Akame ga Kill! (Volume 1)

Akame ga Kill Title

Tatsumi is just a country boy trying to make it big in the Capital so that he can save his village. He’s thought Danger Beasts on the road there, but nothing will prepare him for the monsters that live in the Capital!

What did you read?

As a part of my extended analysis of Akame ga Kill, I shall be re-reading the manga too. This may sound like overkill, which may be appropriate for this particular series, but I will make sense the further we get into the series. Akame ga Kill is one of the rare instances where I read the manga first. I picked it up thanks to the striking covers and quickly read through all fourteen volumes only to discover that the fifteenth volume would be the last and it wasn’t due for release for another month… That’s when I bought the anime and watched the whole thing over two days. Anyhow, in this post, I will be looking at Volume 1.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Cover

What happened?

Volume 1 of the manga covers the same material as episode 1 to 3, although in a slightly different order. It starts the same with Tatsumi arriving in the Capital, getting robbed by Leone, and then taken in by Aria and her family. That’s when Night Raid attacks, killing the family and exposing the horrible things they’ve been doing. Tatsumi tried to defend Aria, but upon finding Sayo and Ieyasu in their torture shed, he changes his mind and cuts her down himself. Leone decides to take him back to the base as a new recruit. Tatsumi isn’t so sure.

After meeting the members and talking through the situation, Tatsumi agrees to join Night Raid. His induction won’t last long though as a group has entered their domain and must be eliminated or the location of their base will be compromised. Bulat takes Tatsumi with him and gives him a role. He attempts to stop a fleeing tribesman, but his naivety gets the better of him and Akame has to save him.

To get Tatsumi up to speed, Najenda assigns him to train under Akame, but that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Then, an assignment presents itself and with most of Night Raid on another mission. It’s up to Tatsumi to take the lead role, especially as Akame is too well known. Tatsumi lures Ogre into an alleyway and makes his first kill, although it wasn’t as easy as he first thought it would be.

Tatsumi comes back intact and earns Akame’s praise. But, there’s no time to rest. Now, Tatsumi will have to pair up with Mine. She takes him to the Capital where they go shopping… Later, they take on a mission to assassinate, the Minister’s cousin. Once more, Tatsumi proves his worth, saving Mine and creating an opportunity for her to shot an attacker.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Mine

How was it different from the anime?

In the manga, the order of events is slightly different. The mission to assassinate Ogre comes after the group of tribesmen have infiltrated Night Raid’s domain. Otherwise, it’s pretty much the same. The one other notable difference is that the manga refers to Imperial Arms as Teigu. I don’t think it’s that big of an issue, but I do like calling them Teigu. That may be because I read the manga first though. The manga is also far more graphic with its depictions of torture and death.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Torture Shed

What was your favourite element?

I think it made more sense having the scenes in the order they were in the manga as it showed Tatsumi develop his skills in a logical manner. Showing him fail to kill the tribesman and then train with Akame, made it more impressive that he was able to take down Ogre.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Tatsumi versus Ogre

What was your least favourite element?

I am missing the music that really drives the action forward in the anime and raises the tempo. The artwork is also not as good as I remember it. I’m pretty sure, it gets better as the series goes on, but it definitely didn’t feel as polished as the anime.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Honest

What have you learnt?

I actually really enjoyed the progressive steps of development for Tatsumi in the manga. It’s always a good idea to show your hero fail. Every time they fail, it gives you a chance to show how they get back up and improve themselves or not as the case may be. If you have your hero start out perfect and undefeatable, you better have a good reason for it and maybe throw in a different flaw. It’s much harder to relate to the perfect characters.

Akame ga Kill Volume 1 Crazy Rich Girl

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  1. Are you watching the anime subbed or dubbed? I could be wrong but Teigu sounds familiar, so I’m thinking that’s what they say in the subbed version. Either way it’s basically just a comination of 帝国 “Teikoku” meaning Imperial and 武具 “Bugu” which is one way of saying “Arms / Armour”.

    • Yeah, in the dubbed version they call them Imperial Arms. I read the manga first and in that they use Teigu, so it was a bit of a what’s going on moment when I first watched the anime.

      That’s cool to know that it basically means Imperial Arms though.

    • Yeah language differences like that pop up a lot. Japanese wordplay doesn’t really translate well at all, and the anime doesn’t leave them any extra time to explain the meaning behind the name, so it’s easier for them to just say it’s literal meaning.

      Just another reason subs are the way to go…
      Jk, watch whichever you want.

    • To be fair in the manga, they never really explained them any further than they did in the anime. Even without knowing the meaning, I just took it to mean the type of weapon. Sometimes, you don’t really need an explanation, especially if you do it well.

    • True. Whoever wrote the script for the dubs just had no faith that the audience would figure out what Teigu meant!

    • There’s always some creative applications applied to both subs and dubs. Often times there aren’t literal translations for stuff. Not that would make sense anyhow. I don’t have a problem with that. I’m more interested in how the story can change by moving scenes around or chaning certain elements.

    • In my experience subs often don’t get too liberal with the translations, compared to dubs. Dubs they get someone to tweak the scripts and whatnot in order to make the new VA audio fit the scene and all that, whereas subs don’t have to worry about that. Someone could say a couple words in Japanese that mean a lot and the subber can just throw a paragraph at the bottom of the screen, no problems.
      Dubs don’t have that luxury and I imagine make many more changes as a result. Just like how they can’t put translation notes or anything up to explain wordplay or meanings, so instead they have to rewrite entire jokes in some cases.

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