Title: Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction Vol. 2
Author: Inio Asano
Publisher: Viz Media
Genre: Slice-of-Life, Fantasy, Drama
Publication Date: July 17, 2018
The second volume of Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction continues to explore life in Tokyo with the mothership of the invaders looming overhead. In the beginning of the volume, we’re treated to more dialogue between Kadode and Oran. They decide to go hunting for a mythical snake when in reality, they go to a diner in order to study for upcoming exams. Kiho was left out and ends up spending some time with a boy she liked name Kohiruimaki. It turned out that the two of them had different views and ended up parting ways.
While the first half of the volume felt a bit “normal” (and that’s a relative term seeing how we’re dealing with Inio Asano here), the back half began to stir up some drama when it was announced that there was a battle taking place between the Japanese SDF and the Invaders in Shibuya. While this is going on, we check in on Keito, the invader that escaped the crash from the first volume and has been posing as a citizen of Tokyo for the past three years. He lets himself into some occult nut’s apartment but makes his escape when he returns home. He seems to just be traveling from place to place, taking in Tokyo’s culture. There haven’t been any real plans revealed yet, is he even has any.
The end of the volume comes when the SDF open fire on a medium-sized cube-like vessel that was making its way out of the city. The blast destroys a good portion of it and it looks to crash into Musashino City where unsuspecting residents are living.
That was quite the cliffhanger for the second volume. Asano continues to offer up a darker, grittier outcome on life and this sci-fi twist breathes a certain life into this story. The characters, though, felt a bit flat in this volume as they all just seemed to be going on their own paths without anything really standing out. The story seemed a bit slow-paced as well as we really didn’t get anything interesting until the back half of the volume. Then again, this aligns with Asano’s style and even though things were a bit slow-paced, the dialogue and the way the story was written still held your attention. The fact that he can do that while only being mediocre is a testament to his skill as a mangaka.
Honestly, there really isn’t much to talk about in this volume, character-wise. The only real development we got came with Kiho and her rocky relationship with Kohiruimaki. Kohiruimaki was a bit dense to the fact that Kohi liked him and really just ended up spouting off a bunch of stuff that demeaned the things that Kohi believed in. He felt that Kohi wasn’t looking towards the future and was pretty dumb for being short-sighted. No matter what the context, saying something like that… especially to a girl who has an interest in you, is instant proverbial death. After Kohi revealed that she liked him, Kohiruimaki felt bad for the way he acted. He texted her and said that he was going on a journey and will return as the man that she deserves. He also apologized for not noticing her feelings. In the end, it was nice of him to man up to his mistake but it’s a bit too soon to see if his apology has any sort of positive effect, but it is a start.
The only other interesting tidbit was with Keita. Even though we only saw him for a brief period of time, it was interesting to see how he’s been blending into society. Also, for those who are wondering, no… his name wasn’t mentioned as of yet. I simply looked it up because I didn’t feel like typing “the alien invader” or any alternate version of that phrase over and over again! The fact that he hijacked an occult fanatic’s apartment to take a bath and grab a bite to eat was hilariously perfect. It’s bad enough that the guy thought his lines were tapped and he was being watched as it was… now when he returns home and finds that things are not as he left him… well… you can imagine how psychologically damaging that could end up being for him. It’s this kind of dark humor that gives me the biggest smiles! I loved it. Plus, the snowman scene was pretty hilarious as well!
Volume two of Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction continues to build the world and its characters. While it did come off as a bit slow, it still grabbed your attention and made you keep turning the pages one by one. The characters are dark, gritty, entertaining, and more realistic than any other character you would find in, virtually, any other manga. The sci-fi hook is splashed in when needed and blends seamlessly with the rest of the story. While the citizens of Tokyo continue on with their day-to-day lives, you still get the hints that they are very concerned about the mothership that continues to loom over their city. Knowing that it could attack at any moment but they can’t really do anything about it is just something that they’ve all accepted as fate. It’s kind of grim when you think about it. To just carry on your day as normal while knowing it could be your last but with an attitude of “well if it happens, it happens” is just really morbid and dark. Is that truly living? Is that truly society?
I wonder what kind of backlash the government will get after shooting down the medium-sized vessel over a populated area? Knowing Inio Asano, we’re not going to get the answer straight away in volume three. It’ll probably go right back to some slice-of-life antics and then just casually slip in the results of the attack over a news broadcast or something else depicted as background noise. That’s one of the great things about this manga. Often times, people will glance over background text like that because it just adds realism to the story and doesn’t contribute anything to the plot but in this series, anything and everything is vitally important. Something as simple as background text of a radio announcement plays into the characters dialogue or into a major plot point later down the road.
This manga makes you take in every word as something of significance and importance. It’s one of those series that you really have to pay attention to otherwise something might happen and you’d wonder just what you missed because it won’t make any sense. The ability to utilize every inch of the page and every word on it in such a way that drives the entirety of the story forward isn’t easy but Asano pulls that off flawlessly! Two volumes in and I’m really loving this series!
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