A Little Too Clever for its Own Good, Yes; But “Mangaman” Still Delivers


I’ll be honest. I actually really loved “Mangaman.” 

It is NOT without flaws. For instance, it drags a little in the beginning, the ending was a little too neat even for a silly graphic novel, and sometimes it gets carried away with its own (admittedly considerable) wit, which is just as unappealing in a book as it is in a person.


“Mangaman” is still ridiculously fun.

The story is fairly simple, and (I believe) unique. Cultural and sociological implications aside (which maybe isn’t the best way to go), “Mangaman” goes like this: thanks to the experiments of a mad scientist, a boy from the manga universe gets torn from his world and deposited into the world of Western-style comics. Appropriately off-the-wall situations and adventures ensue. I thought it was really funny. To my mind, it kind of recalled “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” in a good way. (Just to be clear, any time I compare something to “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, it’s highest praise.)

The art is also spectacular. I was blown away on nearly every page.

“Mangaman” is a funny, clever, facetious clash of Western and Eastern graphic storytelling. If not constantly laugh out loud funny, it will have you snorting or chuckling on just about every page, and the story will absolutely suck you in. The book is well-written, beautifully illustrated, and so much fun. I think nearly anyone will find something to enjoy here.


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