What is it with writers in general and Horror writers in particular and their obsessiveness concerning small towns? They make them seem like places where every other house is full of mystery, monsters, the deranged, or weirdness run amok. Whether it’s King in Maine, Lynch in the Northwest, or Ono in Japan, on either side of the Pacific, writers love to make stuff happen in small towns. Shiki (Shi Ki), which can be translated as “Corpse Demon”, is no exception.
Shiki can be described like this:
The story takes place during a particularly hot summer in the nineties, in a small quiet village called Sotoba. A series of mysterious deaths begin to spread in the village. At the same time, a strange family has moved into the long abandoned Kanemasa mansion. Dr. Toshio Ozaki, head of the only rural hospital in Sotoba, initially suspects an epidemic. But as the investigations continue with the help of his old friend Muroi Seishin, who is the village priest, the deaths begin to pile up; they becomes convinced that the undead are plaguing the village. A young man named Natsuno Yuuki, who hates living in the village and only wants to leave, begins to suspect he is still being pursued by a girl who has already died.
Attack of the Mega Cute Vampires – Double Feature. Start!
Our first feature is Chibi Vampire and here’s what Tokyopop said about it.
Karin is a cute little girl who also happens to be a vampire…with a twist. Once a month, she experiences intense bleeding from her nose–we’re talking gushers! In other words, she’s a vamp with blood to spare, so rather than stealing blood from humans she actually gives her blood to them. If done right, this can be an extremely positive experience that benefits the “victim” as much as the vampire. The problem is that Karin never seems to do things right!
Karin’s family, of course, are “normal” vampires. Karin is their precious little ugly duckling of a vampire. Crosses and mirrors don’t phase her. [Groan.] She works at a Chinese restaurant that uses lots of garlic. [Moan.] Karin gives people her blood when she bits, instead of taking theirs. [Doh!] And she can even go out in the daylight. [Shudder.] Karin is just trying to enjoy a peaceful high school life, with a part time job. Karin needs that job since who else is going to pay the electric bill? Her family sees in the dark far better than she does. But the blood, her blood, gets in the way. Not only does that time of the month (yeah, I know, only a female mangaka can get away with that) intrudes on her life but her blood seems to act up when she’s around the new transfer student, handsome but poor Kenta Usui. What is going on? Gusher!
Glenn Hough (gallyangel) is a nonpracticing futurist, an anime and manga otaku, and is almost obsessive about finishing several of the lists tracked on WWEnd. This is the first in Glenn’s new series on Vampire Manga, a companion piece to his excellent SF Manga series, which will be accompanied by separate series for Horror and Fantasy.
The Japanese love, love, love, the supernatural. Their folklore and native religion of Shintoism foster a worldview that is positively bursting with gods, demons, and beings of all shapes and sizes living alongside Humanity. When Stoker unleashed his Count Dracula upon the English speaking world, Vampires and European Vampire lore found especially fertile soil in Japan. Like a sponge.
It’s not a surprise then, that Vampire related Manga is prolific enough for it’s own category blog. So we start.
One of the best – number one as far as I’m concerned – is a relative newcomer to the manga scene. It debuted in 2006. What gives it top of the heap status for me? Two words: Mina Tepes.
Princess of the Vampire Clans and Ruler of the Night: Mina Tepes.
Anyone who knows Stoker and the saga of Vlad the impaler should appreciate how deeply entwined her name is in all the Vampire lore which has gone before. How deeply right that name sounds for a Vampire: Mina Tepes.