Sunday, 13 November 2011

Bakuman Season 2 - Episode 7

Despite his rather long-term hospitalisation, Mashiro is determined not to stop drawing manga, even if it means working through the pain barrier - something which even Azuki eventually seems to reluctantly understand and decide to support him with.

However, not everyone is thrilled with Mashiro's dedication, most notably his mother, who of course sees parallels between her son and his uncle given his untimely demise from overwork.  It's these concerns that she puts to Jack's chief editor when he pays Mashiro a visit, giving him suitable food for thought in the process.

It's this train of thought that eventually leads the chief editor to pay a return visit to Mashiro with the following announcement - after a meeting of editorial staff, it's been decided that TRAP will be put on hiatus... not just until Mashiro's recovery, but until his and Takagi's graduation from high school.  This is, needless to say, a massive shock - not just to Ashirogi Muto themselves, but also some of their fellow manga artists who happened to be visiting at the time of the announcement.  In view of this, the decision is made for a show of power amongst the manga artists who are friends with Mashiro to effectively go on strike until the decision is reversed.  But can their respective editors talk them out of this decision, and will they even want to?

Although not quite as good as recent episodes, this instalment rightly took its time in building up to and then delivering its announcement of Ashirogi Muto's enforced hiatus - a decision that sits atop an interesting set of ethical and moral dilemmas underpinned by Mashiro's age and made incredibly complicated by his mother's reluctance for him to carry on drawing manga.  Whether putting their work on hiatus is the right thing to do is an interesting theoretical topic for discussion in itself, before you even reach the question of whether the length of the hiatus is fair - regardless, we're certainly set for an interesting face-off between authors and editorial staff next week.

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