Otaku USA Magazine
Jack Frost, Volume 1

jackfrost_1How many times have you started reading a new series only to wish that the annoying, precotious schoolgirl protagonist would just get violently decapitated within the first few pages? In Jack Frost, your wish is finally granted! And that’s not all, she actually stays conscious long enough in that disembodied head of hers to witness her own gratuitous upskirt shot! Seriously, how messeded up is that? I think I like these Korean guys…

Unfortunately, it’s all just part of a dream (in fact, the protagonist describes it as a “schoolgirl’s wet dream”) which turns out not be a dream after all, but either way, she’s still not eliminated from the picture, and the plot only gets more convoluted from there so…sorry guys. I am embarassed to admit that I didn’t understand much of Jack Frost, but that’s only because there was nothing to get. The protagonist is a “mirror image” in a world of dead souls who live in… empty high schools…and fight eachother, and therefore she is the sole person who cannot permanently die? Even though she gets decapitated all the time? And therefore, everyone wants to get a hold of her and use her blood like Elmer’s. There’s a guy dressed in black called Jack Frost, and he’s an unbeatable a-hole, for some reason he’s asigned to protect Noh-a Joo (oh yeah, that’s the main character’s name) under orders of the tall blonde dominatrix school principal. There’s also a school nurse with bigger boobs than any other nurse in drawn media, which is a pretty tough racket to top…yeah…who’d-a thunk? Those Korean guys are pervs. I almost forgot, there’s, like, zombies and stuff, and at the end they fight a metrosexual vampire who claims to be a pirate.

Fortunately, Jack Frost’s drawing makes more sense than its writing; it’s drawn pretty damn well. You wouldn’t know it wasn’t Japanese just by the art, unless you had a Korean friend in college who went on to work as a character artist on Rock Band, who had an equally prolific obsession for big, glowing, beady Akuma eyes. Jack Frost is slick and sharp and violent. It is over 50% comprised of big dudes with big spiky hair, who grin with spiky teeth, wear tattered clothes made of spiky fabric, carry big spiky swords, and bleed massive swirling jets of spiky blood. I’d hate to be the doctor examining a stool sample from one of these dudes. All joking aside, this series is well drawn, in an agressive, badass way which makes you wish more videogame adaptations would get outsourced to Korean artists.

Jack Frost might be worth a look if only for the art, but I wouldn’t expect too much from the plot. The story is a bit unusual and weird, but it doesn’t make enough sense to be very gripping and I can’t imagine it would hold a reader’s interest very well over successive volumes. Open it up, if it looks good enough to compensate for the flimsy story, by all means buy it. If it doesn’t immediately grip you, don’t waste too much time trying to figure it out.

Story and Art: JinHo Ko
Yen Press
Rating: Older Teen

Available: Now