Volume 1 User Reviews

is a manga book published by Shinchosha that was released on 04/10/1991
Write a Review 1 user review Average score of 6 / 10 for Volume 1
Good Story, not so great art. Reviewed by Count_Zero on Sept. 5, 2010. Count_Zero has written 23 reviews. His/her last review was for Volume 5. 27 out of 27 users recommend his reviews. 1 out of 1 user found this review helpful.
Tokyo Babylon is something of a spiritual successor to X/1999. So, when I decided to start reading that series, I wanted to get a bit of a primer from CLAMP's earlier work.  That said, while Volume 1 of Tokyo Babylon gets off to a good start from a narrative standpoint. From an artistic standpoint there's much to be desired. 
The story follows Subaru Sumeragi, the heir to the Sumeragi clan of Onmyoji, as well as his fraternal twin sister Hokuto, and Subaru's friend Seicharo Sakurazawa, who shares a name with a clan of assassin onmyoji, but deflects any questions about whether he has anything to do with them. Subaru takes on various jobs for the Japanese Government and other clients to exorcise spirits and to generally help them pass on. In this volume Subaru deals with a possessed piece of clothing, and a ghost haunting the observation deck of Tokyo Tower, as well as some foreshadowing of chapters to come. All of these stories are well told, and were legitimately suspenseful. 
Where the volume all falls down is the art. While the character designs are still on par with the rest of CLAMP's excellent work, the backgrounds, on the other hand, are where it all falls down. At best, the art looks like washed out photographs, or grey-scale photographs lightened and used as a background. At worst, there's no background at all. While this does lead the reader to pay more attention to the words being said, instead of the action, it still leaves with something of an impression that from an artistic standpoint they thought they had more important things they should have been doing.
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