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A Guide to Junji Ito (Links Added)

About 2 years ago I started what would become a fascination with the work of Junji Ito. Ito is a famed manga horror writer from the Gifu Prefecture in Japan. His work is renowned by many horror aficionados and I decided to begin cataloging his work and rating it. More to come as I read!
1Lazer/Wulf
The Beast Of Left And Right


It all started when I got into these guys from a friend a while back and saw they had merch featuring artwork from a famous panel from Junji Ito's Uzumaki. I loved the illustration work and was hooked immediately.
2Nine Inch Nails
The Downward Spiral


Uzumaki
My first experience with Junji Ito was this one. A horror classic which revolves around the concept of a town haunted not by a creature or monster but by a spiral pattern. Beginning with a man’s obsession which leads to his own self-disfigurement into a spiral, the novel eventually leads to grandiose proportions beyond the scope of our world. 10/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Uzumaki
3Flying Lotus
You're Dead!


The Enigma of Amigara Fault
A immensely disturbing short that left me feeling incredibly shook for days after I read it. Amigara Fault is a story encompassing a discovery of a body of rock found on a cliffside with holes in the shape of human bodies. Later, many become lured into the holes as they believe they are perfectly aligned with the outlines of their bodies. I’ll save details for those who intend to read it. My personal favorite and a definite must in my book. 10/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/ZNSaq
4Laura Stevenson
Sit Resist


The Human Chair
This was a bit more silly among the work’s I’ve read and I admit was a bit of reach in terms of being “chilling”. A woman purchases a chair which haunts her as if a person exists within it. I found this one to be kind of a stretch. However, I feel that to other’s it may differ greatly depending upon their natural fears. 5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Human-Chair/Ch-000---Oneshot-?id=178592
5La Dispute
Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair


Thing That Drifted Ashore
A trope among some of Ito’s shorts, the length of this one keeps you from truly feeling just how terrifying it’s grip could truly have been. As the title suggests, a creature from deep below the sea drifts ashore. The monster has it’s reveal even after it’s inherent death. Give it a go if you are scared of deep sea critters, but this was less than impressive in my book. 4/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/8GG4A
6Choking Victim
No Gods, No Managers


Red Turtleneck
Some of Ito’s best illustration work in terms of facial expressions emoting discomfort and pain, this was a pretty killer one to check out. A teen is left with his head separated from his body and must hold it up in order to prevent it from falling off after being cursed. A strangely enticing thriller. 8/10

Link: http://iemonsy.tumblr.com/post/65566643111/ma-no-kakera-tomio-red-turtleneck
7Sophie
Oil of Every Pearl's Un-Insides


Glyceride
Glyceride contains some of the most disgusting panels amongst all of his works and takes poor human hygiene to a new level. If you can stomach this one kudos, cause this was some seriously wretched work. I won’t give any other details away… 9/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Yami-no-Koe
8The Tallest Man on Earth
The Wild Hunt


Earthbound
More of social commentary than anything, Earthbound pushes un”earth”ly self-punishment to a new extreme. The victims in this story become literally paralyzed in place from the guilt of their crimes. 6.5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Yami-no-Koe
9The Dillinger Escape Plan
One of Us Is the Killer


Secret of the Haunted Mansion
Here we get a future glimpse at Soichi and more of his sinister antics as he coaxes two children to enter his haunted mansion of terror. 6.5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Yami-no-Koe
10Nodachi
Beyond Death Beyond Reason


Roar of Ages
Admittedly not one of his “scary” efforts, Roar of Ages is a deeply intriguing effort nonetheless. The writing of the story opens up plenty of opportunity for a prequel or possibly even a sequel, if Ito so chose to do so. 6/10 (as it stands however)

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Yami-no-Koe
11Fake Blood
Fix Your Accent


Blood Sucking Darkness
This seemed a bit too geared to people who are afraid of bats. I personally am not so I found it hard to feel the fear of this one. I do think that those who don’t like blood won’t need the illustrations to be in color though to be disturbed. 5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Yami-no-Koe
12Envy on the Coast
Lucy Gray


The Hanging Balloons
Who ever heard of a town attacked by floating head balloons that take form of the victim’s head? If you’re as skeptical as I was, you’ll scoff before giving this a read, but I assure you there are some epic surprises and some cringe-inducing illustrations at work here. 9/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/i2IJ6
13Fear Before
The Always Open Mouth


She is a Slow Walker
Hey! A zombie nod off! I was most definitely excited for this one and this contains one of Ito’s greatest page-turning scares ever. His buildup in this one was brilliant. 9.5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/She-is-a-Slow-Walker/Ch-000---Oneshot-?id=267613
14Sufferer
Sufferer


Black Paradox
Another of Ito’s collective stories split into multiple volumes, Black Paradox was an other-worldly endeavor filled with its share of thrills, grotesque imagery and plenty of action. 7/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Black-Paradox/Vol-1-Ch-1--Group-Suicide?id=62830
15Colonel Claypool's Bucket Of Bernie Brains
The Big Eyeball In The Sky


