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Genshiken: Second Season 1 Paperback – September 4, 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Genshiken: Second Season (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Kodansha Comics (September 4, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1612622372
  • ISBN-13: 978-1612622378
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,098,390 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Genshiken makes its welcome return to my bookshelf. Taking place the semester after the original series ended, we see the return of all the major characters (though most are sadly only cameo appearances) and three new characters in the form of the "next generation" of Otaku. Of the old cast the only returning characters are Ogiue, Ohno, Kuchiki and Sue (who was a minor character in the original, but has a much expanded role).

The series has always been something of a snapshot of the Otaku culture, making references to contemporary anime and manga (with a few classics thrown in) and in that regard this new book is exactly like the old series. With references to Bakemonogatari and Puella Magi Madoka Magica (if you don't know either of those two series, consider looking them up as many jokes in this manga require knowledge of them) we keep in the spirit of the original series. This does make a bit of an issue in terms of continuity though. As mentioned before this takes place the semester after the original series ended, which means they ended their anime references with series during mid 2006. Suddenly they are talking about shows from the 2010s. This may come off as annoying to some, but it's not really a big deal. It keeps the jokes current and makes the transition smoother.

All in all I would recommend this for fans of the original series. If you didn't read the original Genshiken... DO NOT START HERE. The character's have had several books of development and newcomers could easily be lost.
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Format: Paperback
There's going to be some mixed emotions about some of the content in this book, because at times it feels so vastly different than the first "season" of Genshiken. This is both a good and a bad thing, depending on how you look at it.

Part of what made the original set of Genshiken manga so much fun was how realistic it felt, giving so many of us a feeling of "we've totally experienced this". To an extent this is still present in this volume, but over all of this there's a veneer of complete and total unrealism that comes with fictional manga. You know what I mean: that feeling that no matter how "real life" the manga tries to be, you can't shake that this is utterly a manga and doesn't seem like it'd be the least likely to happen IRL. The volume is full of typical manga-esque setups and the like on occasion that sort of bring this into focus even more. This doesn't make the various situations in this volume bad, mind you, but it is a change from the first season and some will slightly begrudge that the series has taken this turn. I have to admit that even as I loved this, part of me mourned that this is sort of becoming "fictional". I know this sounds vague, but there's not a lot of other way to describe this.

That being said, this was a pretty fun read. The new characters are nice and I especially love Hato, even as this character seems to be a symbol of the change from "actual life realistic" to "fictional manga realistic". Once you read about this character you'll understand. My only big gripe is that one of the characters seems a little too abrasive at times for the rest of the laid back Genshiken members and occasionally says and does things that she should've been called out on earlier in the volume.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As of this writing, five volumes of GSS have been released in the US, and they're all pretty much the Hato-kun story arc. Hato-kun is both an extremely capable cross-dresser with identity issues, as well as an equally extremely talented but insecure artist. I think if the character had only one of these attributes, s/he would be much more believable. But, the way his character is pushed towards both, it's hard to look at him more than a quirk.

EDIT: Development in Madarame's life, especially in volume five!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
New Guard arrives to take up spots in the Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture. I miss the Old Guard, but they aren't banished to the netherworld that is a career. That is not to say the new characters introduced have their own charms! Sue, forefront on the cover, makes an otaku-worthy re-entrance as part of the main cast. Fittingly, Ogiue in the background of the cover (and what she's doing) serves more of facilitating the introduction of the three other members through the book. That alone can suggest the composition and direction the "society" goes.

And that really is the takeaway of this book--introductions. You see some old-new character dialogue to get the sense how the new environment will evolve. Some loose threads from from the prior "season," while not addressed, let's you know the author didn't forget. New threads get thrown in, of course, so we can guess where things go from the volume.

The biggest plus for me is Kenjiro Hato's storyline, which I guess kinda pulls into how I'm a fan of the manga Wandering Son. The biggest minus, I guess, is Kuchiki, who (still) doesn't click with me, being almost all slapstick (and virtual substance) through the volume.

As a continuance of Genshiken, it was long-awaited, long-anticipated, and now yet long-appreciated.
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