Thursday, September 8, 2011

Amazing Agent Jennifer 1

Amazing Agent Jennifer 1 by Nunzio DeFilippis, Christina Weir illustrated by Kriss Sison, 2011. 192 pages. Published by Seven Seas. Source: Publisher for review.
A spin-off straight from the pages of Amazing Agent Luna
Long before Luna’s hard-as-nails boss known simply as "Control" became a top agent, Jennifer Kajiwara was a rookie. From Jennifer’s freshman year in the Agency, through her struggles with her parents and her grueling training, to her first dangerous mission as a field agent (and first big romance!), being a young secret agent is never easy.

Jennifer must learn the hard way how to play deadly spy games as she becomes embroiled in a secret war full of intrigue, betrayal, and deadly consequences. This is the first volume of a two-volume spin-off that will tie directly into events in future volumes of Amazing Agent Luna.
First Sentence:
They won't let you declare your major until sophomore year, but that doesn't have to stop us from getting a head start.
While reading Amazing Agent Luna I was always quite curious about how Control came to be the way she is, and how exactly her story started. So when I learned there was going to be a prequel spin-off I had to read it and it was amazing.

Story:
One of the best things about Amazing Agent Jennifer was that you finally got to learn about Jennifer (aka, Control). I really enjoyed finally getting to know her back story and how she came to work for the agency, plus it was done in such a way that your pulled in from the very beginning.

So AAJ 1 starts out with Jennifer, and her parents, as she starts out at college. I thought it was interesting that they used that as the starting off point because it gives you a very good look at Jennifer's personality (over achiever) and the dynamic between her and her parents (she's brilliant and could be/do just about anything, while her father wants her to take over the family business).

The other thing that made this such a great manga for me was the slow development of the relationship between Jennifer and Dan. I loved that they didn't instantaneously have feelings for each other and that it was something that happened slowly over the four years that they were in school.

Okay, so my absolute favorite thing about Amazing Agent Jennifer would have to be when Jennifer and the rest of her class are (unknowingly) in the  middle of the final test on their way to becoming agents for the agency. The reason this is my favorite sequence is because it pretty much sets up the remainder of the volume (because soon they'll graduate) and lays the beginning of the ground work for the next and last volume in AAJ.

I'm starting to think that the writers of AAL & AAJ like to leave people hanging, because it seems like just about every volume leaves off on a cliff-hanger. Not cool, since now I have to wait till February for the second volume to come out. Guess I'll just have to console myself by re-reading volume 1 a couple of times. so that would be the downside to AAJ 1.
Character(s):
what I really liked about Jennifer, as a character, was that she was that she had such a strong personality and knew what she wanted. Plus once she set her mind to something, whatever it may be, she went after it with everything she had and wouldn't settle for being less then the best. I thought it was interesting to see a manga character that was so driven and not wishy-washy in any way.

I really liked Agent L, who went through the four years of training with Jennifer, I thought he was an excellent character. Plus he brought out a slightly lighter side to Jennifer, and seemed to help to keep her a little grounded. I really hope that nothing bad will happen to him in volume 2, but for some reason I have a feeling that something not good may befall him.
Artwork:
I really, really enjoyed the Kriss Sison's art work in AAJ. I thought it was definitely some of the best I have seen because his character depictions were just amazing. Plus I seriously enjoyed the subtle changes that the characters went through throughout the whole manga, which covers roughly four years.

I loved how Sison so perfectly captured the the different personalities and expressions of the characters. The art was definitely one of the highlights of the entire manga, along with the storyline. 

Final Verdict: Amazing Agent Jennifer 1 is absolutely stunning, and a great addition to the AAL world.

Amazing Agent Jennifer 1 earns 5 out of 5 pineapples.

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