I highly recommend you pick up To Your Eternity if you’ve ever liked a heartfelt and meaningful story. This story runs deeper than most, tugging at the deeper meaning of being alive and why we are here. It does this via a character who isn’t human but is trying to be. In this eighth volume religion has sprouted around the myth that is the protagonist named Fushi.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
While traveling with the Guardians, Fushi is captured by Prince Bon, a man who can see the dead. Soon after, Fushi and Prince Bon embark on a journey to provide aid to the people of the land, as well as protection from Nokkers. But before long, they are faced with a force that considers Fushi’s very existence to be heresy.
Why does this matter?
This series is playing a long game, opening with Fushi discovering a boy and meeting new characters along the way, all of whom he can turn into on a whim. If he touches you and you die he can then transform into you. New rules are introduced in this latest volume, and the very strange prince on the cover proves to be another magical character.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This volume plays out a new narrative thanks to the prince character named Bonchien Nicoli la Tasty Peach Uralis. The name is about as flamboyant as the character, who we learn takes Fushi under his wing to gain favor with his father. He wants to be king, but he’s not the father’s first choice. This drives the narrative due to Uralis being a super nice dude. He likes helping others and uses Fushi to show the world Fushi is good. Problem is, a religion has sprouted up over the years Fushi has existed that has deemed him a devil. As the story progresses Uralis’ scheming to gain favor gets them in a lot of trouble and Fushi is tested beyond his limits.
One of the most intriguing elements of this volume is how complex Uralis is, though he comes off as a cliche at first. He seems to be comic relief, but over the volume you realize he actually has a heart, conscience, and good intentions. Yoshitoki Oima will make you want more of Uralis in volume nine, which is a testament to this series which has produced well over five characters you’ve grown to love up to this point. Uralis also introduces a second super-powered character. I won’t spoil it, but it jives well with Fushi’s powers and is a nice compliment to the mystical element of Fushi, who has been the only supernatural element up until this point.
The art continues to be stellar. Highly detailed environments, expressive characters (straight out of an anime at times), and good looking Fushi powers are on display.
It can’t be perfect, can it?
I was a bit let down at one point when one of Uralis’ helpers turns out to be in love with him. The helper is a male character and at one point a friend to Fushi, Kahaku, explains to Fushi that men can love men. At this point in Fushi’s story, he doesn’t know much about love in any form but he does know friendship. There’s an interesting lesson made about two strangers becoming close even though they never see each other. This is relatable to Fushi and is called back later in the story. There’s a deeper meaning translated here and it’s nice to see a progressive story, especially in manga. Unfortunately, the story pulls a twist in a later chapter negating the same-sex relationship. I won’t spoil it, but it reads as if Oima wanted to steer away from anything queer and make it heterosexual. I’d much rather this element had not been introduced at all, especially with some of the characters’ emphatic “But I’m not ‘that way’ so you know” statements.
Is it good?
A good volume that continues to add to Fushi’s epic journey while developing the deeper meaning between the characters. The supernatural elements continue to evolve and grow to make this a manga series that is highly rewarding.