Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Serenity, v.3, Basket Case

Created by Buzz Dixon and Art by Min Kwon
Published in the U.S. by RealBuzz Studios

Slugline: Serenity has to face up to responsibilities under the influence of her Christian friends.

This manga is out of the ordinary because it is an inspirational Christian manga. I know that there is a whole Christian youth movement out there, but that was completely outside of my church's culture. That being said, there have been a few inspirational comic series that have had mainstream release -- most of them crashed and burned.

With manga now so popular, it was inevitable that someone would try it again. And surprise, it doesn't suck. I'm of the school that you prove your faith by living and showing it, rather than preaching it, and most previous comic series were too heavy on the preaching. People get enough of that already, thank you very much.

Serenity is the main character, a young girl whose school friends fit the Christian youth mold, while she does not. There are two storylines here, one involving a purity test making the rounds at the high school, and the responsibilities of finding an abandoned baby. I liked the first story a bit more, for a purity test embarrassment happens to everyone, but there was a little more obvious preaching on the part of the characters. The second story was less likely, but the character's reactions were better, showing their beliefs by their actions.

Art ranges from okay to pretty good. The artist does not seem to believe in the need for backgrounds, but the book's coloring makes up for it. The fact that it is inspirational may turn people on or off, but the book itself, aside from matters of faith, is a good read.

- Ferdinand

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