Gin Tama Volume 16: German Suplex Any Woman Who Asks, ‘Which Is More Important, Me Or Your Work?’
Story and Art: Hideaki Sorachi
Release Date: 27th December 2006
Covers Chapters 131-139
Shonen Jump Advanced /Viz Media
Emotions rise in volume 16 before we fall back into the land of fun. This time the tale of a dying love continues before a hard boiled tale and a sex change plot. The usual then.
The first story which continues from volume 15 is great. I think while it contains the usual humour and strong storytelling it has a tragic feeling throughout with little hope of happiness by the end. Okita’s sister is on her death-bed and her fiancée is busy selling weapons illegally. It becomes a choice of giving her a final happiness or taking down the crook, Hijikata vs Okita on morals and pieces of their past appear bringing out the water works. It is one of my favourite of the serious storylines and ever character adds something to it, a little charm, a little anger, a little hope.
Gin Tama even goes this zombie route this volume with a two parter about people growing deadly mono-brows causing the characters to turn into old men. Zombrows. It may be because of Kochikame’s 30th anniversary but it still manages to be an entertaining struggle. Kochikame would be proud though it does highlight that sometimes Gin Tama can be a series of confusion if you don’t know what it is referring to. Kochikame is a police manga featuring a protagonist with a mono-brow by the way.
The Hard Boiled cop story is the next in line which laughs at the idea of a hard boiled cop with their fancy narratives and hard boiled customs. Brandy on the rocks please. While the thief story feels a little tired the inclusion of a family on a conveyor belt, a Ah-leeeey Davidson and the Hard Boiled cop himself make things an entertaining ride.Then things finish with a two part story of setting up a party for Kyube so she will gain an interest in men after her bodyguard believes she wants to construct a Tower of Babel. I’ll leave that for you to figure out what that is.
Volume 16 is, as usual, a great read from start to finish as it ranges from emotions at the flick of a page. And no cliffhanger this time!