By Deb Aoki
Takashi Komuro's world gets turned upside down as zombies invade his high school and turn his classmates into the bloodthirsty undead. The world has gone to hell, and now Takashi and a mismatched group of survivors must stay alive without turning on each other first.
A monk, a mortician, a dowser, a computer whiz and a guy who talks to a sock puppet on his hand find it hard to find 'normal' jobs after graduating from a Buddhist seminary college. But a twist of fate introduces this rag-tag group to an unusual calling: As specialists in "corpse delivery" who help the recently deceased tie up loose ends from beyond the grave.
If you've ever thought to yourself, "I like shojo manga and all, but it would be so much better if it had more zombies," your wishes have come true in the pages of Grand Guignol Orchestra... well, kinda.
Shojo manga's mistress of horror delivers a story about a traveling troupe of entertainers/zombie hunters with lots of dysfunctional family drama, flesh-eating zombies and gender-bending heroes/heroines. Full of Goth-y thrills and Rococo frills to entertain fans of Godchild and The Cain Saga.
The premise of Velveteen & Mandala is pure nerdy cliché: short-skirted schoolgirls fighting zombies in an apocalyptic wasteland. Innocent monster-fighting fun, right? But in the hands of Jiro Taniguchi, alt-manga artist and master of the disturbing, it turns into a twisty, hallucinatory creepshow that gets under the skin.
Almost everything you need to know about Ghost Talker's Daydream can be summed up in a few words: It's a mystery / suspense / sex comedy series about a 19-year old albino dominatrix who can talk to ghosts.
Saiki Misaki's "day job" involves tormenting grown men for money, but her truly unusual talent lies in her ability to help tormented souls who crave release and sometimes revenge from the afterlife.
Mousy Michiru can tell when someone will die, so she's puzzled when she meets Shito and Chika. Her instincts say that her two handsome classmates should be dead.
It turns out both boys are undead, and are only walking the earth today because they took out a zombie loan, a deal with a supernatural 'money lender' to extend their lives. Chika and Shito recruit Michiru to help them find, fight and kill flesh-eating zombies in order to pay off their debts.
Mitsuo and Fujio are two working stiffs who would rather wrestle than work. But when they kill and bury their annoying supervisor at the Dark Fuji dump, they set in motion an invasion of the undead. In zombie-infested Tokyo, the rich start exploiting the poor for entertainment, and the two buddies are reunited in a fateful martial arts match.
Drawn in the heta-uma (bad but good) style, Tokyo Zombie is a manic, manly horror comedy where the undead rampage with relish and wrestling is the only honorable sport in a corrupt and dishonest world gone mad.
High school student Yurara has two handsome classmates who would love to be her boyfriend. But the trouble is, one of her suitors is in love with the guardian spirit who lives inside of her. To make matters even more complicated, Yurara's guardian spirit has a habit of taking over Yurara's body (and transforming her appearance) at most inconvenient times.
For even more spooks, check out Rasetsu, the sequel to Yurara, featuring a pretty ghost-hunter who has a hardcore sweet-tooth and a demon who wants to make her his bride.
Toru Muhyo is a pint-sized specialist in supernatural law, which essentially means that he battles and prosecutes vengeful ghosts and restless spirits who dare to break the rules governing the world of the living.
Meanwhile, his partner and intern Jiro (a.k.a. Roji) tries his best to keep up, but fighting the angry and resentful dead is harder than it looks.
Kieli is a 14-year old teen who spends her days surrounded by sad and lonely spirits who can't seem to pass on to the other side. Seeing spirits isn't as cool as it sounds.
Then Kieli meets Harvey, a cynical veteran of a forgotten war who looks strangely youthful. But that's not the only strange thing about Harvey: he can see ghosts too. In fact, he carries one around with him: The Corporal, a disembodied spirit who talks through a portable radio.