1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
At first glance, this series seems to have it all. The plot is interesting and seemingly fail safe- futuristic Princess must (with the help of two potential romantic interests) locate 12 stones and the accompanying 12 wielders to awaken her slumbering twin. Along the way she'll meet new people, develope new maturity, and maybe even fall in love, eh? But alas, it was not to be.
THis series has many problems. Chief of these, the one it is just unable to overcome, is the length. You simply cannot fit over a dozen characters, the introduction of a whole new world, two love triangles, and several traumatic pasts into 12 chapters of manga and expect to see them through to a satasfactory conclusion- not that it doesn't try. This leads to a large amout of speeding, skipping, and shortcuts, which results in an emotionally lacking story that it's hard to bring yourself to care about- none of the characters go more than skin deep, and half the time it's just really hard to tell what's going on.
Setting aside the three leads (Kyoko, Sakataki, and Hizuki) we actually get to know a grand total of four telepaths. One of them (Karin) gets her own story arc. The remaining three are jammed together into another arc. For the remaining six, they are introduced all at once in the second-to-last chapter, and they probably get two lines each. As for the remaining chapters- Sakataki gets one, one's an introduction, there's a really pointless arc about a lace maker which adds absolutely nothing to the story, then they spend a couple agonizing over the infamous love triangle (don't even ask how that comes to a head, because it's got to be one of the least imaginative climaxes I've ever read). In short, I don't think the author planned ahead very well, and it shows.
Now, on to the artwork. Arina Tanemura's art, in Fullmoon O Sagashite, was nothing short of phenomenal. In Time Stranger Kyoko, it is sadly...not. The page layouts are cramped and confusing. Too many screentones!! Taken individually, each panel is lovely, but taken all together, they just don't work. In close-up shots where only the head shows, it's impossible to tell which charater we're looking at. The girls, in particualr, all look exactly alike. During the climactic moments, her artwork shines- but sadly, not even the best of artwork is enough to rescue a declaration of love where the relationship in question has had two chapters to progress.
The characters themselves...well, it's hard to judge characters we barely know, but most of them are just rediculous. Most of the female characters are teary and just come over as dumb and annoying, and all of the guys are very daring and devil-may-care and basically indistinguishable from one another. Even Kyoko, who sounded so cool in the description, is just another take on the classic manga heroine-klutzy, loyal, just this side of obnoxious, the point of a love triagle, and disarmingly innocent. Bleh.
Now, did I mention that there was no emotion? Well, I'm completely serious. Even during the big revelations and climaxes, when emotion is unavoidable- the characters reations are completely unrealistic! "Oh yes, brother, not to worry! I will gladly forgive you for the destrucion of my tribe, the death of my family, underhandedly trying to steal my true love, and trying to force me to kill you because you couldn't deal with your guilt in a more mature way! No problem! Now lets all live happily ever after!" Come ON! Hizuki's actions are completely despicable and premediated, any way you look at it, and they deal with it as if it was just a little mistake. HE ONLY MURDERED AN ENTIRE TRIBE! It made me mad X(
If you're looking for manga aimed at young or adolescent girls, then I'd recommend you give this one a miss. Your money is better spent elsewhere. Instead, try a different series- Fullmoon, +Anima, and Cardcaptor Sakura are all amazing series' with likeable characters, engaging plots, good artwork, and genuine emotional payback. Hope this helps!