“A Thousand Pieces” – Broken (OEL) – 5/10 Streamers

Mangaka: SteeKira

Genre: Fantasy/Drama/Christian

Review Status: Complete (1 Volume/1 Volume)

Licensed: Yes, this OEL is licensed in the US. It can be read online here and is also available to purchase on Indyplanet and Comicsmonkey

Art: This is pretty average art for a doujin, a light sketch-like feel with a great surreal quality to a the pictures. I do like it, since care has been taken to do good perspective and backgrounds.

Summary: A girl finds herself lost in the woods, and a stranger comes walking by, offering some comfort and an ear to talk to…

Review: I have to admit, there are some things that I’m not expecting when I come across a Christian story. The surrealness of this is one thing- it gives off an eerie vibe from page one. Why the girl is in the woods is a fascinating mystery, as is the odd man that comes walking by. It really gives a good, solid start. And things keep rolling as the girl reveals where they are, exactly, and what’s troubling her.

And that’s where my feelings get really mixed up. This is a comic made for Christians, a ‘comfort manga’ if you will, that reassures that God is there and that He loves you. That is the only thing that this could ever serve as. It tackles the idea of God hurting like we do and still loving us in a very simple, two-part message. It’s obvious that the girl in the story is already Christian, because this is accepted point-blank, no questions asked or issues with the comparisons.

I, however, am bothered by this. Very simply, the comparison of God’s love for humans is not anywhere on the same scale as a broken heart- for the very simple reason that they are two completely different kinds of love. Romantic love is not selfless love, and that means that instead of seeming like something to sympathize with, this seems like a huge, blatant, uninspired GOD LOVES YOU insertion just to emphasize that this is a Christian manga. It makes the loveliness of everything else just seem wasted. And it doesn’t really solve her problem, either- it seems very much a cop-out for practical advice. An insertion of a generic message of God’s love doesn’t make up for that on any level. I can’t even begin to express how saddened I am that everything that could have made this a heck of a lot more worthwhile is missing.

Overall, while there are worse I’ve read, this still manages to come across as generic.

Recommended: Only if you’re Christian and don’t have all of your friends and family telling you that GOD LOVES YOU. However, I know how often people hear that message, so it seems highly unlikely you’d ever need this on top of it.

Other titles you might enjoy:

I don’t have anything. I am too sad from reading this and being so disappointed by it. For what’s supposed to be an uplifting message, it didn’t help me out in this situation.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Gnostic Haruhism, Buddhist Church of Madoka, and an Animevangelist «
  2. Steekira
    Feb 25, 2012 @ 04:02:46

    Actually, I always felt like that all forms of love are selfless. :/ Love isn’t selfish, we humans make it that way.
    Anyway, I’m not gonna take what you said personally, I know I tend to do that too much. You sounded a bit hurt in your review, like my comic/manga/whatever striked you personally. 😦 It’s not my business to pry, but I understand where you’re coming from.
    I know not everyone is going to like what I make, and I realize that. I just feel a bit bad that something I made got you to react to negatively. I guess I just let all the positive feedback I got from it go to my head. But that’s okay.
    I honestly wasn’t trying to give that preachy “GOD LOVES YOU” message at all, which is why I avoided using the words God or Jesus at all. I sort of wanted it to be free to interpretation, but being a Christian myself my Christian values tend to show in my work. I can’t help it, and I know not everyone is gonna like that. The MAIN point was, to me, was to have a message more open to interpretation. Personally I wanted to emphasize and focus more on “To feel is a gift”….but like I said it’s open to interpretation so I apologize if my manga/comic/whatever came off as preachy to you. I don’t hold it against you, and I’m certainly not mad at you for expressing your opinion.
    I’m glad you took time to read it at least. 🙂 Even if you didn’t enjoy it so much, it’s nice to hear feedback of any kind so I can improve.

    Reply

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