Karate Shoukoushi Kohinata Minoru or for the sake of my fingers KSKM is a very interesting series to say the least. Being a major fan of martial arts, I was instantly drawn to a series that had Karate in its name. With no prior knowledge I didn’t know what to expect. This series is very adult. It is far from serious most of the time, but the times that it is series it goes into some interesting directions. Some of the scenes can be unnerving and a bit disturbing, but overall the series is pretty unique and interesting to say the least.
KSKM is about Minoru who started out being a gymnast. He goes to Reinan University, which is a school known for athletics more so than academic achievement. He is a high level gymnast who works with his friend Nana. After getting the crap beaten out of him and watching his friend (girlfriend) nearly get raped, a man named Mutou saves them both and decides to bring Minoru to hell also known as the martial arts world. After that Minoru watches Mutou beat the hell out of some guy, whom he previously encountered and crushed one of his balls (this series is really adult oriented). Minoru watches this ass kicking and then he is propelled into the world of Martial Arts.
First of all, this series is not for the faint of heart. There is a lot of stuff that goes on. This includes sexual assault, vicious beatings, and a laundry list of other pretty hardcore things that goes on in the series. The violence can definitely get out of hand. At one point a character pretty much gets his nose ripped off completely, and he still fights. Things get pretty graphic pretty quickly in this series.
The sexual assaults are also things that seem to play a big role in the series. You won’t have to worry about seeing a woman actually getting abused, but there are quite a few attempts. People who are peeping toms, and there is even a character that goes around assaulting male characters as well. What’s really interesting is that this person eventually becomes a main character and the roommate of the main protagonist.
The story is really quite interesting though. There isn’t necessarily a “hero” in the series. It just so happens that the series is focused on these particular characters. They aren’t necessarily bad or good. In fact, the guy who runs the Martial Arts club takes in about anybody. They can be a peeping tom, a ninja, or a Brazilian jujitsu guy that takes wrestling just a bit too far.
The characters in this series are very interesting though, and they have features that make them quite enjoyable. Most of them have their funny moments, but what makes them even more entertaining is the fact that they all serve some sort of purpose. Even the comedic effect characters have their moments to shine.
Artistically things aren’t as drastically different. In fact, one of my biggest problems with the series is the similarities between so many characters. Practically every character that is of Japanese descent with short black hair looks similar. Not surprisingly though, there is a wide range of female characters. A lot of them follow the usual manga tropes of being shy, aggressive, etc. What makes them entertaining though is that they can all kick ass. Even Nana the girl who doesn’t do martial arts at all has shown to be pretty spectacular with a few good kicks.
Overall this series is pretty entertaining. I recommend it, but I will admit that you should proceed with caution. This isn’t your happy go lucky manga. It has some very adult oriented humor and comedy to it. The artistic style is a bit more grotesque as well. If you are mature enough to handle it though, and you like a good martial arts series then KSKM should be right up your alley.