meta: Horror


2018


Tsutomu Nihei's 'Abara': A Dead-Tech Sampler 
This one-shot story from the creator of 'BLAME!' and 'Knights Of Sidonia' serves as a useful entry point to the man's carbon-black universe of Giger-goth techno-body-horror
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'AKIRA' At 30-Something: The Manga At The End Of The World 
On having a reckoning with the god-emperor of modern manga, in a restored English-language edition at last
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Let's Film This Again: 'Vampire Hunter D' 
Yes, it's been done before, but the possibilities of all-new adaptations of Hideyuki Kikuchi's long-running gothic-Western-punk light novel series are wider than ever
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Patreon 'Perfect Blue': Even Better Than The Real Thing 
Satoshi Kon's hallucinatory, jolting feature film debut still electrifies -- all the more so in light of how its recently translated source novel was a sub-'Silence Of The Lambs' stalk-and-slash thriller
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'Devilman Crybaby': Sympathy From The Devil 
Maverick director Masaaki Yuasa retells one of Gō Nagai's infamous operas of ultraviolence, with Yuasa adding both his trademark psychedelic visuals and a story that ultimately aims to break your heart, not just turn your stomach
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2017


Gō Tanabe And The Hounds Of Love(craft) 
If the rest of Gō Tanabe's manga adaptations of H.P. Lovecraft's horror classics are as good as this first volume, we're overdue for seeing more of one of manga's thus-far hidden treasures
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'Wolf Guy': Bark At The Moon 
A truly strange specimen from Sonny Chiba's filmography, and an illuminating early example of how manga adaptations were a perfect fit for 1970s exploitation cinema from Japan
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2016


'Berserk' (2016): What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted? 
The return of Kentarō Miura's violent fantasy epic to the little screen brings with it a fidelity to its strong characterization and powerful story -- and a renewed appreciation of all that was problematic the first time
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Patreon 'Aoi Bungaku: Sakura No Mori No Mankai No Shita [In The Forest, Under Cherries In Full Bloom]': The Heart's Filthy Lesson 
Ango Sakaguchi's classic story, a mix of 'farce, fable, and mystery' (and horror) is brought to life with outlandish style and color -- and always with one eye cocked towards its heart of darkness
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'Empire of Corpses': Dead Man's Party 
Label anything 'steampunk' and the label tends to take over, but this fantasy from the late lamented Project Itoh is about more than just clockworks and longcoats
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'Rampo Kitan: Game of Laplace': Darker Than You Think 
Edogawa Rampo's 'erotic-grotesque' horror stories are remixed for the (post)modern day in this sinister, surreal, and colorful adventure
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'Kizumonogatari': Came Back Haunted 
Freshly translated into English, Nisioisin's novel of vampires and hapless human thralls is catnip for fans of his 'Monogatari' series, but everyone else faces an uphill climb
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2015


'Tokyo Ghoul': The Inhuman Condition 
It's tough sledding at first due to its focus on a hapless protagonist, but the way 'Tokyo Ghoul' picks up steam to redeem itself is impressive
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'Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust': Beyond The Pale 
Adapted from the third novel in the 'D' series, 'Bloodlust' tops its source material, the earlier animated 'D' film, and a good deal of the competition that's come along since
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'Vampire Hunter D': Wanted, Undead Or Alive 
There's little question 'D' helped open anime to the West, but its status as an artifact of its moment in time has only become more stark over the years
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The First Rule Of 'Lychee Light Club' Is You Don't Talk About 'Lychee Light Club' 
Usamaru Furuya's Grand Guignol horrorshow weeds out all but the sternest stomachs with its transgressive story and gory art -- but is the true test of a piece of work how quickly it empties the room?
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Let's Animate This: 'Dogura Magura' 
Yumeno Kyusaku's masterpiece of surreal horror has been filmed, and even adapted to manga, but its dreamy evil makes it perfectly suited to an anime version
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2014


'Hellsing Ultimate': Or, The Dracula-Vs.-Nazi-Vampire-Burning-London-To-The-Ground Blues 
Looking back over this legendary and now-concluded OVA series, it's striking to realize how it all amounted to a great deal less than it might have seemed
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'Shiki': Human Monsters, All-Too-Human Monsters 
The horror at the heart of this horror story lies in how it toys so adeptly with our understanding of 'human' and 'monster'
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'Claymore': The Beautiful And The Damned 
Rare these days is the series with an all-female cast where character, story, and drama are the goals, not titillation or eye candy
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'Paranoia Agent': We Have Met The Enemy And He Is Us 
The real monster in Satoshi Kon's genre-defying black comedy of horrors is human nature itself
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'Mononoke': To Extreme Sickness, Extreme Remedies 
Long unavailable in anything but fansubs, this psychedelic horror-fantasy anthology is bewitching and intoxicating
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'Berserk: The Golden Age Arc III: The Advent' 
The third of the 'Berserk' films brings us to the long-awaited end of the beginning, and reminds us the TV series still did some things totally right
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Let's Film This: 'Claymore' 
A massive budget wouldn't be needed to realize this most emotionally-powered of dark fantasies -- just proper attention to its story and characters
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2013


'Sankarea': My Little Corpse Bride 
Comedy and horror; oil and water
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