Home > Manga Reviews, Reviews > Vindland Saga, Vol. 6

Vindland Saga, Vol. 6

Sorry for the delay, but it’s better late then never, right? Plus, with NYCC going on, there’s plenty of news items out there as well! So enjoy a small news round up before taking a look at my thoughts on Vinland Saga, Vol. 6!

And now, onto this week’s review of Vinland Saga, Vol. 6!

Vinland Saga, Vol. 6Vinland Saga, Vol. 6
by Makoto Yukimura
Kodansha Comics, 400 pp
Rating: Teen (13 +)

Makoto Yukimura’s viking saga returns with Vinland Saga, Vol. 6 and it doesn’t disappoint! After years of plotting, fighting and ruling England, King Canute’s plans near their end game as he finds himself mere days away from solidifying his rule of Denmark and England. Meanwhile back on the farm, Thorfinn and Einar find themselves nearing their own goal of attaining freedom, but an escaped slave throws that all into turmoil and Thorfinn finds his new pacifistic convictions put to the test.

This is easily one of my favorite manga series currently in print and this volume does wonders to show why that is. Between the absolutely gorgeous artwork and the themes of violence and vengeance, Makoto Yukimura has created an entertaining and engaging piece of work that fulfills all the eye candy and action needs, while also asking and taking a look at the cycle of violence and how realistic it is to believe that it can ever be broken.

Over the past few volumes we’ve seen Thorfinn put through a ringer. His one goal in life was stolen from him and he was forced into slavery. Since then he’s been slowly recovering from the mental and emotional trauma that made up most of his life. Since then he’s been struggling with what he’s done and reevaluating his life, finally stating his new beliefs in this volume. Thorfinn’s internal struggle is mirrored in Canute. On his quest to create a paradise, reality has forced Canute to make some questionable choices along the way, and now we finally get to see the toll they’ve taken on him as he spends most of his private moments in conversation with a hallucination of his father’s decapitated head. While Canute’s ideals may have started out pure, it’s east to see that his ideals have been compromised by the choices he’s made along the way. Thorfinn, on the other hand, has had relative peace and quiet to heal and grow in thanks to his isolation on a rural farm, far away from the war and free from the kind of choices that Canute has been been forced to deal with.

There’s so much character in his artwork and within Makoto Yukimura’s character designs! The characters faces, their posture, expressions and more all convey the characters personality and attitude. The lush backgrounds help ground the story in a firm time and place, thankfully avoiding the empty or tone full backgrounds that often plague manga. He actually talks about this a bit in one of the volume’s extras and explains why he thinks backgrounds matter. It’s something I agree with him on, but it’s nice to see it echoed by a creator I enjoy. His action sequences are enjoyable, though they suffer a bit from being a flurry of fists. While it’s generally not my preferred form of fight scene, they’re few enough that they don’t really detract from my enjoyment of Vinland Saga. Plus, the action isn’t the meat of the series, it’s just the sizzle.

There’s still a question mark hanging over the ultimate fate of the Kodansha release of Vinland Saga and while that may turn some people off, passing this on the chance that it might get cancelled guarantees that it will. It’s an absolutely fantastic series and one that deserves and lives up to the hype and praise that it rightfully gets. It’s been an incredible series and one that’s absolutely worth checking out.

Vinland Saga, Vol. 6 is available now from Kodansha Comics.

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  1. October 11, 2015 at 6:31 pm

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