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Friday, 24 September 2010

Manga Review: Fourteen

So Goddamn Freaky

Title: Fourteen
Author: Kazuo Umezu
Release: Monthly
Status: Complete
Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi, Mystery, Seinen
Art: A
Originality: S
Story: A
Characters: B
Humor: B
Action: A

Impression: Good god this manga is freaky. Fourteen is about a chicken-man hybrid being born from a vat of genetically modified chicken meat as a curse from the animals of the Earth. Humanity’s dominance now permeates every fiber of the entire planet and it is now a mere shadow of the beautiful world it used to be. The chicken-man becomes deeply involved in events that will shape the future of humanity as the oncoming apocalypse approaches ever closer with a series of mysterious disasters that will all culminate in the extinction of the human race its last generation of offspring finally reach the age of fourteen. I kid you not when I say the first volume will freak you out with its excellent scenes flavoured with equal parts of horror and grotesqueness. The rest of the horror never comes as close as those first few do but they’re still pretty disturbing all the same. Despite its out of date style, the artwork works amazingly here and will just pull you right into the terror that the author infused into his series. I’m even willing to look past at all the research the author didn’t do since what really matters is the fear and not the fact that the author gets so many things wrong that political and economical minded people will want to bang their heads against the wall. This manga rises above its apparent lack of research and, in my honest opinion, does more than just rival Junji Ito’s brand of horror making it an absolute must read for horror lovers. Incidentally, I’d just love to see SHAFT pull out an anime of this. Shinbo’s crew is perfect for this series.

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