So again, overall the characters are interesting but a little generic. Their companions Cisqua, Rowen and Kuia are all more comic relief than anything else, but they each get a little back story that helps define them as characters. The villains is where the series starts to fall a little short, and its probably my biggest complaint against Elemental Gelade. The fact of the matter is, none of the main villains really seem human. They are almost always evil “for the sake of being evil.” Azuma tries to show off man’s possessive nature and the need for power but really goes overboard after a while. In this, Azuma basically creates an organization that is purely purely evil, that wants to acquire every single Edel Raid as there own, and force them to work under their reign of terrible evilness. And they do other generic bad guy stuff, like killing every henchman that fails a mission (or sometimes a even a little darker than that).
Heroes are born for their epic adventures and breathtaking journeys. Romance, action, friendship, honor, trust, bravery and countless other codes of chivalry mark the heroes' personalities. Such is the tale of Elemental Gelade and Shining Tears X Wind. They involve two unlikely heroes who are thrust in a world under anarchy. Each is an epic journey of love and chivalry and ultimately the birth of a hero that will change the course of history.Indeed, one can say that Elemental Gelade and Shining Tears X Wind are two sides of the same coin. Distinctively similar yet different, these two are guaranteed to be enjoyed by viewers of one and the other. So follow these heroes as they pave the way for generations to come; be it in the realm of Elemental Gelade or Shining Tears X Wind, satisfaction is sure to follow.
Elemental Gelade follows a sky-pirate (more of a pirate in-training) Coud Van Giruet, catching up with him as he discovers the mysterious Ren, an “Edel Raid”.
Discovering that Ren is a living weapon, Coud makes it his mission not to get recaptured as his pirate ship is boarded. Now on the run, Coud and Ren are trying their best to avoid capture, but seeing as Ren is highly prized among the scum of the world, avoiding capture is going to be harder than they thought.
We’ve all been down this route before. Pirates, living weapons, a main character looking for something to protect and so on. If there is one thing that Elemental Gelade is not going to win prizes for, its originality. In fact, all the early signs for this series point to a by-the-numbers adventure that would be unlikely to spark your imagination.
So why is it I found this book worth my time to read?
For one, it's the healthy mixture of light-hearted comedy and action wich takes cues from Fullmetal Alchemist. There's a healthy dose of light relief injected into the less action-packed moments which helps lighten the mood and delivers some much needed character moments.
However, Elemental Gelade’s main problem lies is in its predictability. Events and characters play out exactly as you would expect them to taking away some edge from the story. Surprises are few and far between so far, and my inetersted began to wane toward the end.
Elemental Gelade should be best seen as a stop gap manga. Something to fill the time before the next volume of your favourite manga comes out. It sounds harsh, but should improvements appear in the form of some less predictable storylines, then Elemental Gelade would be a recommended read. Until then, pick up when you have some reading time to fill up.