American manga has a negative reputation even though some comic writers keep coming up with them. There are some that, if you put your prejudices aside, are actually worth reading. One of these examples is “Her Impact” written by Mikel Miles and artists Digitkame and Sukma Agustriyana.
Sadie Hiroshi, an African-Japanese, is the daughter of Kazuki Hiroshi, one of the greatest boxers Japan has ever seen, is just living a normal life as a single mother. One day a chance encounter makes her go back to her boxing roots.
This comic has been labeled as a “demo,” which could mean that this isn’t final (weird.) Anyway, it’s interesting for what it’s worth. Sadie is an interesting enough character that it makes the reader want to see where the story goes. However, it does need more meat to it or else this will just be another generic story about an offspring trying to be like their famous parent and training to do just that.
It is nice that the character is a single mom and not a teenager or an adult in their early 20s like a lot of manga out there, but the creators do need to fit that into the narrative and not just leave it at that. Also, the creators make a big deal that she is half-Japanese and so far, that hasn’t been used in the plot even though they do stick out like a sore thumb and experience a ton of racism in Japan.
Speaking of Japan, there are a few nitpicks here. One is how does somebody who apparently has lived in Japan for years not know which direction Japanese is read? Also, since this is marketed as a manga, why is it formatted like a western comic?
At least the artists have a clear idea of how a manga should look and have the talent to make it look nice. Sadie has a great look that doesn’t look like the cliché dark-skinned character that’s been around for decades. One of the best things is she is one of the few female dark-skinned characters in manga who is not a blonde. Seriously, why does every single dark-skinned female character in manga have to be a blonde?
“Her Impact” may need some work, but with an interesting character and nice art, it does get the reader wanting to see the non-demo version of the manga and where it goes.
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