Posted September 4, 2012 by Elaine Cepeda in Anime/Manga

Manga Review: Kuroko no Basket Vol. 1

Title: Kuroko no Basket
Mangaka: Fujimaki Tadatoshi
Genre/s: Shounen, Sports
Publisher: Shueisha
Serialized in: Weekly Shounen Jump

From MU:

Kuroko is a member from the legendary middle school basketball team known as “The Generation of Miracles”, and while nobody seems to know about him, the main five players of the team all admit that he is the strongest member, the phantom sixth player. When he joins the high-school basketball team, everyone is surprised to find out that he is small, weak, and easy to miss. What is the secret that makes him so strong, and how will he help his high-school team?

Kuroko no Basket does not dwell to the basics of basketball. Don’t expect that it will explain the rules and terminologies in a game. Not even the practices that they should undergo. It deals with more than that. Kurobas, as most fans call it, will show you a different kind of basketball.

The title is translated as ‘The Basketball which Kuroko plays’ because the story is exactly like that. Kuroko is a different kind of protagonist as he doesn’t want to act as the main star in each game. He has his own ways of standing out among the bunch. Unlike what main characters usually thinks, he does not simply be satisfied with being the winner. Of course, he likes to win every match but he wants the sense of unity within the team. Not everyone in the team will shine equally. There is always that one person who stands out among the rest and Kuroko is willing to be the supporting character for that person.

The person whom Kuroko chooses to play alongside him is Kagami Taiga. Kagami is from America and has a raw talent in basketball. He may appear as a self-centered jerk at first. But he recognizes Kuroko’s talent even if that is the only thing Kuroko is good at. In this volume, we see that Kagami wants to take down the Generation of Miracles. We have yet to see if he can do that or will he lose himself in the process?

Other than having unique characters like Kuroko and Taiga, volume 1 introduces us to interesting set of characters. For instance, their female coach who is only a 2nd year student in Seirin and the entire Seirin basketball team members. They make the manga amusing to read with their remarks. You can easily tell that they go along well with each other. I think it’s a good balance to the usually deadpan Kuroko.

The art is pretty decent. I have this love-hate relationship with how the characters are drawn. Actually, it’s more of their eyes. They are a little too sharp for my taste. Then there’s the shading that bothers me at first but it kinda grows on me later. What I liked is the the background. It is pretty and neat so it isn’t confusing during games.

Whether you are a fan of the anime or not, I recommend this series to you. With its interesting story and set of characters, I’m looking forward in reading the next volumes. I’m also interested to get to know this Generation of Miracles since volume 1 presents us with one of them.

Elaine Cepeda