Title: Platinum End Vol. 3
Author: Tsugumi Ohba (Story), Takeshi Obata (Art)
Publisher: Viz Media
Publication Date: August 1, 2017
The mystery man that paid Mirai and Saki a visit in the last volume of Platinum End turns out to be a terminal cancer patient named Nanto Mukaido. Even though he is a God candidate, he cannot use his arrows. His goal is to make sure that Metropoliman doesn’t become God as he feels that would be the best way to protect his family once the cancer claims his life. He teams up with Mirai and Saki who begin to collection information on where to find and end Metropoliman.
Despite gathering information, Metropoliman sets a trap in which he uses a girl and pierces her with a red arrow. He gives the girl a set of wings and her own red arrows and tells her to purge the world of ugly girls. She is labeled as a serial killer and even though Nanato knows it’s a trap, he suggests they confront her because it would draw out Metropoliman. When they arrive on the scene, which is at the top of a tower, a bomb explodes. Nanato narrowly escapes death after being saved by Mirai, but Metropoliman shows up and has an arrow aimed right at Mirai’s back.
This volume was a nice balance of character development and story progression. While there wasn’t much in the way of action, it made you feel as if you didn’t need it. Ohba and Obata are great at producing psychological material and Platinum End is no different. This volume was weighted on strategy as well as the moral implications of their plan. They mixed the right amount of character development into it to keep it interesting. The cliffhanger at the end was a tad cliché and since it put our main character in jeopardy, it’s almost a guarantee that they will find a way out of it. A better stopping point would have been the explosion and Mirai calling out Nanko’s name. At least with a supporting character, there’s a 50/50 chance that they may be dead come volume four. Despite that, still an excellent volume story-wise.
Only Mirai and Nanko get development here in this volume of Platinum End. Mirai’s development was more or less his personality. He talked about how his suicide drove him to appreciate things in life so when Nanako brought up the aspect of killing Metropoliman, Mirai couldn’t pull the trigger on that plan. Even though it was a kill or be killed situation, Mirai felt that killing people wasn’t something that needed to be done. While I can appreciate the morality here, the problem is that too many characters have this persona about them. It’s an overused archetype for main characters and while it worked before, it’s become quite tiresome. I hope there is some revelation down the line to help Mirai out as a character because the soft type just doesn’t feel unique anymore.
Nanako’s personality, on the other hand, is completely opposite. He is definitely a family man, but since his cancer is terminal and he could die at any time, he doesn’t really care about anything that happens to him. He sees that he has a job to do and no matter how morally wrong it is, it’s still a job that needs to be done. He has already used his arrows to steal money so his family would be taken care off after he’s gone. He has no problems killing Metropoliman because he knows his death would benefit, not only his family, but all of humanity as well. His heart is in the right place, but he also knows he has no time to sit around and do things on a moral standard. To be honest, those in the same position would probably do the same thing. I like Nanako as a character so far, but he’s been set up to die which I’m sure will be a sad moment when, not if, it comes.
This was another phenomenal volume of Platinum End! It does a great job to sell you on its characters and even though Saki took a back seat for most of this volume, it was warranted since they were trying to establish Nanako as a new character. The fact that it’s not against the rules to use means outside of arrows to kill God candidates is a pretty huge revelation. We’ve already seen bombs, guns and knives come into play as well as clever ways to kill using a red arrow versus a white arrow.
This survival game isn’t so black and white anymore. We’re only nine chapters in and the game has gotten really in-depth. Even though it seems like it’s getting complex, Ohba and Obata found a way to make it easy to understand. Depth doesn’t need to be complex and as long as you keep it simple, it can be pulled off and that is exactly what this duo has done again! If you’re not reading Platinum End yet, I highly suggest picking it up. It’s negatives are far outweighed by its positives and if we all know Ohba and Obata, it can only get better from here!
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This item was provided for review by Viz Media