Mod Edit: Takashichea - 11-1-13
Removed fan scanlation watermarks.
This is the portion of a fairy tail arc where i say Fairy tail is on a roll and this could be the series’ best and most explosive arc yet. Now most times i would warn of being too hasty, this being fairy after all; yet the tone of this arc feels somewhat different, giving me hope that we might finally get an arc worth the fairy tail hype, not seen since the tower of heaven arc (which messed things up by reviving Erza; though Hiro was in an unfortunate situation because i would have lost interest if Erza had exited from the story).
The meeting of the demon gates commences, among the seven present demons, some of whom express anger at their preclusion from the scheme in play, Kyouka asking for patience and calm as the initiated strategy plays out. The seven have congregated at the Zeref shrine, speaking of the loyalty they share for their master.
Elsewhere the rainjinshu have been tasked with running a restaurant, a duty they execute in the company of Yamaji, former member of the Magic council; Laxus is absent. While discussing the recent events regarding Tartaros’ attack on the council, the restaurant is attacked and obliterated by the demon Tempest.
All the rainjinshuu are defeated, with Tempest then cornering his true target Yamaji; just as he squeezes the life out of the little man, he is struck by a bolt of lightening, signaling Laxus’ appearance. The two face off in battle…
It is difficult to read this the second chapter of the Tartaros arc and not experience some excitement at the prospect of a fairy tail arc that might actually produce some unpredictable surprises.
With two chapters, Hiro has allowed me to experience some genuine excitement about fairy tail, not hindered by my reservations over what the series has done in the past. True i am taking into consideration the possibility that Hiro is doing what he always does, create great set up chapters but fail to deliver an exciting story. However that isn’t stopping from property enjoying this chapter, as it normally would, the worry that any excitement i am feeling now Hiro will ruin by the halfway point.
The arc has so far set up Tartaros as a formidable guild, probably the most powerful enemy they have faced. It is worth pointing out that just because these demons are from the book of Zeref doesn’t automatically make them invincible; after all Lullaby was attested to being some unstoppable creature, only for fairy tail to annihilate him without breaking a sweat. It is unlikely that every demon Zeref created is a Deliora.
Each new chapter seems to focus on introducing a specific demon gate. We saw jackal eliminate the entire magic council; and now we are about to see Tempest take on laxus, because destroying the restaurant and the rest of the thunder club isn’t that great a feat. How Tempest does against Laxus, who took down god slayer Ogre with one punch- supposedly Saber tooth’s strongest mage- and defeated the strongest wizard saint, outside of the four gods, will determine how strong he is, or we think he is.
I am really hoping Hiro makes this fight both unpredictable and short; i do not want this continuing to a second or third chapter. The demon worship at the shrine makes you wonder if zeref is really giving the orders here. Sure he wasn’t looking too pleasant the last time we saw him; yet i doubt that he has anything to do with Tartaros’ actions, more like they are clinging to the image of the old Zeref that created them. But then again who summoned them out of the book.
I think when Zeref finally makes his move it will be something grand, beyond the scale of even Tartaros. You have to wonder why Tartaros is so hellbent on eliminating the council, going so far as to seek out an ex council member. This is more than just eliminating their authority, as Yamaji holds no political power at the moment. And if they are targeting all council members, past and present, that means they will be going after Urtear and Jellal, which should be interesting.
RATING: 5/5, great chapter, this is twice in a row that Hiro has managed to impress me and let’s hope he can keep the pace going.
Edited by Takashichea - 10-27-13
Remove illegal manga scanlations watermarks
I don’t know what Hiro is up to, giving us one of the dullest chapter in ages last week, then following it up with its complete opposite. This chapter was epic, exactly what it set out to be, a prologue to the Tartaros arc; though every time i begin to celebrate that Fairy tail is on its way back to greatness (if it ever was great) i am reminded of how good Hiro is at set up chapters, only to fail epically when it comes to actually delivering.
The chapter kicks off with a look at the past, the magic council discussing Fairy tail’s return, their impact on the tournament and the possibility of cancelling the Grand magic games. The subject turns to Tartaros, with news of many guilds in the Balam alliance, affiliated to Tartaros, being annihilated over night. A few counselors seem to find the news suspicious, the way it coincides with fairy tail’s return.
