Saturday Issue Review: Elfen Lied Vol. 1


The Saturday Issue focuses on the more visual books read here at In Libris Veritas; ranging from graphic novels to manga to game companion guides.

elfenlied-1Source: Borrowed  
Publisher: Planet Manga 
Series: Elfen Lied #1
 Paperback, 208 Pages
 Horror Manga
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository
Rating: 4/5

Nyu is a sweet girl lost, unable to speak, she needs all the care that Kota and his cousin Yuka are able to lend when they have lovingly welcomed in their home. Lucy is a mutant Diclonius with a pair of horns on his head and powerful invisible hands capable of terrible acts, escaped from a laboratory where they subjected to unspeakable tortures. The naive Nyu and bloody Lucy are the same person. The masterpiece by Lynn Okamoto. A hard and bloody story about the loss of innocence.


Elfen Lied is one of my favorite anime series, but I never thought to check to see if it was a manga before now. I do have to warn those unfamiliar with the show or manga that this isn’t as adorable and cute as the cover would have you believe. It’s violent (in some cases overly so) and has nudity.

I remember the opening episode of Elfen Lied and how my mouth was just hanging open for the first 10 mins. This manga is no exception to that. Even though I know the story reading it again it still has that same feel. It’s shocking, disturbing, and at times oddly endearing. Lucy and Nyu are two halves of a whole. Lucy being the one who does what she deems is needed to survive, and that usually involves killing the person causing the problem. Nyu is innocent and confused, she doesn’t understand language and has to have help with most things. Both have trouble connecting to the people around them on some level, but she handles it differently in each case. The relationship between

I’ve heard there are not any major differences between this series and the show, and so far that proves true for this volume. It’s pretty on par with the scenes and progression, but I wouldn’t let that stop you from reading it if you enjoyed the show quite a bit. As for the content…well that’s on par as well. It is extremely violent in areas, so if you can’t really enjoy things like that I’d warn you away. There is also the relationship between two of the main characters who are cousins, which is something that is still somewhat on the normal side in Japan so it pops up in anime and manga a lot.

The art was a bit disappointing, however. There is something about it that just doesn’t work…I’m not sure if it’s the thinness of the line work or lack of details in areas but the art looks fragile almost. Like something is just missing from it.

I’m definitely grabbing the next volumes of this one, and maybe (if I get extremely lucky) find a physical copy to own.

4 stars

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