Print Review: XXXholic volumes 1-7

XXXholic volumes 1-7

Review XXXholic volumes 1-7Written by WarpshadowRating very good

With a mix of Japanese superstition and twilight zone style moralism XXXholic is something new and interesting. Good art and fun characters don't hurt either.

Watanaki is a very unlucky boy who is haunted by spirits who he has the misfortune of being able to see. One day he is chased by those spirits into a mysterious store. He is greeted by Yuko, the owner and proprietor of the store who offers to remove his ability to see spirits for a price. Watanaki agrees to Yuko's offer and begins doing various tasks until he has done enough to pay for Yuko's services. Unfortunately for Watanaki Yuko is a very whimisical and demanding boss and often gets him involved with many strange and supernatural events.

XXXholic is a low-key supernatural slash horror manga. I say it is low key because it never tries all that hard to scare the reader. Instead it relies on other factors such as how the characters interact with each other to draw the reader's attention. The most prominent of characters is Yuko who acts as the philosophical mouthpiece of the manga. Yuko has different philosophy of life than most shows out there so her observations are different from the usual screeds you hear from these types of characters. Yuko's relationship with Watanaki strongly resembles the Tsundere (violent or cold love interest) type of romance although the with the significant twist of Yuko being Watanaki's boss making the relationship all the more believable. Although there occasional hints to a larger plot but for the most part XXXholic is episodic. The manga crosses over with another of CLAMP's creations, Tsubasa but other than a couple of chapters in the first and second volume and vague references later this has little effect on XXXholic. I found this manga title to make for quick and enjoyable reading and I would recommend it to others.

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