Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer, Vols. 7-8

By Satoshi Mizukami. Released in Japan by Shonen Gahosha, serialized in the magazine Young King Ours. Released in North America by Seven Seas.

Akane is the one Beast Knight we’ve never really focused on, so it makes sense that he gets a lot to do in this new omnibus. As we expected, he’s introverted, sullen, and insular due to a poor home life. As is perhaps less expected, he’s also siding with the enemy, though as the book goes on it becomes clear that this isn’t really due to anything but misplaced anger, and that when genuine heroism and compassion are shown to him, he can’t find it in himself to keep up the facade. Like all the other characters in the series, time is taken to explore him in depth, and it’s worth it. Though we still remain puzzled as to what Animus and Anima are doing – are they enemies, rivals, relatives? Is Animus even trying to win? Is Anima even trying to fight? Or does she just love food?

lucifer7-8

Despite one of the most obvious couples in the series being torpedoed in the last omnibus by virtue of death, these are still mostly teenagers and young adults, so love still drives a lot of the plot. I’ll leave Yuuhi aside for now, but there’s also Yuki and Subaru, who are the two nicest, most innocent characters in the series, so get the most selfless wishes in exchange for becoming knights. Yes, OK, it’s not going in a romantic direction (Subaru’s crush on Mikazuki is so obvious it can be seen from space), but their friendship is amazing when you’re in a series that’s playing with cynicism like this one does.

That brings me to Yuuji. He’s the main character, and thus gets the bulk of the character progression. We see his desire to grow stronger in order to fight by Samidare’s side. But we also see how he uses that strength to grow emotionally as well. The death of his grandfather, after all that he did in order to prevent it at the start, is a shocker, though honestly its the lizard that shows all the outrage that Yuuhi won’t. Anima, though, allows him to achieve closure, both with his grandfather (who let’s remember abused him horribly as a child, something I think might be a bit glossed over here), and with Hangetsu, whose death Yuuhi also needs to move past.

So now that we’ve seen all this, the question remains: are he and Samidare still going to destroy the world? I think the other knights would have something to say about that, particularly Yayoi. And honestly, Samidare needs a bit more development before I can say whether or not she will. But with the final omnibus coming soon, I don’t think Yuuhi is going to be helping her anymore – though that may come as a surprise to him. We’ll see how it wraps up, but I want to say again how much I’ve enjoyed this poor-selling series, and I wish it did better.

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Comments

  1. It’s not selling well? A shame, I thought it was really popular with scanlations back before it was licensed (I remember hearing rumors that the scans were so popular that it wouldn’t be profitable to license, not sure how true it is though, ditto with Franken Fran and scans), but I’m certainly buying it, though I’m behind on reading it.


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