Kazuo Koike begins on Mahou Shoujo Mimitsuki Mimi no QED. Seriously.
Stop the presses! ANN reports that the infamous Kazuo Koike is starting a new magical girl project, Mahou Shoujo Mimitsuki Mimi no QED. Koike claims that he intends to compete with Studio SHAFT’s Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica (2011) with his new story, which will be about a woman who is an engineering student. More information can be found at ANN; I may be a little too shocked to take it in.
For those who are not familiar with Kazuo Koike, he may be the last man on earth one would expect to see writing a magical girl manga. He is crowned as the king of jigoku manga, a subgenre of the gekiga movement (though English-language fans prefer to use the term “bad manga”): absurd male power fantasies turned up to eleven and more, unapologetically offensive to even the basest of sensibilities and intellects. A guilty favorite of many manga and anime fans, Koike’s manga is perhaps best described by Patrick Macias: “I expect worse from Koike. Things like alternating cycles of sex and violence at superhuman intervals, flavored with casual racism, hard gambling, and dodgy historical fact.” Koike is best-known in the west for the stately Lone Wolf and Cub, which is not at all representative of his entire body of work, which includes Mad Bull 34, Crying Freeman and Hanappe Bazooka (which I can’t find good coverage of anywhere, but it’s about a talking penis and has art by Go Nagai. Of course.) He is also the writer of Wounded Man, home of the line: “Blood got in my eyes and I can’t see a damn thing. Piss on me so I can wash it off!” This should probably tell you all you need to know. (For a very in-depth, very NSFW, very trigger-inducing [rape, racism, misogyny, etc] overview of Koike’s body of work and recurring themes, see Anime World Order Episode 7, from 25:30 onwards.)
Magical girl fans have been anticipating a new wave of mahou shoujo series to appear, inspired by the success of the dark and gritty Madoka Magica. However, none of us could have guessed exactly how gritty this new guard would be right off the bat. I’m not sure if the genre is ready for Koike yet, but we’ll see. Other self-professed fans of Madoka Magica include Evangelion’s Hideaki Anno and Ghost in the Shell’s Mamoru Oshii. Heaven help us!