Sunday, March 14, 2010

Garo Feature #6

I'm back.  Sorry about the wait.

For the Dec., 1966, issue, I've decided to highlight Sanpei Shirato's 36-page three-part short "War".  This one originally appeared in Shonen Gaho in March, 1963.  Click on the image to go to the media fire album.

In the first part, the German army overtakes a Polish village and shoots everyone related to the resistance.  A young girl tries to escape and falls into a hole in the snow, next to a pistol dropped by one of the victims.  A German soldier spies her, and she instinctively shoots him in the chest.  He lands on her, collapsing the hole so that no one else sees her.  Later, the Russian army liberates the town, and a Russian soldier tries to befriend her, only to be shot in the chest before she runs away again.

In part 2, the German air force drops bombs on a village, and one of the bombs fails to go off.  A demolitions team is brought into defuse it, but they bobble the ordinance and it falls over.  They discover that it's filled with sand.  When the German army invades the town later, the villagers are convinced that the soldiers are running low on ammo, and don't put up a fight when lined up in front of the firing squad.  The narrator informs us that the Germans used this trick to make it easier to take over villages.

In the last part, a Japanese husband at home is talking to his wife and children over dinner.  We learn that he can't eat raw meat for some reason.  The next day, he and his two sons go out to visit a zoo, and they stop at a sushi restaurant for a quick meal.  The father isn't paying attention and pops a piece of sushi in his mouth.  Realizing what he'd done, he runs out to the street to throw up and is hit by a car.  He flashes back to when he was a soldier during WW II on an island when the Americans bombed it.  Only he and one fellow soldier survived the air raid, but there's nothing to eat on the island and they start to starve to death.  The friend gets desperate and attacks the father, but is killed himself in the fighting.  The father tries to eat the friend raw and can't bring himself to do it.  He stumbles away, only to discover an emaciated woman hiding in a house.  The scene skips to where the father now has a full belly, but he walks into an American patrol sweeping the island and he gets shot before being taken prisoner.  He then wakes up in the hospital with his wife and kids.  He pretends to be happy but is now riddled with guilt over his recovered memories.


  1. This looks really amazing. I wish English publishers would get off their lazy asses and pick up some of the best Garo works to put in a series of anthologies! Like they're planning to do with Ax:

    Thank you for the 3 part synopsis. I'll refer to it as I'm going through the pages you uploaded on mediafire. But I think you should consider switching to photobucket of flickr for the next batch of pages, because mediafire is horrible to navigate and only worthwhile if you have an account or you're able to download a complete zipped archive.

    As for sharing high res scans (as we were talking about previously), have you considered livespace? If you set up a hotmail account, you will automatically have a livespace which has a handy storage capacity of 20gb for free, which they call 'SkyDrive'. Not to mention there's a 10mb limit on all hotmail attachments. If you ever need to send data to just one person, skydrive is a great option. Several times my friends have temporarily uploaded large files onto skydrive for me to download, then deleted those files soon as I received it.

    So if you plan to translate this 3 parter, you could always dump the files on skydrive for me and I would edit the pages for you based on your panel by panel translations.

    (I have yet to go through all your previous manga posts. I plan to sort through and download everything soon though.)

  2. BTW, I'm a huge fan of Shirato and have every issue and both graphic novels of The Legend of Kamui which got an English translation way back in the day. But the series got dropped and the West only ever saw a tiny fraction of this brilliant ninja series. Ever since then I have been dying for more Shirato.

  3. Well, trying to put together a Garo anthology now may be difficult because of permissions issues - a lot of the artists have died and their estates may be problematic to deal with. I can see why an Ax anthology might come out first. But I do agree that it's time for more exposure of the Garo works. On the other hand, there is an exhibit coming up in New York next month, if you can get out there.

    I did see the first couple issues of Kamui when it initially came out, but I wasn't ready for it then. It appeals to me a lot more now.

    I tried using flickr and photobucket, and their restrictions on file sizes and transfer bandwidth is too restrictive.

  4. Drop me an e-mail.