Greetings! I´m ShadowHaken, and welcome to another article where I’ll be talking about the latest anime/manga that I´m reading or watching.
Disclaimer: English is not my native language, so I apologize in advance for anything that is badly written or completely incomprehensible.
You can check the past entry Here.
Chapter 5: The Man from Death
The chapter starts in a war zone, a group of soldiers enter into a devastated city left for the conflict; a curious butterfly flew on that hell on earth while the soldiers explored; one of the soldiers, L.T. Aragaki went to a nearby building and starts exploring, he looks the hubris and a lot of bodies; soon enough he sees that what it looked to be a woman she was holding what seemed to be a baby, the soldier quickly goes to check the well being of the new born, he turns out the body of the holder and in horror he see that what looked like a baby was in truth a bomb; Aragaki tries to escape but it´s too late; the bomb has exploded.
In the present, Aragaki is in a bench with Nanbu; both of them start talking about the past, Nanbu is pleased to see that Aragaki is alive and well, so much that he starts crying; also he apologizes for not doing much to avoid that he goes to war, Aragaki says that wasn´t his fault, he was called to duty and he attended the call; plus if he survived it was thanks to what Nanbu taught him anyway… Still, before leaving Aragaki says that he asked for him just for one reason… To completely destroy his new protégée…
Later Pops, JD and Sachio are in the house; Joe is angry because it looks like his Manager wants to stop the fight, Nanbu says that is not the case, it is just a possibility; still Junk Dog doesn´t understand and says that this fight is their ticket to make it big! Still Nanbu says that the thing is that he is not sure that Joe could win, not like he is right now… Sachio then start checking on Aragaki and has found that he is a Megaloboxer who lost his 2 legs on the war, he was Missing in Action and was found a year later; still when he was on his prime he make it big on this sport, and right now, even if he lacks some members of his body, he has aimed to be quite above the ranks; they see some videos of him training (and his trainer looks like Mickey from Rocky) and on his matched and well… It ain´t pretty how their opponents leave the match.
Still Joe is ready to fight and he alongside Nanbu goes to train; Pops knows that JD punches like a truck; but he still hasn´t managed his “sweet spot” the exact distance where his punches gives the maximum impact.
The next day Joe has finished his morning stroll and is having breakfast with Sachio, they talk about stuff including in how Sachio needs to exercise once in a while and stuff; still they see Aragaki´s background and yeah, the pictures of how his opponents finished are ugly.
A memory… one of a young Aragaki seeing a photo with Nanbu, he is in the bus ready to fight for his country in the war; meanwhile a younger Nanbu is on his gym, seeing with frustration on his eyes the boxing gloves.
Back in the present, Nanbu has reached the Veteran center, he can see someone getting on an ambulance and how other speak that the guy is still alive, so they will go to the hospital to see him before the family comes; after that Pops start talking with Aragaki´s Trainer in the graveyard, the old veteran speaks about how most of those graves are filled with people who took their own lives in desperation, the images of the war where too much for them so even if the violence had finished in the real world, in their head it was still hell.
In the case of Aragaki, he was no different than those, he loss everything in the war, his body and mind, still… He survived because in his hearth he felt that he had someone waiting for him… Nanbu; but in the end not even that happened. Pops tries to excuse himself saying that he thought he was dead, Aragaki´s trainer just says that indeed he was left for death; but why didn´t Nnabu tried to know the truth or investigate a little if they were so close? Just some official report was all that it took for him to do nothing? In the end he says that Aragaki´s doesn´t want to speak with him anymore… Before leaving, Nanbu just gives the message that Aragaki can hate him as much as he wants; but please…he must not bring those feelings to the match.
After that Aragaki´s trainer ask him why he wants to fight someone like Joe who is not in the top 100? If he wants to go to Megalonia, he should be aiming higher; Aragaki says that he wants to fight him because if he defeat the “Gearless” Joe, he will get the attention and more sponsors, which will mean more money; still, the conversation continues and his Trainer says that they aren´t doing this because of that and he knows it; in the end it is because he is just jealous of the new protégée of that old man, that he has the place that for right belongs to him…Aragaki says that he has his own reasons on why he does what he does, and go back to his training.
A memory… a damaged Aragaki, with just 2 stumps for legs is holding a gun on his mouth, he has lost all the reason to live, and he has nothing on this world and tries to finish his life still… In the end, he can´t do it, and starts crying while he sees a ticket of a dog race bet.
