Manga Review: Gamaran

Rurouni Kenshin left a deep impression in a lot of us manga/anime fans, leaving us with a search for more Samurai action. There has been quite a few titles released after Kenshin such as Samurai Deeper Kyo and Peacemaker Kurogane , but hail in comparison. I enjoyed Samurai Deeper Kyo and Peacemaker Kurogane, but they just didn’t have all the elements that Kenshin had.

About six months ago I stumbled across a manga called Gamaran. The description mentioned a giant tortoise style school and I thought that to be amusing and interesting so I gave it a shot. Surprisingly I was hooked after two chapters. Gamaran does not posses the same comedy style as Kenshin but is similar in other aspects. The story revolves around Kurogane Gama the son of a legendary swordsman, Kurogane Jinsuke, who is believed to be able to kill one thousand martial artists. Gama Resides in Unabara where it is also known as Haunt of Demons. The ruler of Unabara  Washitzu Naosata is looking for his successor, therefore calls his thirty one sons and tells them to search for whoever they believe to be the strongest martial artist of all. Each  of their chosen martial artist will fight against each other until only one is left standing. The winner will become the successor. Washitzu Naoshi, a child of the ruler, comes in seach for the legendary thousand man slayer, only to find that he had gone missing several years ago. After seeing Gama’s battle style, he instead chooses to ask Gama to come with him. Wanting to become stonger, Gama agrees to his offer, and that marks the beginning of Gama’s battle to become the strongest.

Gamaran is unique in its character design, unique sword styles and willingness to destroy characters. I thought at one point that this neat looking character is going to kick some ass but only to be cut down on the next scene. The manga has a nice balance of action,comedy and seriousness. I give Gamaran a 5/5.