- Mangaka : Rumiko Takahashi
- Publisher : Viz Media
- Genre : Horror, Romance, Supernatural
- Published : November 2020
Eternal youth and longevity have been a very touchy subject since people started to die and decay. Well, some still continue the pursuit of immortality, and we can’t really blame them. Living forever sounds a bit too tempting if we’re to be honest. According to legends and tales, there are multiple ways to achieve this. Theoretically speaking, science may even achieve this at one point in time. Hopefully, humans still exist by then. Anyway, immortality has always been a common sight in fiction. More so, manga. But what if we’re to add mermaids into the mix? We end up with a dark fairy tale that’s not suitable for kids.
Mermaid’s Saga Collector’s Edition follows the story of Yuta, an almost five-century old fisherman. During his days of mortality, he happened to consume the flesh of a mermaid, which gave him eternal youth. As time goes by, however, he soon realizes that immortality isn’t really all that fun. When his wife dies and he’s left alone, she tells him to find a mermaid because she knows of a way to turn him back to normal. Five hundred years later, he meets Mana, a girl groomed to be a mermaid snack, and starts a new adventure with her.
1. The Terrifying Truth Behind Mermaids
As the title gave away, Mermaid’s Saga Collector’s Edition focuses on mermaids. These mermaids, however, aren’t they pretty, singing ones like Ariel of The Little Mermaid. Instead, they are the terrifying ones like how real mermaids should be. We mean, creatures who live under the depths of the ocean and probably sitting on top of the food chain can’t possibly be cute, tamed monsters, right? Reality -- at least according to Mermaid’s Saga Collector’s Edition -- is that mermaids are carnivorous monsters who can’t even pass as humans. More so, they would resort to cannibalism if it is to benefit them.
2. Human Nature in the Spotlight
As stated above, immortality is far too tempting for humans. Just to get their hands on some mermaid flesh, they’d resort to some despicable means. Be it pillaging, stealing, or even murder. What’s interesting in this manga, however, is it doesn’t romanticize immortality. It completely captures the perils of being an unkillable creature. Yuta’s past connections were shown far too many times and the grief of losing each one of them can’t possibly be light.
1. A Bit of a Dull Heroine
Mana has been groomed by another immortal to be mermaid food. That means that she’s even forced to eat mermaid flesh since that’s one of the requirements. In order to prevent her from escaping, her ankles are shackled for her entire life. The very very thin silver lining, however, is that she’s well-fed, groomed, and cared for. Being in seclusion for her entire life might excuse how ignorant she is of the world. Still, she makes some very stupid decisions. The result of which is often Yuta being in ridiculous circumstances if not for Mana. We bet Yuta didn’t encounter as much problem before he met Mana compared to when he met her.
If you think that this will be a lighthearted series after reading the word mermaid, then drop this book and run for your life. If not, then congratulations. Mermaid’s Saga Collector’s Edition is eerily interesting. It showcases the other, more realistic side of fairy tales. It proves that living happily ever after doesn’t always age well.