We are in a round of new mangas debuting in Shonen Jump. The latest series that debuted this past week was called Shadow Eliminators. This will be the manga series debut for Kento Amemiya, whose only published work of record are two different one-shots Ruirui Senki, the original pilot for Shadow Eliminators, and Shikigami. With this being Amemiya’s freshman debut as a mangaka there will be a lot of immediate questions if they can find success where other mangaka haven’t. Let’s find out with Shadow Eliminators Chapter 1: “Layers Of Shadows.”
Writer & Artist: Kento Amemiya
On his first day of at his new high school Aoba Kuromori makes a bad impression on the school’s Public Morals Vice-President Yayoi Asakaze. While following him around school Asakaze catches Kuromori going through a mysterious portal.
When going through the same portal Asakaze witnesses Kuromori save a student from the possession of a creature known as Threads. Kuromori’s grandmother reveals to Asakaze that Moribe City has become a beacon for the otherworld and the Thread creatures.
On the way home Asakaze runs into a high school girl who is possessed by a Thread. Kuromori appears to save Asakaze from getting killed by the Thread. Kuromori transforms his arm into a blade to eliminate the Thread and save the girl.
The next day Asakaze agrees to help Kuromori form the Shadow Eliminators club to help keep people safe from the Threads and the otherworld. End of chapter.
Shadow Eliminators first chapter is a “get the job done” type opening. This had a very basic structure of introducing us to our two main leads, a mentor, and the overarching threat to this series. It’s all by the books but for a first impression that’s all this needed to be.
The best thing that Kento Amemiya did was lean into how Aoba Kuromori and Yayoi Asakaze complement one another. It’s an old wrestling thing to accentuate the characters strengths while hiding their weaknesses. With the simple approach that Amemiya went with to introduce us to the world of Shadow Eliminators this was the right call. The attention needed to be on how the reader should engage with our two leads in Kuromori and Asakaze.
In the process Amemiya is able to create a quick pace to give us an introduction to the world of Shadow Eliminators. There isn’t anything different to this usage of creatures or spirits from the otherworld possessing people in the real world. We have plenty of mangas that deal with this plot element. Which is where it was key for Kuromori and Asakaze personalities to shine. They are what grab the readers attention to get invested in this world.
Most importantly, Amemiya was able to show that there is a lot of potential for cool action with Shadow Eliminators. Kuromori transforming his arm into a sword through this world’s form of jutsu was a cool thing to add as an element to how the Threads are fought. This creates a lot of possibilities for how the Threads can be fought if Kuromori and his grandmother teach Asakaze to transform his body into a weapon. How Amemiya expands on the fighting styles implemented will be key to helping the cool factor for this series.
Where Amemiya will need to make sure to not rely on is only the chemistry of Kuromori and Asakaze. While they are engaging characters their personalities and chemistry can grow old if we don’t get at least a third lead and the Kuromori’s grandmother to be part of the main cast. Having a mix of personalities and fighting styles will help Shadow Eliminators from not getting lost in other similar mangas, like Jujutsu Kaisen.
Kento Amemiya does everything right to create a successful debut with the first chapter of Shadow Eliminators. The lead characters are presented well with enough information about the world to want to learn more. Now it will be about adding to this by expanding both the world and cast. If your into mangas like Jujutsu Kaisen then you should check out Amemiya’s Shadow Eliminators.
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6.5 Night Girls out of 10