For some reason I thought this was the last volume… I guess I’m happy it’s not?
But I’m disappointed by the sense I’m getting that, in the long run, no shounen manga dares stand in the way of the almighty Shounen Jump formula. For one thing, the formula seems to require that the female characters either stop getting fight scenes, or make them the froofy passive-looking metaphysical kind.
For another, there seems to have been an executive decision that Soul Eater lose his hat, acquire a hairstyle somewhere between present-day-Ichigo’s* and Edward Elric’s, and completely change the shape of his face and eyes. Because it’s not okay to have a protagonist who doesn’t look exactly like every other protagonist?
Also, Black ★ Star has suddenly become the number-one angstiest member of the cast? The guy who pronounces a little star in the middle of his name to emphasize how special he is? The one who was introduced as a parody of Naruto!? Yet he is now More Special Sasuke! It’s like the manga’s IQ is progressively getting lower.
If Patty ends up getting angst, too, I’m just going to retreat into writing fanfic where everyone’s an adorable moron again.
* Hey, remember the good old days when Kubo Tite actually had a recognizable personal style? Whatever happened to those days? THE SHOUNEN JUMP FORMULA HAPPENED TO THOSE DAYS. If Mizuno Junko ran a manga in Shounen Jump, within twelve months it would become a story about a fourteen-year-old boy overcoming his rocky relationship with his dad through montage-intensive training to become the best evil naked zombie drug dealer gigolo nurse.
** I just checked and Soul Eater actually runs in Shounen Gangan, not Shounen Jump. Close enough!