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Review: Zombie Loan (Vol. 04)

Manga-ka: Peach-Pit
Publisher: Yen Press
Rating: Older Teen (16+)
Released: October 2008

Synopsis: “Why, even mean-spirited, ill-mannered, money-grubbing, undead zombie hunters have families! Chika’s overly affectionate dad and his cellphone-happy little sister drop in on the Z-Loan office, much to Chika’s chagrin. All the familial silliness lifts Chika’s mood, but also throws his partner’s dark past into relief. When a horrifying, trust-shattering secret is revealed about Shito amid whisperings of his ties to a powerful Mafia group, will the Z-Loan office ever be the same again?”

Zombie Loan is a series that I first discovered as an anime and I loved it. The story is actually pretty interesting. I was rather sad when the anime came to an abrupt end, and to learn that the manga had been released here made me pretty happy because I’d get a chance to see what other adventures Chika, Shito, and Michiru would go on. And though the manga released here has not yet caught up to the anime, I must say that I have been rather let down.

That isn’t to say that I don’t still love the story. As I said, the story was just so interesting that I had to keep reading. In this volume, our heroes have returned from their vacation to the hot springs and are ready to continue making some money.

We get to learn a little more about each of their pasts. Chika comes from a loving family, with an incredibly over-bearing father and an equally apathetic sister. Shito, on the other hand, seems to not have any family, and though is effectively referred to as the heir, it appears that he is more of a servant than a master.

It doesn’t take long for Chika and Shito to end up having another argument, destroying any good mood that might have carried over from their recent vacation. When Shito storms off, he is kidnapped by the newest villain; a rather deranged doctor who is, surprise, also a zombie.

Of course, this means that our remaining heroes must go to rescue him after learning a little more about his peculiar past. They team up with Sotetsu, another zombie who’s a part of the business, as well as a chibified shinigami, in order to find and save Shito.

I really do have no arguments about the story. Perhaps some of the hooks are clichéd, but overall it’s put together nicely. It’s the way the paneling is laid out, and the fact that there is an excessive use of super deformed scribbles that really gets to me. Sometimes the panels are fine, but often they are pretty darn confusing. And as for the scribbles, you just can’t go more than two or three pages without finding something that very closely resembles a snowman.

All the same, I plan on continuing to read Zombie Loan. There’s great improvement in the paneling and art from the previous volume, and I do still want to see what’s going to happen beyond the anime. Besides, we keep learning more about Michiru’s peculiar similarities to a shinigami and I’d really like to figure out what that means!

Review written November 12, 2008 by Gizmo.
Book provided by Yen Press for review purposes

Shevaun Morrison

About the Author:

Shev considers herself easily distracted, and usually rather excitable. She doesn't really have a favorite type of anime or manga but will read or watch just about anything. Although she does have a tendency to like things that are extra shiny And/or have a punk/gothic look to it. Shevaun's a role-play nerd, and loves RPG video games too.

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