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Descendants of Darkness: Yami no Matsuei, Vol. 1 Paperback – September 14, 2004

4.3 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
Book 1 of 11 in the Yami no Matsuei Series

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Yoko Matsushita is the author of the manga series Yami no Matsuei also published by Hakusensha in Japan. Descendants of Darkness is her second series.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: VIZ Media LLC; Sh Ojo Ed edition (September 14, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591165075
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591165071
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 5.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,422,844 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
for we are all descendants of darkness! this line, quoth the beautifully evil Dr.Muraki, is the title of one of the most potentially fascinating manga I have ever read. A plethora of detailed artwork and ridiculous, easy-to-realte-to (I think) characters are what make this could be cliche manga a diamond in the ruff. Long dead Tsuzuki is the desert obsessed (and totally gorgeous)agent of the Ministry of hades, where very attractive men (with the exception of chief Konoe) keep the troublesome spirits of the dead in line. Even though the mebers of Hades would drop Tsuzuki like a plate of hotcakes if they could(he's kind of annoying, but liakeable, unlike a certain cliche manga female character I could mention coughUsagicough), they won't because, despite his looks, he's one of the most powerful agents of death that they've got. After losing yet another partner, Tsuzuki ends up with Hisoka, a babyfaced, bigeyed (and dead) sixteen year old as his second in commmand. Hisoka dislikes Tsuzuki (he kind of dislikes everybody, but his cold and unfeeling nature is just a cover for a heart tha, deep down, wants to know why he died. The two main characters are soon matched against the evil, sadistic, possibly psychotic "Doctor" muraki, whose strange attraction (is it really so strange?) to Tsuzuki and possible connection to Hisoka's past lead to them meeting him many more times.... and so goes the pretense of DoD. To contradict anything you may have heard, DoD is not a yaoi series. It is a higly complex and intricate shojo story, and reading the first volume immediately causes you ot beg for more. ^^
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There were few surprises because I had already seen the anime; but the manga is presented in a very different tone using quite adult humor. This involves sexual harassment of many types but mostly male on male, and even goes so far as to include rape. So keep that in mind when the youngsters get curious. It starts rather unevenly as the author changed her mind about the lead characters several times, changing names and personalities and even promoting a sidekick character (Tsusuki) into the pivotal lead.

The basic plot surrounds "shinigami", also known as gods of death, who must go around the country to find and retrieve lost souls who were misplaced after death or who should have died, but didn't. These last cases are not directly mentioned, but do figure into the character development of the leads. Most of the cases in the manga revolve around murders, the "undead" and even feature an energy vampire/sorcerer. Character development for Tsusuki (for example) involves him considered a semi-competent slacker who also happens to be the most powerful shinigami in the Summons section of the afterlife. He is the lowest paid and much of the humor goes to his insatiable sweet tooth and often fawning nature. He is literally a character who wears his emotions on his sleeve, all the time. Surrounding him is a partner who is not only grumpy, but also an empath, which leads to a lot of situations where Tsusuki's emotions literally cripple him, and lots of other friendly and antagonistic characters who are sometimes, nay often, undisguised perverts.

Much of the tension and drama involves a violent, insane doctor who pursues Tsusuki relentlessly and specializes in psychological torture that is particularly effective on our hero.
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Format: Paperback
This story is my personal favorite. I waited for the manga to come out for a long time, and now that it finally has, I am very glad. The anime is very beautiful to watch, but the books are more entertaining because they go in much more detail.

The story is mainly about Tsuzuki, god of death, and his hot partner, Hisoka, and their adventures as they try to fix the beauro's problems. The manga is really funny, with Tsuzuki slacking off all the time and eating apple pie whenever he can, and Hisoka mainly grumbling and sneering at everyone, which doesn't make him any less cute.

Muraki is the sadistic villan of the story, and though he does very mean things to Hisoka, which I highly do not approve of, he is still very interesting character and gives the story more feel.

I can't wait for volume #2.
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Format: Paperback
The other reviews have said it quite beautifully. Decendants of Darkness is a great series that sadly never ends. The series does end at vol 11 and the story is incomplete. That said, if the thought of an incomplete series drives you completely mad stop buying the series after vol 8. Vol 9 contains the beginnings of the incomplete story arc. All other story arcs are completed. Vol 9 does contain some one-shot stories that are serious funny, however.

Also, all of the story lines beginning in this vol are complex and interesting with the exception of some funny story lines thrown in. The main character is goofy and obsessed with sweets and has a grumpy sidekick. The supporting cast ranges from a penny-pinching secretary to a mad scientist bent on creating a sex-change potion to two girls who want to dress the grumpy sidekick in female clothing. I forgot the rivalry between the main character and another supporting character that tends to destroy large buildings in massive explosions. Descendants is crazy at times and other times you nearly want to cry.

Additionally, if you are drawn in by amazing and beautiful art look no further. Each and every vol contains beautiful drawings of the characters and background scenery.

(Also this review should be dated March 29, 2007, I don't know why Amazon thinks it is May 19, 2005. Weird.)
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