Illustrated by Tarako
God has a team of designers at his disposal who will make all manner of creatures based on a very limited scope - things like a mammal able to eat leaves off tall trees (which results in a giraffe), or something “adorably uncute” (which results in the koala). The designers, all sharing a name with one of the planets, each have their quirks when designing animals: Mr. Saturn’s greatest invention was the horse, something he tries to reinvent for everyone challenge to limited success; Pluto makes terrifying animals but is also very fixated on how her creations will reproduce; Neptune makes all kinds of amphibious animals; and Jupiter has become the official taste-tester, making sure delicious animals have extra protection or defense mechanisms. At the end of each chapter is a note on the main, real, animals that were designed, providing some educational content for readers.
One of the endorsement text on the back from Anime News Network likens this to Cells at Work!, and that is a great comparison. This story fits on the vein of explanation manga that has loads of scientific content and approaches a topic with lots of brevity but accurate dialogue. Most of these chapters are presented in more of a slice-of-life way than Cells as the stories don’t really build on or influence the next chapter, until we get to the last one, where there’s a mighty cliffhanger to encourage readers to reach for that next volume.
Kodansha rates this for Teens (13+), and that’s likely due to the amount of space dedicated to discussing reproduction within the animal kingdom. Pluto is not shy about using the words “penis,” “testes,” “ovaries,” etc., so some basic knowledge of reproductive organs and function might be helpful.
Sara's Rating: 7/10
Suitability Level: Grades 8-12
Publication Date: November 22, 2017
ISBN: 9781646511136 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 7/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Animals, Humor
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