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Buddha #01: Kapilavastuby Osamu Tezuka
Synopses & Reviews
Japanese comics godfather Osamu Tezuka's vaunted storytelling genius, consummate skill at visual expression, and warm humanity blossom fully in his eight-volume epic of Siddharta's life and times. Tezuka evidences his profound grasp of the subject by contextualizing the Buddha's ideas. The master entertainer's emphasis is on movement, action, emotion, and conflict as the price Siddharta runs away from home, travels across India, and questions Hindu practices such as escetic self-mutilation and caste oppression. Tezuka's approach is slightly irreverent and incorporates something that Western commentators often eschew — humor.
"Heavily influenced by Walt Disney, Tezuka's often cute characters may take some getting used to, but his storytelling is strong and clean. Appearing in handsome packages designed by Chip Kidd, this is a stunning achievement." Publishers weekly
"This is one of the great achievements of the comics medium, a masterpiece by the great ones." Artbomb.net
"Filled with beauty, cruelty, drama, comedy, romance and violence, Osamu Tezuka's Buddha encompasses the entirety of life in a masterpiece of graphic literature....Even if you can't achieve satori with Buddha, you can open up another world." Time Magazine
Osamu Tezukas vaunted storytelling genius, consummate skill at visual expression, and warm humanity blossom fully in his eight-volume epic of Siddharthas life and times. Tezuka evidences his profound grasp of the subject by contextualizing the Buddhas ideas; the emphasis is on movement, action, emotion, and conflict as the prince Siddhartha runs away from home, travels across India, and questions Hindu practices such as ascetic self-mutilation and caste oppression. Rather than recommend resignation and impassivity, Tezukas Buddha predicates enlightenment upon recognizing the interconnectedness of life, having compassion for the suffering, and ordering ones life sensibly. Philosophical segments are threaded into interpersonal situations with ground-breaking visual dynamism by an artist who makes sure never to lose his readers attention.
Tezuka himself was a humanist rather than a Buddhist, and his magnum opus is not an attempt at propaganda. Hermann Hesses novel or Bertoluccis film is comparable in this regard; in fact, Tezukas approach is slightly irreverent in that it incorporates something that Western commentators often eschew, namely, humor.
About the Author
Regarded by many as the "God of Manga" Osamu Tezuka was born in 1928 in Toyonoka, in Osaka, Japan. A prolific author and artist, Tezuka is generally regarded as the single figure responsible for developing Japan's massive manga and anime industries. His cinematic art style and novelistic narratives have made his work as universally accessible and relevant now as when first published in Japan.
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