Daydream Sanctuary Features

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New Flavors: Genkaku Picasso

Genkaku Picasso
( Picasso Hallucination )
by Furuya Usamaru
After miraculously surviving a freak helicopter accident, Hikari "Picasso" Haruma finds that he somehow has the power to help people through his art. He is helped by his friend, Chiaki Yamamoto, who was killed in the helicopter accident, but came back as an angel. According to Chiaki, when the accident happened, both she and Picasso died, but she begged God to save him because of his wonderful talent. As a result, Picasso survived the accident on condition that he saves other people. (Baka-Updates)

At first I saw the volume cover . . .
"It has something do with with art and drawing?! Count me in!"
and then I read the description/synopsis/plot . . .
"This seems really interesting! So it also has a fantasy twist?! My type!"
I read the scanlations afterwards . . .
"It was as good and as amazing as I expected! I'm impressed."
I wanted more, so I also read the unscanlated chapters together with translations . . .

The art style isn't exactly to the liking of the majority, but you seriously have to check out the sketches drawn by the main character! Here are some samples of them:

They are so MARVELOUS! If you have been amazed by such incredible pictures like I have been, then I already encourage you to read the manga already because there's more of them in the chapters! Whether the story would be your type or not, the artworks are just so wonderful that the manga's already worth reading just for the sake of looking at such masterpieces~

But well, if you're not fond of that type of art . . . there's more into this manga than just the art~

It's not only about drawing pretty things . . . but also drawing what is inside one's heart. In other words, a person's true thoughts and feelings. These are presented through gorgeous artworks and interpreting them will make you need to analyze and think deep. Psychology plays a big role here, because it's about understanding human behavior and thinking after all.

That's why the two main characters had been a great combination! The leading girl reads difficult psychology books, so she could understand and interpret people's actions. While the leading guy is an artist, so he does the drawing and . . . artists sometimes see things differently. They have their own perspective and they are imaginative. So the leading guy illustrates what he saw on that person's heart, then the leading girl studies the person's background and comes up with explanations on how it would affect the person's current behavior, and together they interpret the person's dark feelings . . . what the person might do . . . and what they should do to stop that person. I find it . . . brilliant.

Yes, the serious illustrations here aren't just drawn at random; there are symbolisms and meanings behind it. Trying to figure them out had been fun. And when it's revealed to us what the things in the sketches were all about, or if we were able to successfuly understand it in full, things start to make sense, and how those things had been connected to the story and the character's background and personality had been really terrific!

Also, this seems like a "typical story of the leading character saving the day in the end" thing, right? There's actually something really different in this one. Yes, our main character is one of those relunctant heroes who actually refuse to help and finds it bothersome to save people but he's left with no choice and in the end he actually feels some satisfaction from doing so. However, the actual person solving the problem isn't the main guy, but the victims themselves. How is this done? Well, the main guy gets to enter the subconscious of the person with a problem, and when the main guy finally gets how to help the person, he cheers up the person when he/she is in pain and pushes/encourages that person to do something about his problem. It's like he has become that person's conscience, without the person being aware that it's the main guy who's telling him/her what to do. The victim is the one who helps himself/herself or gets over his/her problem or self pity. I am so impressed~

This manga seems to be episodic though. So it has the same formula in every chapter. . . That can't be helped. But as long as they're not always the same pattern (like being resolved at the exact same way, victim's problems are too similar, there's a main character recruitment in everychater, etc.), it will do okay. And even if a series is episodic, there should be connections between recent and past chapters at least. And yes, this manga is one of them. Some characters didn't just disappear when their case was over, and characters from previous cases actually have a relation to characters of some of the later cases.

Overall story had been really good and interesting, in my opinion. It had really good plot twists too! I like being surprised that way~ I had no problems with the pacing and how events were presented either. Story idea/concept was very creative! But of course, it's not without flaws. Well, maybe it's only bothersome . . . to me. You see, when the leading girl died, she had asked a divine being to save the leading guy but in return he has to save people. I just . . . felt that there's not enough background with that supernatural occurence. I mean, at least give the divine being who had fulfilled the leading girl's wish a name. Also what exactly the leading girl has become (like the leading guy's question: is she an angel? a fairy? what?!!!) I can't explain but . . . it just felt too random. It's as random as a kid wishing his dead goldfish to be alive again but in return he should become a Goldfish Hero. It's just . . . that random. It's okay if this was a gag manga, but I don't think it belongs to that category.

