In this volume, we get our resolution to the Kamoshida storyline from volume one, we add a new character to the group, our group gets a name, and they start broadening their outlook on this whole morality police thing. Similarly to volume one, the main conflict in this series centers around not nice adults doing bad things to people who are basically children. Our next big bad seems to be an artist who verbally abuses and exhausts his apprentices until they can't take it anymore and quit. One of the apprentices has asked Ann, our new member of the team, to model for him. This would be a perfect opportunity for the Phantom Thieves to take out another jerk adult!
So if I was a teenager reading these books, I would probably agree that all the terrible adult characters were real people. As an adult, I cringe a little every time we find another adult abusing children. The abuse is not always physical or sexual, as was the case in the first volume, but it still makes me slightly uncomfortable. However, the Phantom Thieves do decide to help out their classmates with each other, so we see that it's not just cringy adults treating each other horribly. In the end, when the abuser has a change of heart, their apologies are heartfelt and do shed a little light on why that behavior is unacceptable. In that way, I suppose we are getting a little bit of a happy ending. I do like that the team seems to be coming together in this volume and shaping their identity as a group. The three teens are distinctive individuals within the narration, and they work well together when the need arises.
As for the art, the shading is what I think I don’t like. Whatever basic shading plaid block that’s used on everything is used on things like tongues, and it’s a little distracting to see the same checker pattern on people's faces as is in the shadow they cast on the ground. Otherwise, the art is really nice, and the Personas are all interestingly drawn. The costumes of the three teens are also interesting and detailed.
VIZ rates this for Teen+, most likely owing to the nature of the jerk adults throughout the series. There is also some mild cussing.
Sara’s Rating: 8/10
Suitability level: Grades 10-12
This review was made possible with an advanced reader copy from the publisher through Edelweiss. This graphic novel will be on sale April 14, 2020.
Read previous volumes in this series: vol 1
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: High School, Manga, Fantasy, School Age, Action Adventure
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