Hit the “Random” button and see what comes up! In this feature, we take a look at whatever manga the Random Number God decides to throw at us and find out if it’s worth your time.
This time: Adabana, by Shirasaya
Aaaand we’re easing into the new year with a quick oneshot about swords and stuff. I’ll get something that actually has more than like five chapters next time, I swear!
Adabana reminded me quite a bit of Diary of a Drunk Man, which I rolled for Random Manga Theatre over a year ago. At least, they both feature traveling swordsmen who have special weapons and wander the earth. Wait, wasn’t that also the plot of Ruroni Kenshin? Yeah, Adabana isn’t terribly original in its premise. In short, several hundred years ago a man used the demonic sword known as Dark Flower to murder an entire nation in revenge for them murdering his nation. Now he wanders around seeking penance and redemption for his allegedly terrible deeds.
And so, because this is a one-shot, our nameless hero saves a cute girl, wanders into town, murders a bunch of bandits, and explains his life story in short order. How entirely unsurprising. At the very least, the execution is quite good, in particular the artwork. My understanding is that Adabana was the very first work of an amateur mangaka, which perhaps makes it more impressive than it would be otherwise. At the very least, I’d look forward to seeing something new by this artist.
Verdict: Has Potential
I’m the first to admit that using a tried-and-true plot with strong execution is a perfectly acceptable method, but some amount of originality is always preferred. Adabana is a hair’s breadth from being something better, and that’s a bit disappointing to see. Still, it’s better than a lot of the stuff I’ve found on this feature, so that counts for something.