So the third English volume of Diamond and Pearl Adventure! came out today, and so of course I had to snatch it up.
The primary focus of the volume, save for a two-part side story, is a battle between Hareta and Team Galactic...and some Gym Leaders tossed in to the side. Honestly they don't do much, which is kinda a shame.
The battle is pretty cool, although I wish there was more to the volume (the side story takes too long, and while it's interesting by itself, that's print that could have been devoted to more plot). Ihara plots and writes very interesting battles, using abilities and staging as if they were for live-action, using the entire setting. Azelf gets to use its ability to control/heighten willpower, but I think there was a missed opportunity there in that it doesn't do so against Cyrus, which would have been FASCINATING.
The basic battle plot can be summed up by saying "it REALLY sucks to be Saturn". Seriously, he gets his butt kicked by Magikarp, he gets FIRED, and can only get back in the gang by demonstrating that he's willing to die for Cyrus (which he very nearly does).
And oh yeah, Roark seems to think Saturn is a girl, calling him "she" twice on one page. This is never corrected, so it may not be Roark but rather the translator. And since Saturn is drawn so feminine as to make Bashou look like a macho man (see the waist-to-hip ratio, the moobs, and the distinct eyelashes in the attached picture), this may be a rational conclusion, albiet a blindly incorrect one. I'll probably write to Viz and ask them if it was meant to be Roark being a dumbass or if the dumbass was the translator.
More later. For now, share your thoughts!
Also damn Byron do you even OWN a shirt?
(side note--Ass Grunt, whose swelling seems to have spread to his legs as well, refers to Saturn as "sir", but some military people use "sir" as a gender-neutral address to a superior officer, so it's really hard to tell)