Other counselors defend fairy tail, one suggesting that Tartaros might actually be responsible for destroying its own partners, in some strange bid to gain power while cutting away the weaklings. The Chairman, Gran doma, suggests action similar to the alliance between guilds that brought Oracion Seis, another member of the Balam Alliance down.
This time it would be the counselors combining their magic to bring Tartaros down. It is then that news reaches them of an intruder; explosions, initiated by a demon named Jackal, tear through the building, and when the smoke clears, only Daron Bolt and Org Roshi are alive. Daron bolt tries to help Org Roshi, who orders him to run as he falls foul of Jackal’s exploding magic.
Back at fairy tail, the guild celebrates its win and informs Makarov of all they had learnt from the village of the sun moments before the news reaches them.
Elsewhere Daron bolt arrives at the snake slayer’s (forgot his name) cell, informs him of the death of the counselor, and demands he tells him all he knows about Tartaros. The slayer will not budge, not even when bolt puts a knife to his neck. He wants bolt to secure his and the rest of Oracon Seis’ release before he can provide any information.
He does however provide him with an important bit of information; that none of the nine demon gates are even human, not even silver, but rather they are all demons from the book of Zeref (just like Deliora) and E.N.D is their lord, the strongest demon Zeref ever made. We catch a glimpse of seven of the gates assembling for a meeting.
I haven’t read a fairy tail chapter as good as this in a very long while. Actually the last time a fairy tail chapter got me this excited was when Gray died during the Daimatou embu, and even that chapter was mostly dull except for the end. This chapter does an epic job of setting up this next Tartaros arc, and clearly Hiro aims to raise the stakes of the battle this time.
I do not think we have ever seen villains as strong as this in fairy tail before, besides Zeref himself and Achnologia of course. The fact is Deliora was so strong that a mage as powerful as Ur had to sacrifice herself to contain it. If any of these guys are anywhere near as powerful as that, then Fairy tail is going to need a lot of Nakama power ups to even make a dent in this particular force.
It is interesting that this time the bad guys had the foresight to attack first; and the fact that one demon could lay to waste the entire council says quite a lot, either that the council was indeed that weak or that jackal is that strong. Seeing Daron bolt take a knife to the slayer’s neck quickly heightened the dark tone of the chapter. Clearly he was willing to kill to avenge his friends.
That brings up the question of the snake slayer. The last time we saw him, he was out of prison, fighting along side fairy tail to stop the dragon rampage. Then rather than escape, he handed himself back to the authorities and was returned to his jail cell. He clearly hinted to have heard something with his abilities in the time he was free and that led him to return to prison.
It is plausible that he knew of the Tartaros plot and, rather than gaining freedom all by himself, he thought to leverage his information for the release of his friends in the future. But that is another thing that doesn’t make sense. Oracion seis have never been the best of friends, despite being in the same guild. I do not see the snake slayer putting his life on the line to save them from their incarceration. So he clearly has something else in mind.
I am surprised by the deaths in this chapter; sure not exactly important characters, but none the less, people do not die in Fairy tail and that has always been one of its greatest weaknesses, its failure to go the extra mile and actually show the consequences of facing a powerful threat. Knowing that characters will not die in any situation usually innervates the sense of danger.
This time round Hiro might be moving to change that. This arc just might be what the Grand magic games arc was supposed to be but failed terribly, the best arc in fairy tail history.
It was interesting seeing silver in color; he didn’t look anything like Gildartz. More interesting though is the revelation that he isn’t human. That puts a spin on the devil slayer concept. Now we know why a devil slayer would hang around demons in the first place, and it makes you wonder if a devil slayer even exist. The way i see it silver is probably just a devil who is a slayer rather than a being that uses devil slayer magic per say.
It is like calling Igneel, a dragon, a dragon slayer because he can use dragon magic; it wouldn’t the biggest surprise if it turned out that Silver is actually a dragon slayer.
RATING:> 5/5, like i said this is the best chapter i have read in a very long long long while. And i know, Hiro is awesome at set ups but almost always fails to deliver in the end; but i will hold onto hope that that will not be the case this time.
HIGHLIGHT: jackal, that last page.
Edited by Takashichea - 10/19/2013
Removed all scanlation names
Another short fairy tail chapter.
