Mar 29, 2009
Manga review of Eden Volume 6 by Hiroki Endo. Translated by Kumar Sivasubramanian. Originally published in Japan by Kodansha. Published in US by Dark Horse, $12.95, Rated Mature Ages 18+.
Elijah's botched rescue attempt has left his mother in critical
condition and his sister still in the hands of Propater. On top of
that, the AI Maya seems to have joined sides with the enemy as well
and Cherubim has been blown to bits. Plus, Elijah has the blood of
a cop on his hands and his friends are going to be none too happy
when he arrives in his jail cell. Even if he gets out alive, there
is a gang war brewing on the streets between his father's men and
an up and coming gangster named Pedro. Helena complicates things
even further by buying the prostitute that Pedro loves to work in
her brothel in an effort to save her from her destructive heroin
As you can tell from the plot points outlined above, the world of Eden is about as far from the Biblical garden as it is possible to be. In fact, probably the closest approximation is Hell. But there is a certain elegance in the ultimate degradation, and a certain beauty in the worst violence as portrayed by Endo's highly realistic and fluid art. The writer has done a good job of moving Eden from a militaristic ultra gore action piece to a more meditative (albeit still with lots of blood) poem about the lower classes and the gangsters that control the streets. Even Pedro, who does some pretty evil things in this volume, is shown through flashbacks to have a heart and a true love for Manuela, even though his physical abuse would belie otherwise. Eden is the best manga series being printed right now. Nowhere else can you find the masterful combination of art, writing, and honesty about the human condition.
My Grade: A+