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Nausicaa Perfect Collection: Vol 2 (Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (Pb)) Paperback – 1 Jan 2000

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Paperback, 1 Jan 2000
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x991663d8) out of 5 stars 18 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x997003d8) out of 5 stars NAUSICAA OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND by Hayao Miyazaki 14 May 2010
By MOTU Review - Published on
Format: Paperback
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is a manga written and illustrated by legendary anime filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki. It originally ran from 1982 to 1994; the total work is over 1100 pages (the edition currently in print is seven volumes). The initial chapters were the basis for the eponymous 1984 film. Here, a postapocalyptic Earth is polluted and overgrown with toxic forests and giant insects. As neighboring states go to war, Nausicaä, princess of the Valley of the Wind, works to restore peace and to purify the earth.

It's hard to talk about the manga without mentioning the film, which is one of my all-time favorites. More people are familiar with the film than with the comic, and Miyazaki is far better known as a filmmaker than as a comic artist. Obviously, Miyazaki is more limited in a sensory way here, without the film's color or outstanding musical score. But he is much freer to explore his world: the film features a considerably streamlined story (one nation has been omitted) and a moral conflict that is fairly black and white. The manga is substantially more complex.

Miyazaki has created a rich, deep world, which is worth the investment the reader must make. Particularly early on, there's a lot of exposition in dialogue, like we're accustomed to seeing in American Silver Age comics. And it takes some time for the reader to determine who is on which side and what, exactly, is going on.

Nausicaä is always engaging but rarely gripping. Toward the end of the saga, Miyazaki does manage to generate some genuine suspense, but mostly the story meanders along as Nausicaä herself more or less blows where the winds of war take her. The ending is rife with potential, but it goes out with something of an abrupt whimper.

As an archetype of love and self-sacrifice, Nausicaä herself is an exceptionally admirable protagonist. Through nonviolence, she is a uniter, a peacemaker. The only stumble here comes at the end of the work, when Miyazaki puts her into what he obviously feels is a shades-of-gray, no-win moral situation. But it's actually somewhat underwhelming, as Miyazaki barely even hints at the ramifications.

Miyazaki's ever-present attention to detail is here in the artwork, which is generally impressive, although such a degree of detail often makes for some messy and hard-to-interpret panels, particularly during battles (and there are a lot of battles). And Miyazaki doesn't shy away from depicting the carnage more graphically than he ever did in any of his films.

There are a wide array of supernatural powers at work here that for the most part were not present in the film. A number of them are kind of silly, and some don't always make a lot of sense (hello, sentient mold monster). Telepaths are a dime a dozen.

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind is always good but rarely great. It will particularly appeal to fans of the film who want more of Nausicaä's adventures and a deeper look into Miyazaki's postapocalyptic world.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x990141a4) out of 5 stars If I were to get just one manga title ever, it would be this 18 Sept. 2000
By E. Gutierrez - Published on
Format: Paperback
"Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind" is my all-time favorite. If I had the choice of picking just one manga (comic book) title ever, it is Nausicaa. Personally, I think this is Miyazaki's best work, and it did take him several years to finish the series. That's a lot of hard work right there.
It's hard to summarize the whole plot, since it is complex but somehow you do get to follow it all through, as it was well written and drawn. You get glued to it. What's interesting here is how none of the warring sides is really depicted as the "evil" nation. Imagine a huge war between 3 main groups in the future where insects are as big as whales and an atmosphere which is lethal. Picture technology that most people don't even remember how to fix. Picture Nausicaa, the princess of a tiny farming nation caught up in the middle of it all. On top of this, an "unusual storm" is building up threatening to wipe out everyone. But what really impressed me most is the bravery, courage and compassion of Nausicaa's character even toward her "enemies".
This one is truly for keeps. Beautiful and brilliant.
On a side note: The original English series is a set of seven graphic novels. This is actually the same as the re-release (Perfect Collection series) which is on four graphic novels. The Japanese manga release is also on seven graphic novels. I actually got everything except for the english original GN #5. It took me 10 years just to get all the Nausicaa manga I now have. If only they would release the DVD! What's taking so long?
What more can I say, it really is my favorite. Try it. It's what got me into Anime and Manga.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9919e444) out of 5 stars The best story I have ever read 29 Dec. 1998
By William J. Jack - Published on
Format: Paperback
The story of a girl with a gift. Set in a bleak future where a toxic jungle is slowly engulfing whole countries, Nausicaa tries to prevent her kingdom from being destroyed in the war ensuing between the largest remaining empires. I cannot say enough to praise Hayao Miyazaki. I first saw his work in the animated film "Warriors of the Wind" back in the 80's. It turns out this is a badly edited version from Topcraft who bought the rights. I was still hooked, though. After searching for quite a while I found the comics. Hayao had continued the story of Nausicaa well beyond the scope of the movie. I found in enthralling. I still read it every so often and suggest it to anyone who loves epic stories of fantasy and adventure. Disney recently bought the rights to the movie, and apparently plans to re-release it sometime in the future. See also: Kiki's Delivery Service, and Princess Mononoke.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x990c85ac) out of 5 stars Read this! 13 Oct. 2000
By Michael Borgwardt - Published on
Format: Paperback
Simply put, this is the best thing ever printed on paper, and believe me, I've read all sorts of stuff. The scale of the story is truly epic, and the world and characters incredibly alive, especially Nausicaa herself, whose determination and compassion turns enemies into friends or even followers. I am not a very religious person, but Nausicaa as a person is very much like the Jesus of Nazareth in the New Testament, only more vividly described.
HASH(0x9918912c) out of 5 stars Impressive 19 Mar. 2013
By L. Alexander - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am fairly late to Nausicaa, having only seen the movie about 10 years ago. I find it a compelling story about what humans do to destroy their environment, even in decline. Anyway, I bought the book on a whim, thinking it would be a recap of the movie. Wrong: this is a much more detailed and different storyline. It answered some things that seemed to be missing from the movie, and creates a much richer world.

I definitely like Nausicaa's impressive martial abilities, juxtaposed by her peaceful nature. The airships are almost Victorian science fiction, with lots of technology that can't be replicated anymore. The noble folks rising to meet their oppressors is something we can learn from.

A bargain at ~$9 per volume, I am going to collect the whole shooting match. Great stuff.
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