Review: 'Blue Exorcist' Vol. 1 (Manga)
ICv2 Stars: 4 (out of 5)
Published: 05/04/2011 02:19am
Blue Exorcist Vol. 1 (Manga)
Publisher: Viz Media
Release Date: April 2011
Creator: Kato Kazue
Format: 200 pgs.; B&W; Trade Paperback
Age Rating: Teen
ICv2 Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Orphan Rin Okumura discovers he’s the son of Satan and after the death of Father Fujimoto he decides to follow in the footsteps of the man who raised him by attending True Cross Academy to become an exorcist. There he has to keep his true nature secret from everyone except one instructor, his twin brother Yukio.
If you think True Cross sounds more than a little like Hogwarts for Exorcists you wouldn’t be wrong but happily Rin spends precious little time studying and gets the opportunity to battle demons by drawing his father’s sword which allows him to unleash his Satanic powers. Well, it’s just a flower demon but that’s just one of the unique twists that makes Blue Exorcist different from all of the other manga featuring scruffy teens battling the supernatural.
Like the way the Christian cosmology it uses has got dollops of Jewish Kabbalah in it (earth is referred to as “Assiah” and Hell “Gehenna.” Then there’s Mephisto Pheles, the head of True Cross and leader of The Knights of the True Cross, a secret society of exorcists. Not only does he dress like an amalgam of Johnny Depp’s Willy Wonka and The Mad Hatter but can turn into a talking terrier for no apparent reason.
Over all Blue Exorcist is a well done and lively take on the genre and while the translation is generally quite good there is the occasional glitch which gives us this memorable non sequitur; “dig the wax out of your eyes.”
--Steve Bennett; Writer and retail services consultant.