WHERE ARE YOU GUYS READING THESE KAIJI MANGA UPDATES. HELP A SISTER OUT, LINK ME PLEASE
edit: Mangafox IS crap but if anyone is looking for series 3 and up this is all I got so far: http://www.mediafire.com/?2ascduq7cla1x#g96fwq85cxk01
Bluhbluh Fukumoto fans why so awesome. Come to me. /clutches
Better said than I can ever hope to. Shine on you crazy diamonds. Or something. <3
This may seem dorky as hell but I feel that coming across FKMT’s works have really changed my life. I’ve met great people, made friends, found amazing art, and been inspired. I don’t know what I’d have right now if I hadn’t luckily learned about Kaiji.
Fukumoto’s works hit me pretty hard. Like, as over-the-top and silly as they can be, there’s a sort of blend of brutal honesty (no, stop peering into the ugliness of my heart, Fukumoto…!) and at the same time, a strange kind of gentleness in his worldview. I think the main thing that strikes me about his work is a kind of sense of “we admire goodness because it isn’t rewarded” and that’s carried out in full - Kaiji gains nothing out of his acts of goodness, and often they turn uncompromisingly back around on him to fuck him over, but at the same time you get those moments of Ishida-san’s brilliant victory and Kurosawa wondering if he was as admirable as the ant and it’s hard not to kind of lose it.
It feels like Fukumoto takes sort of stereotypical, empty cultural platitudes like “don’t worry about what others think, just be yourself,” doesn’t flinch from how painful and ugly that actually is, but searches for that kernel of dignity and truth in the struggle anyway. I haven’t read Ten in full, but the pages where Akagi is telling Hiroyuki that it’s okay to be third-rate make me sort of weepy too.
Another thing I really admire about Fukumoto is his belief in the intrinsic value of a human life. We see the poor and the downtrodden, the outcasts, the failures, the people who have given up on their futures or simply have no prospects, the ones labeled by neoliberal capitalist societies as worthless. And he writes them with a compassion and understanding that to me, stand out far more than his famously ridiculous gambling schemes.
Basically all of his major series play some kind of variation on this theme — Kaiji, some NEET chump with a mullet and no marketable skills who continuously falls into cycles of failure and complacency, is genuinely, truly good and generous underneath it all. The sense of horror you get from the games he plays, like the Brave Man Road, hinge on the belief that no one deserves to be exploited in the ways that these characters are, no matter how much they supposedly leech off society or burden others.
Akagi is an outcast who could never live what is considered a normal life, but he knows with an unerring conviction that his constantly-on-the-edge life in the fringes of society is not wrong or invalid. The end of Ten is basically just Akagi assuring his friends that society’s traditional model of ‘success’ will not make you happy; that would be living the way you truly want to, barefoot in the grass, fuck the haters, shades slide on, ollies outy, yeah!!!!!!!!
In Kurosawa, the hero is an overweight, misshapen middle-aged man who’s never been in a relationship: pretty much society’s definition of a squandered life. He’s petty and dorky and kind of gross sometimes! And he’s never been truly content with how his life has gone, but he comes to the realization that it’s never too late for anything and ends up galvanizing a group of old homeless people — maybe one of the most vulnerable and hopeless segments of Japanese society — for one last affirmation that life really is worth living. (The full title, Legend of a Strongest Man Kurosawa, is quite touching in this regard!)
And I think this message of “life is beautiful!” is maybe the strongest in Buraiden Gai, where Fukumoto portrays the Human Academy in such a way to show that even bottom-of-the-barrel criminals convicted of things like burglary, assault, and murder deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, because they are human. At the end of the series, Gai decides to be the bigger person (despite the fact that he’s like, 14) and refuses to exact any personal revenge on the villains who wronged him in the worst ways, because they are human too.
(And then in his prequel series, Washizu plays mahjong while encased in concrete because why the fuck not???)
In times where we are surrounded by people who seek to put a monetary value on human life, people who think of the marginalized as subhuman, or people who believe that being apathetic and disingenuous is better (cooler, even) than expressing true empathy, compassion, and sincerity, Fukumoto’s writing is really heartening! I think the questions of “what is the value of a human life?” and “how can we live a good life?” and “how do we even know what that is?” are really prominent in his works, and they’re packaged well in his fun but weird style, his sometimes exaggerated theatrics, his convoluted gambling mechanics, and his obsession with mahjong hehehe.
…gosh I’ve written less for some school essays, who is going to even read this all!! I just wanted to get my thoughts down ㅎㅂㅎ
Reblog again for the wonderful words. You guys are awesome çuç
Well said everyone. <3
I wanted to draw something for Akagi day, but earlier today i smashed my drawing hand off of a concrete wall and my pinky is probably fractured or I bruised the bone or something. Either way, drawing with your fingers taped together is hard. But here it is. R.I.P. you magnificent bastard
Ichijou progress. This drawing has become my own version of the Bog. Slowly sucking out my soul and time, yet I keep coming back to it. B-But I will defeat you yet! Uwooooooooh!
OK I didn’t get much sleep last night, sorry. The colors in the waves are all wonky as I am trying to relearn the gradient mesh tool. The scales would take me like 4 seconds to draw on paper, yet will take me like 2 ours in Illustrator. Why do I do this to myself.
MOE MOE ICHIJOU. <3
Read the one on the right first!
Ichijou: I am a popular…moe character…
Yukio: Number 1
Ichijou: Number 2
Ichijou: How did this happen, Murakami?!
I-I really don’t see boss as an angel or anything…!!
I have a present for you
/Completely out of nowhere/
Hyoudou: Isn’t it great?
Because he didn’t accept it…he’s punished!!
It is best if he was left out
Ichijou: Ugh…damn it…once again the President and his outrageous abuse… *sob*
Hyoudou: KA KA KA KA
Kaiji: Hey hey Ichijou
It’s fine. I’ll take you, Ichijou.
Ichijou: FUCK YOU
But it’s a given that you’re the one on that end!
Kaiji: Ha ha ha
The anime version of me even tops Endou-san
Hyoudou: Let’s give these out in the underground!
Black Suits: Yeahh!!
???: Hmm…somehow…everyone is really crazy…
and now, the official…zawa…zawa… ( ?? haha idek )
I’M STILL WORKING ON THIS I PROMISE. Vectors take a long time and I’ve been busy making icons for LJ. D:
Got bored doing flats so I decided to do some shading first. Doing FKMT style sort of makes me scream because I think his face looks so weird, but Ichijou really is that flat-nosed and boxy-faced.
well now that i’m done inking this i have no idea wtf to do with it.
i should have just vectored it but bluh bluh vector inking after i just did it in Comic Works.
i might print it out and color it with markers, if mine aren’t all dead by now. but i’m out of greys so i don’t know.
oh i hope his hair is ~*fabulous*~ enough!