This week’s Manga Nutcracker came a little late, however now is here with one of my favorite comedy manga Saint Young Men!
Extraordinary characters in a ordinary setting! Saint Young Men shows what manga does best!
Now lets find the essence of this exceptional manga ! Go!
Saint Young Men
Original run September 22, 2006 – present
Published by Kodansha
“Jesus Christ and Gautama Buddha take a vacation from their duties, start living together in Tokyo, Japan”
The millennium is over and both Jesus Christ and Gautama Buddha need a well earned break! Choosing Tachikawa, Tokyo for their vacation time, they rent an apartment and explore Tokyo, and humanity as the original odd couple, whilst comedically trying to hide their true identities.
The characterization of Jesus as a man who loves everything, is amicable, laid-back and fun loving paints a fresh and inviting picture of the father of Christianity. While Buddha is depicted as a “big brother” type, frugal, calm and responsible with a love of manga.
The resultant situations they find themselves in, play out to hilariously ridiculous effect as we watch our holy protagonists desperately trying to protect their cover. This “slice of life” manga is filled with individual chapters, detailing a separate day in their lives, making it east to pick up Saint Young Men at any point!
Saint Young Men is perfect mix of great characters, amazing setting and undeniably brilliant comedy – all handled with respect for their respective religions.
The research undertaking to make Saint Young Men must have been complex for it to show shine through in the subtlest of ways. Hikaru Nakamaru sensei has achieved the seemingly impossible, mixing two complex topics and packaging the concept in a way previously unseen.
This is, in my opinion, what manga does best. Tacking the unseen and impossible and turning it into a relatable piece of engaging entertainment. By tacking THREE major themes, Christianity, Buddhism and Japanese culture, Hikaru Nakamaru sensei has managed to find the grey in-between and produce a manga that is incapable of offending. Like in most manga, a villain isn’t a true villain, often ending up friends with the protagonist once they’ve ‘ironed’ out their difference, Saint Young Men manages to successfully find the middle ground and tell a story that is truly relatable. This is what manga is all about!
Did you like this week Manga Nutcracker? Did you enjoy Saint Young Men?
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