Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Things No One Cares About: Rohan Kishibe Won't Move

Hirohiko Araki is best known for his long running manga  Jojo's Bizarre Adventure,of which I dedicated and entire month to. When I first did that little stunt I had only read up to the third major arc,Stardust Crusaders,and had not experienced the unbridled pleasure of Diamond is Unbreakable.This part introduced the character of Rohan Kishibe,an eccentric manga-ka.Araki loves this character and says that if he himself had a Stand it'd be Kishibe's Heaven's Door. He has even given Rohan multiple spin-offs dealing with his escapades,including today's feature:Rohan Kishibe Won't Move.

Rohan Kishibe Won't Move is a series of short stories involving the titular character as he gets into odd situations while researching topics for his manga protects. The first story ran in Shonen jump in 1997 with the rest being published in a few different magazines between 2008 and 2013. The stories range from tales of suspense to the horrors of real estate. They are interesting little stories that let us see more of Rohan as a character and the weird things that go on in the Jojo universe.

The first two stories,At a Confessional and Mutsukabezaka,use Rohan as more of a framing device for the stories. Both are fun little thrill rides that give me that Twilight Zone vibe albeit with a much lighter tone. At a Confessional is probably the better of the two for its climax that elevates catching popcorn in your mouth into a fight to stay alive. I won't say much more about it as not to spoil the hilarious twist ending.

The second story is by no means bad,being just as weird as its predecessor but has a scene that really bugs me. Near the middle of the story,the female lead kills her lower class lover by accident.. The problem is that he keeps on bleeding form a rather small wound. However she has to hide him as her father and arranged fiance are coming. She starts hiding his possessions and then for no reason strips down to her underwear. Then proceeds to stay that way till she hides the body and this scene goes on for awhile. I think she might have got blood on her dress but her dress looks the same from the time she sees her boyfriend till she takes the dress off. The series has had fan service before but it was never this obvious or drawn out. Which is a shame because we do get to see a bit of how weird Rohan can be and the rest of the story is enjoyable if a bit vague.

The third story,The Millionaire's Village, has Rohan confront his greatest foe:good manners. The story stars Rohan and another editor of his as he accompanies her to a buy a home in a remote village. Here we're shown a more caring side of Rohan as he does fight to win back his editor's life after losing her due to the village’s strict upholding of good manners. While you could read his care as more selfish ,i.e if she dies he'll be in big trouble,it comes of to me as a bit of genuine concern on Rohan's part.

The fourth and final of more story driven parts is Poaching Reef and brings back minor character Tonio Trussardi. It's funny to see Rohan just going along with the plot even though he points out how silly it is. The story is the two go poaching for rare albacore so that Tonio can possibly cure his dying fiance. Not much to it,the plan gets botched and then Rohan unbotches it. The story does bring up a weird detail in that the place the men go to poach belongs to Josuke's family. Josuke appears at the end and doesn't seem to mind that the men poached from his family's waters. The issue sort of goes with the “just roll” with it tone of the story,so I don't mind too much.

The last story is Rohan goes to Gucci. It ran as a pseudo-advertisement manga in the magazine Spur and is fairly pointless. The stories before it gave us a look at Rohan as a eccentric man who has a selfish streak but can be a good person. Here he's just a generic jerk to a random desk clerk at Gucci,a fashion company, and then spouts adverts. The mess is in full color but that just makes it look unappealingly gaudy in a way the series tends to avoid. The panels are disjointed,and one character just disappears with no warning,taking Rohan's wallet with her. Interestingly enough this story is the only one to feature a stand besides Kishibe's. The rest of the stories attribute the weird events to nature or demons. It doesn’t make them weaker by any means but I find it odd I guess. Maybe it was for the better as the Stand introduced here is just silly. A boring attempt to advertise for a brand the author favors.

In the end,four pretty good stories and one poor advertisement for a brand I probably can't afford. The stories are enjoyable and feel like solid Jojo stories despite the lack of Stands.

Till Next Time:Stay Positive

No comments:

Post a Comment