Train + Train

Train + Train by Hideyuki Kurata and Tomomasa Takuma 3/5 stars (amazon.com)

The futuristic world of Deloca has a unique educational system. When students reach the age of 15, they board a train which travels around the planet, making high school a perpetual field trip. Hapless Reiichi and his friend Liae meet Arena Pendleton, a rich girl who is estranged from her family, currently hiring herself out as protection in return for being treated at an all you can eat buffet. When Reiichi meets Arena, his life changes forever, as they fight a scary alien and end up accidentally handcuffed to each other! Reiichi ends up boarding the train for “special” students with Arena, which causes his education to go in a direction he never anticipated.

Although I very much like the idea of the setting for Train + Train, the characters all seemed vaguely familiar. Arena is brash and violent, while Reiichi’s more retiring personality undoubtedly hides some untapped potential that will be released due to his close association with his new companion. Add in an exceedingly violent nun on board the special train, and I was struck with the sensation that I’d seen all of these character types before in other series. Still, I do think the setting of the manga is interesting, and the production by GoComi is excellent. I might try checking the second volume out of the public library.