Really, only three things happened:
---First we learnt that the eternal flame hadn’t disappeared but rather it had simply shrunk to a size so small that it might disappear. Natsu was needed to reignite it.
---Secondly Natsu continued his battle with the black bird, ending things on the alter of the eternal flame and using some powerful flame attacks to defeat the creature and ignite the flame.
---Thirdly, the flame grew to a healthy size and we realized that it was Atlas flame.
A lot of this chapter was irrelevant, though entertaining. The fight with Natsu took up most of the pages but it was actually worth the panels in showcasing some of Natsu’s new moves.
Atlas flame was the primary attraction here though, and i have to say that though i considered this particular option, it was none the less a surprise. Now i am curious as to how he ended up in his current state. This is Nastu’s chance to finally learn what happened to the dragons 14 years ago. I suspect that a lot of next week’s chapter will be dialogue, but that isn’t a bad thing, either that or we will finally get to Erza Vs. Minerva.
RATING:> 3/5, pretty entertaining chapter, though little story progression.
Highlight:> Strangely enough it was the fight with the bird that i most enjoyed.
Aaaaaaah, Hiro went ahead to do exactly what i was praying he would do his best to avoid.Suddenly this arc looks like it is going to take a more comedic cutesy turn.
Last week the hunters bested fairy tail. This week find out that, following Natsu’s disbelief that mere humans without magic could defeat magical opponents, the hunters are not as average as assumed and are actually champions of the hunter guilds’ version of the Daimatou Enbu, making them fairy tail’s equal at least as far as accolades are concerned. Gray still manages to steal the moon drip which they go on to pass around among themselves as they avoid the hunters until it gets to Happy’s turn.
The exceed drops the bottle, causing panic. But as predicted it only melts a small portion of the ice on the ground and from beneath Natsu hears a voice using his enhanced senses which he says is familiar. He runs off to find it as everyone else follows, eventually colliding with the mage that was with Minerva on her first appearance in this arc. Before Natsu can react, the mage reverts him to his younger self, making him less of a threat.
Elsewhere Erza grapples with her tiny size and searches for a solution.
First the good bits: i am starting to like Sylph Labyrinth. They are proving to be very capable mages. I actually didn’t realize it last time that the hunters were human. I assumed they were somehow manipulating magic through their gadgets. The fact that they managed to hold fairy tail off so easily without magic makes them that much more impressive. I liked the bit about the hunters’ tournament, proving that they are just as capable as fairy tail, who are magic champions.
It took everyone way too long to figure out the fact that the moon drip was too little to prove useful. But i liked the comedic elements it injected into the scenes, especially when happy dropped the bottle and he asked Natsu to spank him. Erza’s scenes were funny enough, especially when she was imagining how different her life would be if she couldn’t revert to her normal age.
What i didn’t like was the age reversing bit. I am starting to fear that this is going to turn into a chibi arc. And i am not saying that it automatically means Hiro will mess up. Just that i have never seen a chibi related arc or saga execute well on screen. I will commend Hiro though. I still can’t predict where this story is going and that is good. If there is one place fairy tail goes wrong, it is when it becomes too predictable to be enjoyable.
I am starting to think that the enemy mage shrank Natsu and Erza because he heard from Minerva just how dangerous fairy tail was. That makes him seem weak though.
RATING:>3/5; overall a decent chapter, even though i didn’t like where it seemed to be going.
Highlight: Happy’s dropping of the bottle, the reactions of everyone.
I am really starting to regain my faith in Fairy tail. Obviously that makes me naive because anyone that has read fairy tail extensively knows that Hiro never does anything new. None the less i am choosing to have hope in this new arc.
I enjoyed this chapter. Story wise, we didn't get anyway, but not every chapter of a manga series is able to create a natural pacing in story while constantly making new revelations. For now i am comfortable.
Thinking about it, little happened. The chapter starts off with fairy tail pursuing sylph labyrinth for the moon drip. The dialogue here i mostly comedic. The hunters complain that they went through quite a lot to acquire the moon drip and it wouldn't serve their interests to give it up so easily.
They eventually stop fleeing and engage fairy tail, proving to be a formidable force. Fairy tail quickly realizes that they will have to take the fight seriously after the trio deflects there attacks.
