After my 2nd review of Gantz we need something truly weird to wash away the conventional. The horror, the horror. Tomie is what we need right now. All images are belong to Junji Ito (writer), Gekkan Halloween and Dark Horse Comics (distributors), used to educate our sad little pupils on some disturbing badass horror!
Mr. Towelhead reviews:
So dear weird-movie-goers, Tomie is a horror manga written and illustrated by Junji Ito. For the most its an R-rated unconventional horror mix of jump-scares and psychological horror. It was first released by a certain Gekkan Halloween distributor and now-a-days by Dark Horse Comics (at least in english). The thingy ran from 1987 until 2000, spawning 3 volumes. For an unconventional story it was gathered quite a cult following and a staggering number of 9 film adaptations MEOW! Of course we are talking about creepy Japanese horror-manga-adaptations.
The basic idea is that Tomie is a beautiful girl who knows she’s neat and uses her charms to get ahead in life. But her charm is her downfall as people around her go crazy with jealousy. Murder, suicide and redemption are common occurrences of each story as the manga is divided in several different stories that follow, more or less the same formula around Tomie.
The formula repeats itself, and repeats itself, and repeats itself,
and repeats itself, and repeats itself, and repeats itself, and repeats […]
The manga is a collection of different horror stories around, * gasp * different Tomies, each follows (sadly) the exact same formula with very few new elements brought to the overall story. Basically once you know the formula you’ll get bored of the story-department as the main concept is repeated with different characters in the exact same roles as always. There is no innovation except for a very few reoccurring characters, a very few new details as to the Tomie mythology and well, Tomie who’s always the same kind of Tomie.
What the manga does VERY well is the creepy department. Each story goes along different kind of scares, some are obvious, some are creepy, some are more psychological and so on. But each features extremely creepy situations of how Tomie… does her Tomie stuff and scares the living shit out of you.
When it comes to the creepy department…
Mr. Ito has certainly done his homework!
Unfortunately the Tomie arc of fear goes up until the third or fourth story, reaching a climax of mad fear! But then it all goes down the drain as the manga becomes less and less creepy, with stories featuring really blend moments of fear, and the overall-story repeating itself in the EXACT same manner, also don’t help.
I mean, once the manga presents you some of the most disturbing scenes ever, you can’t simply go back to normal scares. You have to keep the tension up some how or finish the story, or at the very least change the formula. SOMETHING, anything!
Wether Tomie is occult or not is somewhat unclear. While some of the stories try to explain her unnatural nature, so to speak, some features of the Tomie experience are clearly reaching into the occult department. So there.
Tomie is an odd mix of occult and biological mystery
With only three volumes, Tomie is a short experience. Its crazy, disturbing, a bit disappointing but in any case, INTENSE as hell!
Mr. Towelhead is kind of happy:
6 / 10
The only gripe is that the story repeats itself with no change, no innovation, and that after the third or fourth story the creepy factors get dim, to the point of the last stories being just vanilla. I mean blend. I mean boring, lame and unimaginative. And certainly not creepy.
After all the madness we’ve seen …
… a ball of hairs, seriously, is the best you could’ve come up with?