So before I start the article I just wanna say a few things for the readers. This manga type is doujinshi. Meaning it is not advised for people under 18+ to view this content. Some people may find this content disturbing and as such, I warn you before reading on. However, before you think it’s totally insane. I’ll have to stop you. This manga has decent gore and blood elements. It is not anything hardcore NSFW. It resembles AoT in a sense, so if you are okay with an anime/manga as the attack on Titan. Then you will be fine with this as well. The name of the manga is crueler than dead. It’s called crueler than dead.
So what is crueler than dead about?
The story of crueler than dead follows a female MC which suddenly woke up in a room with no memory of her past. She hears the cries of someone and finds out it is a small child with her in the room. Soon she realizes that she is in a post-apocalyptic world. A massive destruction occurred in Tokyo with the rise of Zombies. Crueler than dead will revolve around a survival based horror story. With an assumed high pace of drama and panic.
There is only one safe haven. And it is the Tokyo Dome. People who have survived took refugee. The survivors formed a camp and are fighting as the last lines of hope for humanity. However, new hope shines upon them. Which you will find out about soon. Crueler than dead was published as doujinshi. Although, there were no signs of it being a doujin in the first chapter. There was only gore. The first volume is being released in Japan on February 19th. The second volume is said to be released March 19
Review of crueler than dead chapter 1
Alright so aside from the official announcement and the brief story. I wanted to go in a bit deeper and explore the story from its main points and went on to read the first chapter. I enjoy seinen art that has a lot of gore and bloodshed. So this was perfect for me. The art was good and clean. It had some hype moments when there were a lot of details. I will post them in this later on so you can see them.
Before that, I have to reveal the part about hope. But to get to that we need to jump to the start of chapter 1.The story starts as the main character wakes up in a research facility. She seems frightened and the first thing she notices is a scream of a child next to her. She hears a strange noise coming from outside the room and carefully opens the door. There she meets a soldier from the Tokyo Dome. The man is wounded. However, he uncovers first sings of truth about her. And about the world.
What does the man reveal?
This soldier plays a key part in revealing a lot of information. As you can see in the picture next to us. This is mainly how the gore works out for now. It’s nothing that is hardcore. And later it gets to a part where it’s similar to titans eating humans. But as I said, if you are okay with AoT you can bare it. The soldier explains to us how the main character is actually a mutant zombie-human. She does not remember her memory for the past years due to being a zombie.The pharmaceutical company created 5 vaccines and used 2. She and the child are zombies turned back to human.
He explained there is one more zombie left in the room. When she got a bit scared of it. He explained how they still have strength and instinct. From the times they were zombies. Although, he did not specify if this strength was permanent or not. And also continues to explain about the Tokyo Dome. He reveals her that there is still hope. The soldier explains there are 3 vaccines left. With these vaccines and her power new hopes rise. The soldier also explained a little bit about the monsters but I will mention that as a separate part.
About the main character of crueler than dead
We see a bit of personality of the main character. Right after the soldier dies. She goes out to find the monster. There she sees the monster eating a human. The picture will be provided below in the gallery. She sees a torn off finger on the floor and grabs it. She puts it in front of her and looks at it with a bit of a shocked face. Now, this part is where I wanna say that this is a bit strange. You see if it was anyone else. They would not dare to touch the finger. Meaning despite her shocking state. She has potential to be a badass MC which kicks ass with a bit of sympathy. As she is looking shocked at the finger. The monster attacks her from her back. She was not ready for the attack. Although, she reacts instinctively.
She grapples the monster from behind her back. Uses her leg to throw the monster off balance. And then strikes the knife into its head. A brilliant scene I must say. It’s quick and fast but relies on regular military combat. This is good for a fighting style. But, does it fit the character from what we know? She was not trained and does not know how to use a knife. Animal instincts are what she should have. However, even with them, it’s hard to maneuver such refined through training moves. Something similar might have been possible but more wild perhaps. This is currently a bit off for me but I still love the way the combat was done. I will stay with it and perhaps there is a hidden reason. Maybe some hidden past of hers, it is all yet too early to judge on one simple fact.
The ending of crueler than dead chapter one
The ending came pretty fast after their attack with the monster. The child saw her attacking the monster but said nothing. After the monster was defeated they both came out. They stood on fire escape ladder. Looking at the scenes of a torn down city. The apocalyptic feeling was made very well. The scene also had a good feeling about a beginning. The scene and what she said also had a good impact on me. At the last page, we see her face as she is crying.
As she cries she says: “I am crying but not for the death of man..”. As this sentence was left unfinished I swiftly quicked on the next page. Only to be disappointed to see credentials. Soon, before I knew it I was hooked on something that I randomly passed by on. And I simply had to share it. Oh yeah, there is also a part of her history which I need to explain, but before that. We need to put facts about monsters from the soldier. Still got that unfinished.
Facts about monsters
The story summary describes the monsters as zombies. However, throughout the chapter 1. I have never seen anyone mention any zombies. There was a virus that broke through humanity. Which is actually the only similar point to zombies. The rest explains these undead creatures more like vampires. Actually, you could call them a zombie-vampire combo. Due to all facts pointed out they could, in fact, be brainless ghouls. That’s the thing that most resembles their characteristics.
Characteristics of the monsters:
- Feel no pain or fear
- Strong as gorillas
- They eat humans
- Their mutation was caused by a virus
- They fear sunlight
- They are easily killed by MC in one-on-one
These characteristics tell us a lot. And as you can see my association with the vampires was due to sunlight. However, they feel more like brainless ghouls to me. I ain’t sure about sunlight with ghouls. As some stories made them immune while some not. The whole idea and the concept of this reminded me of Will Smiths movie “I am Legend”.
Crueler than dead main character backstory
Her name is Akagaki Maki, she studied hard for her entrance exam. And then came to Tokyo as a college freshman. She had high hopes for herself. She made some friends and then got drunk at a party. The calls from her parents annoyed her that evening. But she had no other worries than clothing and money. She was very occupied with thinking about her image in front of her friends. She wanted to have more time and spend less on working her part-time job. Her options to evade that was asking parents. Or working at a cabaret bar. Those were her daily thoughts. And she enjoyed them, it fulfilled her. Could this mean that somewhere in the future, her emotions towards the past might blind her judgment? We shall see.
That finalizes everything I had to say about this manga. It was really exciting and I am now an official fan. I can’t wait for the release of more chapters. Depending on how the manga goes my feeling towards the manga might become stronger or lessen. In fact, there is also potential that the story will go downhill. Not every good beginning has a good follow-up story. And the only thing left for us is to wait patiently and see. So, about those pictures from the manga, you can see them below. I will add a small gallery of some good images I cut out. Just so you can get a good sense of the art. I only added a few images so you still have lots to see in manga.
Where can I read crueler than dead?
Crueler than dead gallery: