Taisuke Kanou is your average 16-year-old student. He has two close friends, Hirose and Megumi. Hirose has trouble with bullies, but Taisuke is always there to defend him, even though he just winds up getting beaten instead of Hirose. During class one day, Taisuke is hit by something unworldly and for that split second, he sees a vision of the universe. As he's walking home from school, he sees a girl fall and die in front of him, but his first thought is jealousy. He later finds out that the strange sensation that hit him is spreading throughout Japan. Those who are struck by it either commit suicide or "evolve," but the comrades have evolve usually have dark intentions for the rest of the world.
This manga is also known as Alive: The Final Evolution. The story is made by Kawashima Tadashi and the art is by Adachitoka.
I'm pretty sure that most of the people don't know the name of Kawashima Tadashi. Kawashima made his professional debut with Daughter Maker, which ran in Kōdansha's Monthly Shōnen Magazine Zōkan Great. From October 2003 to October 2009. And then he started making Alive with Adachitoka. This manga was actually the last one what Kawashima Tadashi made. Because Kawashima succumbed to liver cancer on June 15, 2010 and died at the age of 41, having finished Alive on his deathbed.
I really like this story and it's made me quite sad that this is only one manga which he made and isn't known so well outside of Japan. And an anime adaptation was planned for Alive: Saishuu Shinkateki Shounen and was to be produced by anime studio Gonzo. Production was cancelled in 2010 when the studio was delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange. I would have liked to see anime of this and it would have made Kawashima Tadashi probably really happy too if this manga would have an anime adaption. I really hope that this manga gets an anime some day.
And then Adachitoka, The name is a compound of the character artist Adachi (安達), and the background artist Tokashiki (渡嘉敷). Both are female. Adachitoka debuted by providing the illustrations for the manga "Alive: The Final Evolution". Prior to this, they were assistants to Katou Motohiro, author of "Rocket Man", and Shimizu Aki, author of the manga adaptation of "Suikoden III".
Noragami is their first original project, and began its serialization in 2011. And probably most of people who knows Adachitoka, knows them from Noragami manga or the anime (which come up in last year). And I must say that the season 2 of Noragami (Noragami Aragoto) is coming up this year!
I know that I said something about writing abut Animecon next but I just must write about this first! I bought 3 first volumes of this manga about 6 years ago. It was some of the first manga which I bought in English. I really liked it right away, even though it's quite serious and dark one. But then I didn't find 4 volume or 5 or anything but those which I already have. I still don't really know why I didn't find them (maybe the store just didn't see that there is any buyer for them). And quite many years have passed and still I can't find more from Finland (or I'm just blind).
Actually the series was published in English as Alive: The Final Evolution by Del Rey Manga. 8 volumes were released from July 31, 2007 to November 24, 2009 before publication was discontinued. So there is reason why I can't find it (but still I could have find all those 8).
Overall there is 21 volumes and even though I have read them all I really wan't to buy them. And probably all in Japanese (even though I have the first 3 in English and they probably look a little different). This is great manga and I really want it~
Like I said, I really like the story and the art is pretty good too and gets really much better when you read further. I really like the art style of Adatchitoka specially in Noragami (which is newer than Alive so they have evolved quite a lot~).
And now there is probably going to come some spoilers so go away now if you don't want to spoil yourself, thank you.
First, like I said I really like the story of this manga. It's little different what I have read before and even though I started reading so many years ago, I remember those 3 first volumes really well.
The main character is pretty normal main character type. He is a teenage boy who is bold, confident and who is not afraid to stick up for his friends. And of course he have dark past; he lives with guilt because he feels it was his fault that his parents died. Since his parents death, he has been raised and looked after by his older sister. But still I think Taisuke is quite a good main character even though he is quite ordinary one.
And then there is Hirose.
Yuichi Hirose is Taisuke's best friend. He is small and timid for his age and is picked on by bullies. Taisuke and Megumi often help him out with bullies and animals, as seen in the omakes. Although small, he himself is infected with the virus and is given powers. He lives with last living family member, his mother. His mother soon commits suicide due to the virus and he ends up congratulating her on her death due to mind altering by a police inspector. Hirose gains the power to make anything "disappear" by creating holes(this ability is known as void). He later resents Taisuke and becomes ambitious and cruel.
I really though that Hirose is one of the main characters. Well he obviously is one in the start but then he become more and more villain like and more distant. And when come that part when he have the the Heart, I noticed that there isn't much hope to get him back to the way he was. I really hoped that in the end Taisuke will have him back to normal but he have become quite mad. I kind a liked Hirose, but then I started to dislike him even more and more even though I hoped that he isn't that bad in the end....
