Drug & Drop Volume 1
It’s just like the first series (although promised to continue, unlike the aborted first run), with the addition of “many crossover references to the CLAMP universe.” That’s what drove me away from their work previously — I got enough of that when I read superhero comics — but I admit, it’s fun to see Watanuki from xxxHOLiC requesting the boys for their latest mission.
Our heroes are Kazahaya, who’s got an ability to have visions when grasping objects and prophetic dreams, and the bulkier Rikuo, his roommate. They work at a drugstore, but their boss tends to send them on errands that involve spirit investigations. They spat and bicker, but Rikuo protects Kazahaya when it’s important.
All the things I expect from CLAMP are here: Hints of boys’ love, as the two guys are thrown physically together and drawn face-to-face. Elliptical stories with supernatural overtones. Dramatic panels showing spirit figures in distinctive black-and-white designs. Prefiguring hints of doom to come — in this case, lots of blood-soaked images — that may or may not turn into something down the road. Self-sacrifice to save a friend.
I most enjoyed a couple of everyday scenes with the characters, such as the one where the two guys and their boss work together to prevent some giggling schoolgirls from taking and posting pictures of the guys to keep their presence a secret. But those types of interactions aren’t the focus of the series, so I’m looking for it to be something it’s not. CLAMP fans, on the other hand, will welcome a new continuing series to ponder over. (The publisher provided a digital review copy.)