Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service is a fantastic series. I’ve always loved paranormal stories with quirky characters, and Kurosagi dishes that out in spades.
(Yes, yes, I know there’s that other famous manga called Kurosagi. But the one by Otsuka Eiji/Yamazaki Housui has the limelight this time, alright?)
So when Eeeper’s Choice announced a MMF (Manga Movable Feast) for Kurosagi, I had to join in. Despite not having an active blog. Hey, as good a time as any to start writing again. 🙂 (I’d also wanted to join one of those things for the longest time, but mainly been too lazy/shy…)
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (or Kurosagi Shitai Takuhaibin) is an ongoing series. Fourteen volumes have been published in Japan, and only twelve have been translated into English, by Dark Horse Comics. I wish I could give a solid date on when 13 will be coming out, but more on that in the last blog post of this series.
It tends to be episodic in style, guiding the characters through cases where our characters get to fulfill the wishes of the dead — in exchange for recompense, of course. The level of gore and the episodic execution reminds me of Pet Shop of Horrors, but Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service delivers a deeper, less fantastical story, often asking some interesting questions while maintaining levity.
Before we begin, I should probably note that this manga has a fair bit of blood and oft-gory bits, right from the first chapter. It’s still all in black and white, yes, but can be shocking to the uninitiated. I think there’s some nudity in the images I’ll be posting. I can’t say I like gore, but I really like Yamazaki-sensei’s art style. I find it pleasing to the eye, and the detail is great. (There’s a nice shot of intricately-decorated china in volume two that didn’t make it to the cut. “Black (tea)…like your company.”)
One-line chapter summaries
1: Creepy dad gets what’s coming to him.
2: Dignity to the dead in a traditional story.
3: An embalmer dabbles in, uh, body art.
“I knew you wouldn’t understand…does a priest give last rites to kill someone? No, he does it in faith.// This knife is just my rosary. // I move it in my hand and I prepare them for eternity.”
4: An actuary is super-effective.
MVP: Karatsu. He’s the main character, after all, and his corpse-animating ability courtesy his/his guardian’s powers are pretty useful for vengeance.
Tidbit/Random Thoughts: Aokigahara Forest will become a recurring location in the series, and is an actual place infamous for suicides. The translator, Toshifumi Yoshida, directs the reader in the notes to this Japanese reporters’ account of strange occurrences in the forest.
“We’ve got everything here that points to us being a death spot. Perhaps we should just promote ourselves as ‘Suicide City’ and encourage people to come here,” says the mayor of Aokigahara, exasperated by the high number of suicides registered in the area.
It’s also listed in the Cracked list of six creepiest places on Earth. Which I found an interesting read. Ah, Cracked. XD
A few excerpts from volume one: 🙂