Now onto manga which is my preferred choice to anime at the moment. That being said I have read much less manga and have not completed many full series so this list is due to change eventually. Comment some manga recommendations down below! Also yes that is my collection in the top picture.
- Vinland Saga
If you read my favorite anime post or follow me on any social media this will come as no surprise. I am obsessed with this manga and really love where it is going passed the anime and how the characters are developing. I am currently caught up with 11 volumes and waiting for the 12th has been such a struggle );
The art is amazing and I love having it in physical forms and having the art in my collection whenever. If you enjoyed the anime and would like to know more of the story or if you haven’t watched the anime go check out the manga! Rating (10/10).
From what I have seen in the manga community Rikudou is a fairly unknown manga, at least in the United States. I first seen it on a youtube video about the best psychological mangas. Sadly there is no English print and I haven’t even been able to find a Japanese copy for purchase so I do have to read it online.
Rikudou is about a young man named Riku who has been through an extremely traumatic childhood and becomes interested in boxing to get his anger out. Because of his past it is very hard to get Riku down no matter how hurt he is. Although he has much less training and does not have the amazing form of the other boxers in his area, Riku’s hard work makes him a top up and coming underdog. You get the amazing action and adrenaline of a sports anime complemented with a very psychological and depressing inner conflict in not only Riku but his friends and other boxers he faces.
This manga is definitely more on the explicit side and will not shy away from dark topics which I enjoy. It makes you want to work hard and put your all into something just like Riku. As every manga on the list has amazing art, this manga tops anything I have seen. Its very realistic and flows seamlessly making the fight scenes look like you’re watching a movie. I would recommend this to anyone who likes sport manga or depressing yet compelling stories. I hope i can get a physical copy I need this art!! Rating (10/10).
3. Twin Star Exorcists
I have said this many times but in my opinion Twin Star Exorcists is one of the most underrated manga out right now. This series has everything any of the popular shonen manga but does it better than most in my opinion.
The series follows two exorcists who are told they are involved in a prophecy that will eventually defeat all of the evil spirits or “kegare”. They are due to get married and have the prophecy child. While this seems pretty silly and cheesy, the story is much more than that. We are introduced to a variety of characters all with unique personalities and exorcist powers. Theres cool tournament arcs, bloody battles with kegare, and a story that evolves with each volume.
One of my favorite things about the story is that even the kegare have different personality traits and feelings that humanize them even though they’re main goal is to kill humans, readers are drawn to their personalities and reasoning and even end up liking some kegare. Its the classic dilemma of who is really in the wrong here? Who is the bad guy? Along with that unlike other shonen this series is not afraid to kill people off or have the main characters lose battles or suffer grave injuries. You are actually afraid a character could die because it happens a decent amount.
The covers are some of my favorite covers in anime and the art style is very clean and dark yet cute at times as well. Theres small portions of comedy thrown in but for the most part Twin Stars is a thrilling read and if you are a shonen fan you need to check it out! Also, it does have an anime that does not follow the manga and I was not a fan of so definitely go for the manga over the anime. Rating (9/10).
4. Battle Royale
I describe Battle Royale to people as Hunger Games on crack. It is in my opinion a more realistic portrayal of what would really happen if this was something the world did for population control. That on top of the fact these participants are all highschoolers. Imagine the feeling of going to this random island, getting deadly weapons, and knowing only one of your classmates will survive. You either kill or be killed. It is interesting to see how people change and what goes through their minds when in this horrific situation.
This is one of the most explicit manga I have ever read. It goes into great detail with the murders and other awful things that happen on the island. It also goes into characters back stories and relationships with other classmates which just adds to the pain when you watch them be brutally murdered. I found myself holding out hope for my favorite characters saying they will find a way out of this only to be crushed when they die, although I should’ve known. This is the manga I show people when they think manga is lame and they always become interested.
The manga is very hard to find but if you’re into this kind of thing it is a must read. It has a live action movie I have not watched but would love an anime if done right. Rating (9/10).
5. Deadman Wonderland
Coming in at number five is Deadman Wonderland which is ironically the first manga I have ever gotten and what made me want to collect manga in the first place. The anime was amazing but did not have an ending so I needed the manga and it did not disappoint. I am not going to say Deadman Wonderland is the best critically acclaimed manga, however out of everything I have read so far I enjoyed it enough to make my list.
The premise is so cool and unique. A prison where people can go like an amusement park and watch the bad criminals die in inhumane ways. Ganta is blamed for the murder of his entire class and sent to this prison. They have sensors on their necks where if they do not follow rules it will explode… Then there is this mysterious girl in a jumpsuit who appears randomly, eats a lot of food, and is extremely strong when she wants to be. On top of all this there is an underground fighting ring with peoples called deadmen who control blood where the punishment is the removal of a limb.
The action scenes in this manga with blood fighting is really cool mixed with the rich people cheering for the deadmen to die makes for a dark scenery. The characters are all very unique and share the common goal of taking over the corrupt prison. The crazy characters, amazing action, plot twists, and general unsettling mood of the manga make this a great read! Rating (9/10). P.S. Crow is my favorite 🙂
Thank you for reading! Tune in next to see popular anime and manga I have dropped….