nothing. It was simply spectacular.

What you could do to make it better

Nothing.

Is this suitable for children?

Maybe, but there’s a lot of blood and a dragon’s head gets cut off.