Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Bakuman Season 2 - Episode 19

Serialisation means great news for Takagi... or is it bad news?  Either way, he's now all set to marry Miyoshi - provided he can get the blessing of her parents, that is.

It turns out that convincing Miyoshi's dad isn't as tricky as you might think, as his own youth ties in to that of Mashiro's uncle Nobuhiro, giving him an understanding of the demands of both love and manga that come of that particular profession.  Impressed by his meeting with both Takagi and, ultimately, Mashiro, his consent to marry is given.

From here, we whip through proceedings at a fair clip, with the Shounen Jack New Year party seeing Ashirogi Muto ignored in favour of the current hot tickets of Nizuma and Iwase and thus further lighting a fire under our protagonists as they swear that they won't lose to +Natural.  The trouble is, such brave words look rather feeble against the massive hype and unprecedented sales of Jack as this new series is introduced, and lo and behold Tanto can't even best it with its opening chapter.  As we fast forward further, Ashirogi Muto's efforts create a stable series that's much-loved by kids, but is that really enough to satisfy the hunger of our authors for success?

I was worried where this week's episode was going after its latest ludicrous developments from a romance angle - I'm not sure why the series felt a need to link Miyoshi's and Miho's love interests in with those of their parents, but thankfully this was ultimately glossed over rather quickly to get back to the serious business of making manga.  Although there's nothing fresh about the formula by this juncture, it still remains interesting to watch if only in preparation for the moment when Ashirogi Muto break out of mediocrity and do something spectacular - until then, the show is carried pretty well by its characters and overall scenario, provided it stays away from delving too deeply into the lovey-dovey stuff.

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