So welcome back to another edition of our weekly manga recommendation series. This week, we are talking about a series that is very close to my heart. I expected this to be your run-of-the-mill sports manga but boy I couldn’t have been more wrong. It is much different from a normal sports manga and it is something that will hurt you.
You already know it, this week we are talking about 3 Gatsu no Lion or March Comes in Like a Lion. I absolutely love this series and I am so glad that my initial impressions of it were wrong. This is a recommendation so don’t expect any scores at the end. With that said, let’s start right away.
3 Gatsu no Lion is written and illustrated by Umino Chica and is serialized in the seinen manga, Young Animal. It started its serialization on 13th July 2007 and it currently has 16 volumes. It also has 2 seasons of anime adaptations by Shaft. The anime is also great so you can check that out as well if you want to. Of course, the manga is well past the point where season 2 left off so there is still a lot of good content for you even if you have watched the anime.
3 Gatsu no Lion is an emotional punch. It deals with a lot of common teenage problems. Even if they are not as extreme, I am sure you will find some of the stuff in this manga very relatable. I mean the characters are so well written; you can’t help but feel them. It is a beautiful manga.
3 Gatsu no Lion has a fairly simple plot. It follows professional Shogi player, Kiriyama Rei. Rei’s family died so his father’s friend who’s a Shogi player took him in but, Rei’s adoptive siblings bullied him because of his talent in Shogi so Rei starts living alone in his own violation. 3 Gatsu no Lion follows Rei as he opens up to people bit by bit and how that affects his game.
One thing I really love about 3 Gatsu no Lion is that Shogi isn’t the primary focus of the story, Rei is. The author very skillfully uses Shogi as a medium to show the feelings of different characters. Even for side characters, their matches are really well done. Do not expect any sort of hype from this manga like other sports mangas because 3 Gatsu no Lion is much more character-driven than others.
3 Gatsu no Lion has a lot of characters. Almost every single character in the manga is so well written too. Like you will know the quirks of characters that you probably won’t see again. That is really good. Aside from that, Rei’s character development is so beautifully paced. He opens up to people very slowly and he is actually kind of scared of getting close to people. He is kind of like Shinji from Evangelion but, Rei is better at reading people than Shinji.
3 Gatsu no Lion has beautiful art. It is very unique; when you do see color, the colors are never too bright. Everything is a little dropped down and subdued. This art style really brings out emotions in the faces of characters. It may not be for everyone but, I think it suits the tone of 3 Gatsu no Lion really well.
Why you should read 3 Gatsu no Lion?
Quick pointers on why you should check out this manga:
- Great character development
- Good plot
- Great pacing
- Beautiful art
- Really relatable
That is it for now. Let me know your thoughts down in the comments. If you have any other recommendations, feel free to drop them as well. With that said, I will take my leave here. See ya!