Sunday, April 25, 2010

Garo #34

June, 1967, issue #34. 202 pages, cover by Sampei Shirato.

カムイ伝 (Kamui-den) #30

This is a rather oddball story for the Kamui series. Shouseki is wandering the countryside and he enters a village that is essentially a corpse field. Bodies thrown into heaps everywhere. He runs into a priest that is praying for the lost souls and is directed to a nearby castle. Right after he arrives, hundreds of starving peasants rush the castle gates demanding food. The guards cut the peasants down and shoot rifles into the crowds. Shousuke looks on in horror as victims resembling everyone from his village dies. Later, he retraces his steps and finds the priest has also been killed. He gets ambushed by vagrants that steal his loin cloth and food and leave him for dead. The castle lord rides by and laughs at the fallen outsider. Shousuke recovers, but now he's covered in bruises, has no food or papers, and no pants. Sampei writes in an afterward that this was an attempt to show a "parallel world" version of the village where events had turned out differently. 41 pages.

『防衛』について (About "Defense") #27
Koshi Ueno (上野昂志). 2 pages.

日本忍法伝 (Japan Ninja Arts Legend) #20

(Subtitled: 吉野八荒 (Yoshino Boundaries) #16)
Mamoru Sasaki and Satsuko Okamoto (佐々木 守 & 岡本 颯子). 6 pages.

生命 (Inochi (Life))

A mother wolf and two cubs are out walking through the heavy snow one winter. Conditions are harsh and one of the cubs dies. They find a human hunter living in a cabin and the mother attacks him to get food for the other cub to eat. There's a fight, and the wolf rips off the guy's forearm while the hunter cuts off one of the wolf's ears. Years go by and the cub has survived, having enough pups to start a new pack. The mother wolf is now old and grizzled and has the respect of the new pack. After killing a deer, there's a gun shot and the rest of the pack scatters. The old one stands her ground and faces off against the hunter, who now has a sword blade attached to his stump. They fight again and this time the wolf dies. The hunter takes the body back to the cabin, while her daughter follows behind out of curiosity. The hunter places the body on the ground across from the fire pit and sits down just as time catches up to the both of them. The young wolf watches on as the cabin and its occupants turn to dust and are blown off into the wind. 40 pages. This is the feature story on Nihon-go Hunter this week.

Shinji Nagashima (永島慎二). Shinji drew "Le Masque" in the last issue. A footnote says that "Inochi" was drawn for the Dec., 1966, issue of Shonen Gaho magazine. Note also that "Inochi" is the first story in what Nagashima is calling his "Shinji Genkiga Collection".

かわりみ (Kawarimi (Lightness of Foot))

Yuu Takita (滝田ゆう) gives us yet another black comedy, this time featuring a schmuck that doesn't know how to behave at hostess bars or izakayas. His company's president, essentially a small-time yakuza-like boss, is threatened by a yazuka rival. The solution is to have the schmuck take the boss's place when the fighting starts, but the guy finds the money in the safe and goes out partying before being thrown into jail at the end. 16 pages.

参加 (Participation)

Another atypical story in this issue, this time by Shouhei Kusunoki (楠勝平). Set in modern day Tokyo, rather than old Edo, we have a family of four that is currently facing a tipping point. The oldest son is looking at surgery for a life-threatening disease, and one of the other patients with a similar problem dies during the operation. The mother confronts her fears by praying regularly at a shrine. The father has just given up smoking and drinking, and is being ridiculed by his co-workers when they go out together at night. The day of the surgery comes and goes, and the boy has been healed. However, some days after getting out of the hospital, he's hit by a car and dies instantly, with both of his parents showing up in the crowd to see him at the last moment. The mother had stopped praying at the shrine, and she thinks this is all her fault. The husband dismisses this claim and spends his days playing with the younger daughter, and his nights out carousing, smoking and drinking again. 25 pages.

マンガ革命 (Manga Revolution)

A young manga artist, upset at having his story rejected again, bands together with other artists having similar problems, to form an army to overthrow and destroy the current publishing industry. Their new stories, printed later on, go over well, but history has a way of repeating itself... 14 pages.

No real information on Kazuo Masuda (升田かずお) in either Japanese or English.

反乱 (Revolt)

An unnamed hunter arrives at a village where there's a fresh corpse, but it had been cleaned down to the bone too quickly to have been from normal causes. Eventually, the hunter encounters an old man and 4 hillbilly types. The old man warns the hunter against the hillbillies, but the 5 of them head out of the town anyway. Soon, the hunter discovers what the threat is. In along with the unnaturally strong winds and rain, thousands of insects, birds and small animals converge on them. The hillbilly leader kicks one of the others out of the circle and he's quickly cleaned down to the bone. Pretty soon, the animals eat up the other three hillbillies and the hunter arrives back at the village, where the old man comments that a whole bunch of other hillbillies have arrived, just as much of a threat as the animals are. In the end, the hunter is beaten to death by one of the new hillbillies. 28 pages.

Makoto Ikeuchi (池内誠) is a pen name for Seiichi Ikeuchi, who also wrote under different hiragana and kanji spellings of his own name. According to the Akame fan page (Aka Me Pro, or Red Eye Productions was Sampei Shirato's studio), Ikeuchi was born in 1947, and entered Aka Me Pro around 1966 as an assistant, where he worked on "Watari" and "Kamui Gaiden". "Revolt" was his manga debut, and he went on to create various golf manga, including "The Swing". There's an interview with him at Comipress.

李さん一家 (Sumomo's Family)

Yoshiharu Tsuge (つげ義春) is out in the woods staying at a cabin he's found. As he starts up his own garden, he encounters Mr. Sumomo, a strange little man that can communicate with birds by whistling. The guy lives on the 2nd floor of the cabin with his wife and two young children. This is basically just a slice-of-life story as we're introduced to people that don't really show emotions or much intelligence. Later, Tsuge returns home, and the other four continue living on the second floor of their cabin. 12 pages.

作品集 (Creation Collection) #12

3 more pages of satire by Katsumata Susumu (勝又進). In the gag on the right, a teacher is berating her pupil for messing up on a kanji test. She goes to the child's home, then realizes that the kanji used for "husband and wife" was correctly written reversed as "wife and husband". In the second gag, a martial arts master tells his student that the way to defeat the enemy is to not look them in the eye. In the last panel, the customer is requesting extra food for free and the clerk is refusing to look up at her.

鬼太郎夜話 (Kitaro Night Stories) #1

Shigeru Mizuki is starting up a new Hakaba Kitaro storyline here. A doctor that has been plagued by a demon cow dies while trying to locate his tormentor. At the end of the story, he wills rats to bury his bones where he lies. 10 pages.

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