Bisan Manhwa Review
Written by Park Hye-rim
Not only is this a Manhwa, but it is also a webtoon. And for those who are unaware, a webtoon is typically Korean and is a manhwa style webcomic that is published in chapters similar to manga but online, rather than through a magazine or etc.
Bisan, is a moving tale and told from the point of view of an old man, now hold up you rascal, don’t lose your attention yet. Bisan is told from the point of view of an old man, but the actual story is basically a retelling of the man’s experience as a child. It is a moving tale that encompasses the feelings of loneliness, comradeship and human nature. it appeals to the senses, and despite being a relatively short manhwa,it is what one would describe as short and sweet.
This is a pure and innocent tale, almost folkstory like ahah. Either way I enjoyed it’s simplicity and small attention to certain details.
[THERE WILL BE SPOILERS] – I shall put this ~ [SPOILERS] where they appear, but will try and keep it relatively mysterious, probably won’t be many in this review.
Bisan or it’s alternate name ‘The Flying Mountain’ possesses a simplicity and beauty in it’s natural form, the overall mood is quite clean cut and straight to the point. Not surprising as mystery is not one of its genres.
But hey it is supernatural, what I can say is that in a way it is quite a strange manhwa, but that’s its charm so do read on.
Plot of Bisan
Bisan, is about a young boy who meets a giant turtle, as he runs away from the troubles of a mass drought (see what I said about it seeming a little strange?), that isolates this young boy from other parts of the general population is his ability to be able to witness this enormous turtle that carries a mountain on his back. Bisan is essentially a story within a story, as the main character is the grandfather of the first appearance of a child, which in some respects makes it a cyclical story. Starting and ending with a child.
Characters of Bisan
As I may have mentioned, this manhwa is rather refreshing, and somehow diverges from normal shounen character qualities, the little boy is neither OP, sure of his path in life, and is actually a rather lonesome character. Throughout the whole manhwa only two characters have significance, reinforcing how the storyline completely revolves the boy and the turtle. Despite the cropping up of minor characters – which are never named – the story centres around the journey that the turtle and boy go through.
But the turtle is mightily significant, it is the dramatic device that pulls the story along, the major turning point in the young boy’s life.
Or is journey the wrong word? I guess not, this manhwa is about two lonely souls that find a companionship that is not based on physical attraction but the bond that overthrows discrimination of species. There is the apparent genuine bond between two characters and beings.
However, it also highlights how a young child can feel alienated and how a child has to mature or grow up beyond its years to suits those around the said child, whilst receiving nothing in return from the ‘adults’ and ‘family’.
Art of Bisan
In terms of art, being a Manhwa and a webtoon every page is coloured and illustrated. But there is a exquisite feeling about the simplicity of the art, colours are generally quite subdued with gentle hues. The art is neither extravagant or lacking, and has a very individualistic vibe, that put me at peace.
The character designs are also simplistic, whilst retaining a certain depth, the wave of emotions are easily conveyed, be it tears, smiles or the hardships There is a certain benefit to having a story revolving around only two MCs as there is more of a journey between the character developments and as the two characters, the little boy and the tortoise travel together. We see the boy’s tears and anguish that the feels for the ‘invisible tortoise’. Perhaps being the only one able to ‘see’ the tortoise the two are tied by more than a accidental meeting but fate, and all good things come after a bad event. You could even say that hope is a major theme of this Manhwa.
It’s up to you whether or not to try this Manhwa but what I can say is that this Manhwa is great for a chilled short break from a action manga.
Ginny T. UK.Surrey based/AnimeAmino Original blog.