Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Murder Princess, v. 1

By Sekihiko Inui
Published in the U.S. by Broccoli Books

Slugline: For a title called Murder Princess, she is
not doing a lot of murdering, and technically she isn't even a princess, she is a queen.

Murder Princess does suffer from one really silly
conceit in the beginning: that by falling and bonking their heads together, a tough-as-nails female bounty hunter and a princess fleeing a coup would end up exchanging souls. Sure, I am willing to take some weirdness, but it is just there, dropped into the story. If we can get past that, there is an actually a not-half-bad story here, though for some reason it does feel more like a Saturday afternoon special than anything else. You have the recurring villian, a mad scientist who has created two incredibly cute but incredibly deadly robots disguised as children to do his bidding. Whenever we need a random threat to illustrate some aspect of a character's personality, said trio conveniently show up to wreak some destruction before having to flee.

There is some sort of prophecy being floated that
Falis, the bounty hunter in Alita's body, is going to destroy the kingdom, but it doesn't really seem to drive the plot, and how she ends being paid to help protect the kingdom is a little threadbare. The action scenes, on the other hand, are decent, and if you are willing to overlook the plot holes, it is reasonably entertaining.

Murder Princess vol. 1 is also available from Right Stuf, Intl., an online retailer specializing in anime and manga.

- Ferdinand

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