The official opening for the new Netflix anime based on the works of Junji Ito has been unveiled, and it’s absolutely twisted.
Junji Ito is one of the biggest names not just in manga but the entire horror genre. His surreal drawings have inspired nightmares among readers with how grotesque they can be. Whether it’s the contortion of bodies in Uzumaki or characters getting crushed by an unseen force in Smashed, Ito’s work has become a mainstay in horror fiction that is beloved by fans all over the world and has become a staple of must-read manga for Halloween. Now, a new batch of stories is coming to the world of anime to terrify more potential fans. Junji Ito Maniac is an upcoming Netflix series that will adapt different stories by Ito. This will be the second anthology anime based around Ito’s work with the Junji Ito Collection debuting in 2018. Maniac is set to adapt new stories that weren’t covered in Collection though with some announced adaptations including The Hanging Balloons and Photograph. If these stories can recapture what made the original manga so scary, this could be a new classic anime that brings the beloved horror stories to life. Based on a recently unveiled video though, it looks like Junji Ito Maniac is already on the right track.
Netflix released the official opening for Junji Ito Maniac on their official YouTube channel, and it has everything that fans of Ito come to expect from his stories. It goes for a kaleidoscope effect that creates various illusions as it swirls around Ito’s most famous femme fatale, Tomie. Since Junji Ito’s artwork is rooted in the surreal and uncanny, this opening ties into the feeling of his manga incredibly well. You can’t help but feel unnerved as the song “Paranoia” plays in the background. Plus, the inclusion of a VHS-style effect will make viewers feel like they’re about to watch something raw and forbidden. It’s a genius opening for this new anthology that is sure to turn some heads and warrant giving the show a glimpse when it releases.
What’s even better is that when comparing this opening to Junji Ito Collection‘s from 2018, Maniac‘s is the clear winner on this front. While Collection certainly attempted to look at the surreal side of Ito’s artwork, it mostly prioritized images of Ito’s characters rather than the imagery that made these monsters scary. Maniac, on the other hand, goes all-in with its outlandish visuals. It’s not afraid to hide just how wild and horrific Ito’s twisted stories can be with the dynamically shifting background that messes with the viewer’s mind in a stunning optical illusion. Compare this to Collection‘s mostly static opening with more subtle illusions, and it’s clear which is the better opening here. Maniac feels like it will be a series that understands what made Junji Ito’s stories so scary and could be a better retelling of them for the world of anime.
Since Junji Ito Maniac is currently slated to release in 2023, fans will haveplenty of time to brush up on their Junji Ito knowledge with the countless manga available for reading, including Liminal Zone which released earlier this year. The horror author’s work is definitely going to be difficult to adapt based on how unique it is compared to other horror manga out there. However, if the twisted official opening from Netflix is anything to go by, fans of Junji Ito have nothing to fear.
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Source: Netflix Anime
Check out Junji Ito Maniac when it premieres January 19th only on Netflix!