“You Can’t Return To The Past” – Return to the Labyrinth (OEL) – 6/10 Pumpkin Pies


No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path. ~Buddha

Mangaka: Jake T. Forbes

Genre: Adventure/Drama/Fantasy

Review Status: Complete (4 Volumes/4 Volumes)

Licensed: Unlicensed, formerly published by Tokyopop.

Art: This looks like a comic book rather than a manga. Occasionally the characters can look… off. Generally, it looks just fine, though.

Summary: 13 years after the events of the movie ‘Labyrinth’, Jareth is in need of a successor- and has chosen Toby! Stolen away to the Labyrinth, he must decide if he will take the crown, and Jared will once again try to win the woman he loves.

Review: I’m not sure whether my fondness for the movie makes me like this more, or makes me dislike it more. On one hand, all the characters that you loved are back! For brief cameos where they are utterly useless and might as well not exist. The romance between Jareth and Sarah? Almost non-existent. It is there, all right, but it’s a side story to what’s happening with Toby, and not really what fans are looking for.

I did like how this went more into the labyrinth, why it exists and the lands that surround it. There is no real depth to this, though, other than the small mentions of these lands, giving intriguing hints to how the labyrinth fits in. On the other hand, it disappoints in many ways, leaving questions unanswered as to why he left one woman and desired Sarah to begin with.

Many things rely on Deus Ex Machina in order to work, leaving character useless in the grand scheme of things, focusing on the person that we couldn’t care less about (he’s a bishie, but that’s all that’s in his favor), and plot threads go totally unanswered. One character and *major* plot thread all in one completely is forgotten about in the end so that some important moralizing can be tossed at the reader.

While it’s an interesting, more in-depth look at the world of the labyrinth, the story is completely lacking. As a Labyrinth fan, I am disappoint.

Overall, It was nice, but I’d suggest reading fanfiction instead if you’re looking for a romance fix.

Recommended: 10+. This could perhaps be lowered. If your kid is watching the movie, they can read this manga.

Other titles you might enjoy:
Alice in the Country of Hearts (manga)
Are You Alice? (manga)
Pandora Hearts (manga)
Karneval (manga)

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