Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Volume 4

Hayate The Combat Butler, Volume 4
ハヤテのごとく!Manga Volume 4
Hayate no Gotoku Manga Volume 4

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis: This volume of the manga starts off by wrapping up the Gilbert fake kidnapping plot by defeating the mecha with the Eight personality matrix. This resolved, Hayate’s next task is to get Nagi to the first day of the new school term but sadly, he fails when he gets lost. That prompts Isumi to stop by Nagi’s place to make sure Nagi is OK. After Isumi leaves, Nagi decides that Hayate needs to attend her school, Hakuou Gakuin.

Hayate gets his chance to visit the academy Nagi’s attends when Nagi forgets her bento (lunch). Katsura-sensei, who’s guarding the gate to the school grounds, is not about to let the suspicious-looking Hayate enter, but he manages to get by her just the same. Wandering around campus, he comes across Katsura-sensei’s younger sister and President of the Student Council Hinagiku (aka: Hina) who’s stuck up a tree after having rescued a baby bird. Hayate not only helps her down, but defends the baby bird from a crow. Hina figures to thank Hayate by showing him to the top of the clock tower (where the Student Council meets) he’d admired earlier.

At the top of the tower, Hayate admires the view but Hina is afraid of heights. Katsura-sensei enters and challenges the “suspicious” Hayate, leading Hina to defend Hayate. In the end, Hayate ends up saving Katsura-sensei from falling off the clock tower, but Nagi’s lunch is destroyed in the process.

Hayate is given a day off to buy a cell phone and takes a trip to his old high school, where his former classmate NISHIZAWA Ayumu (because her parents and brother show up later, I’m calling her “Ayumu” for the manga reviews though in my episode reviews of the anime, I addressed her as “Nishizawa”) takes a chance to finally confess her feelings for Hayate, only for him to turn her down after he thinks of Nagi. After he returns home, he’s told he’s being enrolled in Hakuou Gakuin but he has to take the entrance exam. Klaus tells Hayate his job rests on whether he passes or not. On the day of the exam, Katsura-sensei has a joke exam in which Hayate ends up battling a group of starving monkeys before she gives him the real exam. Hayate ends up failing by one point due to his being tired from the fight.

Meanwhile, it is assumed that Hayate has passed, so Klaus has a huge, formal party. Katsura-sensei, having consulted with Hina, comes by to tell Hayate the results and to apologize. After many failed attempts, Hayate finally learns the bad news. However, Maria uses her influence and that is enough to get Hayate in. Hayate is shocked when he learns that he and Nagi will be in the same grade due to Nagi having skipped grades. He also learns that there are other butlers at the school, so his school uniform will be his butler uniform.

On his first day of school, he and Nagi come early where they meet the young Taiga-bocchan and his butler (who acts like the master since he has Taiga shower him with flower petals) Himuro. Himuro takes Hayate’s necktie as a means of showing him what defines a first-class butler. After Hayate retrieves a new tie, he is given a glowing introduction by Katsura-sensei to his new classmates. At lunch, Nagi’s attempt to get romantic with Hayate is interupted by Hina, who causes Hayate to become determined to get Nagi active in a club. So they check out Hina’s Kendo Club were member Azumamiya decides to challenge Hayate and summons his butler Nonohara to do the deed.

In the omake, it is Golden Week, so Maria, Nagi, and Hayate are in Greece for vacation where Maria and Nagi used to live. Hayate is somehow sent back in time where he protects the young Nagi from the mafia before returning to the present to fullfill a promise he made to Nagi when he went back in time..

Thoughts/Review: I love Viz’s new otaku-friendly adaptations, but their choices are a bit odd to me. For example, I never expected them to not translate the word “gakuin,” which means ” academy.” I was pleasantly surprised that the title “bocchan” remained in the adaptation (I think I’ve only seen it once before, and that was in a Fruits Basket volume). However, I am not going to complain about that at all. On the other side, the term “bento” has shown up in the adaptations of several manga I own but Viz went ahead and translated it as “lunch.” That’s not a problem, but it shows the oddness of their choices of when to go otaku and when not to.

The lack of translator notes continues to be the biggest weakness of the manga adaptation. Seriously, how hard could it have been to include this? If it means an extra dollar to get translator notes, I’d pay it (they’d better be complete though).

As to the stories, as I have been thinking, they do flow better than the stories of the anime did. Since this volume marked Ayumu’s entrance, she comes off as a bit different. I think she was in every anime episode, usually in a cameo bit showing her eating something (including KFC one time). While those eating jokes in the anime were amusing, not having them in the manga makes her seem more of a serious character if that makes sense.

Reading the story with Hayate taking the entrance exam and the monkeys, I couldn’t help but remember the scene in the anime. I have to say, this is a time when the anime version of that moment is superior, simply due to the way animators can bring things to life, to say nothing of the monkey sound effects. ^_^ Funny stuff, y’all.

As for the extras, the standard 1-page “goddess” manga is there as are the two 4-koma strips (which I wish were in color) and two notes from Hata-sensei. There’s a 1-page bit for Isumi as well. The character profiles of Katsura-sensei, Hina, and Ayumu are included this go-round.

Bottom line: This manga is on my “must buy” list as great, humorous, light reading material.

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6 Responses to “Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Volume 4”

  1. braves says:

    I have to wonder why they won’t translate a word that means “academy”. If a series is more otaku-based and a term doesn’t translate that well into English, then leave it in Japanese (like “senpai”). Otherwise, I don’t see the point of doing that. I have to wonder how the sentence flows in the manga- “Oh, I left something back at the gakuin.” >.>

  2. AstroNerdBoy says:

    They don’t actually use it that way. They leave “gakuin” untranslated when it is listed as “Hakuou Gakuin” (the name of the school). I don’t remember them saying something like, “I’m going back to the gakuin to get my notebook.” They do translate that to “school” (or whatever) as I recall things.

    That said, it is still surprising to me that they call the school “Hakuou Gakuin” rather than “Hakuou Academy.” Again, I don’t mind it, but it is unusual.

    Sorry about any confusion, sir. ^_^;

  3. braves says:

    Oh, I see. Thanks for clarifying.

    I just thought that it was possible give how Viz Media has done certain dialogue in past when it comes to having Japanese terms in their manga….

  4. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I boycotted Viz for a long time after their substandard “Maison Ikkoku” release (and not much improved re-release) as well as not being happy with their “Inuyasha” release. As such, I don’t know how they do things regarding dialog.

  5. braves says:

    I was specifically referring to a scene in Bleach that goes like this:

    “This gate has a Reishi Henkan-Ki – A spirit-particle conversion machine – on top of a normal tunnel world gate. The two are attached by covering the gate with Ketsugo-Fu – union tags…As you know, the Soul Society is a world of Konpaku, and it is impossible to enter without looking like a Konpaku.”

    Yeah, I’m wondering if this is even English. -_-

  6. […] volume finally links to the omake chapter in volume 4, where Hayate was sent to the past to save Nagi from the mafia. I like that Nagi didn’t […]

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