Since its launch back in March, Manga Spice Cafe has brought us an amazing unboxing experience. A “manga cafe in a box” is the perfect term for it, as it delivers a care package full of exciting new manga, Asian snacks and drinks. This month’s box was a suuuuper fun time as we delved into May’s theme of dragons and scaly creatures. Maid Mayumi was our adorable, fun-loving server and you can tell she had a great time pulling together this package. We tried very unusual and colorful snacks, and chuckled at the amusing subject matter of our books. There’s a lot to share here, so let’s dive on into this unboxing!
Maid Mayumi-chan adorns the front cover of our latest booklet, volume 3, and inside you’ll find a plethora of knowledge about all the manga artists for each book we received, plus a couple of fun facts, a showcase section, and an overview of the included snacks and drink items.
Akira Toriyama was our special artist for this month’s showcase, and rightly so as his works have captured the hearts of many worldwide. In the booklet, you can see his amazing ability to create perspective and detail for his characters. You can also see his passion for designing dinosaurs, vehicles, and other mechanical structures. Toriyama is a comic genius, but after working 10+ years with ink, the mangaka has looked to a successor to continue on his work. That man happens to be Toyotarou!
Toyotarou-san is known for his Dragonball spin-offs, his style nearly indistinguishable to Toriyama’s. The info booklet reveals that there is an interview with the two of them in the back of our Dragonball Super manga. Let’s take a look at what Super is all about:
“Having defeated Boo, Goku is starting to get bored with his life on Earth. His wife, Chi-chi, wants him to get a job, but all he wants to do is train and fight stronger enemies. Elsewhere in the universe, the God of Destruction, Beerus, and his attendant Whis are traveling from planet to planet in search of food and entertainment. After blowing up some hapless victims, Beerus is reminded of a man from his dreams with the moniker “Super Saiyan God,” or something like that… The God of Destruction sets his sights on Earth to track down this mysterious man! Maybe this will give Goku something to do?”
We’re not gonna lie, Dragon Ball Super was a pleasure to read. As supervisor for this manga, Toriyama had mentioned that he wanted the story to be simple enough and enjoyable for children to read. But as adults who grew up with Dragonball and Dragonball Z, Super is still a really fun manga to get into, it’s humor and action reminiscent of it predecessors. (And Goku, the main character, is still as dense, happy-go-lucky and eager to fight as ever…) Many of the classic characters are still around and involved in this new saga of the story, which is nice given that the creators could have left them behind at some point. The art style is a perfect copy, the action remains dynamic, the gags are silly yet entertaining, and the plot thickens as the idea of multi-universes is introduced, opening up a multitude of possibilities for the Dragonball series to run with. We give this an A+!
We enjoyed this manga with a yummy box of cookie and cream pocky, alongside a collectible Dragonball Z version of Ramune! Sooo good!
Dragon Ball Super, dubbed, is currently airing on TV and subbed and dubbed are streaming online!
Sticking to our scaly creature theme, next we have Rei Toma’s The Water Dragon’s Bride. Let’s take a quick look at the story:
“In the blink of an eye, a modern-day girl named Asahi is whisked away from her warm and happy home and stranded in a strange and mysterious world where she is sacrificed to a water dragon god! What plans are in store for her, and what will happen when she comes face to face with this god?
A young boy named Subaru comes to Asahi’s aid, but despite his help, Asahi must endure a test of survival! Will she be able to make it out alive, or will she end up being sacrificed?”
Rei Toma has a reputation lately for creating fantasy works such as Dawn of the Arcana. The Water Dragon’s Bride is no exception. It takes place in an ancient Kofun period-like Japan-styled world where our protagonist wakes up after being swallowed by a pool of water outside her family home. This story was surprisingly dark given the soft, simplistic shojo style used. There was also a lot of blank white space for background, which we’re not quite sure if it was a stylistic choice or if the mangaka was cutting corners to get the work done. Either way, the further on we read, the more this worked for the story and it forced us to focus on the characters and their expressions. The Water Dragon’s Bride was an emotional read and worth a try. Looking forward to pouring over the next book.
We paired this read up with Nongshim’s lightly flavored Honey & Apple Twist Snack. Also what came in the box was a combination of Nobel Fizzy Candies. When they start to dissovle in your mouth, the Chibi Soda candies release a sweet, fruity and fizzy sensation in the mouth. (Makes us feel like we’re underwater too!) Super Cola candies, on the other hand, are extremely sour and make you pucker like crazy. Eventually the strong lemon flavor cools down into a cola flavored fizzle.
Volume 2 of The Water Dragon’s Bride comes out July 4th 2017!
My Girlfriend is a T-Rex – just the idea of it, let alone the name, is hard to imagine! This is one story that you know has got to be too ridiculous not to read! Here’s the summary:
“In a world where humans live side-by-side with anthropomorphic dinosaurs, Yuuma Asahikawa is a young man looking for a fresh start in life. It’s a classic case of “be careful what you wish for” when Yuuma begins dating Churio–a gorgeous Tyrannosaurus Rex with a ferocious appetite.
Follow the ups and downs of Yuuma and Churio’s bizarre romance as they spend their daily lives together. As Churio’s vicious claws, reptilian tail, and razor sharp teeth hinder even the simplest of activities together, will Yuuma, let alone their relationship, survive?”
My Girlfriend is a T-Rex is Sanzo’s very first manga and it’s a hilarious ride. He’s a huge fan of monster girls, if you haven’t noticed. And there are plenty of them walking around among humans in this bizarre slice of a story. Speaking of which, there isn’t much of a story. More like a number of short gags that show instances in the lives of these cretaceous females and their male suitors. Despite this, the manga never gets boring and happens to be funny all the way through. Sanzo’s style may be simple, but his best work is in the humor. We definitely recommend this book!
Alongside this manga, we snacked on baked potato Yegam chips and limited edition Puccho soft candy chews. There were 4 flavors, Blueberry, Ramune Soda, Grape, and White Soda. It’s a weird little candy, a white taffy like chew with really gummy bits in the center. Super super chewy!
Volume 2 of My Girlfriend is a T-Rex is currently available as of January 2017!
May’s box, all in all, was a real treat to unbox! For a manga subscription box service, it really is a great experience. If you’re interested in grabbing a Manga Spice Cafe box for yourself, come on over to their website at mangaspicecafe.com and subscribe now!