Assassination Classroom (Ansatsu Kyoshitsu) Manga Review

Class E is the Assassination Classroom. Here the lowest students of the school have a secret mission: kill their sensei before he destroys the earth. 

My Review (Part 1)

Gintama's parody of Korosensei as Ginkorosensei
I was creeping on the Japanese best-seller list when a manga caught my eye. Surrounded by ridiculously popular titles like One Piece and Attack on Titan, Assassination Classroom drew a blank. Over 8.6 million copies sold in 2015 alone, a best-seller, and I had never heard of it. What made this manga so incredibly popular? And did this finally explain that moment in Gintama? What was I getting myself into?

The Art
The cover art for Assassination Classroom took me by surprise. Instead of dark intensity; I found comedy.
Korosensei looks like a balloon with a happy face transplanted onto an octopus’s body. For a being capable of destroying the moon I would have expected sharp edges, deep shading, mysterious eyes not something so humorous. The decision to make Korosensei the way he looks was the first introduction to the refreshing world of Assassination Classroom. The manga takes humor to a different place where a being capable of worldwide destruction is also a unique sensei who counters assassination attempts with manicures.  

Nagisa’s character appearance is another of my
favorite things from Assassination Classroom. I love the big eyes (I’m a sucker for great eyes), the hair with an actual reasoning behind it, and how his look matches so naturally with who he is. His angelic smiles are so deviously distracting! Even the deadliest assassins can be forgiven for falling into his charm.

Now comes the most significant problem I hold with
Students of Class E
Assassination Classroom's character designs. The majority of Class E student's look so incredibly similar. They run the line of falling into the 'same face shape' just slightly different hair rut. The manga's length did give them a chance to become recognizable but at first glance they all blend together with few exceptions. The blandness is an immense disappointment when compared to a creative character look like Korosensei.

The Characters

Nagisa: the student who makes the greatest insights into the enigma of Korosensei. Nagisa is used to being ridiculed for being in Class E and accepted it until the year Korosensei takes over Class E. Nagisa is loyal to his beliefs. He doesn’t lose them throughout the manga although his assassination education unleashes a hidden side of his character.  

Karma Akabane: Incredibly quick-witted with a
brilliant mind and ruthless killing sense he is the first student to cause actual damage to Koro-sensei. Karma is a master manipulator with the ability to spot the lurking darkness in a person. He was removed to class E as punishment for violent offenses. Among all the Class E students, he is closest to Nagisa having known him before becoming a Class E student. 

Bitch-sensei (Irina Jelavic)- Extremely confident in her powerful sex appeal, Irina is a top rate assassin who is tasked to kill Korosensei. She is an excellent actress but her true self is prone to being petty and easily frustrated. She had no initial intentions of being a real teacher but slowly grows to care for the students of Class E.  

Karasuma Tadaomi: bridge between the world
governments and Class E he takes the role of PE teacher to turn the students into assassins. He is intelligent, level-headed, and capable of facing high-stress situations without breaking a sweat. The class admires him greatly and strives to follow his example.

Korosensei is an enigma in the manga. What he is and why he wanted to become a teacher for Class E is a large part of what drives the manga. He is off the wall intelligent, creative, and humorous even when fighting off serious assassination attempts. Nagisa finds he has a lot of surprising weaknesses as well. Example: When he tries to look cool, his weaknesses show; he is surprisingly quick to panic; and boobs (a dangerous weakness for many men).

My Review (Part 2)
Assassination Classroom is more than a mere manga on ordinary students attempting to save the world from unordinary destruction. The charm of the manga lies in the way it combines a struggle with a
journey. The struggle is more than the students work
to become top-notch assassins. Class E is literally the loathed bottom feeders of the school whose existence is meant to make the ‘normal’ students work harder to avoid having to join their ranks. They face daily persecution for not being ‘good enough.’ Korosensei in his ridiculous way starts a change in these forgotten ones. His efforts to make a difference isn’t always understood by the students. He wants them to succeed in more than an assassination. From raising their academic rankings to being sport standouts, he fights alongside them. Some of the battles are humorous, others make you want to cry, but all teach no student has to be what one a-hole principal schemes for them.

The part which never fails to stand out is just how
incredible a character Korosensei is in the manga. He is so inhuman and deadly. Yet has the most ridiculous hilarious weaknesses it stuns the reader just how one character with a weakness for porn can outfox the world’s military forces. He brings out the best of his students taking them from rejects to death served with a smile. Deadly plots lie in humongous puddings, while porn stashes are hidden assassination plots. The topsy turvy keeps one guessing while never forgetting the world is at stake. How it will end is the reader’s guess but the manga is so page-turning one won’t want to miss a panel before reaching the final conclusion.

To the Reader
Assassination Classroom is clearly of the school life genre. You will find many of the school life scenarios: exams, sport festivals, student rivalries etc. The adventure in those scenarios along with the drama
Love the manga? Watch the anime!
keep it from sinking into a standard school story. And the humor…the humor is everywhere! Some of it is the immature ‘porn jokes’ type but much of it comes from odd ironies and the characters themselves. For those who worry it will all be one big joke there are many moments which bring emotions to the surface. It’s not hard to see personal life experiences in the feelings these characters’ struggle with. Feelings which occasionally do fall into the genre of romance but don’t take away from the feeling of action and suspense flowing through this excellent manga. 

Final Score: 9.4
Make it your end-of-summer manga must.


暗殺教室 ; Assassination Classroom ; فصل الأغتيال ; 암살교실 ; Classe do Assassinato; Ansatsu Kyōshitsu

Author(s): Matsui Yuusei
Artist(s): Matsui Yuusei
Year: 2012
Genre(s): Humor, Suspense, Drama, School Life, Sci-fi, Action
Chapter(s): 184
Status: Complete
Anime: Yes