Sunday, August 21, 2016

Manga Review - Black Clover Vol. 1

Manga Name : Black Clover (Volume One)   
Author: Tabata, Yuuki (Story & Art)  
Original Serialization: Shounen Jump (Weekly)
English Publisher : VIZ Media
Genres: Shounen, Action, Comedy, Fantasy, Magic 

Generic can be quite fun at times. The manga 'Black Clover' is a good example of that. Despite having generic and cliché characters, a generic setting and magic system, this manga somehow shines through. It's may be due to the writers passion for his story and characters. The crisp and enticingly detailed art helps too.

Black Clover Volume 1 begins the story of young Asta who was born with no magical ability in a world where magic is everything. Moreover he also is an orphan and comes from the lowest class of society. In order to prove his strength and keep a promise with his childhood friend come rival Yuno, Asta dreams of becoming the greatest mage in the land, the Wizard King! And like many typical shounen Yuno on the other hand is very talented in terms of magical ability. So the struggles of our protagonist begins.

In case of the main characters this manga is quite clich√©d to say the least. Asta as such is so much similar to many protagonists in popular shounens with him being an orphan, his weakness and his attempt of trying to be the best. But the most annoying part is his constant proclamation of his aim to be the 'wizard king'. Yuno is also quite generic in his role as a rival with his calm and cool attitude, and the fact that he is blessed with high degree of magical powers. Yet some of the side characters (introduced specially in the last half) of the manga are quite innovative. Moreover the 'magic knights' have a vast array of members which as a fact promises lots of different characters and further room for exploration for the future.

Even so the weakest aspect might be the setting of 'Black Clover', which seems so generic and is never really explored bar the mention of the class system of nobles and peasants/regulars. The magic system is also not yet explored fully and uniqueness of the magic knights as magic users with individuality is not established either. This might be another aspect which leave space for improvement.

The art on the other hand is quite fine and enticing, having varied character art, detailed and engrossing background art and flowing action scenes which really makes me want to see them animated. Which in itself is an achievement of the artist in my book.

So, the first volume of 'Black Clover' on the whole is a very very generic take on shounen action manga, which despite its blandness does leave much room for improvement and exploration in the future. We, as readers, just have to put our faith in the author and wait with hope for the future. Who knows, he just might take us on a incredibly fun ride. But on the present it is drastically lacking originality.

Overall Score -
                           6 out of 10. 

If you want more info and other reviews of this Manga check out its MAL page - 

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