Hellstar Remina
A space/new planet tale which definitely showcases Ito as not only a master of unique and massive creations but also an action novelist. This story goes all over the place and back, much like Uzumaki but instead in the vein of a space epic. 8.5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Jigokusei-Remina
16Pressure Cracks
Pressure Cracks


The Back Alley
A man finds a place to live in a city he enjoys only to find out a dark secret in the alleyway hidden behind it. Another short with some glimpses of immense panel designs but at times failing to utilize just how brilliant this could have been with added length. 6/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/0nEKM
17PUP
The Dream Is Over


Long Dream
To anyone who has had a nightmare and wanted to escape, this may make sleeping quite impossible for a day or so. What would happen if your nightmare lasted not only for hours but for years or even an eternity? It’s an unfathomable thing that’s sure to last past your initial reading of this story. 9/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/4e4G5
18Tall Ships
Impressions


Splatter Film
Who knew that tasting something delicious beyond words could end up being your end? Splatter takes something so simple and makes it detrimental to life itself (much like most of Ito’s other work). Some crazy illustration in this one and although it’s not so scary, it definitely has tons of artistic merit. 6.5/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/fFrO0
19Thunder Dreamer
Capture


Fixed Face
I’d maybe avoid this if you’re claustrophobic or fear being trapped in place. This is a short based around a woman who gets trapped with metal pointed rods in both ears. While not showing a great deal of gore, a lot can be said through Ito’s attention to detail in facial drawings. 8.5/10

Link: http://iemonsy.tumblr.com/post/104139722970/fixed-face
20Melt-Banana
Fetch


Soichi’s Beloved Pet
A less terrifying outing to someone as into horror stuff as I am. Soichi, a recurring character among Ito’s work, curses a cat which his siblings find in the wild. The cat quickly becomes hostile and highly disturbing in it’s actions. Yeah this was just entertaining. 7/10

Link: http://kaidantheater.blogspot.com/2012/06/souichis-beloved-pet-by-junji-ito.html
21The Hotelier
Home, Like NoPlace Is There


The Window Next Door
Do you have a window that is adjacent to a neighbor's window? I hope you know your neighbor well cause after reading this you may be afraid to go near it otherwise. Ito's grotesque illustration of the woman in the window is detailed beyond measure. Quite a disturbing vibe to this one. 8.5/10

Link: https://scans-daily.dreamwidth.org/3773300.html
22Sampha
Process


Lingering Farewell
What if you could have extra time with those you love after they die? Ito presents us with a story about a family who prays for the return of their loved ones after they die through a ritualistic prayer. The prayer allows the deceased member to live several year after their death as an after image of their former self. A truly interesting concept but the lack of scariness is made up for with intriguing writing. 8/10

Link: http://iemonsy.tumblr.com/post/79562560679/ma-no-kakera-lingering-farewell
23Sleater-Kinney
Call the Doctor


The Chill
A curse through a jade statue begins to create a large amount of holes in the skin of whoever takes it. The victim also begins hallucinating of bugs coming from out of the holes of their body. A strange and utterly freaky concept which is sure to unnerve people. 7.5/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/kVYFI
24Slint
Spiderland


Army of One
What would seem to be a concept aiming to not only frighten but also make commentary of hypnosis of masses through media. Sort of like the human centipede but a much more conceptually thought out premise. Regardless, it's an eerie endeavor which had me imagining what the haunting song that plays throughout the story might sound like. I don't know that I'd ever want to hear it in reality... 9/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Jigokusei-Remina/Vol-001-Ch-006-005--Army-of-One?id=171461
25Motion City Soundtrack
Commit This to Memory


My Dear Ancestors
I was not prepared for this one at all. Starting off as a case of amnesia for Risa, she soon learns what traumatic sight she had witnessed that caused her sudden memory loss. A terrifyingly freakish climax brings this ending a ton of surprise while still maintaining the creativity that Ito is known for. 9/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/SpRPO7B
26Alexisonfire
Crisis


Mold
A house becomes corroded with a new breed of fungus. More of a gross endeavor than a scary one but I could definitely see someone getting disgusted. I found the illustrations intriguing here but the story left a bit to be desired. 6/10

Link: https://get.google.com/albumarchive/112087642883883024530/album/AF1QipMV398YFhfh5-Go3b_KE4AvkLKm-EhbRprPbt5L
27Nirvana
Nevermind


The Groaning Drain
UGH this was ABSOLUTELY one of the laziest Junji Ito stories I've read thus far. A woman obesessed with cleanliness goes nuts and someone gets pulled down a drain... YADA YADA YADA. I'm not ruining anything, don't waste your time... 2/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/y3pvO
28Buckethead
Bucketheadland 2