Elsewhere Erza does a bit of investigation, discovering that the giants had been heading into the mountains when they were frozen, clearly armed and ready to fight against something.
At the mountain top, she discovers something and before she can react, she finds herself transformed a younger version of herself.
As i mentioned above, this was a fun chapter, compounding upon the quality of the last six chapters. The art was great and again i am not sure if it's me who has never paidmuch attention to fairy tail art or Hiro has really kicked his skills into another gear.
The story stalled in this chapter to focus on the action and that didn't bother me because as far as action chapters go, this was pretty good. I liked the uniqueness of the different mages, the giant fist like gadget and its potency against Natsu's flames, the sword with the stretching abilities, perfectly complimenting the sword skills and agility the mage wielding it displayed against Gray's ice attacks, and the sniper attacks that debilitated Lucy's arrow based summon.
I was afraid these guys would prove to be no different from the Garou knights, all talk and no bite. But i was pleasantly surprised when they put up a good fight. And, as mentioned above, the art in these action scenes was superb. One of the reasons i enjoy reading fairy tail is how fluidly displayed the action scenes are.
I do not know what to think about the Erza twist.
If all the characters end up reverting to their child like selves, i will not be happy. Those sort of clichés do not impress me. Clearly this is linked to the eternal flame which i assume Erza found located behind ice. whatever the case, i hope Hiro has a good story in store for me.
So far i have nothing to complain about.
MY RATING: 4/5, this was a decent chapter, short and concise. I cannot complain.
HIGHLIGHT: The fight between fairy tail and the hunters. Lucy looks like she is in for a beating once more. I am curious as to how they are going to deal with the sniper.
Here is the thing, i haven’t been having the greatest fan of fairy tail in the past few weeks. While the chapters haven’t been exactly bad, there have been several disappointments that have left me craving for an epic fairy tail chapter to rejuvenate the excitement i held for the manga one or two months ago. I am none the less a fairy tail fan and will indeed continue to watch fairy tail until it ends, or at least i think i will. Who knows what Hiro will do in the times to come to completely alienate me from the series.
That aside, this post isn’t me trying to ask myself why i am still reading fairy tail (at least i don’t think so), like i am trying to convince myself that fairy tail is a good manga. As far as i am concerned, fairy tail might have its failings, but it is indeed a good manga. And i have come across a number of opinions on the internet disparaging fairy tail, so many in fact that i suddenly realized that whenever i stood up to defend the series, my arguments were always more along the lines of ‘fairy tail is better than you are giving it credit’
Basically i am always ready to defend fairy tail, but what i have never taken into account is why i defend fairy tail. So i say that fairy tail is a better manga than most people say, Why? Why do i read fairy tail? Why do i consider this manga to be a more impressive piece of work than many otaku believe?
Originally i wanted to approach this from the side of ‘why fairy tail doesn’t suck’ where i would basically locate those complaints that most critics aimed at fairy tail and counter them. That proved to be difficult, so this is going to be basically me explaining why i read fairy tail, which in turn will attack the question of why fairy tail doesn’t suck. So for all of you that have spent an age hating on fairy tail and simply do not understand why us fans bother, this is why we or at least i as a fairy tail fan read the manga despite all its faults.
---1-The Cast- I have always been a big fan of series with large cast and that is what fairy tail provides, a massive cast of characters and mages of all shapes and sizes (literally) with a diverse selection of personalities, abilities and backgrounds. Granted Hiro doesn’t make the best use of them. During any given arc, the action is usually restricted to a select few characters, specifically Erza’s group, but that doesn’t mean the rest of them are ignored.
Hiro does his best to give us as clear a glimpse into the lives of this multitude of mages as possible within his limited space. I like how Hiro, at least a hundred or so chapters ago, would start off each chapter by giving us a brief biography of each of the characters, specifically there full names, their backgrounds and specific form of magic, many of whom you would have never noticed before. It was a fun little way of letting use know who was who and without having to go into lengthy arcs, explanations and dialogue to make to make this information known to us.. Hiro is worth complimenting for the task of creating so many mages from one guild, putting that much time into giving them unique and distinct personalities and assigning to each of them a unique type of magic.
