Negima Volume 6Kidnapped in Kansai! The chaotic class trip continues as Negi Springfield and his thirty-one beautiful female students explore the historic cities of Kyoto and Nara. Negi’s special headache is Konoka, the headmaster’s granddaughter, who turns out to have her own magical abilities! Although she’s not aware of them, others certainly are… and Konoka is kidnapped by a group of wizards who plan to corrupt her budding talents. Negi is going to need all the help he can get – even if it comes from a former foe…

Negima!: Magister Negi Magi tells the story of young Negi Springfield, a ten year old wizard from Wales who dreams of one day becoming an all-powerful ‘Master Mage’ and at the same time find out the truth behinds his father’s mysterious disappearance – the legendary Master Mage who was once known as “The Thousand Master”!

After graduating from the Merdiana Magic Academy in Wales, young Negi gets posted as an English teacher to the Mahora Academy – the only problem now is that this young 10 year old is in charge of 31 boisterous (and older) teenage girls… and each one of them is very ‘special’ in their own way. Life at the academy is tough as Negi continues to pursue his goal of becoming a Master Mage and trying to solve the mystery behind his father’s disappearance – as well as befriend all his students and deal with magic attacks from both within and out of the academy!

Volume 6 of Negima! continues the school field trip storyline and as the conclusion of the previous volumes misadventures comes to an abrupt conclusion in the early pages of this volume, we are immediately thrown into the thick of things as a new threat arises and captures Konoka – setting the stage for a non-stop action fiesta that continues right up until the very end of the book! Almost everyone who joined Negi on the field trip is involved in the battle, including the surprise appearance of some very unexpected faces!

The man behind Negima! is none other than the super popular creator of Love Hina and A.I. Love You, Ken Akamatsu, who continues his tradition of drawing uber cute young female characters that tend to expose a lot of flesh, take a lot of hot spring baths and flash panties as much as possible while they’re at it!

Ken’s story for this particular outing is pretty much all action from the get go. The first chapter sets the stage for pretty much the rest of the volume as the story concentrates on an all out magical battle that ends up involving more than just a few main characters. There aren’t too many plot twists or surprises, but Ken manages to switch between the serious and comical tones at a fluid rate and his well researched magical spells and attacks deserves a serious amount of praise. There is a fair bit of character development that takes place thanks to all the fighting that goes on and it is nice to have some of the relationships between the various characters explored in a little more depth. And while the volume is all pretty much action all the way through, Ken doesn’t pull a cheap shot and leave us hanging, instead he concludes events and ends off with a satisfying end to this particular story arc.

On the visual front, Ken continues his very busy art style with copious use of shading and backgrounds which makes every single page bustle with details. And while Negima is ‘cute’ looking all by himself, Ken’s real forte is super cute girls and he struts his stuff with a practised hand, delivering some of the cutest shots you could ever ask for. Of course, being Akamatsu he does put a LOT of fan service material in for the boys as well, so just be aware of that. Liberal use of exaggerated faces and figures also plays a big part of course and it must be said that Negima certainly does look good, but I must admit that I do have one or two reservations about the art for Negima. One, the extremely busy pages sometimes slows the rate of reading just a little, and two, the innate cuteness of his characters doesn’t really work all that well in a serious battle setting where characters are actually trying to kill each other.

Nevertheless, one can’t REALLY fault the book in any way as Negima is a fun read that does look good, features plenty of cute girls to oogle at, and happens to tell a fairly solid story, all while managing to be both serious and comical at the same time. And with all that already said, there’s still place for all the romances, love triangles and romantic comedy that Ken is already famous for! Just consider this the complete Ken Akamatsu package and leave it at that.

To sum it up, Negima!: Magister Negi Magi Volume 6 is a polished and exciting presentation that fans of Ken Akamatsu are sure to INSTANTLY fall in love with! If you are already a fan, pick it up. If not, try pick it up anyway and see – you just may like it! :)

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