Venus in the Blind Spot by Junji Ito
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A “best of” collection of creepy tales from Eisner award winner and legendary horror master Junji Ito.
This ultimate collection presents the most remarkable short works of Junji Ito’s career, featuring an adaptation of Rampo Edogawa’s classic horror story “Human Chair” and fan favorite “The Enigma of Amigara Fault.” In a deluxe presentation with special color pages and color illustrations from his most recent long-form manga No Longer Human, every page invites readers to revel in a world of terror.
Warnings: extreme body horror, corpse mutilation, stalking and gendered violence, sexual assault, necrophilia, animal death
Note: Not a YA novel; this is like nightmare fuel so keep it away from kids.
Reading this anthology is like discovering new fears that you didn’t know you had. As an anthology, not much connects the stories with each other, but they are all like way out there, in terms of what the horrific element is. The first story itself in which groups of people are found dead with their corpses stitched together in bizarre ways, thus having everyone isolating themselves will hit particularly because *looks around at COVID* and that story is only the start of how insane it gets. There’s people living secretly in chairs, a father who has hit upon a new innovative method to keep the boys away from his beautiful daughter, the weird creepy kid born in a very, uh, disturbing method of procreation, and more. The stories deliver on the horror, put it is like inexplicable horror – more on the supernatural, than having some human reasoning or logic behind it, which can also make it frustrating, because in terms of conclusion they don’t deliver much. It is disturbing, of course, and the artwork doesn’t shy away from putting it all right into our faces (Junji Ito sure has some talent in giving us quite terrifying expressions) – perhaps the most disturbing one was the one with the tongue (yes, I am saying this in an anthology that has had corpses sewn together like some bizarre modern art pieces). I am not sure if I really want to read more of his work – I’m intrigued by the elements, but the lack of satisfying conclusions to most of the stories kind of put me off.
Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Viz Media LLC, via Edelweiss.
Releases on August 18, 2020
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