And while they never play a major role in the arcs, Hiro makes sure never to keep them too far. During the tournament they were always in the stands, cheering on the fairy tail team as they did their guild proud. Hiro always takes the time to switch the scenes around, using the likes of levy and bisca to shift the plot away from the central scene, to tell the story through a variety of other angles, making sure that a fairy tail chapter is never really restricted to one place, to one set of voices narrating the entire plot, but instead allowing other voices to jump in and contribute to the progress of an arc.
Basically despite the fact that they aren’t the most active group of people, they keep each chapter fresh and dynamic. You never know from which perspective you will follow the given plot. It also creates that whole ‘nakama’ atmosphere fairy tail speaks so often about.
---2-The Humor- strange individuals like to compare one piece and fairy tail. And while i usually disagree with them, what is clear is the fact that both series are funny. Sure i might not have beenparticularly happy with last week’s first chapter, but i am willing to admit that it was funny. Most manga have this problem where if nothing is happening, in other words when a chapter is fairly random and has nothing whatsoever to do with the primary plot, it will get boring. As fans we are interested in reading happening chapters, when something new occurs and the plot progresses. When that doesn’t happen, when a manga series decides to grace us with a chapter of nothing but downtime, we lose interest or at least get bored. Not so with fairy tail. Fairy tail, despite what is happening, always manages to inject some humor into the plot and that sort of thing will make the events of a chapter feel much less of a waste of time.
Even when you have to read a chapter revolving around the characters having a party or preparing to have a party, at the very least you will laugh. And when you consider the fact that all manga eventually reach a low point, when they are not at their best, it is comforting to consider that at the very least, each fairy tail chapter will get a chuckle out of me. In fact that was my biggest complaint with the dragon war; Hiro was simply injecting too much humor and while he is usually able to compliment his jokes with the events of a serious scene, this time he was simply ruining the mood.
I like to laugh and fairy tail gives me that. Hiro might not be the best at determining how and when to use humor but you cannot deny that he knows how to make us laugh.
---3- The Art- I will not go so far as to say that fairy tail is amazing art wise; there is however no getting around the fact that the manga is consistently drawn. The first time i came across fairy tail, i remember thinking that i hadn’t yet come across a manga that wasn’t only well drawn but so easy to read. Fairy tail is unbelievably easy to follow. Every image within every panel is drawn to flow seamlessly with every other image in the next panel, allowing for a more fluid picture to evolve.
The first time i read fairy tail, i remember being amazed at how easy the battles were to follow. Every panel has as much detail as you need it to have to give you an acceptable idea of where exactly you are. i remember reading chapter 338 last week, during the feast, and thinking that if this was bleach, we would get really close shots of Ichigo or whichever primary character was in play while everything and everyone else would fade behind a black or white background. Hiro had no problem adding those little details in, including shots of the partying crowd in the back as the primary characters interacted. I like that in a manga, a mangaka that doesn’t skimp on the details and provides us with as clear a picture of a scene as possible.
And when he really puts his back into it, Hiro will do some really amazing shots, usually large wide spread images. The fact is, it might not be the best or one of the best art works i have seen in manga, but fairy tail’s art and thus Hiro’s art is none the less brilliant.
---4- The world- I like the fact that the fairy tail world is so solidly developed. It is an intricately designed fairy tale of a world, with a (fairly) consistent set of rules, with a clearly distinct magical system with a fairly solid mythology. It is the sort of self contained and self sustaining world that many a manga never achieve. I like the fact that if i closed my eyes and thought of fairy tail, a specific image would jump to mind. Sure we might not have seen so much of the country or the world for that matter and i might have no idea what anything outside of Fiore looks like, but if you told me toimagine it, to draw a picture, describe what that external world would look like , i would be able to do so.
And that is because, despite his flaws, Hiro has done an impeccable job of creating a world wholly distinct from any other, that is a concept of its own, filled with magic and which can only seem to grow. I love the feeling of magic generated by the concept of fairy tail. Fairy tail is basically a fairy tale and it gets that idea across clearly. This world is rich in unique concepts and ideas, though the pitfall is that Hiro simply isn’t using it to its fullest. I have said it before; if Oda or Kishimoto were doing fairy tail, with its preexisting ideas and concepts, they would create a world class manga story.
