Read You Like a Book

Flowers of Evil 8As the old year came to a close, one title shined brightly as a unique visual and narrative experience – The Flowers of Evil anime. With its unusual artistic direction, thoughtful soundtrack and cloy pacing the work caught the attention of a significant segment of the animation community and also rekindled America’s fascination with Shuzo Oshimi’s source material.

Now in its eighth volume, the current cast of Oshimi’s shonen drama briefly takes a turn away from the angsty tension that was so thick for the first six or seven volumes in favor of a slightly more optimistic outlook. And at the core of this new perspective is Takao, who has found a new reason to come out of his shell. Once again motivated by the written word, his hunger for storytelling has opened his eyes to those around him. And all the while those around him who are witness to his blooming are seeing him in a different light. But has he learned anything from his past? Can the youth, who has experienced so much already, fully comprehend where he previously went astray? Will he continue to be a ghost and tail shadows those around him, or will he make a new narrative in his life’s story when adversity raises its head again?

Now moving into its final arc, The Flowers of Evil continues to inspire debate amongst comic readers globally. While not standard shonen material, its cast and the way they gradually grow and mature has captivated a community looking for the next evolution in manga.

The Flowers Have Blossomed

Flower of Evil 7Over the years, Vertical has consistently challenged the North American manga market with eclectic and significant graphic works from Japan. Having such luminaries as Tezuka, Takemiya and Kon under our umbrella has set us apart from the rest as the vanguard for quality. Now it is becoming clear to us, and to a growing audience that we have uncovered a new challenger, whose latest work is setting a community ablaze with his very personal narrative and surprisingly memorable characters.

Shuzo Oshimi’s The Flowers of Evil snuck up on a large number of people when it made its English language debut in 2012. Now in it’s seventh volume it is poised to shock again, albeit with a new tone and attitude that is more than appropriate to the story’s growth and development throughout its acclaimed run.

In this most recent volume, readers are treated to the climax of this series’ second arc. And upon experiencing its shocking conclusion, we are then introduced to a more modern more familiar setting with a more mature Kasuga now in high school. The tone has changed, as well. But deep inside, waiting for the appropriate moment, is something hot, dark and compelling. Making it one of the most anticipated releases in our growing catalog.

Burning Flowers

While Vertical is not a stranger to the adaptation game, it is a bit unusual for one of our manga titles to be running as its anime counterpart is broadcasting globally. So with The Flowers of Evil anime adaption just beginning to air, and causing quite the controversy at that, what better time would there be to check out the critically acclaimed manga? Each volume has been more addictively tense than the last and, as the series continually outdoes itself, volume five only strengthens the claim that The Flowers Of Evil is one of the best manga being currently published.

If you thought the previous volumes were shocking to the touch, this one will leave your bones electrified. Shuzo Oshimi weaves a chilling and unforgettable tale about a couple bored youth in a small forgettable town that has left both the fans and the critics screaming. This bold manga continues to completely break societal convention and says it’s okay to reject our society’s contemporary values. Of course, now it’s about figuring out how to top it with an even bigger act of decency. While Nakamura and Kasuga are plotting away, the increasingly vindictive ex-girlfriend Saeki wants to know why Kasuga dumped her, as she sets out to find what exactly the relationship between he and Nakamura. What happens when she begins to uncover exactly what this dynamic duo has been up to may be one of the most shocking scenes to ever be published in a Vertical manga (quite a feat considering what we have published).

Don’t let your ordinary spring go waste! Give into your inner deviant and pick up The Flowers Of Evil volume five today, $#1t-bugs.

Into the Darkness

Another year and with it comes another set of releases. Our first release of the year is oddly apt for these dark days of winter. Shuzo Oshimi’s The Flowers of Evil has earned critical acclaim since its debut last year. However, whatever naïve and almost disturbingly cheerful narrative may have developed throughout the first arc of this series will quickly be erased as Oshimi’s cast willingly dive deep into the darkness to create a world uniquely their own.

Volume four of The Flowers of Evil finds the panty stealing nervous wreck of a protagonist Takao as a new person. No, he didn’t shape up after trying to run away backfired. Instead of reforming, after burning his bridge with the former girl of his dreams Saeki, Takao openly accepts his new life as a “filthy pervert.” However, his recent actions have left class-bully Miss. Nakamura more than a bit disappointed. As a matter of fact, she wants nothing to do with the once bookish teen. Will they ever be able to reconnect, or will not even committing an act of graver indecency than ever before be enough for Nakamura to give out a second chance?

Contrary to what the media may be propagating recently The Flowers of Evil continues to boldly break convention and says it’s okay it’s okay to reject society’s values. So this year, instead of making resolutions that will never be kept, why not attempt something that may come naturally to a well read manga enthusiast and regularly partake in our guilty pleasure known as The Flowers of Evil.