Monday, June 13, 2011

Time for My First Manga Review Ever "Chobits"

I know that this is something that usually do not care about or choose to cover, but I can no longer pass it up anymore. Normally I would never review a manga/graphic novel but I have a special reason for doing so. It has been ten years since the initial release of manga in Japan thus giving me reason to celebrate the ten year anniversary of the series. I also have some personal reasons, do due in part this is the first magna that I have  read all the way through, due in part it was given to me from a dear friend in my senior year of high-school.

Okay getting all of my personal feeling of this series aside lets get on with an overview for it. Chobits is a series created from the well known group "Clamp", who have done such great series like "Card CaptorSakura" and "Code Geass ". The manga was first serialized in “Young Magazine” and published by “Kodansha” from Feb. 14th 01 until Nov.29th 02. Later eight paper-back volumes was released in Japan and where localized/published in English by “Tokyo Pop” in 2003 released bi annually through out the year.

Now due to the fact that Tokyo Pop is no longer being in business "Dark Horse Comics" decided to pick-up/renew the license and is releasing it in big "Omnibus" collections with re-translations as well. As usual there is a an anime adoption as well that aired on "TBS" from April 2002 until September 2002, with a total of twenty six episodes. Funimation has just recently released the series on DVD/Bluray set. I highly suggest picking the anime as well, but I will not be reviewing that as of now guys/gals.

Getting this out of the way lets focus on the plot for the series, which by today's standards is rather generic due to harem and ecchi elements. The setting takes place in science fiction type world where all computers have persona's or human form called "Persocoms". They are mainly like any other type of PC but with the ability to talk, give directions, play games with their master "no not those type of games you sick bastards". 

There happens to be talk of a rare kind of Perscom called a "Chobit", which is able to think, learn, feel and even rumored to the ability to return love as well "but is this love real?". Now you might of guessed that the main focus of our story is just a typical shojo romance manga/anime which to something that most people hate.To be honest I usually avoided this genre until now and I am highly regretting it for doing so due in part of all the good stories/shows that I have missed over the years.

Moving to a short synopsis of the main story which is about our average male lead “Hideki Motosuwa” who has to move from the country side to Tokyo. He moved here due in part that the college he applied for, thus forcing him to go an “Cram-School” for a year. On Hideki's visit to the big city he is astonished to see "Persocoms" or personal PC's everywhere and how expensive they are thus dashing his hopes to ever owning one "I do think 5,000 dollars for a basic model is tad much."

A few weeks pass by Hidieki gets an apartment and job so lets move on to that. He finishes up a late night shift at his part-time job, at a pub called my pleasure. He works with a young high school senior named " Yumi Omura" that has a crush on him "thus the reason why she calls him "Senpai". On Hideki's on the way home he finds a beautiful girl in the trash, that he happens to think is a murder victim.Upon closer inspection it turns out the girl is a "Perscom" and decides to take her home instead of letting her rot away in the garbage. 

When Hideki gets home, he looks all over her body, for a way to turn her on.. "yes this pun is intended" and finds that her on switch is.. well between her legs. I do suppose this is one way to turn a lady on " I mean that literally". After she wakes up the said girl hugs Hideki only saying the word "Chi" which he decides to name her, "I guess it better than calling her blonde bimbo."  This huge turn of events will change/impact Hideki's life forever. 

On to a little more on Hideki's personal life, he lives in single room apartment which make things more fun due in part, that will be next impossible to keep something like this a secret from his land lady " Chitose Hibiya" and his neighbor " Hiromu Shinbo". Hideki goes the same cram school and Shinbo has his own personal mini persocom, named " Sumomo" which is basically just a laptop computer. There are many other characters and story elements that I would love to introduce but I do not feel like spoiling the rest of the story for you. I have set up the basics for the plot and it's up to you if you want to read/watch this or not.

Alright people even with these hugely used generic tones and flaws that are present the industry today, I will say this at the time this was new and interesting for me. Even after ten years since the entail release of the series in Japan, I still find Chobits to be amusing, funny and charming to read due in part of how the characters and story is handled. This could have been another cheap/generic harem at the time but looking back I am happy that Clamp took the high ground and said no.  Everyone in this series and I do mean everyone ends up with some else in the end, which is something I have yet to see again. I am willing to admit that there is a lot of fan service shots "epically with Chi and Yumi" focusing on their panties/swimsuits but I am willing to look past this, mainly due in part even I need some eye candy time to time.

For now I only own the original release from Tokyo-Pop and despite my collection setting around for nearly ten years. The art-work for the series still holds up and even surpasses current manga that are coming out now. Through all of the series not once did I notice a quality drop from chapter to chapter. I do realize that I am giving it to much praise but one flaw I can point out is how some of the story has serous plot holes here and there. This also  take a lot of understating in computers/technology to get a lot of references that are used so you might need to re-read some parts more than once. I have to also give props due in part that every character ends up with some-one thus negating the sour taste from a harem ending.

One of the huge reasons I re-read this manga is due in part of the story, and the lesson that it teaches. I usually do not care for lessons or what a show has to teach but this still has a big impact on my life, even till this day, "yes this going to be corny so just deal with it". I learned that you should love some one for who they are, not for what they are. You have to look pass they people look and try to love them despite them of their race, culture, and religious beliefs. This had a huge impact on me at the time in 2004 and I just wish that I could find "the only one meant for me". Okay that's enough ass kissing my only problem with the series is that it ends in a cliffhanger, I wish that clamp did a better job on this but at least it wasn't a "Bitter-Sweet Ending" making me personally happy. Have fun watching the OP for the anime below guys/gals.

That's all I have to say on this people, there is nothing else I can add or take away from my thoughts on this manga series. Yes I have such a huge biased on this series I do realize this but I needed to get this review out of my system. I know it seems that I only review shows that I like so far but believe me you, will see some non kiss ass reviews soon enough. Chobits is just such a huge nostalgia trip me that this review needed to be done. I will some more reviews up soon, right now I am working on review for one of the worst eroges I have ever played.

-Cecil The Dark Knight
-Rating 4/5
-Age Rating 16+


  1. This was the first manga I ever read and when I got into anime it was one of the first ones I watched. I actually re-watched it last week.
    I loved how at the time it was quite an original story and the amount of knowledge about computers involved. I liked both the subbed and dubbed anime but I wish they had added a bit more to the ending. One thing I always wonder is why did the creator of Chii, who wanted to be her father, put the switch in that spot?

  2. Excellent review man; I've been looking into manga to read over the summer and I had been tempted to take a look at this, and your review has made me decide that it will certainly be worthwhile reading ^_^