También puedes leer este artículo en:Español
We are in summer, otakus! Do you know what Japanese do in this season (well, besides enduring the hot climate, of course)? There are matsuri! And kakigori (shaved ice)! However, the star of the summer is the obon, the time when the Japanese remember their deceased loved ones. That is part of the reason why ghost stories abound during this season. And which modern ghost story is better than Jigoku Shoujo? Enma Ai and her gang are always there when it is a matter of revenge! Which other ghostly manga like Jigoku Shoujo exists out there? Which manga deal with revenge in interesting way? Let’s find out in 6 manga like Jigoku Shoujo!
Similar Manga to Jigoku Shoujo
1. Uramiya Honpo
- Author: Shoushou Kurihara
- Genres: Seinen, Thriller
- Volumes: 20
- Published: Mar 27, 2000 to Aug 15, 2007
Shoushou Kurihara´s debut was Uramiya Honpo, which was so successful that he did several follow ups to the story and even a live version. He only has one other manga, Kami Appli. Anyway, in Uramiya Honpo, we get to know the owner of a peculiar shop. Her name is Shiori Houjou, who runs the shop Uramiya. Any person who desires revenge just has to pay a price. Shiori will make sure the target gets just what they deserve.
So, have we maybe found Jigoku Shoujo’s relative? In an era where the internet was still not so pervasive, the characters of Uramiya Honpo go to a shop to make a direct agreement with the owner. The chapters tend to be auto-conclusive, just like in Jigoku Shoujo so it is episodic. The main difference is that the protagonist is a fully grown woman, in contrast to Enma Ai’s cute appearance. Also, the style of the manga fit each protagonist. While Shiori’s panels are full of action and the drawing is clearly seinen, Enma Ai is drawn in a cute shoujo style. However, the hellish scenes can be pretty intense in both manga.
2. Wish: Tatta Hitotsu Negai Koto
- Author: Ikumi Mia
- Genres: Shoujo, Supernatural
- Volumes: 1
- Published: Oct 16, 2004 to Aug 17, 2005
Ikumi Mia is the creator of none other than Tokyo Mew Mew. As an expert in shoujo stories, Ikumi Mia presents us with a supernatural tale known as Wish: Tatta Hitotsu Negai Koti. We all know how stories about wishes usually coming in threes… but what happens when you only can have one wish granted? A mysterious girl can grant you anything, even revenge. You will have to live with the consequences of such a wish, though...
In Wish, we have a beautiful girl who can grant you revenge, just like Jigoku Shoujo. Also, the results of such revenge can be nightmarish. The main difference is that the wish can deviate from revenge. Of course, there is an atmosphere of shoujo magic as well, instead of a ghost story like Jigoku Shoujo. The drawing style, although similar for both manga, tends to be softer and uses more screentones in Wish. So, if you ever wondered how a mellower Enma Ai would look and react (no, the times she has weared lolita outfits don’t count), you can try Wish!
- Author: Tsutomu Takahashi
- Genres: Drama, Horror, Supernatural, Seinen
- Volumes: 2
- Published: Mar 22, 2001 to Apr 11, 2002
Tsutomu Takahashi is a veteran in the seinen realm. Although most of his works tend to be set in historical settings and Takahashi enjoys playing with the psychological genre, we get a different taste of his storytelling in Skyhigh. When people die in an unfair way, they arrive at the Gate of Grudges, which is guarded by a woman called Izuko. There, the soul has a choice: pass through the gate and be reborn, refuse death and remain as a ghost on Earth, or kill a person and go to Hell.
So, a Gate of Grudges… where have we seen that? 😉 Where have we seen a girl requesting people to choose a fate and be aware of the consequences? Auto-conclusive chapters? A chance for a victim to get revenge? Yes, Jigoku Shoujo and Skyhigh have lots in common. They even have in common that they were successful mangas, so there were continuations for both. The main difference between the two stories is the visual style. Skyhigh could be considered the opposite of Wish, as the drawing is very detailed and adult-like. Takahashi combines a few screentones with black and white inking. So yes, Jigoku Shoujo is a nightmarish shoujo manga, but wait until you read Skyhigh. It is not apt for sweet dreams.
