Daydream Sanctuary Features

Sunday, October 9, 2011

[Manga] Future Diary

By Esuno Sakae
Yukiteru: I don't have friends... but that's okay. I already have an imaginary friend anyway....
(His "Imaginary Friend") Deus Ex Machina: I am the god of time and space...
Yukiteru: Hiya Deus. You're hanging out in my room again, huh? (I still don't get how you manage to make my room so big and only my bed left though.)
Deus Ex Machina: You seem to be busy with your phone....
Yukiteru: Ah, yeah. I write down stuff that I observe around me here in my diary.
Deus Ex Machina: Sounds fun. Would you like to play a game?
Yukiteru: What game?
Deus Ex Machina: I'll give you and twelve others the power to see the future, using your diaries. You should kill all other diary holders in order to win. The sole survivor of the game shall become my successor.... become a god.
Yukiteru: Oh... err... you're just my imagination anyway so.. okay, whatever.
("Imaginary Friend" #2)Murumuru: Good luck~

= The next morning =

Yukiteru: What? There are today's entries in my diary which haven't even happened yet!

= Later throughout the day, Yukiteru realizes that everything written in his diary are for real =

Yukiteru: This is soooo cool! *big smile*

*Yukiteru sees his latest diary entry*

Yukiteru: ..... DEAD END?

*Yukiteru is f*cking scared but suddenly...*

Yuno: It's your future.

Japan. Contemporary. Parallel Universe. Another World.
Diary. Future. Survival. Time. Space. Stalker. Game. Death. Betrayal. Willpower.
Psychological. Horror. Suspense. Supernatural. Mystery. Action. Adventure. Romance.
Seinen-ish Shounen.
Violence. Gore. Psychopathic Behavior. Immorality. Mature Talk. Nudity. Sex. (not super explicit) Rape.

5 Hearts ---> OBSESSION

The series begins with an ordinary kid living his usual life, until things turn upside down one day no thanks to some bizarre supernatural phenomenon.

As the leading character, no matter how much of a loser he is, he will always manage to survive any dangerous situation because the goddess of luck is absolutely biased towards him. What's surprising is that some of the stronger characters will end up being fond of him, so he even got bodyguards for free. Most of the failed missions would be his fault, but he'll be forgiven out of love.

Such a pathetic main character, isn't he? Sounds like your typical shounen series with loser main characters, huh?

But the similarities end there.

Mirai Nikki is anything but your average manga series.

If you are craving for a remarkably written and fiercely entertaining psychological thriller, Mirai Nikki is something you shouldn't miss.... provided that you can handle it.~

Mirai Nikki is a supernatural survival game wherein your ultimate weapon is your personal diary upgraded with the feature of foretelling the future. The weapons (diaries), predictions (entries), and writers (players) are varied in so many ways.

The series has a fantastic diversed cast. Whether main or supporting, each character had the chance to do something cool and something lame (or freaky)! They all have different traits, backgrounds, and ideals.

If there's one thing that the majority of the characters have in common.... that would be their insanity... they're abnormal in one way or another.

This series presents humans being driven (or already driven) to madness. They may appear ordinary in the surface, but whether it's obvious or subtle, whether from birth or triggered, there's something about them that would freak you out (unless those things are normal or not surprising/peculiar to you). Yeah, they can have charming or awesome qualities, but their creepy sides remain creepy.

Mirai Nikki may be crazy, but as if the real world is any different (heck, oftentimes reality is scarier than fiction). It portrays various kinds of psychological abnormalities which could make you wonder if the crazy people in your world are really insane. It also deals with a lot of ethical and moral issues that makes you question if you're as righteous as you believe you are.

Yeah, for a series that scares you out of your wits, it's also the thought-provoking type. Majority of the things here are more than what they seem. Not everything there can be taken for granted. It has so many mysteries for you to unlock.... and just when you think you've found the answers, more puzzles get thrown at you. Its being twisted and messed up doesn't help you in finding the right path either. It's full of twists and suprises... what happens eventually often turn out to what you don't expect it to.

Mirai Nikki's already psychologically frightening, but visually it ain't less terrifying. We've got merciless killings, chopped body parts, blood splatters and pools, tortured preys, tormented souls, bone collecting... heck, even their laughs could be super scary.

It's disturbing in many other ways too. Some may just be shallow fanservice (yeah, ecchi lovers, there are) but some are for matured eyes only (you-know-what). It makes me wonder why it's still categorized as shounen... perhaps as a horror series, it also makes you let go of your... innocence.

Whoa, that gave me the chills.

Though its the horror elements which seem dominant in this series, it actually also covers positive themes like love and trust. But of course, it won't be as simple as "good versus evil". There are various kinds of love (there's love that can be.... suffocating.) and at times it can be unwise to trust (everyone lies). There's nothing that can be considered as "simple" in this series.

The art style may appear a little bland, and may not fit into such a genre. But that had been a fantastic way to fool the readers on how horrifying it actually is. Besides, majority of the grand and intense scenes were illustrated amazingly anyway. It's just perfect~

Another thing that's just perfect for this series is its main character. Yeah, he was a useless crybaby but... contrary to popular opinion, I think Yukiteru as a leading character for a story such as Mirai Nikki's is what makes the series very interesting. If the leading character is Yukiteru's complete opposite (in other words: a perfect hero), this series wouldn't be as interesting as it is right now.

Even the mangaka seems to be aware of that; I think that's one of his purposes of writing Mirai Nikki: Paradox, because everything can be concluded THAT quickly with such a main character. Mirai Nikki would've been classified as typical shounen if that's the case. No mystery, danger... quite boring. Mirai Nikki: Paradox is a fun read when comparing it to its original adaptation.

Another manga that would be fun to read along this series would be Mirai Nikki: Moisaic, which contains the side stories focusing on the other characters. It would explain some of the events that happened in the main story, though you could go on without reading it~

Mirai Nikki is a genuinely chilling dissection of how willpower can alter fate itself. It is deliberately paced, but endlessly creepy, horrifying manga.* Overall, incredibly written and very enjoyable.

It is highly recommended not only to those who get excited on gore and morbidity, or feel drawn on psychological madness, but also to those intrigued to mindboggling mysteries, or those who get thrilled on heartrending suspense. Heck, there's even shoujo-ish romance in it (I'm looking at you, my OTP!!!).

* copied from holdenn's review at MAL
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