Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service, vol. 8

The story: This time around the gang attempts to recruit some new club members, with mixed results. Later, they hire a part-timer and encounter a wedding planner who works for both the living and the dead -- not to mention yakuza. In the last tale, dead infants are abandoned at the local hospital and the gang is determined to find out why. All the while, Sasaki and Karatsu unknowingly grow closer for inexplicable reasons.

Reaction: There was a lot of Japanese culture on display in this volume, mostly in the chapter involving a marriage ritual for the dead and the yakuza thugs who profit off of it. It was interesting to learn about rural traditions and other Far East customs. Otherwise, this was a good volume, but perhaps not as good as the last one.

Deep thoughts: In the same wedding story, the yakuza are shown shooting and killing someone. This is unusual because Japan has a strict gun control policy in place. Unlike the United States, handguns are increasingly rare and rifles and shotguns highly restricted. In the democratic world, Japan has some of the most stringent laws in place.

Artwork: Some truly lonely young people are introduced in this volume, one of whom looks like a female version of Yata, carrying the same constant eye-shielding bangs. Unfortunately, she ends up having a particularly gross death. And on the "eww" scale, this book is definitely leaning towards the truly icky when we're shown and given a narration of how to clean a person's body following death.

The verdict: If only... This may not be Eiji Otsuka's and Housui Yamazaki's best volume, but it's certainly better than a lot of other shonen manga out there. Regardless, I'll still be reading the next volume as soon as I can get my hands on it. Here's to hoping they expand on the resident hacker's and psychic's connection soon! Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service is available in the U.S. from Dark Horse.

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