When Utsutsu and Yume were young, they were physically and emotionally abused by their sadistic father; and now that they’re older, Utsutsu swears above all else that he’ll protect his little sister at any cost. So when the girl is infected with the mysterious Pupa virus, causing her to turn into a terrifying monster that eats anything around her, the boy does the only thing he can: he offers his sister his body and flesh to consume. He won’t die, for Utsutsu was also infected with the virus, giving his body the superhuman ability to regenerate from any wound, and making himself the the perfect food source for his beloved sibling. Though nefarious researchers and doctors are studying their every move, Utsutsu will do whatever he can to keep the pupa inside of his sister from emerging and killing them all.
I rarely ever write reviews anymore due to having no free time, and definitely don't have time to write a full-fledged writeup of pros and cons - but Pupa was so disturbing that I feel compelled to at least write a warning to others. I was first interested in Pupa when seeing the upcoming Winter anime list, as there's an anime adaptation airing soon. Horror? Check. Disturbing? Check. Anyone who knows me, knows I love me a good horror title, and try my best to read as many manga related to the genre as possible. It takes a lot, and I mean a lot, for me to be grossed out and disturbed by something. Enter Pupa. Look, the story isn't bad - it's kind of interesting and at least it's somewhat unique. A girl gets randomly infected by a virus, there's a nefarious researcher who knows more than she lets on who offers to 'help', etc. But really, Pupa pushes the line for gore and disturbing. Unless you like watching people slowly get eaten alive over and over, or someone getting vivisected while conscious/alive, I'd suggest looking the other way on this one. Hands down. tl;dr: this is too disturbing even for me. :|
Honest to God garbage. Where to even begin?? The plot was stretched so thin, and all the explanation was so vague that I'm not even sure the author understood how everything fit together. It was so seemingly random, that at some point it just felt like the mangaka and the editor must have just been throwing out every possible idea and said, "Why not?". The parts that did make sense were so tacky,and overplayed that I had next to no interest in it whatsoever. A lot of the parts that are explained, are also gross feeling (like, oh, let's say, a woman taking the sperm/eggs from two siblings and implanting it into her own body in order to force a child between them?). The characters were dull, with each character having basically one thing about them. Utsutsu has an extreme sister complex. Yume is a monster. Their father is violent. Maria only cares about research & Hotoki literally gets off to his own sister. And that's essentially IT. There is absolutlely no character development worth noting, and no real intelligence or drive to any of their actions. The art wasn't terrible, but was definitely not distiguishable or noteable, and was very lacking in some places. There was no characterizing art style, like One Piece, or Soul Eater, but I didn't expect there to be in the beginning, anyways. What there was a lot of are images of two siblings eating each other in some very purposely erotic ways. Lots of scenes of them hugging each other, scenes of them being completely naked around each other, and also scenes of them hugging each other while being completely naked. Y'know... Just normal sibling things.. ((Big yuck)). If I walk away remembering anything about this manga, it will only be how truly bad it was. tldr: A nasty waste of time catering to people with sibling complexes while being disguised as a psychological manga.
Slight spoiler here. Pupa started off kind of interesting. Then it turned into something that I... just can’t even describe. Honestly, I think it’s really bad. The premise and description interested me, which is why I read it. It reminded me of Tokyo Ghoul, a manga that I genuinely enjoyed. The first few panels seemed promising, but as soon as that witch chick turned up, I was reminded of the crappy, cliche and awkward stories that I used to write when I was a 10 year old lil’ shit. It was written so terribly for the first few chapters that I was sat reading in awe about how crap it was. Absolutely nothing was flowing the way a decent manga should. Their abusive daddy just showed up out of nowhere, a random witch bitch appeared out of nowhere and told them about some shit, and then Yume’s real, monstrous form was gradually revealed after being bitten by a dog. It progressed so fast that I couldn’t remember the order of events, nor what was even occurring. It is just so bad. I can’t describe it accurately with mere words, but if you read the manga you will understand. Reading it feels awkward and forced, almost cringeworthy. With every chapter I looked forward to something more interesting that was going to occur, but nothing ever did, other than the ending which I can safely say I really liked. The ending may be the only part of Pupa I liked. I will address this later. The art is alright, but certainly not the best. It’s very scratchy and rough at times, although the physical character designs aren’t too bad. To put it simply, they’re better than what an average person could produce, but nowhere near as good as the art in something like Black Butler or Inuyashiki. It is detailed though, particularly towards the end when it gets rather graphic and... odd. The ability to even draw the weird and wonderful creatures in Pupa is something I can praise, regardless of whether or not I like the art overall. Moving onto the characters. Damn, these two are unoriginal. How many sister complex dudes do we need before realising most of the audience or readers just think it’s plain weird? Okay, we get it, some strange people have a thing for little sisters, but this series takes the cake. Is it normal for a brother and sister to sit there completely naked eating eachother and being happy about it? No, it’s not, and already I’m gagging thinking of all the people in their parents’ basements fapping over this. This sister complex crap that prevails within anime and manga gives the rest of us fans a bad name, and is overall very off-putting for a series. Utsutsu is so average it hurts. I have seen this kind of protagonist over and over and over and I haven’t even consumed all that much manga and anime. He’s just... so, so plain. You know the kind of guy I mean. Decent looking, has a little sister who he definitely doesn’t obsess over, has a dysfunctional family, has something randomly happen to him. He might even be more unoriginal than Kirito and that one guy from Eromanga Sensei. Yume’s a little better. She is, like her brother, rather plain, but she’s very sweet and as unenjoyable as it all was, I liked her. The characters just seemed far too stereotypical for them to be interesting at all, and I think unoriginal, overdone and overall crappy character design is one of Pupa’s biggest downfalls. While I don’t dislike them as people, I absolutely dislike them as characters who are part of a work of fiction. The secondary and more minor characters did not fare better. I am no manga or anime expert but even someone as inexperienced as me knows that the very nasty father of the main characters and the witch lady are extremely poorly thought-out characters. They remind me of something from Re:Zero, and pretty much every other series involving either a dysfunctional family or fantasy world of sorts. There is just... no imagination, no originality, no real planning. I feel bad being harsh and critical, but it’s how I truly feel. Would I recommend this? Absolutely not. It’s shit. :( Other than the twist about Yume being an exact genetic copy of Utsutsu’s mother, barely anything kept me interested. The description genuinely made this sound good to me. The manga lived up to zero of my expectations. I could not wait to finish it and I’m starting to wonder why I didn’t drop it, because this was a true waste of time. Don’t bother with this, people. I almost regret reading it because I got next to zero enjoyment out of it... other than the ending. The ending somehow made me feel something. As much as I hated this, the ending actually did something for me in a strange way. It’s quite bittersweet, and while it certainly isn’t innovative, it did something for me unlike the rest of the series. It may be the only thing I liked about Pupa.
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