Usamaru Furuya Litchi Hikari Club

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0 7612 9/8/2007
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{Please note ~ this is an import comic and is not available in English at the time of this review. It can be purchased with the ISBN number below through Japanese bookstores and}

Publisher: fx comics
ISBN: 4-7783-2017-4 C0979


Usamaru Furuya is an amazing artist and an incredibly twisted man. It takes a certain sort of courage just to pick up a title with his name on it: one never really can know exactly what to expect. Chances are it will be offensive, eye-opening and heartrending. Litchi Hikari Club is no exception. Be warned: this is NOT a title for the faint-hearted!!


Based on the 1985 Japanese stage play of the same name, Litchee Hikari Club is the story of nine Japanese school boys who have formed a club devoted to creating the ultimate in artificial intelligence. Overseeing this club is Zala, a calculating, charismatic leader who has brainwashed the boys into doing whatever it is he demands: including, but not limited to rape, murder, and kidnapping. Always at his side is the twisted psychopath Jonboi, who delights in suffering and manipulates Zala though sweet words and sexual favors.

Under their leadership, the Hikari Club has degenerated into a facist psuedo-military organization... but it wasn't always that way. The club was originally formed by Tamiya, a bright and sympathetic boy who dislikes the direction Zala has taken the club and secretly wants to reclaim the club (or in the very least, escape from it with his two friend Kaneda and Dabuse).

Meanwhile Nico, the official 2nd in command has begun to take offense to Jonboi's meddling and his closeness to Zala...

On completion, the club's masterpiece: a robot with real human eyes (donated by Dabuse and Nico), steals a schoolgirl on Zala's orders. But in a rather unexpected twist, the robot falls in love with the girl and she with him...

With a girl suddenly present, tension rises between the club members and loyalties are questioned. When Zala flies into a rage and orders Tamiya to execute one of the other boys... things start to get very very messy.

My Thoughts

The volume is hefty, beautiful and incredibly compelling. I read all 327 pages in one night and then spent an hour unable to sleep because of the images still swirling in my head. Those images are not, however, pleasant ones. Furuya Usamaru doesn't pull his punches... and with a total of 11 graphic deaths presented in this volume; each one is more creative, detailed and horrible than the last. They're made all the worse by the geniune affection to come to feel for some of the characters who are offed. In some places, the gore is oddly beautiful... the final five pages, in spite of consisting of virtually nothing but corpses, are lovely.

The story is, beneath all it's gore, a good one. There are definite, well-defined themes of friendship, predestination, madness, group-thought, rule-by-fear, jealousy and love. The book also works on another level as criticism of the Japanese school system and the degeneration of morals and ambition in Japanese youth as a whole.

Final Thoughts

Highly recommended to those who enjoy Usamaru's work, violent Japanese literature (Yukio Mishima, Ryu Murakami), and films like Battle Royale. Gorehounds will find a lot to love here.

Cautiously recommended to seinen, horror and BL fans (if you can stomach the level of gore, it's well worth the read).

NOT recommended to minors, weak-stomachs, fluffy shoujo fans, people prone to nightmares, unstable serial-killer types, and anyone who lives with their parents or anyone else who might be freaked out by finding a book like this lying around...
Keywords: furuya usamaru, guro, independant, horror
Illustrations and Layout Excellent
Entertainment Value Excellent
Replay Value Very Good
Plot Excellent
Genre Independant, Horror, Guro, Science Fiction
Volumes 1


Join Date:
August 2007

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