Wednesday, May 29, 2013
X/1999 by CLAMP
Heart-racing fantasy action and soul-crushing drama fill the pages of CLAMP’s classic masterpiece, X/1999.
After the violent death of his mother, sixteen-year-old Kamui Shiro returns to Tokyo, the home of his childhood friends, Fuma and Kotori Monou. There he encounters the seven dragons of heaven and the seven dragons of earth, supernatural warriors who all have their own deeply personal reasons for either loving or hating the human race. In time, Kamui learns that the future of the planet lies in his hands. Will he choose to become a Dragon of Earth and destroy the world, or will he choose to become a Dragon of Heaven and save it? As the war for the future rages on the streets of Tokyo, friendships are forged, impossible dreams are cherished, and love struggles against all odds for survival and triumph.
LGBTQ content is limited at the beginning of the series, but it bursts forth with gusto around volume ten. Trust me, the wait is worth it. It is difficult to explain who loves who and in what way without spoiling shocking plot twists. Suffice it to say that angsty and passionate romantic tension builds between two characters of the same gender. In addition, readers of Tokyo Babylon will be thrilled to discover that Subaru and Seichiro burst onto the scene half way through the series. How could one not be enthralled by the tragedy of the gentle exorcist and the heartless assassin?
Anyone struggling in the depths of despair must read this manga. Running through the story is the theme of hope, that despite the grinding forces of destiny which seem impossible to control, the future has yet to be decided. Kamui and Subaru and all the other unforgettable characters face daunting adversity and crushing discouragement, but they continue to find dignity in the choices they make and never stop fighting for a better tomorrow.
X/1999 is currently being republished in six multi-volume editions under its original Japanese title, X.
This manga contains graphic violence and occasional nudity, so I would have felt ready to read this manga when I was sixteen-years-old.
This is the third title I’ve reviewed by CLAMP. Can you tell how much I love them?
Review by Aaron Walsh. Add your review of "X/1999" in comments!