July 21, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Gabbing Geek Manga Review: Alice In Borderland Volume 1

Arisu and his friends find themselves in an alternate world where lethal games are played.

I got really into the live action version of this manga series when I found it on Netflix, well before I found out it was a manga first.  I actually got really into that show, so naturally, I opted to give the manga a chance.

Granted, I haven’t reviewed a manga in a while, but this series was one I came to with some foreknowledge, so that may make something of a difference.

The story more or less follows the same path as the TV show, and that makes sense since the manga story came first.  Young Arisu and his two pals Choto and Karube are out one night when they find themselves somehow transported to what looks like an alternate, deserted version of Tokyo.  At first, they explore and goof off, but then they blunder into their first game where a more experienced woman is there to make sure they understand the stakes of where they are.  For the most part, the characterization is about the same as the show:  Arisu is an underachiever who finds his home life frustrating thanks to a more successful brother, Karube is a tough guy who runs a bar, and Choto, well, he’s mostly a horny kid because, yes, the trio here (and presumably Usagi when she shows up) are high school age kids instead of the twentysomethings they are in the show.

For what it’s worth, I really did like this.  The manga takes a few moments to do flashbacks to show Arisu and Karube (Choto not so much) in light of who and what they went through to shape who they are, and the manga even gives an explanation as to why Karube thought Arisu might have the best chance to survive the chaos that is Borderland (actually named here).  The artwork is great, the pacing is excellent, and the whole thing is just all-around great.

My sole complaint, actually, is because I have seen the show, the story held less surprises.  But I think if I get the chance, I will gladly read more of this stuff.

9.5 out of 10 horse-masked killers.