Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Oh My Goddess! Omnibus Volume 1 Review: Back To The Start

Oh My Goddess! Omnibus Volume 1
$19.99, retail
Out Now

Oh My Goddess! ends its run with the final volume from Dark Horse this October. For long time fans, like myself, it's sad to see it go, cry like Keiichi when he misses out on a kiss from Belldandy. Dark Horse wisely remembered to give fans a remedial course and get new fans with a new format. Oh My Goddess! Omnibus is a huge tomb of your favorite goddesses based on mythic Norse lore in modern/80's Japan.

For those who already know the series or have dabbled you can now collect it in a much easier format. Costing about twice as much as a normal volume you're getting about three volumes in one for $19.99, retail. As of writing, it is a steal at $11.

We start with a likable young college student accidentally calling a goddess and then thinking it's a joke  so he ask her to stay with him forever. Oh, never change Japan. What follows are a series of increasingly funny romantic comedy moments with a growing cast. That format continues with an almost sick desire to draw cars and explain them to perfection. Luckily, our main protagonist is in his college's Auto Club.

Going over it again it's wonderful to see the world starting to form and the characters only starting to gain depth. You have the wonderful beginning romance between the series two main protagonist. The jealousy from the former Queen of the campus. The way Belldandy is just getting acquainted to Earth. Her learning about it is just so moe, you might say. We have ourselves an Urd, just starting to meddle with the two. She's Belldandy bigger, not as nice, sister.

Then there's the overall use of a magic system that the goddesses use similar to having the Internet. The magic tech-jargon is great coming out of the 80's. Not only is their use of magic usually broken down, cars/motorbikes are broken down in detail. Creator KĊsuke Fujishima loves them and manages to fit them into many stories that could just be about the antics of two very different people in love. I wish Akira Toriyama could team-up with him for just a race manga, the two are auto maniacs.

Her smile, the way skirts are blown in the air, the consideration that went into the demons that are summoned. All the art remains the highest quality, even for early work all that effort is at the highest level. For a long time fan you will notice Belldandy's look has changed over time as does much of the manga. You could say the first issue looks like a fan coping the style. It only gets better.

Revisiting these issues  made me laugh all over again with a forgotten connection to LA. For those living here, LA I.T., a fictional Los Angeles University, makes you wish the school were real, for just its t-shirts alone. Two of its auto club members challenge Keichi and Bell in a race and the bad American jokes fly.

One of many stories, many that use the wonkiest of science to explain how magic works. Oh my, we're so far away from Schrodinger's whales and Skuld won't even show up until the next Omnibus!

Revisiting the 80's fashion might be fun for some too. The girls our wearing outfits that break the conventional mold of fashion, until their clothes come off because of unforeseen circumstances.

I would have liked some more extras other than some nice color pages and extra comics. There's a joke comic from You're Under Arrest, another series from the same creator, and Dark Horse does own the rights. It features a goddess and started the spin-off of Oh My Goddess, maybe some fan written love in the back or a guide of whose who would have been nice too. The format is still great quality printing.

For an incredible price you're getting a large format of the longest running translated manga series North America. Now fall in love with Belldandy all over again or give it a shot if you haven't ever tried it.