Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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scriptweaver
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Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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Postby scriptweaver » Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:24 am

After falling in love with Junji ito's stuff over the past year, I decided to make a video talking about his novel Tomie, and what the hell kind of creature Tomie actually is. Your welcome to check it out. Be aware there are spoilers for a couple chapters, but also since the Tomie series is mostly episodic, you may not care about the spoilers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITBItosDnMI

I wouldn't mind doing more Junji Ito stuff in the future considering how much fun it is to read into his stuff (and just plain read his stuff lol) :D
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Re: Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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Postby Ray » Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:32 am

Tomie isn't supposed to be explained. Thats what her mystique is, that's kind've the point of a lot of Lovecraftian Horror. You're not supposed to know what Tomie is, where she comes from etc. She's an evil force of nature, and if you understood what she really was, you'd go mad.

Or more realistically, what the audience imagines in their head is always far scarier than anything the artist or writer can create. When it comes to Lovecraftian horror, less is more. The horror comes from the existential implications of the monster, the monster itself is just gravy.
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Re: Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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Postby Zeruss » Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:29 am

Did someone say JUNJI ITO?! ♡ (☉‿ ⊙ ) ♡

He's my favorite mangaka and I love everything he has produced: Tomie, Uzumaki, the Frankenstein series, the short stories (like The Enigma of Amigara Fault), etc.--He combines my favorite things: gore, body horror, great storytelling, suspense, supernatural elements, and superb artwork (and cats; I absolutely adore his cat manga), but combines them in a sort of delicate manner that seems to naturally escalate to horrific levels later on--That's what I appreciate about his storytelling the most: his control over tone and escalation. He's what I'd describe as "discreet" with his use of horror elements (as in, he knows when and how to use them without wearing them down; not so much that they are discreet in appearance, because they aren't... and I love that) which heightens their contrast with the mundane and amplifies the absurd+existential+unnatural type of horror that's usually applied throughout his stories, while still knowing how to set them effectively even from an early stage for greater effect later in the narrative.

I... I love him.

Regarding your video, kudos for the research and presentation; really liked it!
Though, I agree with the prior post that Tomie -as she is presented throughout the series- tends to have a certain ambiguous quality regarding her nature, which serves to just increase the mystery revolving around her overall (however, it's been a while since I read it, so key details might escape me right now)--I always interpreted her as a sort of chaotic being whose abilities and motivations changed according to each story's needs, or that she simply kept reinventing herself just because she wanted to or the circumstances required it.
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scriptweaver
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Re: Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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Postby scriptweaver » Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:39 am

Thx for enjoying the video. I had alot of fun reading up on yokai folklore.

I agree that the purpose and appeal of Tomie is the ambiguity and mystery surrounding her, but I also think there's is some room to interpret and give shape. After all, it is only human nature to give form to the dark things that lurk in the corners of our mind. Also, the video could also be seen as a way of exploring what source of inspiration drove Junji Ito towards a creature with characteristics as Tomie. As I said in the video, the side by side comparisons to the Yuki-Onna is too similar to simply ignore.

Thanks for the input btw, its very interesting to see a response like this. I've seen more unique interactions with this video versus my other one's which is a very good thing.
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Re: Tomie's True Identity? - An Analysis of Junji Ito's Horror Manga

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Postby robersora » Tue Oct 03, 2017 5:09 pm

I've watched your video, after it popped up in my subscription list. I've never read any of Ito's Tomie Manga, I should check it out now... Ray has a point though: explaining the horror is like explaining the joke, kinda subtracts from the experience. Still, it was an interesting video!
I've read Uzumaki and some of his other shorts. They are all deeply mesmerizing and unsettling. I'm glad that he finally gets more exposure, because I think he is one of the greatest creative forces in the Manga industry.
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