Daydream Sanctuary Features

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

[101 Manga in 2011] GOTH - Highschool Sociopaths and Their Attraction to Murder

By Otsuichi and OOIWA Kenji
Kamiyama: I love seeing flesh and blood....
Morino: I love watching people suffer before death and cry in pain....
Kamiyama: I wonder what it will be like to kill....
Morino: I crave for darkness....
Kamiyama: I want to kill Morino.
Morino: Kamiyama and I seem so the same.

FAVORITISM: 3 Hearts ---> LIKE

Despite the mysterious events and the psychopaths playing their roles in this series, Goth is not exactly terrific as a psychological and mystery series. In fact, it hadn't been intended to be such, since it's more of an eye candy; it's visually delicious to those who find pleasure in watching freaky people doing and enjoying gruesome stuff.
There aren't really much thought-provoking aspects in the series, aside from the last arc I suppose. But though it was the most intriguing part, the twist is honestly pretty predictable if you're used to a lot of horror + mystery series already.

Too bad. The series had an interesting start, with the main character curious to find out the culprit behind the recent crimes... because he would very much want to deal with one of the escaped victims himself.

Unfortunately, majority of the arcs in this manga just begin with a murder, which the main characters will figure out later, then the heroine being in danger, lastly with the hero rescuing her.

Apparently, the heroine's a favorite victim that is lucky enough not to be harmed seriously thanks to the hero being right on time for her. As for the hero, he is genius and perfect enough to solve puzzles and be unharmed by the villain without much effort.

For a manga that involves crime, it's really odd for there to be no law enforcers involved. It's even stranger for ALL the killers in the series fail or didn't even think of silencing the hero for figuring out their dark secrets.

That's just too unnatural.

Speaking of what's "natural", I'm impressed on how the series has portrayed the "abnormality" of the main characters though. They have a peculiar fascination to death and torture, and that had not changed when they encountered the real thing.

They didn't turn into fighters of justice; as they solve more cases; instead of preventing the crimes, their obsession grows. Their relationship didn't turn into romance for the heck of it either. They are just interested in unusual things, and got united because of that interest.

The other undeniably remarkable quality of this series is the artwork. How it was illustrated fit the story's dark mood a lot; intense and creepy scenes are portrayed wonderfully too~ The art and its several mature scenes make it a nice horror treat~

I'm not that pleased with the character designs though. Well, yes, our main characters are goodlooking, but the hero looks so similar to a minor character that it had been troublesome to differentiate them. A more distinguishable variation on character appearance would've made things less confusing. It really sucked that the confusion on the character design was used as one of the "twists".

Goth looks cool but I don't think it has been as great as it seems.

It's episodic and has a number of cliches, and what only saved it from being categorized as something "typical" is the peculiar side of its main characters' personalities. But for those who are used to typical shoujo/shounen who want to be introduced to the psychological horror genre, I suppose this isn't a bad series to start with (provided that they could already handle disturbing scenes like.... chopped naked body parts).

If you're looking for a psychological thriller with good mystery, Goth is not really the title for you. However, if you're simply into horror (but not really aiming to find something extremely frightening) and just looking for a visual treat, Goth is a recommendation~


chungky said...

i've been looking for something with some good oddity xD im not sure if i could handle really gory scenes tho.
if i come across this title i'll definitely giv it a go.

Sapphire Pyro said...

@ chungky

Hope you enjoy GOTH~

If you are familiar with Reiko Shimizu's Himitsu, the gore stuff's kinda similar.... but not as intense as Himitsu's, hehe. VERY different levels of intensity, haha. In other words, compare to Himitsu, GOTH's gore is nothing =P Haha!

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