Friday, August 03, 2007

Venus Versus Virus, v. 1

By Atsushi Suzumi
Published in the U.S. by Seven Seas

Slugline: Two hot goth girls in action! Plus they may be one of the Seven Seas yuri titles! Can this possibly ever get any better?

Sumire is a typical girl who has one problem: she can see dead people sometimes, and sometimes the dead people can see her back. One day a ghost threatens her, and a goth girl shoots it dead. Which is an interesting feat since it was already a ghost, but is beside the point. They go back and forth and the goth girl named Lucia uses her as bait for the Virus, a type of contagious ghost, so to speak. In the process of getting the ghost that been haunting the school, Lucia has to shoot Sumire with her spirit bullets, which has the dual effects of making Sumire a great target for roaming Virus ghosts, but also gives her the ability to kill them. Sumire realizes that she needs help, training and protection and moves in with Lucia, much to the consternation of her friends who do not realize exactly what is going on. She goes on a couple of jobs, but only barely survives them just trying to avoid invoking her own strange abilities.

There are some interesting character bits here, despite my claims of yuri fandom. As in, the women looking longingly at each other is not what I am talking about here. While Sumire starts out shy, her development to being a little more outgoing is organic, and while she currently plays the helpless female, she may have a monster inside and the cynical, world-weary Lucia may be the one to drag her back to reality. Decent action, interesting characters and some different story twists make this an enjoyable read. 3 stars, with a bullet.

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

- Ferdinand

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