And then Megumi... oh dear...
Megumi Ochiai is Taisuke's childhood friend. She has known him since his parent's death and has always been there for him. Megumi is quite loud and is easily angered. She has always looked out for Hirose and Taisuke since an early age and sometimes comes to asks Taisuke's sister for help.
I really don't like this girl. Right away I knew that she is going to make only trouble. And when I read even further and further I hate her even more. Well she isn't really bad character but she is really useless and I don't really remember anything when she have done something useful or anything that is necessary. And like Hirose, I really though that she is one of the main characters! Well in the beginning she is, but when she is with Hirose she become more and more something that really don't matter and you remember her actually only then when Taisuke speaks something about her. And something that I really don't like is the end! She is with Taisuke! Okay I know that they are childhood friends and it's some kind of thing that in anime and manga they start like each other. But still! There is Nami who is much better female character! And she likes Taisuke, so why don't Taisuke like her back D:.
There is lot of good characters and quite a many of them is dead. Let's start with Yura Takumi, he is one of the few people who've gained powers from the virus. He is a vicious man who dresses in overalls and often pokes out his tongue before a kill. He is an artist who destroys his work as soon as it's finished. He teams up with Katsumata and often talks about "The value of death" and how "humans are fossils". He kills quite freely and doesn't seem to be bothered about the consequences of his actions.
Takumi is actually one of my favorites in this manga like is Mitama, she is cute and little evil (after having the girl's corpse) so I like her too. But let's talk about Takumi first! I was really sad when I though that he died when Hirose get the Heart. But then later I was so happy when Takumi came back and had only lost his hand~ After losing his hand, he become more nicer character and it was quite sad that they thought that he is still enemy, even though he wanted to help and he did in the end before he died. And when he died I was really sad when Taisuke didn't notice who was died when he heard that one of his friend was died but he didn't know who when everyone was there but Takumi. I really would like that if Takumi would have become one of the good guys and part of the "Taisukes team".
Oh and then there is Mitama (Akuro)~
Akuro is an alien being containing the souls of an advanced civilization that obtained immortality. Without a body, the souls were unable to die and searched for hosts in order to commit suicide. Upon finding Earth, Akuro split into the souls of the civilization, four hearts, and a single consciousness referred to as Mitama ("The Soul"). Mitama originally inhabits the body of an owl, and later is able to enter and animate a girl's corpse.
When Mitama gets that cute girl corpse as hers body she become quite different character. When she was the owl one she wasn't so noticeable so I first thought that they are even completely different character. Well I noticed it later (but it took a little while me to notice that little fact...ahhahah). But anyway, this little girl Mitama is quite cute one and because she can be so cute and nice and then completely different person some times it makes me like her (I'm weird I know).
In the end when Taisuke, having evaded the attack, takes the two Akuro Heart pieces from Hirose causing him to regress into a normal Comrade. The President of the United States sends a nuclear missile towards Tokyo but is erased by Hirose. Hirose offers to travel with Mitama as a part of Akuro to repent for his crimes and his soul leaves his body. I really thought first that why they let Mitama do it. I really thought that Mitama is going to do something bad. But when I think about it more, I noticed that it's have to end well. There have been the "bad ending" already so Mitama must do the "good end" for this manga, specially when everything have gone quite wrong before and Mitama haven't been that bad and evil villain that she would ruin everything in the end. So I'm quite happy that this end this way; As Akuro leaves Earth, it gathers all its pieces returning Comrades back to normal. Five years pass and then they show how the characters are doing. And of course the only bad thing in this end is that Megumi and Taisuke are together but well I survive because this manga is overall so good.
So I think this is all!
I really wanted to write more, but I think this is enough and I'm really happy if someone read this~ Well it is full of spoilers so I'm pretty sure that almost nobody will read this ^^'.
I would have liked to tell more of those awesome characters and it's quite weird that I didn't mentioned Yuta or Nami (oh, I mentioned her actually) even though they are main characters and in the main character team with Taisuke! (I should really be ashamed that I didn't write about them). They are really good characters! I liked them both even though I first thought that Nami will be irritating, but she is actually good female character.
Oh! I almost started to write more even though I said that this is all!
Thank you so much for reading!
(even though nobody will read this because of the spoilers T^T).
But thanks anyway~
And see you guys later~