Real Account (German release 2018)
- by Okushou
- manga vol.1
When your own life in on the line, you can count on: loyalty, family or friends? For Ataru, the main protagonist, the social network is something like home or even a refuge for him. One day, the virtual world becomes reality for most users. In fact, only those will survive who has at least one genuine follower. If Ataru fails in these horrible games, his followers will also die. So will they still be loyal and support him till the end?
The manga has an interesting plot including many suspenses: The games are very thrilling and amusing to follow. Also Ataru’s moves and thoughts or rather tricks make the reading very enjoyable. A very interesting aspect is to see how far people sometimes would go to save their own lives.
An important aspect in the manga is that it focuses on real problems. For example, people cheat over internet such as lying about their physical appearances. People hide their real personalities behind the internet, it is like pretending to be somebody else. However, the game show reveals their secrets to the world and shows that it is easy to hide yourself on the internet. The story also depicts that online friends are not your real friends which also affects the main protagonist Ataru. He has nobody in real life compared to social media where he has plenty. Therefore, the game show demonstrates how important you are to those friends or even to your so-called real friends.
‘Real Account’ has some science fiction elements since it takes place in a virtual world. Marble is the mascot of the game and besides duplicating himself, he can also stretch his arms to a surreal length. Real Account members are absorbed through their mobile phones into a different world. Another interesting factor is that Marble even manages to kill the followers in the real world. So one can say that the mascot is an interesting character.
Besides from Marble, the protagonist Ataru also has some great traits. He has a slight but explicit character development. He used to have a very shy and reserved personality in presence of ‘real’ human beings (whereas on the internet he seems to be quite popular). However, later on he attempts to take many initiatives and is more self-confident.
Last but not least, the art of the manga is very beautiful especially the cover. The front cover is very promising with the depiction of blood and Ataru holding a mobile phone. On the screen, one can see Marble’s more or less creepy face. The art on the pages are very well done and neat. It shows a successful and good character design and the emotions are also good recognizable. Indeed, the whole animation contains many details which makes it enjoyable to read and easy to follow.
All in all, the storyline is very interesting and amusing. However, we have to mention that it somehow reminds us of the manga ‘The Ones Within’ where gamers also have to play real games. Even though the concept is not very original, we like the fact of questioning the loyalty of friends or rather followers.