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Life was peaceful and quiet in the small port village of Miyakono, located in Japan's Kyoto prefecture. Quiet, that is, until the townsfolk were shocked by a rash of bizarre murders. Rumors abounded about the nature of the killer, but one thing was clear: the bodies were mangled by what appeared to be a set of very large teeth. When a trio of students investigate the temple where the most recent victims were slain, a young man named Yousuke stumbles into and breaks a small shrine, from which emerges a phoenix-like creature made of light that flies towards him and disappears. When he realizes that none of his friends saw the light, Yousuke tries to put it out of his mind... until he is later attacked by the demonic beast that is responsible for the recent deaths. It is then that the phoenix spirit re-appears, offering Yousuke the power to defeat the inhuman beast that is stalking him. A power, however, that will come at a great cost...
おとぎ奉り 灵幻使者 靈幻使者 주작의 활 Otogi Matsuri: Dark Offering Otogimatsuri
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Seriously?! That ending!
This is a really good manga right up until the last chapter. Even then I highly recommend it. To be honest it was probably one of the best structured manga I've read in a long time. It didn't drag. The story wasn't elongated for no reason and it actually got better as it progressed.
The characters are really good. Especially, Yousuke, Ezou, and Irori. They're fleshed out, interesting, and I actually felt like rooting for them. The story is meh, but because it's so concise it doesn't really bring it down that much. And then the ending happened
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
The whole story they make a point of showing how humans disrespecting the gods has caused everything and then they just end the manga with the characters doing exactly that. It was completely out of character too! I thought that the Jingi users especially would be against it and at least make an attempt to stop it!. But no, they just forget everything that's happened, all their gratitude and kill the Jingi. And what's their excuse "we never asked to possessed by you"! What! Had they not been possessed then the world would literally have been taken over by an army of demons.
The ending was weak at best and ruining at worst. It felt like the mangaka was just being childish and changed his mind at the last second.
... Last updated on April 28th, 2015, 12:00am
now, i understand some people are angry because of the deus ex machina, but i think its quite a funny ending imho. because humans really are better off by themselves without gods.
Fun but flawed
As other comments have said it certainly feels like a throwback to "classic" shonen stuff, but it lacks a certain something to push it beyond mediocre. While the world and the characters are interesting enough, and fitting for this type of story, the pacing is absolutely atrocious. The plot lurches from scene to scene with little rhyme or reason, often leaving one chapter feeling entirely disjointed from the next. This isnt helped by the drop in quality of the translation in the last three volumes, it desperately needs a second pass by a native english speaker.
Still despite its flaws its a relatively solid action piece, worth a read if youre a fan of such things
Dear authors, you do not get to make a story with such a setup, only for it to have this kind of resolution. It's ridiculous. So disappointing.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
By the last chapter, the protagonist's lifespan has been totally used up. Throughout the story, it's been stressed that it's unrecoverable, that he'll die after the battle is over. And then the battle does end, and the author pulls a ridiculous deus ex machina so the protagonist can survive, invalidating the entire setup.
... Last updated on January 14th, 2015, 2:59pm
it's a good throwback..
.. to the classic action shounen with its typical Japanese folklore cliches. sounds boring, and at times you might agree, but the execution of the plot, characters, and story fluidity is done adequately.
i don't really agree with the seinen tag too much since i think this story is caught in between shounen and seinen. reasons are that the good and evil is painted pretty black and white, the characters act mature and reasonable in their situations, there's a very large age range with the main character cast, the story takes into account of the 'grownups'/government (minus family members for whatever reason..), pretty straight forward storyline, and there is a good bit of graphical death/murder involved. wouldn't recommend to kids though since the violence does get a bit too graphic at the end.
i don't really recommend this story though if you have no interest in demons, ghosts, yōkai, obake, yūrei or whatever mystical creatures that come from Japanese folklore. the characters and other story elements don't really pull you in otherwise. although the artwork for those monsters are pretty interesting at times.
Edit: imo, the ending felt thought out and timely which is sometimes hard to find in manga. also an ending that throws in commentary on human behavior that is brewing discussion throughout these reviews is a job well done imo. also the romantic subplot tag is very light, up to the bitter end. i'm just glad Irori Mikawa got some time to shine.
but after reading it all, i still can't give this manga something higher than an average rating. not enough badass moments? characters maybe too bland? monster of the week vibe for too long? too straightforward and predictable? i can't quite place it.
... Last updated on March 18th, 2015, 9:06am
I'm so glad that someone is picking this up~ This is such a great manga: beautiful art, interesting characters, hella intense plot that drives you to keep turning the pages! Haven't come across something like this for quite some time, really looking forward to what happen next...
... Last updated on February 15th, 2012, 9:14am
Action, myth, set in modern times these elements are difficult to put into id a harmonious pattern but this manga has managed to keep it under well balanced state. Usually the shonen mains are the most annoying ones out there but Otogi painted the main out really well. the whole setup is set in modern times where a Boy who doesnt believe in supernatural accidentally smacks a shrine open, out from it a strange bird like beast posses him and gives him the power to fight monsters in exchange of sth that he holds dear the most. Steadily Yousuke finds more allies some experienced and some novice than him in this operation of destroying different types of monsters which is ransacking and destroying places all over.
its a highly underrated manga given it has such good elements in it
... Last updated on December 20th, 2011, 10:54pm
After reading all the scanlated chaps, I can't help it but read all the raws. It's one of the coolest manga Ive ever read. It's the mixture of supernaturals and modern war (and godzilla ). It's way better than the best sci-fi Hollywood. Characters are badass, no crybabies like in lots of shonen shits. A little spoiler: the teacher wielding 2 spears while riding CBR600RR was one of the greatest scenes in the entire manga, anime and real movies production. A manga that will leave you in awe for a while. Totally recommended. This real gem deserves more than 10, but oh well baka doesn't allow a score like that
Question: where can I buy this series in U.S? The publisher went bankrupt, and there are only some volumes on Amazon.
... Last updated on February 3rd, 2012, 10:42pm
a sudden gem
It's great manga. At first it looks like your casual shonen - mc gets powers and fights monsters invading his town one at a time. But then innocent people die, girls don't run after him in packs, he's helpless half of the time and army/police gets involved. I was so interested I dl-ed the raws and "read" them. Add the very good art and it's 10/10.
It's seinen for a reason
Wandering spirits, menacing demons and high schoolers developing mystical powers. Sure it sounds familiar. But it hasn't been done like this.
The art is fantastic. Backgrounds are clearly detailed. The main male leads have that cool look and the female leads are pretty and above all are in correctly in proportion (no outrageously large breasts here). Action scenes are well drawn and murder has never looked better. This is not for the faint of heart, as some of the more bloody scenes (we are talking decapatation, limb removal and impalement) even made me cringe.
The plot itself is nothing new. A group of individuals rise up to confront this new demonic threat. What sets it apart is the pacing. You never feel like your missing anything when you are reading, the action is generally very fast paced, and the dialogue is very meaningful.
But what really makes this a great series is that it has it's own style, it deviates from the normal mechanics we are so used to in manga. The supernatural elements are very creative and yet they are still very realisitc because the author hasn't made the 'normal' world oblivious, unlike in Bleach where the 'normal' world is oblivious to the soul society. The main male lead has great personality traits, he's a good fighter but he is also quite perceptive, admits his mistakes, doesn't wait for others to lead him the way and is quite caring. There are quite a few unexpected twists, mainly in the romance department. I won't spoil anything but it's not your typical boy meets girl, boy saves girl's life, boy and girl fall for each other.