CLAMP School Trilogy
Age - E for Everybody
CLAMP School Detectives
Duklyon : CLAMP School Defenders
Man of Many Faces
Ray Yoshimoto (Detectives & Duklyon)
Ikoi Hiroe (Man of Many Faces)
English Adaptation - Jamie S. Rich
Retouch and Lettering
Rob Steen (Detectives)
Brian Bossin (Duklyon)
Tomas Montalvo-Lagos (Man of Many Faces)
Associate Editor - Bryan Masumoto (Detectives)
Editor - Jake Forbes
The triad of titles that revolve around one of CLAMP's few "universe"s, in this case their CLAMP School Universe. I think there might be a second one (if I remember right it revolves around their X 1999 book and several books in which X characters appear in, but I could be wrong) but for now this is the only one that I really know of as a definite CLAMP "universe" with more than one title interlinking together to form one world. And it's also a good read for younger readers who might not be ready for CLAMPs more serious works like Chobits.
CLAMP School, a gigantic "city-school" shaped (oddly enough) like a demonic pentagram, is the "in" place to be in this world. Only the best of the best come here, and this is where the best of the best come to party as well as to learn... apparently the school is known for BOTH it's intellectual side and it's party animal side. Go figure.
So, with that said, we'll look at the trio of books one title at a time.
CLAMP School Detectives
The first book listed as being first published in the early 90's... strange. I thought all three came out at once but the other two are listed as being published in 2001...? Strange.
Sorry. Let's get to the book.
Ah, first boy bands now boy detective teams.
The rank and file of the "team" are a trio of popular boys... who are the object of desire for the entire school's female body from kindergarten up to college including the staff!
The team consists of one Nakoru Imonoyama, whose family is the powerhouse the founded CLAMP School in the first place! He is a member of a mega rich family, and has strange mysterious female oriented powers... somehow he can detect a female in distress from a mile to three away, and instinctively rushes to help her, often dragging his associates (Suoh and Akira) with him in the progress.
A man of great intelligence and skill, he lacks athlethic prowess UNLESS there's a woman in danger then he's suddenly Sly Cooper with the moves he can pull. Oh, and he also hates paperwork which is a shame since, as Student President of his grade (6th), he has LOTS of unwanted paperwork he must deal with.
Oh, and he's also the leader of Duklyon but I'll go into that when I talk about Duklyon.
Then there's Suoh Takamura, a martial arts sports star who is cool as ice -- unless he's stuck with trying to force Nakoru to do paperwork then he often loses his cool -- then he falls in love and finds a new reason to lose his cool for... how cute!
Strange how there seems to be a strange hinting at thing though between Suoh and... uh... nah. Forget I said that, maybe I'm just mistaken... but it seems that he seems to have a thing for... uh, nah.
Finally there's Akira Ijyuin, who seems to be the comedic foil of the trio... but he's also the mysterious "Man of 20 Faces"... and I'll speak more of him when I speak of "Man of Many Faces" shortly.
The three books basically are the adventures of the trio.
And, as you might have guessed, a lot of the stories revolve around missions to aid females in distress.
From aiding an elderly lady from losing her home to a bad man, solving the mysterious case of the female ghost haunting the art room, locating a distressed female student's lost pet peacock, to several matters of the heart including a little romantic difficulties for Suoh.
Bonus sections at the end of the books from CLAMP as they talk about their favorite things... from their well known addiction to playing Sonic's video games to their favorite mystery shows.
Of the three books this is the best. Nicely done.
DUKLYON : CLAMP School Defenders
While I liked Detectives a lot, I have to say I had the opposite reaction to DUKLYON.
Where the formulatic pattern of Detective proved interesting, the same (but different) pattern here proved to be rather boring and dull.
This is a parody of... seems like a Power Rangers parody to me since the team is dressed up in Power Rangers like suits and have strange (freakish) Power Ranger style enemies to fight.
DUKLYON, the Defenders of CLAMP School, was founded by CLAMP School Detectives leader Nakoru who seemed to have formed DUKLYON to eliviate boredom... go figure.
The team consists of the "odd couple" of Kentaro Higashikunimaru (the snobby, kinda dim witted rich one) and Takeshi Shukaido (forever to be harassed for not being a multi-millionaire, dead pan serious member) and finally Eri Chusonji (the female member, and often the first to beat up her own teammates for screwing up here or there).
Their enemy is an organization called The Imonoyama Shopping District Association, lead by a student who is classmates with the DUKLYON team and in love with Eri for some odd reason.
What comes next is a severely forumlatic theme (with a few exceptions this is a basic formula of each chapter of the first Graphic Novel).
1-Story starts with some wacky-ness insueing between the team and their "friend" who is in fact their nemesis.
2-Their "Friend" dismisses himself and almost immediately there's an attack by the ISDA.
3-Team report for duty and suit up, receiving their marching orders from the "General" (Nakoru).
4-Team goes into action and a battle ensues.
5-Eri beats the two guys up for something.
One notable difference is when Nakoru arranges a "battle" on stage between themselves and the Man of 20 Faces (who is his own associate Akira though he doesn't know it) in a stage production.
Otherwise the story is pretty straightforward... and not too good.
Even with "appearances" by the cast of CLAMP School Detectives slash Man of Many Faces can't hide the fact that this is not a good book.
Man of Many Faces
Amongst the ranks of CLAMP School Detectives a thief dwells.
Akira Ijyuin. By day a member of CLAMP School Detectives and a normal student at CLAMP School.
By night he's the mysterious thief known as "The Man of 20 Faces", or simply "20 Faces".
He, like Sly Cooper, has a family "legacy" of thievery to live up to... but that's where the comparison ends.
While Sly, like Saint Tail, believes in stealing only from the corrupt and the wicked, 20 Faces steals from whoever his two mothers tell him to steal from.
The book says his two mothers (sisters who were married to his father... well, ONE of them... then again...) are devious crimelords... no way. These two saavy women may know what they want, and aren't above a little thievery to get it, but they are NOT evil. A little too much on the needy side, but not evil.
But these two books aren't just about Akira doing his mother's bidding to steal whatever they want (on a whim or a desire), it's also about the relationship (which turns to love) between himself and young girl Utako Ogawa and how it grows and grows until -- well, you'll see.
A perfect addition to your collection along with CLAMP School Detectives.
I'm not too hot on DUKLYON, but this and Detectives I am hot on.
Ok. Breakdown time.
CLAMP School Breakdown
Two out of three series of this series is recommended from me to you. They're nice reads, well crafted and suitable to all ages which is also nice. Not at all serious, and more for a fun romp reading wise, this is something nice (and short) I can recommend for your collection!
The final part of the equation, however, doesn't suit me very well.
I don't know but somehow I don't seem to like DUKLYON very much... maybe it's just me.
Moments to Remember?
There's a ton of it in each book... yes, even DUKLYON.
What to Ignore?
...maybe me? I don't know but I'm not a total fan of these books... one of the three rubs me the wrong way as you can see... why it does that and how I can reconsile that is something I haven't figured yet.
It's a bit of CLAMP old school (since it's been out for awhile now) but still it's a nice read, and since it's suitable for all ages it's also a recommended read (from me to you) for anyone who'll like a bit of light reading of which these books deliver quite well.
Kare Kano (His and Her Circumstances)“
Studio - TOKYOPOPAge - Teen (13+)TOKYOPOP creditsTranslator - Jack NiidaEnglish Adaptation - Darcy LockmanEditor - Paul MorriseyRetouch and Lettering - Paul TanckSenior Editor - Julie...
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