Illustrated by Hikaru Uesugi
Deadpool takes a trip to Japan and becomes deputized by Captain America to protect Japan from the evil-doers there. Immediately, we get a Spider-Man stand-in, Sakura Spider, and later, another Venom-type symbiote who achieved stasis with a super popular Idol named Neiro. Neiro affectionally calls her symbiote Kage (Japanese for Shadow), but he seems to not want nicknames nor to get attached to anyone. Through plenty of fourth-wall breaks and lots of references to other manga and anime series, Deadpool and his two compatriots try to thwart the plans of the supervillain Loki.
This book is literally laugh-out-loud funny. I haven't laughed this many times reading a manga since I read The Way of the Househusband vol 1. The fourth-wall breaks are really well done, but most of the humor comes from poking fun at the manga publishing industry. On the surface, this might seem like it would be a good bridge for comicbook readers to get into manga, but I think it would actually work the other way around. Comicbook readers won't have the prerequisite knowledge about other manga series or the publishing industry itself to truly appreciate the jokes. This volume's jokes are a lot more PG than most Deadpool comics. Several times, Deadpool makes reference or pokes fun at this being a "Shonen Jump Deadpool" version, and he points out that he can't do some of his normal gags because Shonen Jump won't allow it. There is a lot less foul language and lewd jokes than normal, which means this is a volume that could definitely end up on teen library shelves.
Uesugi's illustrations are over-the-top in a good way, taking lots of cues from Western Comics. There are some great action sequences with the characters in some really outlandish poses like Marvel fight scenes. The characters are all styled really well. Sakura Spider and Neiro/Kage are wonderful examples of blending the Marvel characters we know and love with typical manga illustrations. This could be a good series for readers who devoured My Hero Academia.
Sara's Rating: 9/10
Suitability Level: Grades 9-12
Publisher: VIZ Media
Publication Date: February 8, 2022
ISBN: 9781974725311 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 9/10, Suitability: High School, Manga, Action Adventure, Humor, Superheroes, VIZ Media
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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