Layers of Fear
NOW THIS IS WHAT I READ JUNJI ITO FOR. The scintillating story, the inhuman imagery and the sheer terror of facing some of Ito's most gory illustrations. This was next level. After discovering ancient ruins and a near death car accident, A woman and sister discover that their daughter/sister has a body composed of layers of skin which contain the appearance of each year of the 20 year old's life. Honestly, I don't even want to tell you anymore. READ READ READ. 10/10

Link: https://imgur.com/gallery/2rrGH
29Brand New
Daisy


Long Hair in the Attic
One of Ito's older stories, this one gets crazy kind of out of the blue. I suppose that is the thrill of the gruesome imagery, which doesnt occur till the climax of the story. A girl is broken up with by her boyfriend and wishes to cut her long hair (as her boyfriend wanted her to have long hair) but only to her own demise. Pretty solid for its age and definitely has it's merit. 7/10

Link: https://scans-daily.dreamwidth.org/4520615.html
30Converge
All We Love We Leave Behind


Approval
This was just a a lengthy and odd story that didn't ever go anywhere interesting. Kyosuke is in love with Misuzu and wishes to marry her but her father does not approve of his marriage to her. He chooses to leave and meets someone new but as per usual there is a twist.. meh this was bland and not scary... 4/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-003-Ch-002-Permission?id=212537
31Sky Eats Airplane
The Sound of Symmetry


The Beehive
This one was just odd and I was rather luke warm on it. Takano is a collector of beehives but faces a trouble making kid who steals his beehives from him. Takano soon recognizes the boy's obsession with the hornets and makes a terrifying discovery as the story progresses. 5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-003-Ch-003-The-Bee-Hive?id=212542
32Cattle Decapitation
Monolith of Inhumanity


The Suichi Front
Some of Ito's most gruesome character designs lie in the folds here. A further dive into the narrative of Soichi's past and present wrapped with some highly intricate facial illustrations. Pretty amusing as well. 6.8/10

Link:http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Shin-Yami-no-Koe-Kaidan/Vol-001-Ch-001--The-Soichi-Front?id=103556
33Blink-182
Cheshire Cat


Junji Ito's Cat Diary
A semi twisted yet marvelously cute entry among the usual dark outing of Ito, this shows Ito's uncanny ability to study an animal's form and illustrate it with ease and precision. This also gives fans and new readers alike a view into his personal life with the charisma and personality his stories usually progress in. Highly entertaining and a must for "cat people" 9/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Ito-Junji-s-Cat-Diary
34Fact
Fact


The Face Burglar
An oldie that I'd love to see Ito redo and add more depth to... The idea of a woman who steals the face of those she's around is pretty fascinating, but alas, here it is done at a mediocre level and lacks the amount of illustration prowess Ito has now to truly terrorize you by the end of the story. 5/10

Link:http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-004-Ch-001-Face-Burglars?id=112489#5
35Greeley Estates
Go West Young Man, Let The Evil Go East


Scarecrows
Although this is an earlier work, you could never tell by how well this was done. My guess is his illustrations were progressing here cause this grew very chilling and haunting is it went on. A man puts a scarecrow over his daughter's grave and her soul begins to inhabit the scarecrow. I'll let you read and grave through this one... 8.5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-004-Ch-002-Scarecrows?id=112500
36Paramore
All We Know Is Falling


Falling
This was just odd and didn't do much for me. A group of 200 people in a town disappear only to begin falling from the sky one by one after vanishing for several days. Could see this being interesting if it were done with more depth but as it is this was just alright. 5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-004-Ch-003--Falling?id=103092
37Melt-Banana
Scratch or Stitch


Red String
This was just silly... a high school boy gets taken over by string? Eh just another one of Ito's shots in the dark that misfired greatly. 2/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-004-Ch-004-Red-String?id=112504
38The Bouncing Souls
How I Spent My Summer Vacation


Fun Summer Vacation
Another Soichi installment that finally explains the nails in his mouth. A few of his cousins meet him for the first time on their summer vacation and are cursed by his doll replicas of their bodies. I find this rather amusing and just some solid fun. The Soichi entries are just random segments which just vary between scary and silly. Not too bad. 6/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Itou-Junji-Kyoufu-Manga-Collection/Vol-005-Ch-001--Fun-Summer-Vacation?id=212565
39Alter Bridge
Blackbird


Black Bird
A man is rescued in the woods and is brought back to health. We soon learn that the man had survived not due to food rations but due to a woman/bird who feeds him flesh and blood to survive. The creature is unsatiable and things quickly turn for the worse. This was oddly amusing and something fairly different from his usual work, I enjoyed it. 7/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Ma-no-Kakera/Ch-006--Black-Bird?id=206819
40Jellyfish
Spilt Milk


Nanakuse Kyokumi
This was just weird... a fan crazed over a writer decides to pay her idol a visit and is disturbed by her findings. Kinda dumb but the reveal at the end was pretty sick soooo meh. 5/10

Link: http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Ma-no-Kakera/Ch-007--Nanakuse-Kyokumi?id=213903
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