Sunday, April 21, 2013

Comic Book Review: Dragon Ball Multiverse Chapter 29 Special

Dragon Ball Multiverse Chapter 29 Special – Universe 3, Two Great Heroes
Drawn By: Beta
Story by: Salagir and Gogeta Jr.
Colors by: Faye
Time for my review of Dragon Ball Multiverse the weekly released fan comic of Salagir and Gogeta Jr.  This week we’ll be reviewing Chapter 29 which is titled Two Great Heroes.  This isn’t the latest DBM chapter but the current one, chapter 30, continues directly from this one so I thought it appropriate to start here.
Two Great Heroes starts off oddly enough with two movie villians.  We have Dr. Raichi from the Dragon Ball Z OVA, A Plan to Eradicate the Saiyans and Hoi from Wrath of the Dragon.  Hoi is trying to get Raichi to open his mysterious music box.  Wrath of the Dragon watchers will instantly figure out what’s in the box.  Raichi does not appear interested in the least.  Hoi then tries to appeal to Raichi’s sense of good since the Raichi of this universe appears to be a great hero; one that successfully beat back the Saiyan tyrants (and killed them apparently).  Hoi says that Raichi is a great hero and as such should help free the other hero Tapion who is trapped within the box.  Raichi is reluctant but agrees to do it and revels in the challenge of using science to open the magic box.

Raichi is successful in opening the box.  His lab is engulfed in an immense amount of swirling energy and eventually Tapion emerges from the maelstrom.  He isn’t happy though and asks why he was freed.  When Hoi tries to escape and Raichi blocks him he releases a deadly creature that’s locked deep within himself…well half of a creature – the bottom half.  The creature wrecks Raichi’s lab and all hell breaks loose.

This is where badassery appears in the form of Ghost Saiyans and I must say where the story hits its crowning moment of awesomeness.  The Saiyans look completely badass in their new armor designs and the way they’re introduced is dripping with cool.  I don’t want to spoil any more than that but seeing the Ghost Saiyans piqued my interest and made me more interested in this special and universe.  It really made me more interested in how the battle between Raichi and the Saiyans went down and how their ghosts came to serve him.
The Art of this special was superbly good.  The artist Beta takes Akira Toriyama’s character designs and makes them all her own.  I really liked her design of the Ghost Saiyan’s armor and of the female Saiyans.  Everybody else from Tapion to Hoi to Raichi were translated right from the movies to the page.  My only complaint would be that the backgrounds looked a bit bland and simple, especially towards the beginning but I’ve never been good at drawing them myself and most of the time don’t notice them so it wasn’t a big deal for me.
This time a special finally didn’t seem rushed or like it was just delaying the inevitable.  The sort of mysteriousness of the Ghost Saiyans gave this special more life at the halfway point where these specials typically burn out at with repetition.  The fight with the creature’s lower half dragged on for a bit but still never got stale.
The chapter had a strong plot.  The mysteries of Raichi, Tapion, Hoi, and then the Ghost Saiyans got me intrigued.  The rest of it was just seeing how Raichi handled all of this chaos and what he had in store for Tapion and vice versa.  They’re a weird combo but this is definitely a weird universe.  It also had a nice cliff hanger-ish ending which setup the next chapter.
There were really good translators this time.  There were no awkward phrases or sentences in this special like the series is typically known for.  The character interactions also felt natural and character specific which isn’t saying too much because we never really get to see these guys too much in their own movies.  Everything felt natural and the dialogue flowed smoothly.
This cast of characters is really strange to say the least.  The choice for these characters would leave most people wanting for more but the writers used what they had and to great degree.  The only “main” character from the original series here is Kakarott aka Goku but he shows up here for a second and dies almost instantly.  For a special with no main characters and all class B villains I feel I got more out of each character.  The characters stayed true to themselves and their interactions were really good.  Also credit goes to Beta for some really cool looking original character designs for the Ghost Saiyans.
+        Mysteries that keep you turning the page
+        Great characterizations
+        Solid action
+        Strong plot
+        Great Art
+        Ghost Saiyans!!!
+        Interesting universe
-        Somewhat repetitive fight sequence
-        Bland backgrounds
-        Lack of a strong “leading” character
Overall: 8/10
This special is a page turner and not because you just want it to be over either.  This special did what the others could not in regards to the story and art as far as quality is concerned.  I hope that the specials to come are as good as or better than this one.  Universe 9 is a particular one that I want to see on this level.  Anyways go check it out and get lost in the Multiverse starting here:  Thanks for the read and may your dreams be at your fingertips!

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