- Mangaka : Naoki Urasawa
- Publisher : Viz Media
- Genre : Drama, Seinen
- Published : January 2021
Naoki Urasawa is well known for his realistic premises and impactful storylines. He is the mind behind award-winning titles like 20th Century Boys, 21sth Century Boys, and Billy Bat. It’s always interesting to see human interactions in his perspective. Even though the topics he tackles are surprisingly mundane, the way he tells the story is unique. There’s always a certain twist, and he always seems to encourage his ordinary readers to do something extraordinary.
Asadora first came out in 2018, however, it’s only been available in Japanese. Viz Media released the official English version last January 19. Like the other Naoki Urusawa manga, Asadora has an old school art. The plot, however, is unlike his other works. The story is set in postwar Japan and follows the story of an innocent girl called Asa. She’s one of twelve siblings, and one of the youngest one at that. When a super typhoon hits Japan, she finds herself tangled with an amateur burglar and kidnapper.
1. Ordinary Humans Doing Extraordinary Things
As we’ve stated above, Naoki Urusawa is fond of portraying his characters just like you and us. There isn’t anything special about them. They meet hardship and even face far more difficult obstacles in life. However, fate decides to be a little playful and pull some strings to force them to interact.
In Asadora, the main characters are Asa, an ordinary girl, and Kasuga, a pilot veteran. After the war, the unlicensed Kasuga finds himself unemployed despite his flying skills. Because of the hardships of life, he’s forced into burglary. That’s when he first meets Asa. When the typhoon subsides, that’s when they do an impromptu relief operation from the air.
2. Human Interactions At Its Finest
Another thing Naoki Urusawa is good at is showing the reality of how humans react. The prime example of this is when a police officer comes to stop them from doing their impromptu relief operation. Despite the good they are doing, the police decide to stop them because of technicalities. Yes, in the middle of calamity. On the other side of the coin, the joint forces of the aunties also symbolizes how the masses will come together in times of need.
1. A Realistic Look at Disaster
Again, Asadora is set during a super typhoon in postwar Japan. However, it’s not just an ordinary typhoon. The flooding it caused is so bad that almost every house in their neighborhood has been submerged in water. Given that the protagonists, Asa and Kasuga, are part of the lower end of the social strata, the series won’t have any grandeur scenes like sending a fleet of men or ordering sending out thousands of gourmet food. In fact, the relief operations aren’t exactly that visible. In the end, Asa and Kasuga do what they can in their ability to help the other victims.
Asadora is undeniably a work by Naoki Urusawa. From the plot, the art, and the interactions between characters are entirely his style. For fans like us, Asadora is a must read. For non-fans… well, it’s still a story worth checking out. There might not be flashy scenes and whatnot, but Asadora hits you right in the heart. However, it’s important to note that the volume ends in a cliffhanger. The second volume is coming out on April 20, so you may want to keep this in mind before picking it up.