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HUNTER X HUNTER #39 + 40 Kills You with a Kiss

Episode #39 + 40 -- Watch & Learn. Power of love!

So Nen classifications are basically the Meyers-Briggs personality types of a fight shonen, huh? Meeting with your guidance counselor has to be a lot more kick ass in this world...

I have to think that X-MEN’s long-in-coming success story had something to do with its premise actually being that far ahead of the curve. What does that have to do with HUNTER X HUNTER? Well, when I watch these shows, I can’t help but think a lot about where they fit into the greater evolution of shonen adventures (broad definition superheroics by another name, I say). And just like how the leads of these shows seemed to evolve to encompass both comedy and drama (see my long-winded editorial on the subject), I can’t help but think that mangaka gradually realized that a catch-all, deus ex machina cause for powers was a better creative enabler than coming up with new, unrelated explanations for each hero or villain’s abilities (see also: ONE PIECE's magical fruits).

To wit, having all the important figures in HUNTER X HUNTER get their powers from Nen works the same way as having all the diverse X-Men get empowered by the same mutation. Shouldn’t there be a world of difference, say, between being able to hear somebody’s heartbeat and being able to move objects with invisible threads of goo?

Hey - - don’t think too much about it! It’s Nen, all right? It’s always just Nen.

Of course, one major difference is that X-Men has always been more about the ensemble, and HUNTER X HUNTER doggedly stresses that it has two leads, only. That’s what makes this arc a little intriguing. You know a show is comfortable about having all the time in the world to tell its story (as the remake of a recent, super-successful serial might ) when it can set an entire arc aside for one supporting character (Kurapika) and not worry about being labeled filler.

To be totally honest, I think Kurapika’s a dull character without much to differentiate him. That said, if his gambling tactics resemble his creator’s, at all, I’d really hate to ever play poker against Togashi!

Watch Wish × And × Promise" and “Nen × Users × Unite?" and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode.

About the Author

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk
Kino88on Feb. 19, 2014 at 6:37 a.m.
actually after this episode Kurapika might just be my favorite Character, I like that he's actually motivated by revenge, giving him quite A distance from Gon and Killua's spur of the moment charge, I also like when he walks away from his teacher mid training and Says the single most badass line I've heard in this show so far, "There are some people who need to be chained down to hell" Over all I thought these episodes were a nice change of pace, Regarding Nen, I personally prefer a blanket term explaining everyone's power, rather than tiresome explanations of why spider man can climb walls or how Ice man can freeze stuff, what matters to me is how they use there powers not so much how they acquired them, That's one of the resons why I never cared much for western comic book fiction,
Lurkeroon Feb. 19, 2014 at 6:46 a.m.

I like the blanket source of power. Spend less time explaining powers and more time showing them off. It's one reason why anime and manga tends to be more coherent than Western comics where practically everyone gets their power from different supernatural occurrences.

It's cool when magic is like personality or genetics.

Also, while Hunter x Hunter has two lead characters, they are often supported by someone else who typically knows more than them or is more skilled. The supporting characters make up a good backbone for the plot.

Donwunon Feb. 19, 2014 at 6:46 a.m.

Yep it's Kurapika's time to shine now and this arc is AWESOME SAUCE. Arguably (for most fans) the best in the entire series.

Not much more i will say on this as i don't want to spoil anything but i really wouldn't be surprised if after you get in the thick of this arc you power through to the next one....just due to how compelling it gets

but honestly you're watching it at a pretty brisk pace now which is enjoyable enough to follow, i don't really feel you need to go any faster unless ya want to as i enjoy the 2x-4x weekly analysis. You're almost getting to the halfway point anyhow

jj_jacksonon Feb. 19, 2014 at 6:25 p.m.

I like this upcoming arc a lot i hope you enjoy it. it gets dark and intriguing and entertaining. Personally i like the chimera ant art a little better since its been animated. this arc is great too but i think its boosted a little bit because of some fan favs coming up..but none the less its a great arc and really hooked me into the show deep!

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