Any Manga Like Jigoku Shoujo?
4. Yumekui Kenbun
- Author: Shin Mashiba
- Genres: Demons, Drama, Fantasy, Horror, Shoujo, Supernatural
- Volumes: 9
- Published: 2001 to 2007
When it comes to stories about guys in dark environments, Shin Mashiba can be your mangaka of choice. His most successful manga so far is Yumekui Kenbun, where we meet a special type of Yuuko Ichihara combined with Enma Ai! Ehem, let me explain in more detail. If you suffer from hellish nightmares and happen to enter into a teahouse called Silver Star, you can request help from Hiruko. He will eat your bad dreams for a price!
In Yumekui Kenbun, we can find environments that look like they came from hell, just like in Jigoku Shoujo. However, most of the time the character’s surroundings look beautiful or casual… again, just like in Jigoku Shoujo. We also have stories that revolve around paying a price. The main difference is that the targets are not real people but dreams. Also, the main hero is a guy who dresses in a peculiar way, but definitely not in a kimono like Enma Ai. The styles of both shoujo manga are very similar, as the characters look cute most of the time. However, when hell breaks loose (sometimes literally 😉 ), things can turn pretty dark.
5. Usemono Yado
- Author: Hozumi
- Genres: Drama, Shoujo
- Volumes: 3
- Published: Mar 27, 2014 to Oct 28, 2015
Hozumi has some experience in the shoujo drama realm. She has some sort of fixation with curiosity shops, so we get to visit one in Usemono Yado. A wide variety of customers step in an inn that holds the most mysterious valuable things from their pasts. The customers will have to choose if they want to keep that valuable thing or not… which will come with a price, of course!
If what you like about Jigoku Shoujo is getting to know new characters in most of the chapters, you will like Usemono Yado. If what attracts you is the magneticism of Enma Ai, she has her equivalent in Okamisan, who is cold and blunt. And well, both manga have a lot of traditional Japanese imagery. However, what makes the stories great is how they focus on auto-conclusive chapters while a tying narrative is also running in the background. The main difference between the manga is the focus on the store and the simpler visuals in Usemono Yado, in contrast to the cute shoujo style of Jigoku Shoujo. If you love mysteries but also the human side of regret and sorrow, you should try Usemono Yado.
- Author: Yumi Tamura
- Genres: Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Romance, Shoujo
- Volumes: 27
- Published: Aug 11, 1990 to May 13, 1998
Yumi Tamura is an experimented mangaka who has been active for a long time in the shoujo realm. She usually combines romance with action and sci-fi. So, we finish our manga like Jigoku Shoujo article with this oldie but goodie by Yumi Tamura. Basara was so good that an anime adaptation followed in 1998. In the story, we follow twin sister Sarasa, who has to supplant her deceased brother in order to unite people against an oppressive government.
Jigoku Shoujo sometimes plays a bit with our genderbender minds. However, both manga’s key feature is revenge. In Basara, we get a different type of revenge that has to do more with politics. Nevertheless, we can see how human nature operates in the most pressing circumstances in both stories. If you are into historical manga or old style manga, you should definitely check the action packed Basara!
Jigoku Shoujo began as an anime that surprised the hell out of us with its crude study of human nature and aesthetically pleasant Japanese style. None of the manga like Jigoku Shoujo is exactly the same, but by reading them, we can enter deeper into the human mind. Why do we sometimes desire revenge? Why do we sometimes forget or forgive? Which are the consequences of carrying revenge on? Many, many questions arise, but none of them are easy to answer, don’t you think so?
Which other mangas like Jigoku Shoujo do you know? Don’t forget that we are open to all your comments and suggestions. See you soon! May you enjoy summer in Jigoku Shoujo style (in yukata and such things) 🙂