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Great Teacher Onizuka Volume 1

Written by: Shiro the Commander
Story/Art -
Tohru Fujisawa
Licensed by - TokyoPop
Page Count - 192
Rated 16 and Up
Suggested Retail Price  - $9.99 US


Eikichi Onizuka is a 22 year old virgin who happens to be a former biker and gang leader. He has finally decided to move on with life and start a career. His choice is to become Japan's Greatest Teacher! Of course, his main reason to become a teacher was so he can score with the hot female students. This should be fun.

Packaging: A-

On the cover we have the Great Onizuka himself posing and having his thumb up. He has an unwrapped stick of gum in his mouth and has head phones. In the background of the cover we have a semi-crowded Japanese city street with people walking around and doing business/etc. Also on the cover if you look carefully you'll see Onizuka crouched on the ground before he decided to become a teacher. On the top right of the cover is an indication on how 37 million copies of GTO have been sold worldwide. Must be a pretty popular manga eh? Moving on to the back cover, we have the volume's summary that doesn't really give anything away and the same artwork in the background of the front cover. Inside we get DVD ads for GTO with comments from critics, the usual TokyoPop Manga/DVD ads, and ads for the other GTO volumes. Although there isn't any manga preview for the next volume or any other included information. Meh, its a really nice start to say the least.

Artwork: A+

The artwork is quite simply put excellent. Tohru Fujisawa did some extremely detailed backgrounds/surroundings "especially in Onizuka's apartment lol" throughout the volume. There is an excellent use of shading in the characters especially in Onizuka's facial expressions. Considering the hilarious scenes the artwork's detail and shading, it's just perfect. Great artwork that is really nice to look at as you read the manga.

Text: B

The text of the manga is quite easy to read and understand in most cases. There are some terms with an asterisk next to them and the definition of the term at the bottom of the page. However, there is a minor problem with the text which would be that there is simply too much sometimes. In some pages I'd have to open up the manga a bit more just to see some of the text. There are some conversation bubbles that have tiny sized words crammed a bit too close together as well. Other than these minor problems there isn't that big of an issue with the text.

Content: A+ (Contains Spoilers)

The manga starts off with the introduction of the main character Onizuka as he is in a job interview for some company. Looking at his employment application we kinda find out that Onizuka is a martial artist and pretty much a pervert. Onizuka fails to get the job in the interview especially, considering that he attended a 5th rate college and dropped out of high school. After a couple of hilarious scenes, we get introduced to his best friend Ryuji and Onizuka's crazy championship karate team. Ryuji seems just as much of a solid character as Onizuka and that's a giant plus to this series. Onizuka later meets a high school girl by the name of Erica and of course he gets perverted ideas. He tries to impress her with hilarious methods such as grand theft auto lol. For some reason we find out that teachers can attract chicks that sets Onizuka to decide on his future career: to become the Greatest Teacher and get the title Great Teacher Onizuka!

Onizuka has to take a training course for teachers and believes that with his skills he can do it! Of course he get a reality check when his class is full of thugs that have no respect for teachers at all. After some handy methods Onizuka wins the respect of most of his students in the training course "you need to read how Onizuka did it". In the final pages of the volume Onizuka spends time with the student Nana whom he gets to better understand. After some dramatic scenes we are left with a cliffhanger.

Other Comments:

There is a reason for the manga series being so popular. The fact is that this manga is able to keep a smile in your face as you read it. There are so many well deserved laughs out of it you have to enjoy. The first volume has set things in motion and I can't wait to read the rest of the series.