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Lumenesca's Kobato Manga Review

Kobato

Kobato manga Review

Story & Playability

Kobato, like all of Clamp's creations, has a very original plot. A girl on a mission, Kobato Hanato and her stuffed animal companion Ioryogi arrive at Tokyo with a strange quest: help others in anyway they can, and fill a jar with a materialized version of the heartache they relieve.

But, of course, there are all kinds of story elements that make this manga great. For one, Kobato-chan and Ioryogi are a hilariously mismatched pair. Kobato is innocent and naive while Ioryogi has a sailor mouth and manners to match. Also, the way that she tries to accomplish her mission at first makes you wonder about the social customs of the place she's from. She walks up to random people on the street, and blurts out that she'd like to heal them. And, after the random person runs away thinking she's insane, Ioryogi beats her up about it. In my opinion, the first interactions she has with this community is very well pulled off in the manga and is hilarious! One encounter she has in the first chapter is with a perverted old man. When the clueless Kobato is about to be dragged away, another guy saves her! But, after saving her, he declares that she must be a child prostitute if she was letting herself being dragged away that easily! Talk about insult to injury.

Later on, in the second chapter, the plot picks up the pace. Kobato gets a job helping a kindergarten teacher, whom we find out later is the target of a debt collector and a gang that works for said collector. This is definitely where the drama portion of the story picks up, since there are many issues with the teacher's past that are still in the shadows. Also, the children who attend the small school are always harassed by the gang.

This manga has not been released in the United States, and the only place you can find the first four chapters is on a scanlation site. So many questions about Kobato's origins and the solution to the kindergarten's problems have yet to be answered.

Overall, the humor and drama in the plot are well placed.

Rating: 9

Graphics

Clamp's beautiful character designs and funny chibis are all present. And, of course, at the right times. In humorous situations, Kobato is found in chibi form, adding to the special style of visual humor that manga possesses. In the serious situations, the characters look as you would expect them to. So, not only are the character designs well done, but they're also appropriate for each situation, and not out of place (such as a cute bunnie chibi being in the middle of a bloody crime scene. But you don't usually find something that out of place in a manga anyway).

Another thing some of us know about Clamp's style is that they sometimes give characters from their other manga cameos. In Kobato, you will find that the apartment that Kobato stays in looks exactly like the Gubjougasaki from Chobits! Not only that, but the manager and her two daughters are replicas of Chitose Hibiya, Chi, and Freya, whom are also from Chobits. For those of you who have not read Chobits, let me explain why this is ironic. In Chobits, Chi and Freya are persocoms who, in a sense, are sisters. We find out near the end of the series that Chitose Hibiya, the manager of the Gubjougasaki, created them both. I really like how Clamp pulled off the cameo, and Chobits fans will enjoy it, too!

Rating: 9

Sound

Well, there isn't any real sound in Kobato since it's only a manga and hasn't been converted into anime form yet. But, since most Clamp mangas become anime eventually, I expect it will have a very nice soundtrack and above average voice actors.

To have something applicable to this section, I will say that all the written sound effects match their situations perfectly.

Rating: 8

Fun

Kobato, in whole, flows nicely. It starts you off with good old humor to get you interested, and as the story moves on, dives more into human drama. An interesting relationship that develops mid-story is between the teacher's assistant and Kobato. Remember that guy I mentioned earlier that saved Kobato from the pedophile and then called her a child whore? He's the assistant. He also ends up living next to her! Well, to those who have read many a manga and watched a lot of anime, this kind of twist isn't unexpected, but it's still intriguing. As of now, all four of the translated chapters kept me interested from start to finish and each had a good (and sometimes suspenseful) ending. The fifth chapter has not yet been translated, but I look forward to it.

Rating: 9

Final Verdict

8.83 (very good)

Reviewed by Lumenesca, Jan 29, 2006

Comments

  1. Northy Jan 29, 2006

    You might want to be careful about spoilers, even if they're not from the title you're reviewing. Those who haven't seen or read Chobits (but plan on doing so) might not appreciate this.

  2. BTAD Jan 31, 2006

    I can only read this manga in the intel...so I see it very cute.....

  3. LuthienRapier Feb 03, 2006

    Kobato's a really cute series, it's too bad there's only four chapters. They've stopped writing this one, apparently. I've heard it's not even shown on the CLAMP website anymore.

    ~Lu.

  4. Lumenesca Feb 03, 2006

    O__O! NOOO!

    merged: 05-25-2006 ~ 02:30pm
    Kobato is back! Chapter 5 is up, folks. ^_^

  5. Alas Jul 27, 2006

    Actually, as of last July 3rd at Anime Expo (in Anaheim, California) CLAMP announced that Kobato will be reissued out in NEWTYPE come this November. So Look out for that! YAYZ :D

    I was very happy I got into this series. It's light, sweet, and very beautiful. I suppose you can say that it's probably your typical CLAMP work; lots of tall bishies, sweet heroines, and funny/cute mascots! xD not to mention a great storyline and art conception. I highly recommend this piece to all CLAMP fans and/or manga readers. Kobato is a pleasure to read and experience. :3

  6. Danielly Sep 09, 2006

    hey there i want to read it where can i find it?
    it has a english translation?
    i want want want want to read it!

  7. mechanical-angel Apr 20, 2007

    haha nice review.
    i've uh, so called read it.
    'cos i have it, but its all in jap.
    laziness to translate = not getting to read = just flipping and not understanding.
    haha. (:

  8. rukasu04 Mute Member Aug 09, 2009

    Niiice 8d

  9. IrisChateaubriand88 Oct 11, 2009

    Nice Review I really appreciate it. Now on the 6th October had unveil Kobato Anime Series in NHK Channel, had watched its 1st Episode are very superb & excellently great voice acting both Kobato & Ioryogisan. Can't wait the second episode!

  10. NDWARRIOR626 Oct 30, 2009

    is has nice artwork.


    merged: 10-31-2009 ~ 12:17am
    it has nice artwork.


    merged: 10-31-2009 ~ 12:17am
    cool charaters.

  11. angelwings083 Jan 21, 2010

    yay~ i also love kobato as well!..:3
    *hooray for CLAMP fans!~ >w<*
    thanks for sharing this review!~ ^__^=

  12. Baraka-Senpai Jul 05, 2011

    I love it!

  13. hitsu-chan Jul 20, 2011

    I love this! :3 http://www.gigasmiley.com/assets/img/produit/GigaSmiley.76836b10ddb1183930373bf926d96b7b.gif

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