Springfest Manga Review
Chapters 1 and 2 (Completed)
Synopsis: Shenzhou was at the height of power during the Tang Dynasty, yet its advanced civilization invited Honkai corruption. In the tides of destruction, even the great walls of Shenzhou crumbled, but its last line of defense, a Celestial named Phoenix, remained strong. (Official Crunchyroll Synopsis)
Review (Warning: Spoilers to Follow):
In another case of misleading synopsis, Springfest is actually a short 2 chapter story about a powerful and immortal warrior named Phoenix learning to reconnect after eons of witnessing death and loss have turned her heart cold and made her shy away from forming any bonds, least she have to mourn the passing of yet another friend. That’s the crux of the story and despite some tacky and cliche beats, it’s still a sweet and simple enough tale for anyone flipping through Crunchyroll’s manga library to enjoy. Sure, it raises some questions about the logic of the world the more you think about it, especially in regards to the character of ‘Little Book’, an android like creature and the other prominent character of the story, such as how her creators managed to power her up in the first place but you’re supposed to be reading this for the emotional beats, not the science or logic of it. If you like getting a heavy dose of ‘all the feels’ in bite sized doses, you should definitely check out this series…but I have to include a major caveat besides emphasizing that you need to be someone who enjoys emotional gut punch moments without needing them to be re-inventive or all that deep.
So Springfest appears to have been translated and adapted from a webcomic or specifically a vertical scrolling format employed by many mobile comic series in Asia where the expectation is that the reader is accessing the comic on their phone. This means Crunchyroll has been unable to present the material as neatly as possible because it is sticking to the standard physical book like layout with horizontal panel layouts which leads to several panels that are literally cut in half, needing you to ‘turn’ the page to get the rest of the image and dialogue. It isn’t a story ruining flaw but it can definitely take you out of the moment and can be quite an eyesore.
Springfest now takes the crown for most approachable short form Honkai Impact 3rd manga adapted by Crunchyroll thanks to its short length and extremely simple story to follow. Obviously if you want to get the full lore of the Honkai Impact world, you should read the Honkai Impact 3rd manga which I reviewed the first 13 chapters of here and is also part of the Crunchyroll library with a whopping 117 chapters. But if you’re just looking for a quick and I do mean QUICK shot of ‘the feels’ with no knowledge or desire to dive too deep into the Honaki universe, Springfest feels like a solid pick. Just remember to brace for the ugly panel cuts.
Springfest is available digitally via Crunchyroll.com.