Junji Ito has been one of my life long favourite horror mangaka. I was first introduced to his work in High School when I friend recommended I read ‘Uzumaki’, where a town becomes obsessed with spirals. One scene where a woman stabs herself in the ear – because of the spiral structure of the eardrum, haunted me for months after. I then got really into his one shots and short stories. Without further ado, here are my top 5!
Warning: there’s a bit of gore in the pics!
A man is hired for an unusual job – to ease a boy’s phantom pains. The man and about 4 other workers, run around the boy’s mansion, massaging and spraying painkiller on spots the boy specifies. At first it seems ridiculous, but the pay is good, but the man slowly realises something is up. Workers get hurt and don’t feel any pain, the boy’s mother becomes manic is soothing her son’s discomfort, and it seems no one can leave the phantom mansion.
In the Valley of Mirrors
A group of friends go hiking and find an unusual valley scattered
with mirror shards. Intrigued they set up mirrors on either side, wanting to see what the locals were trying to achieve. A character experiences a horrific flashback with a Romeo-Juliet love story. The friends soon see that it’s not just your reflection in the mirror.
Everyone wants to achieve that Kim Kardashian waist, but to what lengths would you go? A young girl, follows in her friend’s footsteps,
and undergoes cosmetic surgery to remove some of her ribs. While she gets her desired results, she can’t shake the sound of strumming that haunts her every night. When she investigates, she finds a woman playing a harp that looks oddly shaped like a rib…
Secret of the Haunted House
A haunted house shows up in a village town, and scares the towns folk silly. After complaints, a policeman investigates but mysteriously disappears. So two 10 years olds think they’ll do a better job! You also get to see a grown up Soichi – one of Ito’s infamous characters.
Ma no Kakera (Red Turtleneck)
A guy cheats on his girlfriend with a fortune teller. When the fortune teller tries to remove his head, he comes crawling back for help. It’s a race against time as he tries to keep his head on!
I hope you enjoyed these one shots, it was really hard to choose just 5. I’m sure there’s also a few others that I love but have just forgotten to include! Let me know in the comments if there’s any on that you love!
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