One Punch Man (2013)


Volume 3

One Punch Man - Volume 3 (2013)

Author: ONE
Artist: Yusuke Murata
Publisher: Jump Comics

Saitama and Genos apply to the Hero Association to be recognized as professional heroes.

How do you put limits on a near-invincible hero? I'll tell you how. Bureaucracy. Lots of bureaucracy. The Hero Association not only provides a convenient vehicle for introducing a wide variety of heroes (even if--or especially if--most of them are jokes), but also creates red tape to tie Saitama's hands. I mean, he basically does his own thing regardless, but it doesn't get him what he wants (in this case, more popularity and recognition for his work). Without spoiling too much, making Saitama start as a C Class hero does all sorts of interesting thing for the story. Just about everyone thinks he's nothing more than a weirdo in a funny costume. After establishing the Hero Association and its rules, we get to see some other heroes in action to set up the next stage of the story.

The series' visuals continue to impress with staggering action scenes and great visual comedy. Some of the reaction shots are absolutely hilarious. Also, I like how jobber monsters can make for epic fights when set against jobber heroes.

We get two side chapters. One uses an episode from when Saitama was still in training to give us helpful exposition on the shelters and the other gives us a character who parallels Saitama but more importantly, we get an early look at Fubuki and her gang and Tatsumaki.

The Hero Association opens up a lot of possibilities for the story and a big part of the humor in the story comes from the ridiculous heroes out there. The formula of Saitama's solo antics probably wouldn't have gone very far, but bringing in the Association sets us up for larger plots to come. Fans will want to add this to their collection.

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