Thursday, May 03, 2007

Rhysmyth, v. 1

Story by Anthony Andora with Art by Lincy Chan
Published by TokyoPop

Slugline: The best sign that the fans have taken over the kingdom is when they start writing about the fan-intensive stuff.

I have to admit a cardinal sin. Despite being in the prime demographics of my life, I have never owned a Nintendo, PS2, XboX, or even an Atari for that matter. It was a matter of acknowledging my sucky hand-eye coordination and the fact that I would spend time I didn't have in the fruitless pursuit of improving it. So my appreciation of Dance Dance Revolution is at best an cerebral one. But now here is a manga about a souped-up version of it. If that isn't a sign that we have arrived, nothing else is.

But once you strip out the DDR, all that is left is another underdog sports story, which in the first volume doesn't seem to move forward much and not much out of the ordinary happens. Elena can't get into any sports even though she clearly shows grace under pressure, a grace that she somehow has never shown before despite numerous chances and attempts on her part. There is the queen bee of the school putting her down, the jealous guy, the dark and mysterious guy, the wise sensei, and so on. All of the components are there, but they are not meshing together well. Maybe I have just read one too many sports manga recently, but other than the DDR aspect, I felt a little jaded by it, and since I don't play DDR, that failed to excite me.

So maybe for some fans this is exactly what they are looking for. I feel it needs something more.

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

- Ferdinand

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