As it turns out though, it feels like Hiro isn’t fully utilizing it, especially when you consider the fact that any idea or element that is introduced in any arc is immediately forgotten, never to be revisited again after that arc’s end. We are talking about a ton of characters that Hiro could better utilize to make his overall story that much richer, but he chooses to drop everything in the, choosing to move on to a whole new set of concepts and elements. Hell, even Natsu’s power ups don’t survive beyond an arc.
---5- The magic- there is not denying that fairy tail has a unique magic system. The magic itself isn’t really that intricate or quantifiable, and it wouldn’t really qualify as a system. It is more wonder than anything, sort of like how a magician on stage makes a flock of birds disappear. You do not really know how it was done, what sorts of ki or force he was summoning and how he was utilizing it to achieve…all that mumble jumble alot of better made magic systems tend to explain. It is more of ‘here is what i am going to do, here is a little idea of how i might have done it, but mostly, be amazed’.
In a way it is less accurate to say that i am impressed with the magical system and more likely that i am impressed with the different forms of magic utilized in fairy tail. Once more i am amazed by Hiro’s creative capabilities, to create so many different forms of magic, each of which somehow manages to be unique, not only in terms of comparison with other fairy tail magic, but in comparison with other magic and powers displayed in other series. Sure, we know that Natsu is a fire mage and he can shoot, manipulate, generate fire and all that. But Hiro takes it a little further in allowing Natsu the ability to eat fire for nourishment as well as the other unique ways he will do his thing in battle.
It is great fun to watch a new villain make his entrance, anticipating just what sort of power he will display and how Hiro will engineer his capabilities to stand out a little differently from anything that was yet to be seen in fairy tail. Basically i like the diversity of magic because it makes the fights that much better to watch. Watching Gildartz and blue note stinger fight was that much more fun to read because of the fact that blue note manipulated gravity while Gildartz utilized crush magic. The idea of how these two would clash wasn’t clear to me and watching the battle was more like solving a mystery that simply watching a brawl. How two magic forms will clash and work against each other is part of why fairy tail fights are fun to read.
---6- The wackiness- In this regard i admit that i do see the comparison between one piece and fairy tail. Fairy tail is a wacky show about wacky characters doing wacky things. I am amazed at some of the most silly of concepts and characters Hiro will develop in his many arcs. I am reminded of sugar boy, a character in Edolas who was dressed as a knight, in pink armor, not only endowed with the ability to makes things soft, but also enabled to fly, except that he couldn’t fly more than three or four inches off the ground. That meant that each time he is in flight, a portion of him usually his chest was scraping the floor, making his armor as much protection for him against the earth as it was against enemy attacks.
It is such antics, such panels that i find to be absolutely silly and quirky, and one of the elements that keep me interested in fairy tail. This is a crazy series in more ways than one, which, i guess, makes the jokes that funnier.
---7-The Simplicity- as much as i will rant on once in a while about how fairy tail simply fails to hit the deeper notes of its stories, i cannot really complain because that is what fairy tail is about. It was meant to be fun and cheery and as such very simplistic. There are no complex ideals to ponder, not disturbing philosophies to ruminate, no intricate plot twists and story lines that will leave youscratching your head as you try to figure out what is coming next.
Fairy tail at its core is exactly what it looks like, a fun little show about good Vs. Evil. Good guys go out, good guys find bad guys, bad guys do bad things and good guys beat the peanuts out of the bad guys. It is that simple and most times, you will have fun watching these events happen. Someone has said that to watch fairy tail and enjoy it, you need to stop thinking, to stop trying to work out how events will turn out because chances are you will predict a majority of the story; what you need to do is sit back and enjoy a kick ass show about a group of mages fighting bad guys.
It is no death note, but it will entertain you if you let it. At the end of the day this is a fairy tale, and as such when it is all said and done, every turn will close with a happy ending; but that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy watching those happy endings happen. Basically fairy tail is fun if you give it the chance it needs. If you attack it like any other serious manga series, it will not work for you. Sure Hiro has proven himself capable of weaving some impressive mysteries. But none the less if you sit back and let fairy tail do what it does best, be fun and simple, you will enjoy it.
That is hard advice as i too get frustrated with some plots because i will eventually over think them, but that doesn’t mean i still don’t enjoy fairy tail.
