Bakuman Season 3 – 17

As we approach the end of Bakuman, it only makes sense that loose ends begin to be taken care of.

Iwase’s half of the episode was nothing more than a loose end to be tied. Since it’s been a while – it felt like that with the manga – she’s brought back just so Ashirogi Muto can settle things with her. In Bakuman one does not simply leave things sour with the other authors. This particular relationship is my least favourite, but I still found it necessary to push back into the right direction.

Iwase has certain antagonist qualities. She was brought into Bakuman to stir things up, but she’s been a lesser Eiji because of that. A genius writer that only now realises how hard it is to keep up with a weekly series, is a little hard to like.

Any how, Iwase’s back to being a rival so we can move on. An interesting discussion was actually brought up by Takagi: “What’s the best manga you’ve read ” The question is interesting because it does indeed require the reader to distinguish between best and favourite. Much like how Mashiro stated there’s a difference for him with his favourite Ashita no Joe and the one he found most interesting Barefoot Gen. I myself understand this, because my favourite isn’t the one I found most interesting.

Pre-empting the meeting with Sasaki, the conversation stirred up some debate. The meeting with Sasaki was, in a way, a tying up loose ends deal also. One big difference though; this was a relationship that we had more to know about. We find out Sasaki was acting almost like a strict father pushing his sons to the limit. He’s been harsh in the past, and now he can move on knowing he no longer needs to play the father figure. Interesting since Bakuman never relies on the fathers of our antagonists, just the father figure that is Sasaki.

With his seal of approval, the final battle commences! And what do our duo go for The dark hero story.

Perhaps a little clich nowadays, the dark hero story was a much beloved idea once upon a time. Even our original creators know this; DEATH NOTE was the shining example of this. Many speculate about the influence it had in CODE GEASS, another series from years back. I’ll leave my opinion out of this, since I think this discussion is another use of Ohba and Obata’s personal experiences.

As the duo said, they’ve arrived at this point through sheer experience. All those trials, hardships and suffering have led up to this one series. The one series that Bakuman has built up to. It’s time for them to surpass Eiji, if they can beat him at his own game. Can they What’s interesting is that Bakuman acknowledges the limitations of “non-mainstream” series. The non-mainstream is in fact limited; niche or “sleeper hits” tend to be popular but not overly so. It was Ashirogi Muto’s strength, but weakness at the same time. Now it’s no longer a weakness.

The stage has been set. Bakuman is entering the final battle! It’s both comedic and fitting for both sides to tackle a genre that’s very prominent nowadays. It’s funnier since Ashirogi’s series looks a lot like DEATH NOTE.

Final Notes (Mentioned Manga): Here’s the series the assistants mentioned.

  • adamevea

    A Masterful Review…and well said indeed. Yes the stage is set. And It is clear they are creating this series from their own experiences for sure. They show the same focus and build the story on the same strengths and weaknesses as the story itself. We have seen the focus shift thru the three seasons from initially the joy of creating balanced with their actual lives to more and more immersion into the work, leaving life and love behind. Will that love survive? Who knows? It often dosent for the real manga artists and producers. Both the editors and the artists themselves suffer from loss due to the demands some would way wrongly placed of popularity based on votes alone. It is like basing which TV shows and which Media Stars or idols succeed based on sales or polls. Quality what are the best ..based on what are the most popular not on what is the real best in terms of art, design, content and so forth seems the underlying crisis and issue of both this series and the lives of the creators of it, themselves… so this series continues to be excellent even when you can see the choices and the successes of the characters bring not happiness but more suffering. Eiji is not really happy, he is a bizarre misfit who is considered a genius even tho he lives alone and has no hope in any possible world of a partner, family or love ..and the fragile group based on Sasaki being the "Senpai" or father is a bit of a farce as well, it is a shallow fellowship that forces people such as Aoi into abusive and disgusting relationship using the power of the group and based on rather odd forms of bullying that masquerade as friendship. To continue to base their self worth on this strange system of voting for what is most popular and then making editorial choices based on that too, it is all quite odd to say the least. But it makes for a wonderful anime and exciting story and all of that is part of the charm and wonder of anime…it is an art form that is partly focused on itself and it creates its own nature as it evolves.

    Your reviews continue to inspire and be very very good Senpai..and i am glad you are here with us in this fascinating journey. Yes i agree Code Geass will be indeed fun to talk about at some time,, and other Dark Hero stories, which are still popular tho i see some new focus on the Semi Dark Heroine, such as Medaka Box, the super human or supernatural girl who seems to have replaced the Magical Girl as the female idol of recent anime…even Eru of Hyouka could be one of them….but there is always a lot to think about and discuss…and Bakuman continues to be a fine fine series.

    • azeriraz

      Eiji has often been compared to Oda (author of One Piece). The fact is that some mangaka display hikikomri-esque tendencies and stay out of all media. This is more of a safety precaution , but its still sad to see some of them live their life from the shadows and Eiji being the sad, partner-less and alone character really makes you think about the people responsible for some our favourite works.

      The (successful) mangaka's life is a sad one. I'd go as far as to say those that don't make it may be lucky in that sense.

      As usual, thanks for the praise and the always thought provoking comments.

  • adamevea

    thank you Senpai, i was afraid i had been too rough on Sasaki and Eiji, hope not. I was excited by the series and your comments and my thoughts just tumbled out. I re watched it and i do find the drama and the magic of the group makes more sense than after my first watching. It was a cool moment when the entire group was standing there outside of her room when she finally opened the door. And the changes in the editorial staff and among the series all continue to be exciting and to make you want to see more and learn more. Yes, i realize that many of the successful stars of the Mangaka world are NEETs, sadly in some ways, as it can be a tough life. But i also understand that response to the world of Japan and even ours today. And it takes tremendous dedication and just plain work to create even one page of a good manga, not to speak of a series or a life of series. I know that myself being in the process of learning the craft and find morning often arrives before i put down the "pen"….we use software now as much as the actual pen …

    I continue to be amazed at how powerful a medium manga and anime are….they are certainly beautiful, exciting, and really a huge achievement for Japanese art and culture, I re watched one of my favorite series again this week and marveled at every detail….as you see more you see more and understand more. Bakuman is a must for any serious student of manga and anime both..tho it focuses on the actual manga and manga still is the main source of inspiration and the model for anime.

    I do look forward to what will happen. Sadly with the best anime series and manga too, the more we love or enjoy a series, the harder it is to wait for the next issue or release. :) But it is a happy wait.