Review by: Clive Owen
Publisher: VIZ Media
Author: Kiminori Wakasugi
Genre: Graphic Novel (VIZ Signature)
MSRP: $12.99 US
Rating: M (Mature)
Release Date: Available Now
The rise and fall of a Gaylord Kitahara.
To a Metal God, there is nothing worst than losing your Metal Supremacy and Negishi lost it the day he encountered Gaylord Kitahara and played against him outdoors only to be outshined in just about every way to the older man whose past was revealed in a one-sided metal romance. Now, the stage is set for a new star that threatens to upstage the DMC band in Volume 7 of Detroit Metal City.
Not only did Negishi lose his metal streak to Kitahara but he also had to surrender Jack Ill Dark’s guitar so Negishi definitely lost a lot that day. Depressed and not able to face his own band mates, Negishi takes his female friend Aikawa’s advice to room with a group of budding student artists in their studio pad. What he finds there is pleasantly surprising … a group of four artists who not only share his passion for art but also a place where each person encourages the other. This is the perfect outlet to find inspiration and rekindle the love for art.
Unfortunately, not everyone in the Artist’s Studio enjoys Negishi’s sugary sweet brand of pop. In fact, they think its way too awful to the point that Negishi overhears them talking about how embarrassing it is to listen to his horrendous music and even more so when he puts on his angel costume. This crushes the poor guy to the point that – very slowly – the anger secretly boils in his blood. It isn’t until new artists arrive that Negishi finally unleashes his anger. You see, the new artists happen to be metal guitarists and help Negishi find his inner Krauser.
It’s right on time too because Gaylord Kitahara begins his plan to unseat Krauser II by doing all the things the second Krauser would do like mount the Tokyo Tower but also taking to the stage in battle in a battle against DMC. With Negishi not around, the rest of DMC turn to another person to fill the role of Krauser II in the battle. What they find is a mock DMC band with performers that hold a grudge against each member of the band including their boss … who – as we know from Volume 6 – has known the boss well.
When Negishi does return with new moves of his own and even upstages Krauser I and beats him at his own game. Defeated, Krauser 1 is unmasked on stage and leads Gaylord Kitahara to make a most spectacular if not embarrassing confession on stage. Needless to say, the confession doesn’t go as well as he hoped it would in the end. Later, Negishi feels bad about what happened to Kitahara as well as the people of the Art Studio … who release a film project that – thanks to Negishi and the metal musicians – turn out to look like a Japanese horror flick.
Meanwhile, Negishi tries to cheer himself up by trying for a new look so he goes to a hair saloon for a refreshingly new haircut only to find himself growing angry when each attempt looks way too absurd. Then his brother pays him a visit only for Negishi to find out that his bro has a cool haircut and even a girlfriend who he plans to spend the night with in his apartment. Not wanting his brother to beat him in the romance department, he shows up as Krauser to stop their night of passion.
In another chapter, the metal skat band that lost to DMC, otherwise known as Deathism, is getting a music producer. The leader of the band is worried that this producer wouldn’t get their music or their feces-inspired act. As it turns out, though, this producer has a taste for, um, feces … literally. Then, in another chapter, Aikawa asks Negishi if he could fill in for a sot on a local soccer team called Amore Amour only to find himself going up against a team made up of DMC fans he has seen at the shows. Will his allegiance be with Aikawa’s team or Krauser’s fans? Finally, a day at the pool with his band mates ends up with a visit from Krauser.
Volume 7 of Detroit Metal City completes the Krauser 1 storyline as the two Krauser’s compete for the right to call DMC their own. Sure, the other chapters are fun but they lack the intensity and hilarious aftermath of the main story. This is still one hell of a funny comedy manga series around.
MANGA REVIEW BREAKDOWN
Having lost his metal edge to an older guitarist whose past includes falling for Negishi’s wild boss, Krauser I finally appears in an attempt to steal DMC from Krauser II. Meanwhile, Negishi finds himself living in an artist studio looking to regain his artistic focus only to find himself going down a dark path that could very well lead him back to being Krauser. In other chapters, a simple haircut goes bad as does a soccer game and a scat metal band meets a producer with a nasty habit.
The artwork in Detroit Metal City has been consistently unique and interesting throughout but the best part about the art is the comical expressions whenever somebody does something really absurd in this series, which is – thankfully – often.
The gauntlet has been thrown down and the metal mayhem between two Krausers has begun but, in Volume 7 of Detroit Metal City, there could only be one winner and what goes down is nothing short of hilarious. There are other wild antics in this one but the Krauser I story arc remains to be the real main attraction of this volume.
Review copy provided by VIZ Media