---My last and final point- It’s awesome- there is not denying the fact that fairy tail is awesome, at least to me it is. There is a reason why, before the thousand year blood war arc, i ranked fairy tail higher than bleach. And that is because at its best, fairy tail can be that good. The story is unique, having guilds with mages of different styles taking on jobs, not for the fun of it, not foradventure per say but to make money and make ends meet.
The characters at their best make for interesting reading. I am still shocked that Hiro managed to pull that much drama out of Cana. She is one of those consistently drunk characters you never give much thought to.The plot is properly paced and Hiro never forgets to throw in a twist or two along the way. You might be able to predict how an arc will end, but the journey to that end will constantly surprise you. It has great magic and the fights are epic. And the art, as mentioned above, is brilliant. There is no denying the fact that Hiro knows how to draw a fight and to illustrate the effects of the different magical styles. And of course the manga is so easy to follow and read.
You could say that Fairy tail’s biggest problem is how it ends its arcs. So many of its finales are the same and you can tell that a happily ever after ending is coming. It’s like Hiro puts all his effort into making the journey a brilliant one, actually breaking one or two shonen rules and really catching you off guard, only to let the ball drop at the end. It should be the other way round. Hiro doesn’t give most of the more interesting characters time to shine or even get involved in the plot. And i wish every fight wasn’t solved with a power up or nakama power. Plus there have been some plot holes, some explanations of events that have not made sense. I still refuse to believe the whole eclipse gate business. None of what was said made sense logically.The focus on Natsu in every arc and the fact that each arc must end with his involvement is irritating.
But here is the thing, even with all those problems, you can enjoy fairy tail, which is why it is awesome. Sure it has it faults, glaring faults in fact, but that doesn’t detract from its entertaining value.
So here is what i have to say in conclusion, if you are not already, READ FAIRY TAIL.
I do not know what sort of drugs Hiro was high on when he drew these chapters, but chapters 341-343 had some seriously amazing art. I know Hiro has from time to time shown his ability to go the extra mile with fairy tail with one of those special images he will sneak in at the beginning or the end of the chapter. But these chapters were so consistently well drawn. I am not sure if saying that i was blown away has more to do with my low expectations and less to do with Hiro’s own skills.
A new arc has began and i for one am excited, the sort of excitement i haven’t held for fairy tail in a good two or three months. And i am glad to finally return to that point in my life as a fairy tail fan where i can finally crave for and even hold some excitement about the upcoming fairy tail chapters.
I have said it before, Hiro knows how to set events up, to create exciting situations that leave you dreaming about what will come next. The question is whether or not he can deliver. I for one will choose to believe that he can. I can safely say that these three chapters showcased fairy tail at its best. It’s funny, I wrote a fairy tail based blog post on Wednesday but i decided not to publish it on Thursday like i planned because i wanted to first read these three chapters and see if my conclusion in that post would be justified. I am glad it was.
The first chapter begins with quite a lot of fan service and in color, with Lucy and the other girls enjoying a warm bath in their new guild head quarters. It is revealed that ever since they returned as champions, they have benefited greatly from their popularity, with many a job streaming in for the taking with great rewards in play, making it an unnecessary effort to engage in the old battles over wh gets to take which job. We learn that a number of fairy tail mages have been hard at work for days, leaping from one job to another, including Natsu and Gray who somehow managed to put their differences aside long enough to team up. Same thing for Wendy and Erza.
Flare from Raven tail makes an appearance, looking liker her old crazy self. She is offered the opportunity to join fairy tail but declines. Elsewhere we see the fruits of some of the mages’ labor in a page or two.
Later we learn that one of the four gods of Ishgal, the strongest wizard saints, had requested a team of Natsu, Gray, Lucy and Erza to undertake a great task. Admitting to the mages being a better fit for the mission than he, even with his powers and the fact that he chose them specifically, the wizard, Walron Seeken speaks of an old village that worships an eternal flame which has for no fathomable reason been frozen in place with all its inhabitants.
Walron tasks the mages with solving the mystery of the frost and saving the village from its fate. But they are not alone on this quest. Four mages from Sylph labyrinth, a treasure hunting guild are in search of the eternal flame. This particular village is inhabited by giants and for a while now, there presence had prevented the group from obtaining their treasure. Fairy tail’s mission to free the giants is at loggerheads with their own mission, putting the two teams on opposing ends.
