Review: Eyeshield 21 (Volume 7) My Reviews 30 JUN 2011

We continue the story of one wimpy Sena Kobayakawa who has assumed the on-field identity of one “Eyeshield 21” as he comes of age by trying his hand at American Football, thanks to his gift of super fast legs, honed by all the years of running away from bullies and being a gopher in order to avoid getting beaten up.

Volume 7 takes a bit of a back seat from the on field action of an American Football game and instead starts to lay the groundwork for what is sure to be an action-packed volume 8 in the series by focusing on the introduction of the American NASA Aliens football team, covering their rascist coach, Hiruma’s underhanded tricks in getting them on Japanese soil, and their most under-utilized player with the most amazing of abilities, Panther.

Outside of the Americans, time is handed off to the Hah trio of delinquents as the leader Jumonji begins to have more background and motivations pencilled in, and even more time is allocated to Sena and Monta’s mission of identifying and locating the mysterious Musashi, the legendary kicker that the Devil Bats so desperately need back on the team. (Hint, you’d never believe who it actually is, but will most definitely enjoy the soccer-related hijinks in finding that out!)

Writer Riichiro Inagaki is in fine form as he weaves more depth into his Eyeshield 21 universe, and as per usual he has plenty more gags and surprises for us to enjoy. On top of that, he manages to insert the necessary drama and characterization to keep us interested and in the end we have a fairly enjoyable if a little laid back entry into the series thus far.

Artist Yusuke Murata is also once again in fine form, delivering beautifully detailed backgrounds to act as the perfect backdrops for his wonderfully animated and exaggerated caricatures that are always such a pleasure to take in. Again he captures Inagaki’s over the top silliness in a spectacularly humorous way, making for yet again, another fun visual journey.

In summary this is by far one of the more sedate entries in the entertaining coming of age, schoolboy American Football series, but still has the requisite number of laughs that makes it such an enjoyable series to pick up and read for all those young of heart. It entertains, deepens the Eyeshield 21 universe and far more importantly, builds up a strong case for what is sure to be a very action-packed next volume!

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.