I have fond memories of watching the Trigun anime when it became available in the US, so I was eager to read this compilation of the two translated manga volumes; however, despite the nostalgia, I couldn’t help being more critical of the story and artwork than I might have been in the past. My main complaint is that, given the manga only fills two volumes, it felt a lot like a “greatest hits” version of the anime series I had loved so much. I wanted a lot more detail and explanation of the characters than was actually present.
My other major issue with the Trigun manga is holy crap screen tones! The creator used screen tones (a common art technique for various backgrounds, fillers, and effects in manga) in place of shading and several other art methods to fill in plain line drawings. While I respect that hand drawing everything in a panel is an impossible task, the sheer amount of screen tones used to indicate things like darkness, darker skin tones, or just to highlight one individual in a scene was very distracting. Given that the original Japanese volumes were published in 2000 though, screen tones were high tech for the time.
Despite my small gripes, the stories presented in the Omnibus are a fun introduction to the world of Vash and his entourage of pursuers. For anyone who wants to have a complete Trigun collection or wants to dip their toes into this blend of Wild West, post-apocalyptic, and space Steampunk, this is the place to start.
Overall, my nostalgia for Trigun hurt my reaction to the original manga, but I can’t deny that there’s something special about the series. The story contains unique elements and engaging characters. At the end of the day, it’s something I think could appeal to manga lovers and newcomers to the genre alike. With nearly 700 pages of content, it’s certainly worth the purchase price.
3.75 Mysterious Black Cats out of 5