Tokyo Ghoul

Alt title: Tokyo Kushu

Vol: 14; Ch: 144
2011 - 2014
4.621 out of 5 from 11,246 votes
Rank #143
Tokyo Ghoul

Shy Ken Kaneki is thrilled to go on a date with the beautiful Rize. But it turns out that she’s only interested in his body—eating it, that is. When a morally questionable rescue transforms him into the first half-human half-Ghoul hybrid, Ken is drawn into the dark and violent world of Ghouls, which exists alongside our own.

Source: Viz

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Truly spectacular work full of potential and credible characters tightened to the border of their abillities. Unlike the anime inspirated by the Ushida Sui pattern, in pure manga there is no such a thing as censorship which greatly increases the impact of individual story events. The very description of the created world it's dark, I would say even darker that in other manga motives, but its of course lightened by some kind of relief firstly from side of very mild protagonist, next following minor characters like Banji, Uta or even Hide. This contrast it's interpreted through all the chapters suggesting that humans neither ghouls have truly defined their nature by their race. Art Style First resembling at pretty average, art style of Tokyo Ghoul is actually really good. In many situations neat and detailed, possessing with an abillity to literally devour the reader. But that's mainly the case when the story goes smoothly without action or some dramatical events. Even I don't know many types of battle depictions in manga, these haven't seemed zo be very clear to me and many times I had to decipher following scenes - sometimes without bright discovery what moves character really did. This was in my opinion the main weakness in conjuction in art style representation. Characters When speaking of characters I always imagine that silent bookworm that Kaneki once was, coming into that wicked roundabound survival. Despite early thoughts, character development is in this manga real thing, very often returning into previous events that preceded the original story. This makes every Tokyo Ghoul character more complex and justified in the eyes of the reader which usually leads they start to sympathize with him/her. What I constantly admired was also the greatly balanced comparison between different fractions for example Anteiku Ghouls, Gourmet Restaurant Ghouls, Aogiri Tree Ghouls or even the doves. Each of them shows some side of humanity (even actually majority of them are ghouls), reasoning and also the brutality (the brutality from the human doves dedicated to their archenemy is many times stronger that ghoul's). What I missed about the characters was that we didn't follow them thoroughly but only in fragments maybe except Kaneki which was really worth to be noticed. As the main defect of character line I consider the constant monitoring of Commission of Counter Ghoul department because in many times it wasn't even necessary and the characters they showed, especially Marude were not important for the story development at all (maybe ocassionally). SUMMARY: (be aware of spoilers if you haven't finished it yet) Tokyo Ghoul is one hell of the story which really lasted in me while I was waiting for the new chapters. Regarding to its violent and agonized ending I suppose, that there is a space if not the need of sequel which would at least elucidate the fates of leading characters not mentioning slightly outlined newcomers like for example that writer girl which talked to Amon in one of late chapters. It's true that story ending seems to be forcibly concluded same as unexpectedly, but I have to admit that it was a spectacular ride full of tremendous twists that really fullfiled their duty and created unforgettable experience - which I doubt can be followed by anime.


This is a personal review, not an objective one. This manga just didn't click with me like I wanted it to and I honestly don't really get the hype around it. In fact I can make many, many parallels to Deadman Wonderland, which I personally feel pulls off the "depraved, crapsack world" full of tragedy, special abilities, persecution, sociopathic "heroes", and insane villains with a bit more finesse and feeling. I got a similar feel with Ajin, in that it seemed promising but way too much bureaucracy was thrown in. I honestly did not give a crap about the Ghoul Squads (or whatever they were called). I simply skipped past all the pages that featured the inner-workings of the system, their motivations, and the "bonding" time among the members. I get that you're developing the system that these characters live in and nothing is worse than having a vague villain organization that you know little about, but honestly it just read like the in-depth discussions you'd see among the police officers in Death Note.  I don't. Care. At all.  I found the protagonists' motivations yawn-worthy as well. Kaneki wants to save and protect his friends? Who doesn't? The only difference between him, Naruto, Ganta, Ichigo, Luffy, and Eren is that the guy eats people and experienced a bout of Marie Antoinette syndrome halfway through the series. Nothing new was brought to this character "development" except more tragic circumstances in how it came about. I felt nothing for the majority of the characters except perhaps Nishio because I like assholes with glasses.  The depravity of the characters seemed to be built in or a Freudian excuse. "He tortured me so now I'm insane".  I don't know, I feel like Deadman Wonderland really made nearly all the villains sympathetic if you were a bleeding heart. For the villains in this story they're just despicable, especially Ayato and that crocodile-shovel-face freak that tortured Kaneki.  Near the end of the story things got into a certain dark twisted psychological spin that I felt much more comfortable with, but then the story ended and I sure as hell don't want to read about the Ghoul Squad or whatever the hell it's called. Call me disappointed. Except Uta, Tsukiyama (played hammily by Michael J. Tatum in the English dub), and Nishio, all the characters can piss off for all I care. And yes I'm aware that my score may not be accurate in regards to calculation, but I don't really care.


