Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi Human” vol 9 by Gamon Sakurai

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Sato’s killing spree continues as the assault on this supposedly high security building and Kei’s plan falter. It seems Sato will follow through with eliminating everyone on his kill list despite all opposition.

I gotta hand it to this series. All the powers these demi-humans possess are explored to every potential use, in a lot of ways I never would have thought of. This makes Sato really terrifying. He just has no fucks to give but his endgame seems a little sloppy. I mean, starting a war where it would just end up giving more demi-humans a chance to use their powers against him and for humans to eventually neutralize them? I think he’s just out to cause chaos at this point and I say this because (spoilers a bit here) when his ally, Tanaka, saves a woman on Sato’s kill list and tells him “It’s wrong to kill her. Don’t do it.” Sato just goes “Okay!” and moves on. Why would he do that? Why all of a sudden just capitulate to some random change of heart from a person who he could – and would –  turn on at any moment?

At any rate, epic battle with a good conclusion. I’m looking forward to the next one. 4.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 8 by Gamon Sakurai

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Kei is trying to draw Sato out as the psycho seems to be letting is subordinates do all the fighting. The cat and mouse between Kei and Sato reminds me a bit of L and Kira from Death Note but the absolutely INSANE ways Sato takes advantage of his abilities had me flipping the pages almost faster than I could read them! This series gets so dark and twisted but also very smart. This review is kinda short because I don’t want to give anything away but… There’s a woodchipper… Holy shit.

Out of all the manga series I’m reading right now, this is the one I’m most hyped about. I wish the volumes were a little longer but overall, this is a nearly perfect series. 4.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 7 by Gamon Sakurai

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Trying to protect the remaining targets on Sato’s list, Kei and Ko hold up in a well fortified building to position themselves to battle while Sato and his minions invade the building and pick off guards like they’re fish in a barrel.

Ok, brain jarring cliffhanger aside, how the fuck did Kaito get there!? What bugs me the most about it is the very likely possibility the action will be halted later to explain how he got there! And the action really ramps up here so an interrupting back story chapter will really kill the flow.

Watching the demi-humans use their powers creatively in battle is both fascinating and horrible. They may be immortal but they still feel pain. Getting your brains blown out over and over is a nightmare. I expect to see more psycho demi-humans in this series later.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 6 by Gamon Sakurai

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Kei and Ko are now training with Izumi, Dr. Ogura, and Tosagi so they can get ready to battle Sato. We learn some back story on Izumi and finally find out what happened to Kaito – the boy who helped Kei escape several volumes ago. Turns out Kaito got sent to jail for his good deed and has an arrangement  (you can’t say friendship) with fellow inmate and demi-human, Kotobuki.

Despite Kei’s completely understandable lack of faith in anyone, it was refreshing to not only see Kaito again, but see him care about others. He’s not posturing about it or long winded speeches; in fact, if someone says that attitude pisses them off, Kaito just says “Yup.” and moves on. He is how he is and that’s it. I hope this dark and demented world doesn’t kill that feeling. I don’t care if they prove him right or wrong – I hope they don’t and retain moral ambiguity – I just don’t want Kaito’s positive attitude broken.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 5 Gamon Sakurai

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After Sato’s horrific terrorist attack, it’s all out war between the humans and demi-humans. Now that the world sees demi-humans as violent minsters, Kei is forced from his safe haven and back into the fray.

Despite how much of an asshole Kei is, I can’t fault him for doing whatever it took to keep from being maimed, tested on, or hunted. Thanks to Sato, nobody believes a demi-human is anything other than a monster out to kill everyone. So, Kei teams up with Ko; the guy he locked in a truck last volume, to find allies to fight Sato and his terrorist group.

This volume starts giving us a few answers but still leaves you wanting more. I’m looking forward to see how Kei will develop as things get worse.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 4 by Gamon Sakurai

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Kei is hiding out in a small village while Sato plans his war against the humans. He gathers together a small group of other demi-humans and plans a bunch of terrorist attacks with the aim of ruling the country. Those who decide not to participate, Sato plans to kill.

Okay so. remember in the last entry for this series when I said I was hoping Kei would get more proactive? Well, careful what you wish and all that. He gets understandably paranoid. And with Sato being a fucking moron (because being a scary person, an immortal, and having abilities people fear won’t make everyone like you a target) Kei has a totally relatable reason to believe anyone who knows anything about him is a threat. Thanks to Sato, the general public believes all demi-humans to be human murdering terrorists.

Also? Trigger warning for this volume. It’s a spoiler but I don’t care: Sato takes over a passenger plane and crashes it into a building.

Fucking asshole…

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 3 by Gamon Sakurai

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With Kei’s escape, Tosaki’s in deep trouble for letting that sample get away. And now, with video of what Tosaki’s organization does to captive demi-humans, other demi-humans are gathering together to strike back. Tosaki seems to have gone rogue and – of course – has deeply personal reasons for wanting to hunt down demi-humans at any cost.

Even through this volume, I’m liking Kei’s attitude. He’s not sure if helping others is worth it and he learned the hard way that just because someone offers to help you, it doesn’t mean they’re not in it for their own self-interest.

And learning more about Kei as a child makes me wonder if he will continue to be like a snowflake in a storm or take some control over his fate. I’d like to see him be more proactive.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 2 by Gamon Sakurai

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Now on the run, Kei seeks out others like him for protection and ends up captured. At the mercy of twisted and horrible experiments, Key may lose his mind before anyone can rescue him.

In this volume, we also learn about the Shinya Nakamura incident – an event referenced several times as to why you just don’t shoot to kill a demi-human.

Now that I’m deeper in to this, I see a lot of parallels between Ajin and Tokyo Ghoul. Both stories involve experiments on preternatural creatures that are more like torture and do more harm than good. They’re just hacking away at their subjects. Both Ken and Kei manage to teal with their transformation into something other than human pretty well, to be honest. There is a distinct lack of freaking out. But Ajin is darker, in my opinion. The characters are distinct without being tropes and the art keeps the dark, twisted tone. There is a definite sense of menace here where Tokyo Ghoul breaks it up with some levity. Ajin is fairly hopeless in comparison.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” vol 1 by Tsunia Miura and Gamon Sakurai

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Kei doesn’t pay attention when he steps into a crosswalk and is hit by a truck – only to get up and flee the scene. Kei is a demi-human; an immortal. There are only a handful of demi-humans in the world and the known ones are subject to terrible experiments. Unwilling to be chopped up forever, Kei is on the run.

This manga was a random purchase because the premise intrigued me and I’m glad I got it. Of course there’s more to being a demi-human than just not dying. There’s this skeletal mummy thing only the demi-humans can see, various powers, and of course a government agency with who knows what planned for them. It’s high energy and dark so far. I like the art, Kei gets with the program right away, and the rest of the characters seem interesting so far. Impressive debut volume.

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