Fist of the North Star Vol. 2 Review – Tears That Break Ambition

    Title: Fist of the North Star Vol. 2
    Author: Buronson, Tetsuo Hara
    Release Date: September 21, 2021
    Publisher: VIZ Media

Fist of the North Star Vol. 2 continues where the previous volume left off. The second volume of the classic shounen series covers the remainder of the Golan arc and the Warriors arc and sets up the arc that comes after it while keeping up the momentum and pace that the first volume set up.

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Fist of the North Star Vol. 2 follows the drifter Kenshiro as he confronts the Golan army. A gang of soldiers that believe they are chosen by God and genetically superior with the ambition to build God’s Land no matter what it takes. Later on, as he travels the post-apocalyptic wasteland, he also has to face a nomad warlord named Jackal who relies more on his strategic and cunning intellect than brute strength than previous opponents Kenshiro faced in the series up to this point.

That aspect was something that made the confrontation between Kenshiro and Jackal’s gang interesting. Jackal uses a lot of underhanded tactics to prevent a direct fight with Kenshiro during the conflict between him and his gang, which is easily one of the highlights of this volume for me, along with other fights that occur within the volume. Such as the battles between Kenshiro and the Golan Army’s Red Berets, the Mad Sarge, and the Colonel, who uses the martial art known as the Nanto Muonken, which is one of the schools of the Nanto Seiken. Many of the moments in this volume had me on the edge of my seat while reading.

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All of the fight scenes show a lot of incredible and creative moments in addition to the brutal and visceral action that’s well-choreographed with fantastic artwork by Tetsuo Hara. On top of that, the volume also features some beautiful color spreads of specific artwork. Some chapters are presented with a hint of color in addition to the usual black and white manga presentation that the previous volume also had.

The narrative told within the second volume is well-written, and the worldbuilding is consistent with what was presented within the first volume. This is also supported by the localization work that maintains its quality from the previous volume.  Especially in terms of how they re-translated the series as they now use the same terms in the Japanese version in the case for the Golan Army, which was named the Provident in the previous VIZ English release of Fist of the North Star.

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Fist of the North Star Vol. 2 is a fantastic read from start to finish that kept up the incredible and action-packed pace of the previous volume. From the beautiful and visceral artwork to the exceptional localization and re-translation effort that maintains its great quality. I recommend this old-school series to fans of the Shounen genre, and I cannot wait for the next volume to come around.

5/5

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Heather De Boer

Been around the block as a Games Journalist for a year. Loves JRPGs, Fighting Games and Action games a lot but loves to dabble in adventure, horror and visual novels as well.