Nakahara Steals the Show in Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15
Image via Yen Press

Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 Characters Make the Manga Worthwhile

The first volume of the manga retelling of the light novel Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 is out now, courtesy of Yen Press, and it’s a fascinating exploration of Osamu Dazai and Chuuya Nakahara’s routes. Which means, fittingly enough, the best parts of this first volume are when we get to see these two Bungo Stray Dogs characters play off of each other.

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Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 starts with both characters at their very beginnings. Despite their ages, both are established individuals and known for their power Chuuya is head of a gang called Sheep. Dazai is a member of Port Mafia on his first assignment to investigate rumors regarding a reappearance of the former, deceased leader of the organization by the new leader Ogai Mori. (Mori happens to also be the man who killed him.) 

Given Chuuya’s determination to wipe out Port Mafia following the events in the in the introduction, of course this means the two reunite. Given Chuuya’s blunt nature and assertiveness and Dazai already proving himself to be a keen observer who likes to needle other people, this first meeting is fantastic. Seeing him react to Chuuya’s ultimatum of “die now or talk and then die” and choosing “okay, kill me now” is a great example of dark humor. Dazai then telling his new opponent and eventual partner that he’s short and should drink more milk means we get to see another great reaction. And this just keeps continuing. There’s the fantastic banter and chemistry between the two characters due to the way their personalities and personal motivations play off of each other.

Also, while Osamu is the focus of Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, I came away feeling like Chuuya stole the show. The introduction focusing on his execution of the Port Mafia member and pure hated of them is incredibly effective at setting the tone and pulling someone into the story. This continues with his first meeting with Dazai, which really shows their personalities and lets us start to see them play off of each other. The meeting with Ogai Mori only confirms it further.

But again, I do have to mention that while getting to see these two characters in Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 is a great reason to read the manga, the story is also quite good. There’s this supernatural element since we know about Skill users due to both of the leads’ abilities. Yet it seemed confirmed that the old Port Mafia boss is dead, and whatever’s going on and the investigation into it also is engrossing.

Osamu Dazai and Chuuya Nakahara are highlights in Bungo Stray Dogs, and of course that means this look back at these characters in Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 is an absolute delight. The general set up is great as well, and I loved seeing their introduction, getting more insight into the Port Mafia, and seeing them play off of each other. It’s a fascinating adaptation of the story, and I think even people who aren’t fans of the series would enjoy it.

Volume 1 of Bungo Stray Dogs: Dazai, Chuuya, Age 15 is available now, and Yen Press hasn’t noted when the second volume of the manga will appear.

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Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.