black torch, volume 1 cover
© Takaki Tsuyoshi
General Information</>
Original Title BLACK TORCH
Mangaka Takaki Tsuyoshi
Status Complete
Genre Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Shounen, supernatural
Chapter 19
Volume</td/ 5
Original Run 9 avril 2017 – 3 août 2018


As a descendant of shinobi, Jirou Azuma has been learning ninja techniques his entire life. But in addition to that, he also has the ability to talk to animals. One day when he rescues a strange black cat named Ragou, he learns that the world is filled with spirits called mononoke that can take the form of both people and animals. However, their meeting is cut short when they are attacked by a hostile mononoke who is after Ragou’s power.

Black Torch
© Takaki Tsuyoshi

After some months of waiting, I finally got my hand on the two last volumes of Black Torch. I found the volume 5 in the bookstore but I had to order volume 4. Now that I read them and finish the series, I can pretend to give you a decent review. A lot of the thing that I said in my first impression post are still true, don’t worry if you haven’t read it, I will bring back some of the point I talked about and see if they are still relevant.

The story is written on 767 page divided in nineteen chapter and five volume, during that course of 767 pages a lot of thing happened, like a shit load of thing and some of those moment could have be extended a little .

One of the point I talked about is how fast pace it was and this point is still there in the last two follow (at least the author was consistent with that) there is some key moment like Jirou training to control Ragou power could have be handled better, we didn’t really see any of it, we see when it’s start and when it’s end and the “result”, but nothing in between. I think it would have be interesting to see more of Jirou training, instead the author decide to show us what is going on with the other. I don’t mind, I just think they could have show us the training and then go back in time and tell us what happened meanwhile. This is just one example among other of how the story was written. A lot of key moment but not of them was exploited at their fullest, and I have that strange feeling the ending was a bit rushed. The final battle hold in one chapter, I would have expect thing a bit more big for that final one to be honest.

black torch - Ragou and Amagi
© Takaki Tsuyoshi

Another point that I mentioned in the first impression is the lack of originality of the villain, we saw is main goal, ruling over the human and be the most powerful Mononoke (can be replace by Yokai, demon, ex), countless time it’s nothing new. Now if his goal suck, the character himself is interesting. Amagi is somehow handsome and sophisticate, he have a lot of charisma, they give the character that have a lot of trait that could have made him a great antagonist if it wasn’t of his generic goal. I would have really seeing his character explorer more than the flashback we were given.. The same apply at what I will call the mini boss, they are, or more could be, interesting but since everything was a bit rush we don’t see more of them. Mainly Koga, we have more info at the end of the last volume, in the note and with what I read, the story could have continue for some more volume. There is so many loose end that could have be tied up, but nope let’s just talk about it once in the story for then completing them with some note in the final volume. I personally think it would be better if those note woulds have be use to give a more proper end to the story of each character.

I also talked about the generic main characters, that two boy (Jirou, Reiji) one girl (Ichika) team, we can’t do much about that. Black Torch is flirting dangerously with the Battle Shounen line so it’s not a big surprise to see that kind of character.

I know that I still sound like I didn’t like the story, but between you and me, do you really think I would have finished that series if I didn’t enjoyed it? Yes the series have more flaws that qualities, there is a lot of moment that could have be written differently, the author could have pass more time on them. However despite all that, I still enjoyed it. Jirou is a good boy, really good boy and his relation with Ragou, who is contended for the spot of best animal in a anime/manga series, is funny and charming. Despite everything Ragou could have said, he still care about the young man and the opposite is also true. They cared of each other and that why Jirou was ready to put his life in danger to save Ragou (okay maybe the fact that he also have stop Amagi have something to do with that). And we have some strong intendant female character, like Ichika and Toko Kusumi (that one gave me an Olivier Armstrong vibe). I have to say that I was quite happy when I saw Ichika not falling for Jiro or Reiji we saw that too often it was a nice change.

black torch Ragou and Koga
© Takaki Tsuyoshi

In the end enjoyed the story, Ragou, Jirou and Amagi (despite having a boring goal) made it interesting enough for me to continue it, plus I could see more of Koga who is a precious moron (really similar to Jirou know that I think about it.

Just want to give a quick thought about the visual before wrapping this post.

I was quite pleased with the visual, while the line wasn’t always sharp and a bit sketchy in place but I really didn’t mind it. I really like the character design that really go with their personality.

Now the important question would I suggest this series? Only if you don’t mind generic shonen series that lack of depth and if you want to read a series if one of the most interesting cat with awesome facial expression, I would take a series on Jirou and Ragou daily life…

Did you read the series? Are you planning to read it ? Let me know in the comment below!

~ Thank you for reading ~

black torch - Ragou
© Takaki Tsuyoshi


3 thoughts on “[Manga] Black Torch

  1. Yay! So, I’ve heard more people comment on the fast pacing, especially at the end. Can it be that the series was cancelled? Someone had that theory. It’s a shame if that’s the case. I have the first three volumes but haven’t read them yet. I figured I should wait until I had them all, seeing as it only is five. I only bought them on a whim because shiny covers and a cat. i love cats. So, going after your review it’s a win for me. 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I also heard about the series being cancel which is a shame cause the series have some potential. There is a lot of stuff left in the shadow that could have bring more to the manga.
      If you like cat, you gonna love the series Ragou is everything.


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