Tokyo Ghoul:re Vol. 1 Review

Title: Tokyo Ghoul:re Vol. 1
Author: Sui Ishida
Publisher: Viz Media
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 224
Genre: Fantasy, Battle
Publication Date: October 17, 2017

The Story

Tokyo Ghoul:re is the sequel series to Tokyo Ghoul. Here, we follow Haise Sasaki, a ghoul investigator and the Commission for Counter Ghoul (CCG). He is a part of the Mado squad lead by Kureo Mado’s daughter Akira. He is also the mentor of the Quinx squad consisting of Kuki Urie as Squad leader, Tooru Mutuski and Ginshi Shirazu. The Quinx Squad are special investigators implanted with a ghoul’s Kagune. Unlike what happened to Kaneki in the original Tokyo Ghoul, these Kagunes go through the same process as if they are being crafted into Quinques… weapons CCG investigators use against ghouls. Instead of being encased and formed into a weapon, they are implanted in the human body and their power levels are regulated so that RC Cells won’t increase and the investigators won’t succumb to transforming to a ghoul completely. This allows them to use Kagune and Quinques at the same time, making them very dangerous foes for ghouls.

The Quinx Squad is looked down upon by the other squads of the CCG because they haven’t produced any results when it comes to solving cases. Bothered by this, Urie decides to try and solve the Torso case by himself. Torso is a ghoul that eats a victim’s torso leaving the head and limbs behind. After Urie and Shirazu confront a ghoul thought to be the Torso, they discover they captured the wrong ghoul. At the squad briefing, Mado defends Sasaki by stating that the investigation is going at a snail’s pace. She even boldly suggests that Mado Squad can discover who Torso is within a month. As a result, Shimoguchi Squad turned over their data involving the case. After some investigation, they narrow down Torso’s whereabouts, but when Mutsuki enters a cab, she is attacked by Torso. Sasaki and the rest of the Quinx Squad arrive and battle Torso until another ghoul, known as Orochi, shows up.

Sasaki then goes on the attack, unleashing his Kagune and it is here it is HEAVILY eluded to that Haise Sasaki is really Ken Kaneki! Torso and Orochi end up escaping as Sasaki has a meeting with Kishou Arima, the highest rated investigator of the CCG and the man who battled Kaneki at the end of the Tokyo Ghoul. After catching up with Arima, Sasaki asks Shirazu if he wants to go grab some coffee. They find a coffee shop called “:re” and take a seat as they are greeted by none other than Touka Kirishima! This is where the first volume comes to an end.

Characters

Just like the original Tokyo Ghoul, there is a MASSIVE amount of characters and it’s not any easier to try and keep track of them. This series loves to use titles and honorifics so it’s a bit hard keeping track of names, ranks, titles, positions, etc, but at least we’re given a manageable amount to digest here in the first volume.

First up is Haise Sasaki. It’s painfully obvious that he is Ken Kaneki. The fact that he only has one ghoul eye when using his kagune, which is identical to Kanecki’s and he’s missing about 20 years of his memories all point to the fact that he survived his fight with Arima at the end of Tokyo Ghoul and gained amnesia. Arima, most likely, decided to make use of Kaneki’s amnesia by putting him to work. It was even stated in this volume that there is a special protocol where if Sasaki went out of control, he was to be treated as a ghoul and exterminated immediately. Sasaki is the only investigator with this special clause so unless some huge misdirection is in play here, Haise Sasaki is Ken Kaneki.

As for the rest of the Quinx Squad, Urie is only interested in getting a promotion. He even admits that he wants nothing to do with Quinx squad and is a bit hot tempered about it. Even though he seems cool and reserved, it’s only a façade for his inner feelings. Realizing the Quinx Squad isn’t getting any results and is being looked down upon, he wants to go out on cases alone so he can get all the credit. One would think this would be to elevate Quinx squad, but it’s just the opposite. He wants the credit to get promoted and leave Quinx Squad because he sees it as only dragging him down. In fact, his actions got him removed as squad leader after Torso and Orochi escaped. It’ll be interesting to see what happens with Urie from here on out.

Shirazu is a bit of an odd person. While he seems out of control and unpredictable, he is very aware of the things that are going on around him. He seems to stick with Urie, but not because he believes in his ideals, but for the fact that he doesn’t want to see Urie go at it alone. Because of this, Sasaki names him the new squad leader once he demotes Urie, hoping that Shirazu will use this experience to grow as an investigator.

Mutsuki is another odd one. He seems more calm and rational about things, but he is also different from the other Quinxes because his RC Cell level is still that of a normal human’s. Even he admits that he cannot use his kagune properly and must rely on his Quinque to fight. Due to a bitter past, Mutsuki is forced to reveal himself as a girl to Torso, stating that she wanted to be a boy. She seems to have a soft spot for Sasaki and really looks up to him. I’m interested in seeing how this character will develop into the future.

Other characters make some appearances, but not enough to get any development. We got to see Ayato from Aogiri Tree along with his sister Touka at the :re coffee shop. Also at the coffee shop, serving as the barista was Renji Yomo from the original Anteiku shop. We even get a very brief sighting of Tsukiyama, the Gourmet Ghoul! It makes you wonder what roles they will play here in the sequel!

Final Thoughts

The first volume of Tokyo Ghoul:re was packed with a LOT of information. From the introduction of new characters, to recalling past events from the original series, to the ongoing investigations of new ghouls, even to the mystery surrounding Haise Sasaki/Ken Kaneki. Needless to say, this is a series that you cannot pick up and read without previous knowledge of the original. While the first volume does do a great job adding in information where needed to try and get readers to understand who people are, there are still points where it assumes you have read the original Tokyo Ghoul.

I like the different perspective we are being given here. In the original Tokyo Ghoul, our perspective was from a boy who was once human trying to bridge the worlds between human and ghoul. Here, we are seeing things from the CCG side from the (presumably) same person. We get to see how the CCG truly views ghouls and just what lengths they are going to in order to stop them. It’s a pretty unique perspective and it makes me wonder how Sui Ishida will evolve this new viewpoint. Needless to say, I’m excited for the new series and am very much looking forward to volume two!

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This item was provided for review by Viz Media

About The Author

Josh Piedra

Josh (or J.J. as some have come to call him), is a long-time geek culture enthusiast with a deep passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture. Josh also has a Bachelor of Arts in Game Design and is a creative writer who has created original content for over 20 years!