I cannot be the only one starting to lose some patience with Magi. I understand what the author is trying to do, but these are some seriously long flashbacks. We might as well forget about Aladdin and group for the next few weeks to months, with the step by step process in which this manga is approaching its Alma Toran Arc.
With war raging among the various freed species across the lands, Solomon must make his sacrifices in finally taking the title of King, if only to bring about a momentary peace. The final battle against King David begins to take shape.
Here is the thing with these flash backs; there is some merit to them. Rather than catching a very brief very uninformed glimpse of Solomon, Magi has spent the past few weeks allowing us the opportunity to get to know this particular character and his collection of crazy friends.
Not a bad thing, especially when you consider the level of world building that has been achieved in that time, the revelation of what the Rukh are, the secrets behind the various Djinn transformations and even the formation of the world as it is known.
The problems comes with the execution. On the one hand, as I have said several times before, this story is taking its merry time in reaching a satisfactory conclusion. But even if I was to step back from that criticism, accept that we might be in this arc for a while and learn to appreciate all that we are learning, the Manga is doing an odd job of telling its story.
While certainly slow in comparison to ordinary flash backs, the Alma Toran Arc is also quite erratic, jumping from weeks to months and even years sometimes within a single chapter. Not the most impressive means of telling Solomon’s story, what with the way the panels will move from one random scene to another…Magi might be better off if this entire story was simply narrated within the space of a chapter or two.
I wish it would determine a pace and stick to it, because watching Solomon go from hero to King to the very gates of David’s palace within the space of a few panels just didn’t work for me. It’s possible the author is trying to say too much too quickly, seemingly being hurried either by her own intentions or some meddling editor.
Magi has potential, and still ranks as a pretty impressive manga; the message of chapters such as 226 and 227 are deep and philosophical and intriguing to contemplate, of the nature of freedom and what it takes to achieve true peace; however it would help the author took a different route to telling her story, away from the current, erratic and rather random nature of her approach.
RATING: 3/10, it is disturbing that I would fail to enjoy Magi to such an extent. But this arc needs to either end quickly or step up its game.