Y+M – Yagyuu Ninpou Chou

Segawa Masaki seems to be making an industry of adapting Yamada Futarou’s pulp ninja novels into seinen manga; Y+M follows in the footsteps of the amazing Basilisk, but falls short.

Y+M is a revenge tale: the women of the Hori clan (with the assistance of Yagyuu Juubei) seek to bring down the Daimyou Katou Akinari (and his bodyguards, the Seven Spears) who brutally tortured and killed their menfolk. Unlike Basilisk, the sides split clearly into good and evil, and the latter find themselves outwitted and outfought at every turn, their numbers thinning constantly with no corresponding victories. Frustratingly, much of this is accomplished by Yagyuu Juubei rather than the Hori women themselves.

Akinari begins as a threatening presence but becomes steadily more and more pathetic; the villains go out of their way to keep the heroes alive, and Oyura’s actions just made me roll my eyes.

Perhaps these weaknesses originate from the original text, in that case it’s strange that Segawa would choose this volume to adapt as there are many, many alternatives.

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