Sunday, July 15, 2012

HERO Chapter 4

Chapter 4 of Hero - Gyakkyou no Tohai is now up and ready for viewing! In this chapter, Hiroyuki explains last chapter's strategy and the final hanchan begins! Thanks to Biggums for the excellent cleaning, and to Kazuhiko for the quick, accurate typesetting!

"All four players are fighting to come out on top!! It's a battle royale!!"
Well, once again Hiro has displayed his incredible abilities of observation, not only deducing that the 8-sou was also one of the candidates for the rotating tile, but also that Ten knew where all of the 4-pin were by the way he discarded the 3-pin, and thus, that his next draw had to be 8-sou. And on top of THAT, he managed to figure out that Ten would think that he would think that the next draw was a 4-pin based on past experiences alone, and would thus riichi, giving him an extra boost of 1000 points, in order to prey upon the 8-sou that he would draw. Sheer genius.

Interestingly, the first chapter of Ten is flashed back to in this chapter, and it kind of seems rewritten to make Ten seem more like the calm, stoic character he is now, even though he was crazy and all over the place when we first saw him. It kind of makes you think the change was something of a retcon rather than character development, but I suppose you might interpret that the Ten of earlier chapters was merely feigning stupidity.

Since the rest of the chapter is metaphors and stuff that will be expanded upon in later chapters, et me take a moment to compare a panel of Hero that struck me as quite similar to FKMT's style, next to the panel it was based off in Ten:

The Ten version certainly uses more shading and looks different enough to be distinctively Fukumoto's style, but Maeda's version could very easily pass for a Fukumoto drawing in his earlier years as a mangaka. It's just a quick one-off drawing, but I think this demonstrates what I was saying in the blog post for the first chapter: this art style is something of a fusion between Fukumoto's style and a more traditional one. When no features are changed at all about the character, such as with Harada and Akagi, you can compare the two and pick out the FKMT-made one in an instant, but you might not be able to tell so easily without the FKMT version to reference it that it was actually drawn by Maeda. Just a thought.

Oh, and please please please remember that Mahjong Day is on Saturday at 23:00 GMT. Only 4 people showed last time, and many people came late, having forgotten it. Be there!!


  1. Just awesome. I think Hiroyuki is one of Fukumoto's best characters, he's really easy to sympathise with.

  2. rahh I hate the ancient work of fukumoto.
    It's not well paint. it's sometimes just gly, we can't compare with all his works since 2000.
    I have never read Ten cause of this.
    RAHHHHHH i can't wait the return of akagi

    1. If you can't take a few awkward drawings, Fukumoto's works might not be for you. No offense.

      Also, Ten's art changed a bit with every volume. It was publishing for 13 years after all.

    2. Maybe maybe.
      But even the plot, i did'nt understant where he wanted to go in this work (the first or two first volume).
      Akagi, kaiji,buraiden gai and zero are awesome.
      You know, the drawing on a full page, the metaphors, the glances and like I just say even the spirit.
      I don't know I think this prove that fukumoto has evolued with the time.

      ..AND I DON'T WANT TO SEE THE DEATH OF MY HERO !!! (I reny totally ten cause of this lol.. akagi shigeru ? dying ? lol this must be a joke)

  3. Ten was kinda hard to read, It was slow at the beginning, but that East-West battle has really hooked me up at the end... I can't agree with Yukio thought, Hiroyouki is the most boring protagonist I have ever seen in Fukumoto manga... Imho.. Bookworm who achieves great skill of playing throught hard work, that just is not very intertaining.. 2Kassim Papa, BUT! Akagi died undefeated in the end... such an awesome charachter, his determination to take his own life while he was still sane gave me chills! maybe You should give Ten another try : )

    1. He might not be "entertaining" but that's what makes him easy to identify with, for me at least. Despite trying his best to keep up with the real geniuses such as Akagi and Ten, Hiro always ends up one or two steps behind them and starts feeling inferior as a result. This 24-hour game is personal to him because it's a test to see if he can overcome the depression holding him back.