Ninja Girls, vol. 3
By Hosana Tanaka
Del Rey, 208 pp
Rating: OT (16 +)
Katana Raizo is the last surviving member of his family, so to keep the bloodline alive, the ninja clan entrusted with protecting the Katana family has assigned three buxom ninja girls to take him in search of a suitable bride. Unfortunately for them, Raizo’s seems to have little interest in any of this.
I’m coming into the series cold, so I was fairly happy to discover that this volume is made up, almost entirely of a single story. It tells the tale of the Raizo and his companions stumbling into a tournament to decide the next head of the Yagyu clan. Unfortunately the tale follows the all too common trope of introducing a strong young woman, in this case Yagyu Izuna, and then cutting her off at the knees by showing that underneath that tough and capable exterior, she’s really just a little girl at heart. Yagyu Izuna isn’t the only cliched character though; no one in this book really jumped out at me as terribly engaging or fleshed out; they all felt fairly one note. Katana Raizo is your typical, good hearted protagonist who’s awkward around women and a bit thick when it comes to dealing with them. His three ninja escorts barely appear in this volume, so I never really got a clear indication of who they were beyond being comedy and fan service material.
The artwork is ok and fits the material well. The women are all huge breasted, scantly clad and with costumes that allow for easy shots of cleaveage and panties. Much to my surprise though, there’s also a few fairly decent action sequences too. Admittedly they’re short and few in number, but Hosana Tanaka does an excellent job with them. Lots of mid ground shots, depicting the action clearly while keeping them entertaining and interesting. Each move flows into the next nicely, particular in the scene’s involving young Yagyu Izuna. I kind of want to see Hosana Tanaka do a straight action series after seeing some of the fight scene’s here.
Overall, Ninja Girls seems to be yet another manga title that isn’t for me. I got a few chuckles from it, and the short action scene’s where rather nice, but overall I didn’t find it to be terribly interesting. The fan service oriented artwork and flat, bland characters make it a light, forgettable read.
Ninja Girls, vol. 3 is available now. Review copy provided by the publisher.