Author:TACHIBANA Mizuki and SAKURA Rinko
Wings Comics, 1999
Summary by Rurichan
There is so much to talk about Diamond Century (by Mizuki Tachibana and Rinko Sakura.) Its like eye candy in manga form! So, I might as well start at the beginning.
The story begins with Jin Kudoh leaving Japan to attend a prestigious school named Diamond Century (DC). DC’s campus is similar to Clamp’s campus. First of all its huge, a circle with the streets creating a diamond pattern, and six diamond peninsulas, because its so large it has a bank, stores, and streets. The campus is split up in the cardinal directions of North, South, East, and West.
Because Diamond Century is an international school where English is the main language. Jin has a hard time trying to find the East campus while speaking English to students and apologizing in Japanese. Along the way he runs into Guy Garnet, who speaks Japanese much to Jin’s relief.
I appreciate attention to detail, especially in a manga that is set in the near future because it makes the story and the characters so much more enjoyable. Diamond Century was that kind of manga. At first, it was an “ooo nice cover” manga, but the characters, plot, and attention to detail made it a keeper. I would highly suggest it to anybody who is interested in pretty bishonen boys and a sprinkle of shounen ai. ^^
The artists of the manga put a lot of thought into the character designs and the futuristic setting (DC is set in 2001) from their cellular phones, computers the size of palm pilots, even the design of the students’ desks.
Another great element is the random English. This manga is about 10% English, so much English that the manga has its own language advisor. There is a great word play on the words ‘bad man’ and ‘Batman’ where Jin accuses Guy of being a ‘badman’ but Guy understood it as ‘Batman.’
The story establishes quickly that Guy and Jin will get into many adventures together. At the end of the first volume Jin gets involved in a bank robbery and is kidnapped by the thieves (wearing Storm Troopers and Star Trek masks). Guy does some amazing detective work and sets out to save Jin. Guy is a character that seems to need Jin, and Jin needs Guy to show him the ropes around DC.
The plot also adds interesting tidbits about the Jin, Guy, the DC administration staff, and their futures, especially Jin and Guy’s. Why did Jin dream about Guy at the beginning of the manga? Why is Guy important and popular on campus? Who is Guy? Why can’t he sleep? Will the students at DC ever go through a normal day of class?! (Does any manga character go through a full normal day of class?)
Currently there are four volumes of Diamond Century out and its published by Wings. The story, the characters, detail, and random English are what makes this manga a keeper. Not to mention the shounen ai tension between Jin and Guy that I hope develops further.