There are actually more things in regards to the story (more specifically on the story flow) that had bothered me, but I guess that the good parts in this are just so incredible that I had forgotten or ignored them. Haha! (I think it has something to do with story narration . . . but I really can't remember)

And about the characters? All of them have been great and interesting in their own way! They had really good characterizations. They are consistent and their personalities suit them a lot. And not only the main duo gets to do a big role in the stories. Even the other main characters, or other side characters, get to do something. It was a really good set of characters.

Oh they are also fun~ I am very amused on the leading guy's crazy reactions! His relationship with the leading girl is platonic, and they're very cute (No, I don't ship them, but I like their combination~). I also like it that the new main girl is attached to the leading guy but she ignores the other main guy who actually likes her. Haha! And that love story in the third chapter was very very very cute~

This manga may seem boring but it's actually hilarious! The leading character is actually provides most of the comedy. It was so fun when he's trying to ask about the victim's problem as subtely as he can. Like for instance, there was a part wherein he had drawn a girl in bondage because it's what's inside the victim's thoughts. So he assumed that the victim secretly reads that kind of stuff so he asks the guy so blatantly: "Do you have other hobbies aside from anime? Like SM or something?" Bwahahahahahahah!!!! It really killed me!!!! And since this manga involves people's emotional problems, seeing emos in the story is not a surprise (but fortunately the emo peeps weren't extremely emo to the point that it will annoy me.), but they turned out to be pretty funny too. This line made me chuckle a lot:"Please bury my corpse in the side of the school field. With the goldfish, rabbits, and birds-" That second sentence . .. . Bwahahahahhaha!!!! The illustrations in chapter intervals had been amusing as well! Like the part with the leading guy trying to nail polish and when his nose bled at the thought of drawing nude portraits with an actual nude infront of him. Bwahahahaha!

This manga had been very entertaining and remarkable! I highly recommend it! Especially to those who are fans of art and psychological stuff! People who find fun in interpreting artworks may like it too. And it's also a very creative and unique manga, so people who want something different will most likely appreciate it too, since it's not a manga with a type of story that you usually see. I don't think it's the first manga that deals with knowing a person's true feelings, but how this manga explores it, in my opinion, had been very imaginative and one of a kind.

I think the reasons of people who won't like this manga will be 1) they don't like the art style 2) story is simply not their cup of tea, or their type/interest 3) they find it boring 4) they can't relate or don't get what's going on 5) bias/prejudice 6) can't stand a certain character or too f*cked up on a certain event, and the list goes on~

But this manga got me really impressed, so of course I look forward to reading more of this~ I also have some fanservice here:


What?! It's my favorite ride in amusement parks! And it has pretty horsies! And it's not fast enough to make me feel like I'm gonna die! And-
It's so damn easy to make my joyful. My happiness is so shallow . . .


Sapphire Pyro
READ: 4 chapters out of 2 scanlated (2 translated) chapters of a new ongoing manga
VERDICT: Totally Following
The art style on the characters isn't to the liking of the majority, but sketches here had been very amazing!
I find the story really interesting and creative! It had been hilarious too! And I'm a huge sucker for art and psychological stuff.
I love this series~


galimagery said...

lol I skimmed your summary and quickly checked it out. While I was mildly sad that it wasn't actually about THE picasso, I actually, like you, liked the story concept very much! The humour was surprisingly refreshing and totally worked for me. Of course, the whole supernatural thing with Chiaki saving his life and whatnot isn't well thought out, but then the magic in animanga rarely has well thought-out magic, and the art was so nice that I forgot all about that kind of stuff, lulz.

Sapphire Pyro said...

I was also expecting this to have some relation to The Picasso xD hehe~

Ah! That's what I'm trying to say. The supernatural part wasn't well-thought. Thanks for the words~

I'm happy that you've liked this too ^_^

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