The Drifting Classroom, Vol. 11 Paperback – Apr 15 2008
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About the Author
Kazuo Umezu was born September 3, 1936 in Wakayama, Japan. Umezu, who started drawing professionally in the 1950s, is considered the most influential horror manga artist ever. His many horror and sci-fi/horror works include Nekome Kozo ("The Cat-Eyed Kid", 1967-1968), Orochi, The Drifting Classroom (1972-1974), Ultraman (a manga adaptation of the TV series), Senrei ("Baptism"), My Name is Shingo, The Left Hand of God/Right Hand of the Devil, and Fourteen. His popular gag series Makoto-Chan (1976) and Again prove that Umezu is also an accomplished humor cartoonist. (He is also a musician.) Umezu's weird style, incredible ideas and sometimes terrifying imagery have made him a fixture of Japanese pop culture, and his work has been adapted into movies, anime and collectibles.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I think mostly what kept me interested in The Drifting Classroom was the sense of mystery attached to it. New elements keep coming into play in the wasteland where the school has been transported. While you're reading, you're never quite sure what will happen. At one point, a student's hallucinations become real, which could've been elaborated on across the characters. The concept disappears after a mini-story arc.
And I think that leads into one of my main problems with the series: it's too spastic. Everything has to be to the extreme, be it a character's reaction, or the quick resolution of a plot point, or that ALL of the teachers go crazy (conveniently), or the fact that 6th graders somehow know how to cure the black plague/do an appendicitis surgery. There's no subtlety to the story: there's quick conflicts always caused by unrealistically brash characters (who always die for this, such as when several first graders plummet to their deaths off the rooftop for wanting to "fly"), and then quick resolutions by a group of too knowledgeable students.
Things that happen in this story are too convenient. If it had spent more time with the kids NOT knowing what to do, it could've offered a deeper sense of dread. As it is, I was never really worried about these characters.