Uzumaki – Junji Ito

Collected in a single volume, author Junji Ito’s horror manga UZUMAKI tells of a small town that has been cursed by a pattern; the pattern of the spiral!

UZUMAKI has the glorious distinction of being the first manga I’ve read to date. I’m not exactly sure where to go from here as this was pure balls-to-the-wall insanity. I will say that if you’re someone who doesn’t take well to body horror, this is most certainly not the book for you.

Ito’s work in showcasing the horror of the unexplainable mutation of regular everyday people had me reeling from cover to cover. I will say that while one of the novel’s protagonists in Shuichi Saito suffers from a series of mental breakdowns, the book’s main character, Kirie, seems to handle things a bit too well given the circumstances. Kirie’s apparent ability to roll with the punches when folks around her are morphing into grotesque human/spiral hybrids sort of took me out of the story at points, although we seemingly get there by the end.

UZUMAKI is some of the more creative storytelling I’ve come across in a graphic novel. I truly had no idea where this was going to end up and when I thought Ito may give his characters a reprieve, he says, “Oh, you haven’t seen the worst of what my brain can conjure up.


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