Anime Reel – Anime & Manga TV News

Posts Tagged ‘horror

I really like the color scheme. Not much else to say.The noitaminA time slot has been a consistent source of entertaining anime for the past few years (including Nodame Cantabile, Moyashimon, and Honey and Clover). Today, two trailers were released to show off its upcoming slate: one for April’s House of Five Leaves (Saraiya Goyou), and one for Shiki.

Unlike the first Shiki trailer, this latest trailer for the modern horror shows some actual animation. I’m a horror wuss and would rather cower in a corner than watch this show, but I have to admit that it has all of the earmarks of good horror: a chilling atmosphere, good editing, and careful camera work. When it takes over the time slot in July, all of you will have to tell me if it lives up to its promise, because I’ll be avoiding it for reasons completely independent of its quality.

The Saraiya Goyou is an interesting contrast to Shiki, mixing its unique (some would say “ugly”) characters with a standard j-pop ballad from immi. I’ll watch this one with interest, because the story is fascinating, with the naive samurai Akitsu trying to reconcile his view of the world with his new role as the bodyguard of a kidnapping gang led by the charismatic and amoral Yaichi. Their conversations are the core of the series, and as long as those are presented well, I’ll keep tuning in and being fascinated by the interplay of the two characters. Check it out in April!

It sure doesn't look like a zombie story, does it?


Highschool of the Dead, the long-dormant horror-action manga from Satou Shouji and Satou Daisuke, is coming back in a big way this year. After over a year on hiatus, the Western-style zombie apocalypse manga is not only restarting its manga in March’s Dragon Age manga magazine, but it is also set to confirm the existence of an animated TV series project.

Highschool of the Dead is a series I’m really looking forward to, as it brings a lot to the table for fans of zombie movies. The story is pretty basic, as with all zombie stories – a plague outbreak has turned a large portion of the country’s population into flesh-eating zombies. In the midst of the chaotic outbreak, a small group of uninfected high school students team up with the school nurse to find a way out of the danger zone alive. It’s full of references and homages to its predecessors, from Day of the Dead and 28 Days Later to Shaun of the Dead, and it’s a lot of fun to read. Check it out! I command you! It’s even fun for a horror wuss like myself.

Those dead eyes... Dead, dead eyes...Wusses such as myself will be easily freaked out by the horror anime Shiki. Heck, just looking at the picture up there gives me the willies – Japanese dolls have always inspired a little terror in me with their lifeless eyes and general resemblance to a corpse, which is accentuated in most of the promotional stills for Shiki.

Thankfully, the trailer posted to the official Shiki site doesn’t get truly freaky yet, mostly showing some line art and stills from the series, about a small mountain town called Sotobamura which finds cut off from the rest of the world after a large number of the townsfolk die under mysterious circumstances. The original manga was created by Ono Fuyumi and Fujisaki Ryu (of Houshin Engi fame), and if I wasn’t such a pansyboy about horror, I would have checked this out ages ago – it looks great, alive (in a manner of speaking) with the atmosphere that is so essential to a good scary story.

Yeah, it's not that cute. The Japanese were fine with it!

For those of you who are fans of the horror anime Higurashi no Naku Koro ni (AKA “When They Cry”), you’ll be glad to know that the original game is now available in English from MangaGamer. The game, created by famed doujinshi circle 07th Expansion, was released in 2002 to rave reviews. Fans of the taut thriller cited its writing and its compelling mysteries as the game sold over 100,000 copies as an independent release.

The problem with this release is that it’s the original game – the unvoiced version. It’s hard to recommend it, because the product is so raw. The art doesn’t really grab the eye, the lack of voice makes the whole experience very dry, and overall there are very few reasons to play it instead of watching the anime, unless you want to support the company and the original creators.

But hey, if you want to spend your money to download a novel with pictures, feel free – I wholly support the translation effort for such a high-quality series, even though the product itself is lacking.

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Clive Barker, who may not be the master of modern horror, but is pretty good at least.

In news from yesterday, AnimeNation‘s news blog found interview footage where Clive Barker mentions an upcoming project with director Kitamura Ryuhei to adapt several of the famed horror writer’s stories into anime projects. This isn’t the first time they’ve teamed up, as Kitamura adapted Barker’s tale The Midnight Meat Train to the screen in 2008.

I like what I’ve seen of Kitamura’s work, with both Versus and Godzilla: Final Wars being good, mindless popcorn flicks – combined with Clive Barker, the short anime has a good chance of succeeding at exactly what Barker and Kitamura are good at: pure entertainment without any delusions of grandeur.

It’s just too bad I’m a horror wuss, because I won’t be watching any of this.

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