World Trigger 186-189 – Manga Review

Synopsis: A gate to another dimension opened and seemingly invincible monsters called Neighbors came forth, invading our world. The organization known as Border rose up and fought them back. Now years later, Osamu Mikumo has applied to border as an agent, but he’s easily one of the weakest applicants. However, his life changes when he meets Yuma, a boy who comes from the same place the monsters did: through the portal. He himself is a neighbor and together they’ll do whatever they can to defend the Earth.

(Warning: Spoilers to Follow):

Osamu and Yuma both survived and held back the invading Neighbors in a major assault to try and steal people who have high levels of Trion, the energy used to control triggers weapons. After a failed attack by Galapoula, Neighbors who sought to destroy the Away Ship and prevent Border from striking back against their enemies, the Rank Wars Tournament continues. Osamu’s team was lacking in power, carried by Yuma for most of their matches. Now, after some training, have Osamu’s own skills increased enough to prevent his team from losing the Rank Wars?

Review:

World Trigger may still be struggling to fit its new monthly release schedule but chapters 186-189 are anything but flawed. After a plodding mess of pre-battle discussion, planning, counter-planning and counter-counter planning we’re finally in the thick of the final Rank Wars match and World Trigger has never been more on form. What’s presented over these chapters is some of the most tightly paced, back and forth, action sequences the series’ has offered yet. Let’s Jump In!

There’s honestly very little to criticize here, because when World Trigger gets going, it gets going. Hyuse is cornered, encircled by near every other team hoping to eliminate him early. That leaves Osamu and Co. to try and use Hyuse as a sacrificial lamb in order to take out as many of the enemy combatants as they can in one big attack. It’s all thanks to Amatori’s long awaited character development, which leaves her now as a force to be reckoned with.

Hyuse is a very powerful character, in terms of raw combat strength. Yet our author, Ashihara, makes sure to keep him pined down here and unable to wreck shit and make it easy mode for Osamu and the rest of the gang. He’s impossibly strong, and it’d be easy for other authors to screw up using a character like this: Maybe he’d wreck across the battlefield and hand a victory to our leads, or we’d find a cheap way to remove him early. Here instead we find an inventive way to let Hyuse feel like a powerhouse, but not simply become the showboat hero that outshines everyone else.

I also love Chapter 187. Just as it looks like Osamu and Co. might be able to pull their butts out of the fire and eke out a huge victory thanks to Amatori’s incredible Trion reserves, everything goes south thanks to one sniper shot. The way we snatch victory from our heroes and go right into a cliffhanger is absolutely fantastic and had me rushing to read the very next chapter.

My one issue though might still be that it almost becomes ridiculous how long Hyuse holds everyone off when the plan goes awry. It starts to feel a little too crazy how strong he is compared to everyone else. That said, Hyuse only lasts another two chapters, and while he does take someone down with him, it’s not much of a victory. Also we pin so much of our attention on Amatori and how personally she takes the failure. It’s great character focus and really makes you feel for her. As a reader you know it’s not really her fault, plans often go awry in life, but to see her hold this failure so close to her chest makes it a nice emotional gut punch at the end of what is quickly becoming one of World Trigger’s best Rank Wars’ matches.

Ultimately this set of chapters is fantastic. If World Trigger could just find a way to tighten up its pre-battle discussion, and not get too bogged down in details that are ultimately superfluous to the flow of the actual match, it’d shine so much stronger as one of Jump’s top offerings. I’m eagerly looking forward to how Osamu, Amatori and Kuga manage to turn things back around in their favor.

 

 

That’s it for this week! Let me know what your thoughts are on World Trigger in the comments below.

World Trigger is published monthly(ish) in Shonen Jump.

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