Title: Food Wars Volume 19
Author: Yuto Tsukuda
Publisher: Viz Media
Format: Paperback |
Page count: 192
Genre: Shonen, Cookery, Slice of Life
Publication Date: August 1, 2017
Now it’s Alice Nakiri’s turn to step up against the Azami administration when her food society is targeted for abolition. She sends Ryo Kurokiba in as her champion to battle in a shokugeki against Central Elite, Kusunoki. The theme is Salmon and Ryo is a specialist, yet Alice remains distressed over something. What does it mean when she boldly tells off Dean Nakiri at the end of the Shokugeki?
No society is safe from Dean Nakiri, not even his own niece’s cooking society (which she won through shokugeki wins). In a predictable fashion, Alice picks Ryo has her representative in the shokugeki to protect their cooking club. Since the theme is fish (Salmon in particular), we know as readers that Ryo already has the win. What keeps this shokugeki interesting is the amount of information laid out throughout the shokugeki. While some readers may find the details of cooking fish to be boring, I was quite fascinated and interested. I love that every shokugeki leaves me with some knowledge of how to cook a new dish.
Despite Ryo having this win in the bag, so to speak, he has to earn it. His opponent is equally skilled and the cooking battle is intense. What sets Ryo apart as the winner is his ability to adapt and bring forth his true passion for high level cooking. Like the other members of Central, Kusunoki’s shortcomings are a result of arrogance and elitism. Another thing that makes this shokugeki entertaining is the level of interaction between all of the characters involved. In some shokugeki the characters feel more isolated, but here there is a lot of instigation, worry, and pride.
After this we see a confrontation between Alice and Dean Nakiri. It’s fantastic that Alice is so open about her feelings towards her Uncle and his abusive parenting. She outright says, “I hate you!” and declares that she’s not going to let him have his way anymore. The revolution against the new Dean continues.
Finally, the volume wraps up with the beginnings of a shokugeki with Eishi Tsukasa, who wants the ultimate prize from Soma. We’ll have to check out volume 20 to see how that plays out.
It’s easy to forget that Alice and Ryo are members of a club since it doesn’t come up much, so it was nice to see that even Alice has something to lose if Central takes hold of Totsuki. Additionally, we can see that she cares more about her relationship with Erina than she does about being targeted by Dean Nakiri and Central. She’s very open about her disdain of him and unlike Erina, she won’t be a lapdog. Like Soma, she seems ready to go to fight for what is hers.
Although this volume doesn’t focus solely on Soma, his bravery allowed the events in volume 19 to occur. Without his courage to take on Central and protect Polaris Dorm, there wouldn’t be a precedent for others to follow. It is likely the students would be cowering and trying to conform while Dean Nakiri sanitizes the campus of anything he dislikes.
The volume wraps up with a new challenge for Soma. He now has to defend his own freedom in a secret shokugeki. I suspect this is going to be a long and drawn out battle, but the outcome will be interesting either way. The
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**This item was provided for review.