Nijigahara Holograph: A Haunting & Beautiful Manga

Nijigahara Holograph Inio Asano Manga Cover

Nijigahara Holograph Inio Asano Manga 6Nijigahara Holograph by Inio Asano (Solanin) makes you feel uncomfortable at times… well a lot. Its haunting story wrapped in beautiful illustrations  makes it incredibly atmospheric. Before I get ahead of myself, I should probably tell you what it’s about. Well… it’s about… uhh… it’s complicated. (Which is another way of saying it was confusing.) But it was confusing on purpose! So that makes it okay, right? The main reason why it’s so hard to describe is because it is all timey wimey and convoluted, except we don’t have a super genius timelord to help explain the story. Since it’s so tricky to summarize, I’ll give you the official description instead:

“Even as butterflies ominously proliferate in town, the rumor of a mysterious creature lurking in the tunnel behind the school spreads among the children. When the body of Arié Kimura’s mother is found by this tunnel’s entrance, next to apparently human traces, the legend seems to be confirmed. Is the end of the world coming? In order to appease the wrath of the beast, the children decide to offer it a sacrifice: The unfortunate Arié, whom they believe to be the cause of the curse, is shoved into a well that leads to the Nijigahara tunnel — an act that in turns pushes Komatsuzaki, the budding thug who has carried a torch for Arié for a while already, entirely over the edge.

But this is only the beginning of the complex, challenging, obliquely told Nijigahara Holograph, which takes place in two separate timelines and involves the suicidal Suzuki; Higure, his stalkerish would-be girlfriend; their teacher Miss Sakaki, whose heavily bandaged face remains a mystery; and many more — brothers, sisters, parents, co-workers, teachers, aggressors and victims who are all inextricably linked to one another and all will eventually — ten years later — have to live with what they’ve done or suffered through.”

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Even though I read Nijigahara Holograph slowly and meticulously, I’m still trying to piece together the story. Maybe part of me always will, and that’s the beauty of it. I thought about writing this after I reread it to try and make sense of everything. But I felt the best representation of Nijigahara Holograph would be my confused, yet excited thoughts. And to be honest, the experience is part of the draw. It’s like a carnival ride that looks beautiful on the outside, but it’s all horror on the inside and it leaves you feeling really uncomfortable.

Speaking of uncomfortable. Shit gets dark, man. Real dark. But you know what? That’s life. Life is beautiful, just like the mysterious butterflies in the story. And life is fucked up, just like some of the characters in the story. I respect a writer who’s not afraid to have an unconventional plot and ending. Nijigahara Holograph Inio Asano Manga 1

The setting seems mundane at first glance, but as the story progresses it’s transformed into an eerie town that’s filled with sadistic adults and children. Oh, that’s another thing. Asano shows us something we rarely see in stories, children committing unspeakable violence, sometimes at random. These kids are not possessed by any demons, they are just kids committing horrific acts of violence.

It’s hard to pinpoint the main character of the story, but one character that’s present throughout is violence. Violence in Nijigahara Holograph lurks just under the surface like a sea monster. Through the lens of this story, we all have that monster in us; some of us force it down forever, while others let it come up for air. Some people practically let it frolic freely without restraint. The only optimistic thought Nijigahara Holograph offers is a child’s wish to end the world.

You’re probably thinking to yourself, “Damn, Jamila. This sounds like a bummer, why should I read it?” Because it’s a brilliantly crafted story that will captivate you… oh and it’s fucking gorgeous!

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Zombie Stationery

I would revert back to the old-fashioned ways of *gasp* hand writing letters if they could be done on this too-cool-for-words zombie stationery. Not only are they gory but designed exceptionally well. I went through to mild bought of depression when I realized these weren’t for sale.

They were created by Behance Network for the German crime and horror cable channel 13th Street which is now their official stationery.

Credit and Awards for this unbelievably awesome undead design:

Credits:
Client: NBC UNIVERSAL Global Networks Deutschland GmbH
Agency: Jung von Matt AG, Germany
Creative Directors: Jacques Pense, Michael Ohanian
Art Directors: Matthias Kracker, Stefan R?singer
Copywriters: Lennart Frank
Graphic Artist: Karla Kurz
Account Manager: Kerstin Stutzmann, Ruben Ockenfels
Post Production: Recom
Production: Frank Schweizer
Published: 2008 

Awards:
New York Festivals – Silver
ADC Germany – Bronze
ADC Europe – Finalist
D&AD – In Book


[Source: Geekosystem and Behance]

Tattoo Tuesday- H.P. Lovecraft & Cthulhu

Today’s Tattoo Tuesday are a tribute to infamous horror/fantasy/sci-fi/weird fiction author H.P. Lovecraft and of course everyone’s favorite cosmic entity Cthulhu!  I’m a big fan of Lovecraft’s work, although many are dense and difficult to get through, the mythos he created are so fascinating.  You find yourself immersed in his cosmic and dream worlds you forget where you are, well at least I do.  I think the best, and worst part, is that his stories are told like accounts, which are frightening believable.  Speaking of believable, while searching for these tattoos I found a few Elder Sign tats, which I suppose is a good idea because when the Deep Ones come along, they will be protected and the rest of us… well, not so much.

Can you guess which one is mine?!

