HomeComics/MangaMANGA REVIEW | "BEASTARS" - Volume Twenty-Two [FINALE]



It’s been three and-a-half years since I began my journey with Paru Itagaki’s BEASTARS. During that time, I came to fall in love with the world that the likes of Legoshi, Haru, and Louis resided in, even with its darker elements. I had no idea what I was in for when I was given its first volume to review, and now that it’s ended, I’m very happy to have enjoyed its ride. And BEASTARS concludes things with quite the shocking reveal!

As the fight between Legoshi and Melon winds down, a new face appears in the crowd. Yahya and Gosha discover it to be a long-lost blood relative of Melon, who goes into why he hasn’t been around in the hybrid’s life. It’s a moment that forces Gosha to think back to his wife, and how it was a struggle to keep that relationship going due to the kimono dragon’s poison. Yet even with the hardships, Gosha reveals to Melon’s relative that it’s all worth fighting for.

Meanwhile, herbivores and carnivores come together to take care of the Black Market once in for all, in a feat of unity and respect. (Not to mention a lot of chaos and a bountiful of smashing things!) Melon scoffs at the idea that things can change, even as Legoshi has him defeated. However, Melon pulls out one final trick, much to the shock of Legoshi, Louis, and the rest of the onlookers.

And then…well, it’s very hard to go deeper into this BEASTARS finale without spoiling things. But let’s just say that once all of the smoke is cleared, we get some nice wrap-ups with all of the key players. Gosha and Yahya mend their broken friendship; Louis takes the reins of his father’s company; even many of the Cherryton Academy students move on to the next chapter of their lives.

Most importantly, there’s the future of both Legoshi and Haru. Their path may go down the route of many an 80s movie rom-com, but what occurs is both satisfying and cute. It’s thankfully not an open-ended finale, as it finally gives its readers what they deserve: proper closure. As such, the world of BEASTARS ends things not just with a happy ending, but with a feeling of hope that this world of anthropomorphic creatures will change for the better.

Comparing BEASTARS to the worlds of Zootopia and BNA: Brand New Animal may sound like an undersell. However, after reading all of Itagaki’s manga, it’s very easy to see the similarities between these three series. All of them deal with animal people attempting to find their place in society. Sometimes, said society isn’t so welcoming towards certain creatures; other times, it knows that it’s best to make changes to help evolve the world rather than backpedal it. And depending on which you may read or watch, all three do a great job demonstrating this story element in their own unique ways.

However, BEASTARS feels like the most complete when it comes to one’s narrative. Zootopia had an open-ended conclusion, as did BNA. And while we may see this world again in Beast Complex, this narrative reached the goal that it aimed to complete ever since Tem’s death. Yes, it was a bumpy ride sometimes, but Itagaki always managed to get things back on track when it went off-the-rails.

I’m happy with where BEASTARS took me. It never felt predictable, and the story beats and twists delivered always kept me on my toes. My only hope is that now that the story has ended, that Legoshi, Haru, and the rest of the creatures of BEASTARS find their happiness. Seeing how Itagaki feels about these characters (as mentioned in the afterword), I have faith that in this world of carnivores and herbivores, everything and everyone will be okay.

FINAL GRADE (series):

Promotional consideration provided by Chantelle Sturt and Mandy Earles of VIZ Media.

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The J-POP king of America, Evan has been bringing the hottest sounds of the Land of the Rising Sun to the English-speaking public since his college radio days. He's also an expert in the gaming, anime, & manga realms, never afraid to get critical when the times call for it. Born & bred in Boston, he achieved his biggest dream yet by making the big move to Tokyo, Japan in Summer 2023! For personal inquiries, contact Evan at evan@b3crew.com. For press/band inquiries, write to us at thebastards@bostonbastardbrigade.com. (Drawing by AFLM of Wicked Anime)