Supernatural manga titles are a dime a dozen. Some are straightforward while others opt for a more bizarre approach. Kurozakuro can be considered as the latter, with a premise that blends teenage angst, the paranormal, and a touch of mystery to create a delightfully dark series that establishes itself among the head of the pack.
Kurozakuro follows the life of Mikito Sakurai, a gentle hearted teenager often used as a punching bag by local bullies. One night he accidentally swallows a magic orb and is visited by Zakuro a creepy little kid that grants Mikito extraordinary abilities.
After dolling out some much desired justice, Mikito finds that not only is he not the only person with special powers, said powers strip their users of their humanity and transforms them into ogres. As if that wasn’t enough to digest, Mikito finds himself being hunted by a powerful group of individuals looking to wipe out all ogres before they can harm others.
The series does an excellent job of showcasing Mikito’s downward spiral from average person to blood-crazed monster. He doesn’t just unleash his powers at will, rather the series chooses to give readers a slow-burn, giving us hints of his gradual descent into an ogre.
The artwork isn’t the series strongest suite, looking simplistic and overly flat. Even with its heavy use of shadow, the line work looks amateurish and very blocky, though this looks more to be by design rather than lack of skill.
Kurozakuro volume 1 a fascinating twist on the super natural genre. Its premise seems right out of a shonen title but its characters and the handling of their development is closer in substance to a richly layered psychological thriller rather than a smash-em up title. Kurozakuro is flavored with gothic elements that make it compulsively entertaining.