Kino’s Journey: The Beautiful World
Vertical Comics (2019)
originally published by Kodansha Ltd (2017)
“Three Men Along The Tracks On The Rails”
WRITER: Keiichi Sigsawa
CHARACTER DESIGN: Kouhaku Kuroboshi
I don’t know much about this series so I don’t know where Iruka Shiomiya comes into play.
TRANSLATION: Jenny McKeon
PRODUCTION: Grace Lu & Anthony Quintessenza
Kino travels the world that isn’t ours on his talking motorcycle/motorad Hermes. They never stay in one place more than three days, learning about the strange lands they come across. In this tale they follow a series of railroad tracks and come across three men across three days. One is clearing the grass and weeds from the tracks, the second taking the tracks up, and the third laying them back down. All were hired by the railroad company, all have different families to take care of that they haven’t seen since they were teenagers, and apparently nobody told either of them to stop or about the other two. This is the kind of thing Kino and Hermes run into all the time.
Original Twitter Review: Not an easy one to give a quick Twitter review for but I’m planning on doing full reviews for the next few Saturdays. Saw the SF Debris anime reviews, decided to check the manga. It’s certainly food for thought. If you like the anime, check the manga.
That’s the only way I know this series as I haven’t had a chance to watch it and this is my first exposure to the original manga. The link there goes to the review of the anime episode adapted from this story. The manga story doesn’t include the story Kino tells the three men in the anime nor the second tale in the episode, just an epilogue as Hermes asks Kino about why humans in general and her specifically like to travel. It’s a lesson in futility in the name of feeding their loved ones, one of those messages Kino’s Journey brings up. Apparently our traveling duo can’t find a single city not run by idiots who waste their time with dumb stuff taken to their extreme end.
The art is really good, though I should note that the anime changed the character designs for the men. This is not an action story. These are subtle analogies, parables if you will. If only certain American writers could take this as a cue to how to get their point across without trashing their audience. If you want something a bit more thought provoking this is a series to check out.