Sunday, 25 April 2010

Fanatic religious empires in graphic novels (and how to overthrow them)

Those are great (and I mean really great) epic series that send you into this nightmare world of religious extremes, fanaticism, and unhealthy intrigues. Their artists are particularly gifted too and the images are all superb and rich and beautiful (even if what's in them might sometimes be hard on the eye). Here is the 3 I really got into:

Requiem Vampire Knight, by Pat Mills and Olivier Ledroit

This is set in a world (after death, is it purgatory or hell itself?) where everything is upside down - where what is good in our world, is evil in theirs, and where fanatics are always ready to get you back onto the stray path. I like the ambiguity in play, how the sens of 'honor and justice' is a perversion in their world. It plays with a lot of nasty concepts and historical events, and really misses little on the 'awfulness people have done' on our glorious time line.

Angel Sanctuary, by Tenshi kinryoku

It was hard to get into this one - probably because I'm not used to mangas and was finding the shear amount of people in it confusing. But after the 2nd I was hocked I just had to read through the 20 volumes. This is heaven when God simply isn't there and power, jealousy, 'holy' racism. Cleansing is a very scary thing, and in the end purity is as terrifying as all evils. In this work angels are real monsters and heaven is a very scary place.

Sky Doll, by Barbucci and Canepa

This graphic novel is set in a future where flesh is the religion, where mechas exist and feel and act like people, their only difference is their plastic bodies. Amongst those living doll might be the reincarnation of the main 'disapeared' saint - but what if she doesn't want to come back to the decadent world?

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