"Devil" is four part mini series by manga artist Torajiro Kishi (Maka Maka) and blockbuster anime studio Madhouse (Trigun, Paprika, Ninja Scroll), brought to you exclusively by Dark Horse Comics. It's a pretty interesting sci-fi take on the vampire genre.
The story follows police detectives Takimoto and Migiwa as they try to contain these Genetically enhanced vampires or "Devils" as the rampage across Japan. It seems many people think the super-human Devils are possessed, when in fact they are part of a government experiment gone wrong. They are infected with a virus called SCBS (Serious-Injury Chronic Blood-Sucker Syndrome). Yes, it's a bit wordy, but no worse then S.H.I.E.L.D. The Devils are evil bastards and hate the human race. A great scene that shows this is with one of the Devils standing over a half alive woman that he just tore her legs off, telling her " What, your not going to run? Hurry, Go now!" Pretty sadistic panel and I loved it!!
As the issue goes on, Migiwa is kidnapped by the Devil Nishioka who seems to still be half human. He explains his back story to Migiwa of how he was one of the researchers of this virus and fell in love with their first test subject, a girl named Mariko. Nishioka allowed Mariko to give him a "new life" as her chosen one and infect him with SCBS. Nishioka now vows to return to the lab and set Mariko free. Migiwa pleas with him to reconsider, as he seems to have taken to the virus differently and can be the only one to help cure the other infected Devils.
I have to admit I am not a big fan of Manga or Japanese style of story telling. I also didn't read the first 2 issue of this series. Those are the two reasons I chose to review this book. I figured I would be able to come at it from a different perspective and see if it stands alone on its own, something every comicbook should do to attract new readers. With that said, I really did like this issue, and the synopsis on the first page gave me enough info to understand where the story has been. I was really engrossed in the character of Nishioka, the half human/Devil. His loneliness and longing for a life of being special was something I used to be able to relate to. You feel bad for him even though he is one evil character who can careless for life, the life he once craved.
The art of Torajiro Kishi works well. I did think it was a little flat and underwhelming at points, but he did portray a lot of movement to the panels. The first page especially, it felt like it was going to come alive with the classic Anime slow motion fight scene with high speed panning backgrounds. It almost feels like they made an animated movie of this first, then pulled frames out of it to make the comic. They didn't, but it has that effect and it works.
I definitely liked this issue and thought they did a great job of keeping even new readers in the loop. I recommend it to any Manga and Anime fan, but also comic fans in general. Torajiro Kishi's western style sci-fi horror original is a pretty fun ride. " EAT DEATH, BITCH!!"