Eternal Sabbath thoughts
Oh no please don’t do this again Eternal Sabbath. Please don’t start rushing things again. You almost had every main character covered in terms of character exposition, you were just missing Sakaki. But now it looks like you’re going to be rushing ahead of all that and getting straight to the action. Which is a really bad idea unless you have some pretty damn good action to show for it, which you don’t (hey I don’t blame you for that, but you shouldn’t rush forward because of it!).
Hmmm what do I think of this sudden development (SPOILER) that Izaku is rapidly aging and is about to die? I don’t think the mangaka really could have solved it any other way, but THE THEME WAS COMPLETELY BRUSHED ASIDE. WHETHER KILLING IS RIGHT OR WRONG WAS SUPPOSED TO BE DISCUSSED AND NOW IT DOESN’T MATTER ANYMORE. That being said though, there is more than enough thematic discussion in this manga to score it at least an 8, so I don’t mind too much, I just don’t particularly like it as an ending. Well actually, no. I do sort of like an ending like that, but the fact that an important theme has been brushed aside is something that’s a bit annoying to me.
Actually this isn’t half bad. He’s not accepting his death and he’s just killing everything in sight. As far as I can see this brings up another couple of themes: why are some people born just to die early, and what is the purpose of one’s existence if one cannot interact with others? The only problem I have mainly with the mangaka’s treatment of this is that Izaku is not portrayed as pitifully as he should be. There’s still an underlying “he’s a threat to the human race, exterminate him” kind of sentiment going about. Also, it seems that his acts of destruction are essentially an attempt to make the world mirror his inner self, which is very profound in a way. Points for that, definitely.
Oh and by the way I liked how Mine couldn’t kill Izaku. That’s quite realistic, given that people are wired specifically NOT to kill, and it takes a hell of a lot to get someone to kill another person, usually. Uh oh I’ve got the feeling that Izaku possessed Akiba’s body. Just a feeling that it couldn’t have been over that quickly.
Eh the whole “Mine once killed a man” revelation was not hinted at at all as far as I can see. I don’t really like this. I suppose it COULD reveal why she’s so analytical in life, and so bad with men, but at the same time, she should at least have had some sort of partial flashback during the plot. Points off for this, I really don’t like this idea.
Awww that is so sweet how Akiba’s “grandmother” knew he wasn’t her grandson the entire time. Ha that’s also pretty nice, how the ES gene managed to live on through the pregnancy of Mine. I was wondering if that would happen, given that the sex scene happened so quickly – surely he didn’t have a condom on him, right?
So what exactly did I think of the action this time being put ahead of character development. It wasn’t great, but I really did enjoy it. The action was actually quite spectacular in a way, even if it did ruin things a bit. Sakaki needed some characterisation! But whatever, it’s over now already.
Oh and just to clear up something I said in my last commentary, Izaku pretty much turned out to be a cold-blooded killer and not some justice freak the moment he killed Yuri (as she was no longer any use to him). One could argue that he was doing it because she may have “desired it”, but he felt not even a tiny bit of remorse for it, so we can only assume he did it because she was now worthless to him.
Artwork: 9/10 (+1 from last review) The trippy scenes decided this for me: the artwork is very good. It really helps everything come together, and really captures you. However, it was not breathtaking enough for me to award it a 10, sadly.
Characterisation: 7/10 (+3) Horrible characterisation at the start, okay characterisation at the end, brilliant characterisation in the middle. It sort of feels like I’m reading three different manga reading this. Well regardless, the great characterisation in the middle (especially with regards to Akiba and Mine) raises the score significantly from what I first gave it.
Theme: 9/10 (+2) Does not particularly teach the reader a lesson, but explores a very wide range of themes, and explores some of theme in depth. Themes explored include that of whether killing is ever a right action, the cycle of evil, the nature of love and the worth of human lives.
Pacing: 5/10 (-1) Not good overall. Very good in the middle, but the fact that characterisation gets sacrificed for plot in the beginning and end mean that the pacing overall suffers, and one feels that this is almost disjointed in a way.
Story: 7/10 (+1) It has gone from a cheesy sci-fi to a good sci-fi, though admittedly not a great one. The main focus here is a psychological one, so I never expected the story to be awesome, but that being said, it DID get pretty damn good towards the end.
Big Question #1 Would I recommend it? I enjoyed it, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you can tolerate the annoying pacing to get to the deepness of the themes expressed. It’s sort of like a nugget of gold covered in a layer of poop. Can you really be bothered cleaning it? That’s really what you have to ask yourself if you consider reading this manga.
Big Question #2 Is it a classic? It can’t be a classic. It could have been one definitely, with a bit of a better story, MUCH BETTER pacing, and characterisation that wasn’t sacrificed at the mangaka’s whims.