Book Review: Rurouni Kenshin Volume 27

June 9, 2016


It looks like things are going fairly well, huh?

I have been relieved of my duties with the electronic newsletter for the church I attend and have been able to get around to covering a few titles in my backlog.

So far, out of the seven I decided to cover, I have reviewed all but two.

Today, I will be reviewing one of those titles, which is called Rurouni Kenshin Volume 27 by Nobuhiro Watsuki.

As I have given a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.

Having arrived at EnishiÔÇÖs hideout, Kenshin and the gang are ready to get things settled and engage in battle with the people under Enishi, until the last of the players arrive on the stage.

The final showdown between the assassin turned wanderer and the man hellbent on revenge is about to begin, yet nothing will be the same as when the two last clashed swords.

I am not too sure about this volume.

Fortunately, it was not bad enough that I would be forced to go right into what I hated.

I liked how there were not any more questions about KenshinÔÇÖs past and that Kenshin seemed to have found his answer to his journey of redemption.

While it is nice for the characters in a story to have some goal to strive towards and have questions come up during the course of the series, many things should be resolved by the time one reaches the penultimate book, leaving only the most important questions for the final book in the series.

In the case of this series, I had absolutely no questions remaining and the only thing that is on my mind is the intrigue in seeing how Kenshin and EnishiÔÇÖs final fight will end will end in the final volume.

because this series was actually handled pretty well, Nobuhiro and the people who helped him, like his editor, deserves quite a bit of praise.

This is how I expect a good series to come to a close and only a few others have been able to make me satisfied like I am here, mainly because we live in a world where we need sequels to stories that ended just right in the first book.

Again, congratulations Nobuhiro for a job well done.

I also liked how it seemed that characters other than Kenshin were able to easily deal with difficult situations.

In one of the battles that took place before Kenshin and EnishiÔÇÖs final bout, YahikoÔÇÖs ultimate technique had practically been sealed off, which is to be expected when one uses the same move all the time against an opponent.

However, instead of being stupid, Yahiko tried a different approach.

This is how things work in both real fights and even things like RPGs. Doing something that may seem to be dumb, like starting of with a move to weaken magical attacks when that might not be the first kind of attack a boss uses, may actually help out in the long run.

Then again people have the advantage of knowing a skillÔÇÖs or magical attackÔÇÖs strengths and weaknesses in an RPG from just reading a description, whereas in a real fight, you need to find out those details from observation.

Still, it does show that Yahiko had definitely grown from the person he was when he was first introduced, and makes things a little interesting.

The thing that I liked the most though was Kenshin and EnishiÔÇÖs final showdown.

As many of you guys should know, when I saw this fight in Samurai X: Reflection, I thought that it was rather dull, excluding the part where Kenshin states his resolve to continue on his path.

Here, however, the moment the two of them clashed, I did not want to stop reading for any reason.

The fight was awesome, maybe even on par with the anime adaptations of KenshinÔÇÖs fights with Sojiro and Shishio.

This is what I wanted from this fight and the manga succeeded in delivering what the Reflection OVA could not.

Of course, the quality of the fight was not the only thing that out shined the OVA in this fight.

Kenshin stating his resolve to continue on his current path also had more feeling than it did in the OVA.

If I had to say why, it is because Kenshin had went through a deep depression and came back from it, whereas we never really saw Kenshin in a sad state in Samurai X: Reflection, unless one counts the numerous scenes where he is most certainly not healthy.

Because of that, I get the feeling that I first stated that I got from this book, and Nobuhiro does deserve a lot of praise for handling this so well, and I am really looking forward to seeing how everything ends in the next volume.

Outside of those things, I cannot think of anything else that I particularly liked, at least without repeating myself.

The fact that KenshinÔÇÖs journey feels like it is over and that the clash between Kenshin and Enishi started off quite well made this book fairly enjoyable.

Although there was quite a bit to like about this book, there are some issues.

However, aside from issues too minor to talk about, such as typos, only one thing really bugged me.

The fights that occurred before Enishi and Kenshin clashed swords again were utterly boring.

Seeing as Nobuhiro had been working on this series of approximately five years when these chapters came out, he really should have been able to make better fights than this, especially since most of the fights in the Kyoto arc, even those against mere underlings, were much more than this.

According to the words of Nobuhiro presented in this volume, he wanted to have everyone go out in style as things wrapped up, and he utterly failed in that area, which he himself admits.

Now, I will give Nobuhiro credit that he did do a bad job, but that still does not change the fact that it greatly diminished my enjoyment of this book.

Honestly! Fights should not be just written in because one feels like it.

Doing so ruins the flow of a story and may turn a satisfying conclusion into a bad one.

It would have been better if Nobuhiro had these guys finished in a single blow or just left them out entirely and get right to the fight that everyone was waiting for since KenshinÔÇÖs recovery in volume 25.

Fortunately, this is the only thing wrong with the volume, as there was nothing else that I particularly hated.

While there was not a whole lot wrong, the dull fights preceding Kenshin and EnishiÔÇÖs final duel ruined an otherwise great book.

Despite the fact that there were some dull fights, the final showdown between Kenshin and Enishi was enough to make this worth reading.

As this is the penultimate volume in the series, I only recommend this to fans of Rurouni Kenshin.

What are your thoughts on Rurouni Kenshin Volume 27? Did you like it or hate it? If you liked it and saw Samurai X: Reflection, was Kenshin and EnishiÔÇÖs fight better here, like it was for me, or about the same? Was there something you liked or hated that went unmentioned? Feel free to comment.

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