Yesterday I received volume 2 of the new series Dr. Duo (Dr. デュオ). It’s running in Weekly Shonen Magazine on Kodansha, and a tankobon has been released every second month. As there are only two volumes out now, it’s a very new series.
Initially the series caught my attention by the artwork on the front of the first volume, and as I like to give new series a try, I bought it. I think it has a lot of good qualities, such as very nice art and a story that has interesting elements. Furthermore, the Japanese used in the series is such that I can almost make do with the words and kanji I already know, so I have read it without using a dictionary.
Dr. Duo is a story about a boy named Tasuku Kotone (琴音 たすく), a student who by chance meets a ghost in a park. The name of this ghost is Keisuke Shinonome (東雲圭佑), and it is the ghost of a man who used to be a doctor. Tasuku finds out that the ghost has a vast knowledge of medical terms and anatomy, and he can ask for advice for his schoolwork and be guided through their experiences.
Tasuku is the only one who can see Shinonome, and generally, Shinonome cannot interact directly with the real world. There has been examples of Shinonome somehow physically entering the world (a high-five), but other than that, he is see-through and can walk through walls and float in the air.
The above image shows Shinonome from before he died, working as a doctor.
During the story of Dr. Duo we follow Tasuku in his daily routines, going to school and of course experiencing all sorts of situations where people get hurt or has a need for medical attention. Tasuku deals with these situations by his own knowledge, but as the name of the series suggests, Shinonome also plays a big role in these situations, usually being able to give advice to Tasuku or otherwise compliment him.
I am really excited for Dr. Duo, it’s really interesting even though the setting is mostly school-based, but this is actually a strong point of the series, I think. Through the actions in volume 2 we get to know a lot more about the background of Shinonome and the characters are really likeable and entertaining. I read the first half of volume 2 on the train back from work, and I could have kept reading if I had the time. I will finish the book tomorrow as I am very interested in the development of the plot. I must say that I have a very good feeling about this series, so I hope it will run for a long time!
There is some medical jargon and terms that I cannot understand, but usually the procedures or explanations of medical or anatomical kind are accompanied by illustrations in the manga, like when they talked about a specific part of the brain, a drawing of a brain with names of the different parts were shown. This is really nice and keeps you reading even though you don’t know the terms beforehand.
Of course there is a girl involved in Dr. Duo, as with all shonen manga. Her name is Mai Takeuchi (麻衣竹内) and as far as I can tell, she is simply an ordinary girl who adds to the social aspect and school environment of the book.
You can read a small preview of volume 1 at http://kc.kodansha.co.jp/product/top.php/1234643311
UPDATE: Read my review of Dr. Duo volume 3 here.