However while the parties squabble, a new party arrives at the scene, unseen, Succubus Eye, supposedly a dark guild of which Minerva is a part. She learns of fairy tail’s approach, though her attire and her words with regards to the underground make her intentions suspect.
As i inferred above, i am quite excited by the advent of this new arc and as always Hiro is doing a great job of setting the stage for what might turn out to be a brilliant saga. I liked what Hiro did here, sort of throwing back to the old days of fairy tail, with the sort of humor we hadn’t seen in a while, Gray and Natsu’s quarrels, Lucy and her run ins with people suddenly breaking into her apartment, even the mention of tasks and quests, making mention of and showing us glimpses of fairy tail mages out and about, tackling different jobs for money, it was a reminder of what fairy tail was about, outsideo f epic battles with dragons and all that.
It is the thrill of adventure that Hiro creates with the beginning of a new arc. While i am apathetic to fan service, i liked seeing some color in the manga, and i was surprised by how good it looked. The flare incident was surprising, that she could have been hanging around fairy tail all this time and no one knew. I was impressed by her decision to turn fairy tail’s offer down. I am now curious as to how her story will play a role in the future.
I was surprised by how humorous the comedy actually was. I had as of late lost interest in Fairy tail’s particular brand of comedy, but these chapters reminded me of why i used to find the material funny. The arc is off to a great start. We have a village of giants that have been mysteriously frozen and a guild of treasure hunters out to capture the so called eternal flame, which has been referred to as a deity, which means there are more twists and turns to come.
Gray mentioned a link to Deliora and how he was frozen. I am impressed by the fact that Hiro actually made use of some of these old elements of the story he introduced a while back. But one of the biggest revelations of them all was Minerva’s appearance. I mentioned before that i wasn’t too happy that she was all innocent and rehabilitated during the ball at the king’s palace. No way she could have changed so drastically so quickly after all the evil she displayed during the fights.
It seems though that she didn’t quite change her spots; i am actually curious as to who is the current saber tooth master. Last time i checked she was in charge. Either way her appearance in the last chapter was not only shocking but welcome. Unfortunately i have a feeling we will later learn that she really has changed and is probably undercover for the magic council. That is the kind of twist fairy tail is known for, and it would be a particularly unwelcome one.
We learnt here as well that Seeken, the Ishgal fellow was originally a member of fairy tail, having started the guild with Hades, Marvis and another fellow. We can now safely say that the Marvis we see is not in her true form. She was a girl 105 years ago. No way she remained like that, unless she died that young. And why would she be chosen as master over Hades when he was so much older. Clearly there is more to fairy tail’s history than meets the eye, and it seems like Hiro is intent on unraveling the mysteries behind the guild.
Which i love. The fairy tail mythology is growing and there are more stories to tell, hopefully they are all worth reading.
RATING:>4/5; these three chapters were interesting, and not to mention the art here which was brilliant. I hope we do not get another three chapters next week. I am starting to get used to this which means returning to one chapter a week will suck.
HIGHLIGHT: Minerva’s appearance, Seeken’s revelation.
On a side note, if you have not heard, THE FAIRY TAIL ANIME IS RETURNING. It has been officially confirmed by Hiro that the fairy tail anime will return on some undisclosed date. Now i have to say that besides that being good news, it says something about Bleach. Fairy tail has been gone three or four months and its already making a come back. Bleach has been gone for ages, since last year in fact and there has not been a whiff of its return. Fairy tail took a break because it was ridiculously close to the manga, just halfway an arc that hadn’t even ended.
If fairy tail returned this week it would still be really close to the manga because that same arc just ended. So fairy tail isn’t even a whole arc away like Naruto and one piece are (i am glad Naruto is finally getting back on track, hopefully one piece does the same, that business of dragging out events, doing like five pages of a manga chapter in an anime episode is just as bad as Naruto and its fillers), just half an arc away and yet it has returned. Bleach is miles ahead of where the anime stopped, no where near a risk of catching up, and yet it has yet to return. Bleach fans still holding onto hope, it’s time to quite. Bleach is gone.
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