I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the manga version of Tokyo Ghoul considering I felt as if the anime was filled with flaws. The animated version of this creative and compelling manga honestly doesn’t do it justice, and now that I’ve read this, I’ve actually found myself becoming a fan of the franchise in general. The characters in the Tokyo Ghoul manga are nowhere near as one-dimensional, mundane and generally painful to follow as they are in the anime and this is really why I loved this so much. No, they aren’t perfect, and there are a few flaws regarding the characters and the development of them as such, especially Kaneki’s - but they are good from what I could see, and I think they deserve a decent rating because I actually grew to like these guys. It takes a special kind of show or manga for me to start caring about the characters, and with this, I honestly did. Something about the constant moral dilemma between the ghouls and human society that the reader is forced to face is extremely compelling and I found myself at a conflict over whose side I was on because, to me, so many of the people were just loveable despite all the horrific things they’d done. I never once felt this way when I watched the anime. For me, the anime was just another show. But this certainly wasn’t just another manga for me. One thing that bothered me slightly was the way our protagonist suddenly changed into an entirely different person at the flick of a switch. Now I will admit that he looks seriously badass but it also makes him incredibly cliche. He starts out as a meek, timid but generally friendly young man and ends up this super edgy lord of darkness glorified vampire who can beat anybody. To me that’s just really unrealistic development and should have at least happened over a longer period of time than a few days. Surely if someone was tortured nearly to death, they’d end up being  more scared of other people rather than braver and more powerful? Maybe it’s my misunderstanding or me being pedantic, but I just never really understood the way in which he changed. The artwork is great, and it certainly fits well with the plot and genre, that’s for certain. The whole aesthetic is incredibly sharp and works far better in black and white and on paper than it does in colour and on my TV screen. At some points in this story it almost has this crazed, psychotic and horrific feel to it, which actually works really well and was very well suited to the state of the characters and their intentions. The physical character design was just fine too; they were nowhere near as painful for me to look at as they were in the anime, probably because of the lack of luminescent sickly hair colours, for one. The plot diminished a little here and there, but for the most part made for an incredibly interesting and wonderfully horrific story. Some parts were very confusing and, while this might just have been because some of the chapters I was reading online were badly translated, around a quarter of the chapters just weren’t that enjoyable for me. To me, a plot that is not difficult to follow and immerse yourself in is one of the most important aspects of a good manga or anime, and while Tokyo Ghoul was fine in this area for the most part, I can’t ignore the chapters that just made me want to quit reading because I was losing track of the story. But like I’ve said in the review I wrote of the anime version (first season since I couldn’t stand Root-A or whatever it’s called), the actual story and the idea behind it is pretty damn genius. It may not always be portrayed perfectly but the whole concept of this war between ghouls and humans is undoubtedly interesting, and was the main drive that kept me reading. So... a lot better than I was expecting. Not amazing, but darn good. Something about it seemed as though it was focusing less on trying to be edgy and appealing to gore-lovers than the anime did, with more work put into telling an enjoyable story that keeps you turning the pages. I’d actually recommend reading the manga first and then trying out the anime because to me - and a few others, it seems - the anime just doesn’t do it justice, and to an extent ruins the story a tiny bit.

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