Astro Boy Volume 1by Osamu Tezuka
Created by the late Osamu Tezuka, a revered animator and cartoonist - creating over 150,000 pages of comics in his career! - and considered the Walt Disney of Japan, his Astro Boy was the first manga series to be adapted to animation and became a worldwide phenomenon, making Astro Boy the Mickey Mouse of anime - a jet-powered, super-strong, evil-robot-bashing, alien-invasion-smashing Mickey Mouse, that is! Exciting, whimsical, and touching, ASTRO BOY hearkens back to the classic era of comics and animation, featuring stories that readers young and old will enjoy. Don't miss the opportunity to experience this landmark series, never before available in America, each volume featuring over 200 pages in an affordable and convenient pocket-sized format as currently collected in Japan!
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The title of this review, of course, refers to both the actual book in question and the tiny hero whose amazing story is outlined within. Until recently, I knew basically nothing about Astro Boy, but was intrigued enough by the sheer idea - a 10,000-horsepower fighting robot in the form of an eight-year-old boy - that I couldn't refuse. Not following a traditional first-to-last format, this first book in the US-market Astro Boy series starts with a retelling of AB's origin as written in the 1970s, and continues with AB's liberation of the Hot Dog Soldiers (that sounds stupid, I know, but it's great). You really get a feel for what Japanese comics were like in the early days - as compared to the slick volumes turned out today - and this set of stories leaves you captivated and ready for more. Thanks to Dark Horse for bringing these deservedly classic tales to the States, and thanks to the late Mr. Tezuka for crafting them in the first place.