If you are a Lovecraft fan or want to know more about him and his works, the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast is the best place to start!
I included all the information about the tattoo that was available. If you are interested in having me feature your geeky tattoo on a future Tattoo Tuesday feel free to email me at girlgonegeekblog[at]gmail.com.

Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn

“Escher, Lovecraft, Tolkien, and her mom. The full piece was designed by a friend and then Anna got it inked by Attilio Capra at Il Pellerossa. The tattoo is based on the “Haunter in the dark” story from Lovecraft, with the geometrical crystal pictured as one of Escher’s solids. Also inside there is the Quenya word “amil” which means “mother”. (via GeekyTattoos)”
Lovecraft book cover tattoo done by Triscal-Goddess (via DeviantArt)
Elder Sign, modeled after the version described by Derleth. Tattoo (via Cobalt123 on Flickr) Continue reading →

Tattoo Tuesday- Scary Movie Characters

Halloween is on Sunday so it was only appropriate to have a Halloween themed Tattoo Tuesday.  This weeks tattoos I decided to focus on iconic and famous horror/scary movie characters.  Enjoy and Happy Halloween everyone! 

 

If you are interested in having me feature your geeky tattoo on a future Tattoo Tuesday feel free to email me at girlgonegeekblog[at]gmail.com.

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[Sources ChicagoNow TattooParadise Punjabilokvirs AmazingData About]

H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast

I’ve been in a Lovecraftian mood recently and stumbled upon of the best podcasts I’ve ever laid ears on.  It’s the HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast. It is nowhere near new but I had to share this discovery with you all.  Chris Lackey and Chad Fifer are the hosts and they do an outstanding job.

Even though many Lovecrafts stories are short, they are also dense and this helps readers untangle their way and better understand and hopefully appreciate Lovecraft.  Each week they go over one or two of his stories and to be honest you don’t even need to reread or even read the stories prior to the podcast.  They give an in-depth summary and discuss the background of the story, history and things of that nature.  But what makes me love this podcast so much is it’s actually funny.  They made me literally LOL.

Something else I like is that if they don’t like a story, they say it and they say why.  They love Lovecraft but also say whether they think a story is good or bad, they don’t blindly believe everything is gold.  They also address Lovecrafts overt racism in his stories.  You can download them (free of course) on iTunes or visit their website HPpodcast.com and listen and download them there.  They are on currently Episode 52 but I’ve started from the beginning and I’m on Episode 13.

Also check our their Facebook page.

Rumor: Guillermo del Toro taking H.P. Lovecraft to the Big Screen


According to the LA Times Blog, here are rumors that Guillermo del Toro (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth) may direct an adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s 1931 novella At the Mountains of Madness.  They asked him in an interview recently whether that would indeed be his next film and he, “he flashed an impish grin and said, “We’ll see” (LA Times).”  He also said in an interview with First Showing that “If I had the freedom to choose and the chance to hold it until its done, I’d do Mountains right away.”

In an interview last year he discussed plans on making a Frankenstein film and an adaptation of At the Mountains of Madness where he referred to Madness as “[his] obsession.”  He apparently already has a script and maybe this will help him (and us) get over the The Hobbit.

He also told Aint it Cool,

“Mountains is exactly the movie I would like to do,” del Toro said. “It would push buttons, and it’s extreme in many areas. It’s a hard R-rated, big production tentpole in the genre of horror. What I love about tentpole horror – which is not done much anymore, if at all – is that there was a time when you could see something like “Alien” or “The Shining” or “The Thing”. Movies that came not as a B-movie product of a studio, but as an A, tentpole, big release, high-end production like “The Exorcist”, and so on and so forth.”

Excited yet?!

LA Times sources have whispered that Madness will definitely be his next movie and that James Cameron will produce it and it will in 3D.  I’m sick of 3D movies, but if it’s Camerons 3D, plus Del Toro’s directorial prowess with the macabre mind of H.P. Lovecraft well count me in!

Lovecraft fans know how difficult it is to effectively adapt his stories to the big screen while staying true to the nature of the story.  Why?  Well because they are so damn crazy!  I haven’t read At the Mountains of Madness but in simplest form it’s a monster movie in Antarctica (read more about it here).

For those of you unfamiliar with Lovecraft he was an American author of horror/fantasy/science fiction or what he would like to call “cosmicism” or “cosmic horror”.  He’s widely known for his Cthulhu Mythos, if you don’t know about it you should, it will make you a better person :).  Pretty much any horror writer or film maker has been influenced by Lovecraft in some way.

“According to Joyce Carol Oates, Lovecraft — as with Edgar Allan Poe in the 19th century — has exerted “an incalculable influence on succeeding generations of writers of horror fiction”. Stephen King called Lovecraft “the twentieth century’s greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.”

Also fanboys you know Arkham Insane Asylum in the Batman series, well Arkham was a fictional New England city originally created by Lovecraft.  If you know Lovecraft it makes complete sense to name an insane asylum Arkham.

Lovecrafters are you excited or upset about Madness being taken to the big screen? Sound off below!

[ Sources TC Games & More Aint it CoolLA Times Blog]

Zombie Week- Zombie Picture of the Day (7/30)

Typical zombie can never keep their head straight! lol

Found on Flickr from Midnight-Digital