Kingdom Manga Review – History presented in an Epic Way

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kingdom manga review

I started reading Kingdom Manga about five days back. Even though it has 592 chapters till now, I caught up with it in just five days, which goes to prove how amazing a Manga it is since I was reading 15+ hours a day on those five days. After reading through all those chapters, I just knew that I have to write a review of Kingdom manga.

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Plot

plot kingdom manga
Source: Kingdom Manga

Kingdom shows that history can be as interesting as the most interesting thing you can think of. Set in the era of seven warring states of China, Kingdom presents the history of the unification of China, how China unified into one kingdom from several states.

The two protagonists in Kingdom manga are Shin(Chinese name Xin) and El Sei(Chinese name Ying Zheng). Shin is a war orphan who works as a servant at a village leader’s house. Sei is the 31st king of Qin, one of the seven warring states.

Even though he is a servant, Shin wants to be a great general, which is the top ranking officer in the army. Sei’s mission is to unite all of China, put an end to the seven warring states and bring all of them under one kingdom. By the twist of fate, both of their paths collide and they end up becoming best friends, and aim to unite China together.

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What’s interesting here is the reason and way Sei has to unify China. When Sei was a child, he was a captive in an enemy state of Qin and was had to face continuous torture. Though I am not sure, it’s probably due to that, that Sei wants to bring peace to the masses and end the era of the warring states. The way he wants to achieve this is through martial might. Yes, by waging war and defeating all six states and bring them under his kingdom.

What’s interesting about this, is the philosophical question it raises. Though he want’s to bring peace, and the final result of ending the warring states era through martial might may actually bring peace, but at what cost? Millions of people would die in war for that peace to come. This contradiction brings many interesting battles of philosophy in the manga.

Kingdom manga is also an amazing combination of both martial combat and political battles. Since Sei took the throne at the age of 13, he had to face many political combats within the royal court in order to maintain his position as the king of Qin. Throughout the manga, it feels as if you yourself are the lead character, so, in that sense the manga is quite engaging.

Character Development

This is what I like the most about Kingdom. All the main characters have been given proper background to begin with. The development of characters is also smooth and progressive.

Shin starts as an annoying brat who has good enough physical strength and wants to be a great general but is still a brat. In the beginning, though he wants to be a great general, he knows next to nothing about a great general. Slowly as he learns what actually a great general is from both the inside and the outside, he starts to mature.

In the terms of character development, Sei seems to be lacking. Sei does has a very tragic past and has significantly changed compared to his past for the good. But that past is not much shown in the manga, and so, for the most part of the manga, Sei’s character remains the same.

That said, there are many other important characters with amazing growth like Diao and Kyoukai. I won’t give much more details about these characters because if I do then I’ll just be spoiling the manga for you with spoilers.

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Art style

art style kingdom manga
Source: Kingdom Manga

I won’t get into any technicalities here (as if I know about them :P), but let me tell you what made my day in the manga. The best part about the art style is that they are not just drawings and have been properly shaded. It’s the best you can ask for in a black and white scan. As you can see in the image above, it’s as close to color print/anime as it can get.

Final Verdict

Kingdom may be an out of the ordinary manga (I’ve not seen many which entirely depict the history), but it is quite a good one. Being a manga showing historic events in no way is negative for the manga, in fact, I would say it’s a big plus because of the way they have shown it.

I really think my school history classes would have been so much better if school books were manga like Kingdom. I might have even considered history has my career choice :P. With this, I want to tell you guys just how amazing a piece of art this is. I really really recommend you guys to give it a try.

Well, that’s all for this review of Kingdom manga, see you in the next post.


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