The Seven Deadly Sins (manga)

img_5207.jpgThe Seven Deadly Sins is a legendary gang of rebels that was blamed for the overthrow of the kingdom. Even after all these years, the kingdom’s central guards, each of whom is a match for a thousand, the Holy Knights, are hunting down these wanted criminals. But when one young girl appears, with an earnest wish in her heart, and a determination to find ‘The Seven Deadly Sins’, the world gets turned on its head and an extraordinary adventure begins!

The Seven Deadly Sins is a manga that I initially picked up because I wanted to follow a series that was a bit more modern. I love watching anime simulcasts and getting immersed in the hottest anime of the season in both Japan and across the world, but with manga I feel a little different. Manga is a bit more of a time commitment, something a bit more immersive, and I tend to err on the safe side and stick to my backlog of retro manga titles that I have been trying to read/access for the last 10 years.

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I can pace myself when it comes to waiting for an anime to release another episode in a week’s time, but waiting for manga chapter updates takes time and isn’t necessarily on such a tight schedule. But with The Seven Deadly Sins I made an exception. I had a peek at the anime on Netflix, loved it and knew straight away that I had to read the manga. There were already plenty of chapters and arcs available to read so I could devour the story in record time if the anime was moving too slow. It seemed like a good franchise to immerse myself in.

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I fell in love with the artwork straight away. It seemed different to me, to the older manga artwork that I usually spend my time reading. There was a fantastical, historical element to their clothing and their bodies and appearances were so varied. We have Meliodas, who is a short character, and this ranges all the way to Diane who is, in actual fact, a giant.

The characters themselves are so different to one another, and I could never predict what the next Deadly Sin would act, appear or think like. New characters always provided a new element to the storyline and drew out new sides of the characters we already thought we knew. The Sins themselves obviously have complex relationships and histories together, such as the competitive nature between Bann and Meliodas, the romance between Bann and King’s sister, or the memories shared between King and Diane. And the more of the Sins that are discovered, the more complex the story becomes. Elizabeth’s initial determination to find the Seven Deadly Sins has uncovered an even deeper plot that could threaten the future of her entire kingdom.

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The fight scenes are elaborate and action-packed, which you would expect from this kind of storyline. The different physicques, magical abilities and skills of the Holy Knights make for some very varied tactics and battles. It seems effortless and simple, too, which is a relief when you think of other battle-heavy titles such as Bleach and how complex and bogged-down with info-dumps that some of those fight scenes became. The storyline flows really well and, for a manga with a lot of characters, the pacing is impressive and no character is forgotten. The detail within each panel, especially in scenes that are in busy marketplaces and kingdom courtyards full of milling people and brickwork, is extraordinary and really bring to life the fairy tale-esque surroundings and the larger-than-life cast.

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The Seven Deadly Sins is a franchise that I can really get into. The artwork and storyline are absolutely top-notch and you can see why the concept and the characters have become extremely popular. Each arc seamlessly flows on from one another and you can begin to see a deeper, more complex plot unfolding underneath the comedy and fight scenes that makes the reader question who is really a bad guy and who is good. I love immersing myself in their world and reading the small stories woven perfectly into the bigger one. A fantastic fairytale epic that will appeal to a wide range of manga readers.

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Posted in Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Manga