Publisher: Dark Horse
Author: Fred Gallagher
Released: April 13th 2004
I used to read Megatokyo ages ago, and I remember loving the series at the time. That’s why I decided to do a read through of the printed version (I had read it as it released in webcomic form) for my next round of Throwback Thursday reviews.
For those that haven’t heard of Megatokyo, it’s predominantly about two guys (aka idiots) whom are basically otaku and how they got themselves trapped in Japan. Their odd and hilarious nature has a way of constantly getting them wrapped up in new problems.
Megatokyo volume one has all of the material from chapter zero included. Since the first few hundred pages of the comic were done in square format, and thus don’t fit a book’s pages very well, the creator designed to include commentary on the bottom portion. Sometimes it is true commentary, talking about the image or idea involved, and sometimes it’s just witty banter or a joke. The inconsistency keeps it from getting old, and the additional commentary allows for extra insights I had missed with my read-through years ago (though it’s just as likely that I had forgotten a lot of that).
As mentioned above, Megatokyo focuses heavily on two guys (though there’s a ton of additional characters you’ll have to learn the names of); Piro is the main perspective for the story, he’s the more competent one of the two, can speak Japanese, but is horribly awkward and impulsive. Largo is…well he’s an idiot. He’s impulsive like Piro, brash, and tends to get himself in the sillier situations of the two of them. His messes tend to be on the more destructive side, where Piro’s usually result with him hiding from a girl or two.
Obviously being the first volume most of the time is spent establishing the two main characters as well as the supporting cast. It’s also where they get themselves trapped in Japan. You’re probably wondering how that happened. Well as it turns out Piro convinced a drunk Largo to fly to Japan with him (sans passport), where after a shopping spree they both learned they didn’t have enough money for a flight home. Between the fact that Japan is an expensive place to be in, and their impulsive (aka shopaholic) nature, they’re obviously struggling to come up with the cash that would get them home.
Most of the comic has aged well, with a few exceptions. When I first read the series I found all of the Leet speak talking funny, but on my second read through it’s just old and no longer as amusing. Oh how the times change. It’s funny now seeing them gush over older games, but really that’s bound to happen to any culturally relevant series as it gets older.
Megatokyo is a pretty light and amusing story, focusing more on character development and humor more than anything else. It’s great for a casual and funny read. I’m remembering more as I re-read it, so I’m finding myself looking forward to continuing onward.