What’s up guys! Thanks coming back to check out another blog post done by the one only Luna Senpai. In this blog post I am going to do manga break down on Magical Girl spec Ops Asuka volume 1. I will be talking about the following topic, the plot, the characters, the artwork, and of course give my overall thoughts on volume 1. Please note there are currently four volumes translated in English available for purchases. You can also read some of the chapter for free HERE .
WARNING SPOILER ALERT!
Just to give you guys a heads up this breakdown will contain some spoilers. Meaning if you are not a fan of spoilers you may not want to read this until you have read volume 1 of Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka. I will also be sure to source out any information I did not write for plagiarism is not cool!
The Plot My Dudes
Summary: When alien invaders came to planet Earth three years ago to wreak havoc, the aliens didn’t stand a chance against a group of young women blessed with powers that come from a mysterious source. After all was said and done these girls with magical powers went back to their normal life. However, peace never last to long in the real world. The same sinister aliens have come back … meaning it is time for the Magical Girl Special Ops force to stand their grounds in the battlefront to defend mankind.
My Thoughts: Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka first volume 1 is one of the very few manga’s that I have ever picked up, and read it completely through in one day. This dark theme manga created by Makoto Fukami, and Seigo Tokiya is surely going to give you a run for your money. Throughout the first volume it does explain a bit better what happen three years ago. They do this by incorporating flashbacks, which may confuse some readers. However, it explains that being a magical girl isn’t all fun, and games. I felt like Fukami was foreshadowing that a happy ending doesn’t exist, because the fight never ends when you are a magical girl. The manga goes into great detail about the disas which are the alien monsters who invaded earth. You will also learn how all this effects the magical girls … definitely Asuka.
Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka is for sure a darker, and edgier magical girl manga. For example, in one of Asuka flashbacks she encounters two disas who apparently kidnapped her parents, but here is what makes this so sick,and dark. After the disas ( the aliens) kill Asuka parents … they send her dismember body parts of her parents one at a time. Talk about gnarly, and how traumatizing that is for a young girl!
Throughout the manga we follow Asuka who was the leader of the Legendary Magical Five . Fukami, and Tokiya make it very clear that Asuka wants nothing to do with being a magical girl. This doesn’t last long when shit starts to go down. Asuka was not able to stand, and just watch the following events unfold in front of her. Asuka uses her magical girl powers to defeat a group of bad guys before her. The question is who are these bad guys? What do they want? I think that is something you need to find out yourself. It wouldn’t be fun if I gave you guys all the answers.
Lets Talk About The Characters
I didn’t like that we didn’t get to learn much about the characters in the 1st volume. I mean we learn a lot about Asuka, but I would have love to known more about some of the side characters. It would have been nice if they added extra pages talking about each of the characters introduced in the first volume. Just so we the reader could get a better understanding of the characters before us. Any who I cam going to provide information about characters I feel are important in the first volume. This infomation will be from wiki fandom.
Disas AKA Netherbeast
They may appear cute, and friendly but do not let them fool you one but. These monsters will not hesitate to rip you into pieces, and all its gory details that go with it. Disas or Netherbeast are monsters created as biological weapons in the spirit world. They take form of a harmless looking plushie when they aren’t active. When activated the Netherbeast will suddenly grow in size, and become violent killing machine monsters (Source Wiki Fandom)
Summary: Asuka Otori is the main character of Magical Girl Spec-Ops Asuka. Asuka had wished since she was little to become a magical girl. Her wish came true when she was one of the 11 girls chosen to become magical girls to fight in what would later be called the Distonia War against the invading magical beast from the Spirit World. Holding the codename Rupture, Asuka was the leader of the Magical Five, the 5 surviving magical girls who defeated the king of the magic beasts during the final battle of the war. Now, 3 years after said battle, Asuka has retired from being a magical girl and struggles to live a normal life. However, the rise of magical crime forces Asuka to take the mantle of a magical girl once more. ( Source Wiki)
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Enhanced Senses, Magic, Light Manipulation, Durability Negation, limited Magic Negation, Force field Creation, expert knife and handgun user, skilled aikido user, minor resistance to mind manipulation and harmful magic chemicals
Summary: Kurumi Mugen was one of the 11 girls chosen to become magical girls to fight in what would later be called the Distonia War against the invading magical beast from the Spirit World. Holding the codename War Nurse, Kurumi was recruited into the group by Asuka Otori and grew very attached to her. She was part of the Magical Five, the 5 surviving magical girls who defeated the king of the magic beasts during the final battle of the war. After said battle, Kurumi worked as a researcher for the JGSDF’s central research division, furthering Japan’s magic development. (Source Wiki Fandom)
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Enhanced Senses, Magic, Healing, Acid Manipulation, Biological Manipulation, Limited Memory Manipulation, Force field Creation, skilled at using syringes as a weapon, including using her smaller syringes as throwing weapons, Minor resistance to mind manipulation and harmful magic chemicals (Source Wiki Fandom)
Summary: Mia Cyrus was one of the 11 girls chosen to become magical girls to fight in what would later be called the Distonia War against the invading magical beast from the Spirit World. Holding the codename Just Cause, Mia was part of the Magical Five, the 5 surviving magical girls who defeated the king of the magic beasts during the final battle of the war. After said battle, Mia revealed her civilian identity to the public and officially joined the American forces Special Operations Division, though recently she has been conducting black ops with the CIA. (Source Wiki Fandom)
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Enhanced Senses, Magic, Force field Creation, can magically boost the power and penetration of her guns, expert gun user, minor resistance to mind manipulation and harmful magic chemicals (Source Wiki Fandom)
Summary: Abigail is an illegal magical girl and part of the mysterious faction known as Babel Brigade. (Source Wiki Fandom)
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Enhanced Senses, Magic, Force field Creation, Expert scissors user, Minor Resistance to Mind Manipulation and harmful Magic Chemicals (Source Wiki Fandom)
Enough About The Characters Let’s Talk Art
Seigo Tokiya the artist of this manga does a wonderful job with the action scenes. Tokiya really knows how to get the feeling of sharp movements, and making the scenery seem realistic. Though the characters are drawn a bit sloppy, but it isn’t to the point that it stops me from reading the manga. I just think Tokiya could have done a better job when it comes to the character designs. Besides that the panels are fairly easy to read, but do get a little crowded at times. However, it is still pretty easy to read even with the few slip ups.
Overall Fucking Thoughts
The dark theme magical girl has been done several times, but Magical Girl Spec Ops Asuka takes it to a whole new level in my opinion. This manga shows that the darker theme magical girls still have hope! With Asuka battling her traumitzing past, and overcoming every day obstacles. You will find this manga to be thrilling, and psychologically fascinating. The manga did a splendid job with setting the story up, though they did lack in going into better details with some of the characters. I suppose that gave it a mysterious vibe, and definitely left me wanting more.