After that he goes to see Nanbu´s gym, the place looks abandoned, still he tries to open the door; but it´s locked, he sees in the window and remember the words of Nanbu… That this was his home and he will always be welcomed in it; Aragaki put his head on the crystal for both desperation and sadness… Today that building doesn´t even exist anymore.
Back in the present, Joe has found Argaki in front of a basketball field; meanwhile Pops has come back and Sachio has detected some things about Aragaki, weaknesses; since his gear is light weight plus his age it could mean he has low stamina; still Nanbu gives counterpoints, so many that Sachio ask him in what side is he on?! Also he should have detected that a student of his was on this sport to begin with! Ina ny case Pops drinks water and goes out.
On his truck, Pops starts talking to a higher Divinity represented in the cross, he feels lost and he knows he wronged him, in his hour of necessity he decided to just forget about him just because it was convenient, so he knows that is no wonder why the hate; but still…
Back with Joe, Aragaki is saying that the Nanbu he knew would have never used a gimmick like a “Gearless” fighter, he is disappointed… Joe says that he thinks the same, still those kind of bluffs aren´t so bad in the end; Aragaki ask him if he trust him? Joe just says that he believes in him, so he does the same, quit simple; still Aragaki responds by saying that Nanbu has a tendency on betray the people that trust him, so he hopes that never happens to him… Joe then just ask him if he blames Pops for what happened to his legs? He continues saying that Pops has his life and he has his; but in the end… the choices one makes are yours only and no one else… the chat ends with Joe telling him that if he wants to destroy him.. He will be waiting for him; but don´t expect it to be a walk in the park.
The night comes and Joe is training; Pops is telling him his weak points and how he has to do this if he wants to win; JD stops and ask him if he still believes that he can´t win against Aragaki? Because the Pops he knows will tell him he has chances to win, even if it was a lie… He has changed since in the underground he never give a damn about him; Nanbu says that he still doesn´t give a damn… After that the training continues.
Aragaki is reviving his memory of the fateful day when he lost his legs, he sees the bomb and tries to escape; but someone is holding him, Nanbu, who smiles with malevolent eyes… The bomb explodes ad Aragaki wakes up, it was all a dream… In reality they are a few minutes before the fight; meanwhile Joe is preparing himself and Sachio enters saying that the place is packed… Still Pops is not with them.
Back with Aragaki, Nanbu has encountered him and his team, he wants to ask him something… He says that indeed he ran away when the things went south, so he can hate him as much as he wants; but please, he must not hate Joe because of it… Aragaki just saw him and continued his path.
Both combatants are in the ring and both of them have their own following who wants to see them win!
In Pops head, the memory of the time when he get the notice of Aragaki´s death comes to mind, he didn´t took it well, he couldn´t believe such thing.
The match starts and both fighters looks on equal on the first seconds; still little time passed and is obvious that Argaki is superior, he blocks and avoids all the atatcks that JD throws at thim while his punches to the face comes clean to our Hero. In the end he is able to give him a powerful attack that Joe´s teeth protector comes out with blood… The counting continues and gets to 9 while Aragaki smiles…
End of the Chapter
An Excellent chapter! A very good pacing with a lot of deep and strong moments that makes you understand Aragaki and the way he is right now! Seriously this chapter, while it didn´t had a lot of fight it was still incredible good and I´m sure that when we get to see the actual fight between Joe and Aragaki is going to be amazing! Mostly since the little part that we saw was just to get us hyped and amazed at Aragaki´s powers on Megalo boxing!
Now as I have said in the past paragraph, this chapter made us understand Aragaki and his whole story in just a few minutes, something truly amazing; still it also showed us the other side of the coin and even in waay less time, and it´s with Nanbu, how he took the whole grieving process and when Aragaki was called death in the war, he didn´t take things well, heck that might as well be the reason why he ended up in the slums and with someone like JD as his protégée, just trying to get a little money and nothing more.
Now the little we saw from the fight was truly good and it made me wish to see more! So next week I will most likely will have my eyes glued on that fight that it promises to be amazing!
Finally and a little in the light side of things, Aragaki´s new Coach looks awfully close to Mickey from Rocky! Don´t you think?
Anyway my two cents. See ya Next time!