Happiness is a horror manga, tackles the subject of vampires and psychological in a master way. Initially in a school setting the characters are realistic, they act like normal students in front of the dangers and have their own personalities, wills, ways of acting, without being cliché.
The story follows Okazaki, a young man who accidentally turns into a vampire, a shower of tragedy falls in this manga in almost every chapter, with cliff hangers taking your breath away and making you marathon several chapters in a row without even wanting to. Read at your own risk, all the characters who enter the story are ready
for a terrible end.
Art is an incredible extra point, it is unique, sinister, it is totally adequate for the climate of this narrative. Do not believe? Go back to this review when Okazaki the vampire look at the night sky. The author is the same as Aku in Hana, Chi in Wadachi and other artistically incredible works with high psychological content.
The manga is now complete, go and read it, just 50 chapters, it'll be a unique experience.
I recommend it to all fans of horror and psychological suspense, violence and tragedy. Happiness remembers Tokyo Ghoul and Ajin in some points but has its own brightness. You definitely will not regret it, it's a complete manga, good characters, good art and good story, go ahead !!
Happiness' first few volumes are great; Aku no Hana with vampires, what's not to like? Unfortunately, things spiral out of control pretty quickly, as this spooky Let the Right One In-esque romance-horror becomes a Tokyo Ghoul/Ajin wannabe around chapter 15 or so. We're left with 35 chapters of shady government agencies, cultists, a villain straight out of a Dean Koontz bargain bin book, two semi-interesting characters getting sidelined for what feels like forever, one uninteresting character getting mutilated for what feels like forever, and time skips. Lots and lots of time skips.
It's all so...typical. A damn shame considering the manga's early promise and the
mangaka's track record for non-commercial weirdness. I guess if there's a lesson to be learned it's this: selling out may lead to large amounts of cash, women and fame, but you're gonna get a lukewarm internet review from an unemployed thirty year old who still reads comic books, and to win him back you'll have to write incest-horror (see the excellent Chi no Wadachi).
A final note: the art is fantastic. Just look at that cover. There's also quite a bit of Van Gogh and Edvard Munch inspired panels scattered throughout. Alas, the rest of the material is not nearly up to the art's high standard; you're probably better off doing a google image search for the best bits and skipping the rest.
Let's start with the plot. This story and MC are not very original at all. Young timid boy in a town where there are monsters (vampires) come out at night and kill people. The boy meets a girl who's not really interested in anyone but him and boom. Turns out she's a vampire
But with that said its still entertaining and keeps you on edge
(9chaps in the plots score may change with time)
Art: the art for this manga is about average, maybe slightly above nothing you haven't seen. Has a realistic touch to it.
Character: MC is the typical shy,timid,frail guy. Hasn't been
long enough for him to get possible development. There are some interesting supporting characters who may turn out great
As unoriginal the plot and characters are I'm still enjoying this story. It has everything that would make for a pretty popular anime. It's not at the top of my must read but I will finish it
I give it a strong 6
If you liked Tokyo ghoul or parasyte definitely give it a read
What we have here is a stylistic version of a trite plotline of monsters vs humans and the questions of good and evil. To me though this is the problem, the story was never interesting enough that there was a payoff. The whole thing was luke warm providing plot points that didn't escalate tensions, there were repeated moments where out comes were just erased in order to preserve certain characters. Miraculous victories for the MC and his group of friends for no reason.
I had this problem with Aku no Hana as well where I felt like the author doesn't understand human emotion, perhaps
he is cripplingly autistic and only experiences interpersonal relationships through media and stories, none of his own. As such the relationships of the characters don't come across as genuine and its hard to develop any emotional bond as the reader, which translates into the events that effect them not having the impact the author desired. Further the author blows his load in the beginning by localizing all the intensive action into the first arcs and he just bubbles out goo for the latter half and by the end he is curled in the fetal position still inside of you sleep farting at you.
We have several characters here whose motivations do not make sense in the context of the story, and we also have the case of a rule change for the vampires rendering the events of the first half null and void. It was like the author was backed into a corner or one day his editor who wanted to write a story herself called him drunk scream crying for a favor and he did it.
What saved it for me was the art, which was drawn incredibly well especially since the reference material for many of the panels in the book were non existent and had to be derived from the authors mind. Other influences that were clear are Starry Night by Van Gogh which made me keep turning the pages.
In conclusion, it was completely unoffensive like elevator music, didn't leave a lasting impact, didn't really excite me or make me feel anything, and overstayed its welcome after a while.
This a fairly new manga, and at the time of reviewing, it is only 16 chapters in.
Warning: there may be slight general setting spoilers for the first 16 chapters.
If this manga keeps going on its current path, it could be a truly great piece of work, one that I have waiting for years to finally happen. The setup is extremely promising, and has my extremely excited to see where it goes.
I'm going to start by saying that this seems to be rather shallowly tagged and summarized. It's about as Shounen as Ajin and Tokyo Ghoul are, which is to say, not at all. They are
not shy about the bloodshed as well. If you are familiar with Ajin, the setup is very similar: a seemingly normal boy is suddenly not so human anymore, and they have to struggle through the psychological turmoil and run away from home. In this sense, it is only "school-life" for the first couple chapters. At this point, I do not expect it to go back to the school setting.
There's also the thing about the MC being a closet pervert. What? The closest thing that comes to it is when his best friend points out a cute girl, and the MC just gives him a thumbs up. Otherwise, the MC is rather mature and down to earth. I mean, he faps once, but he's a high school boy. Waddaya expect? Honestly, it just makes it even more down to earth.
Let's get on to the actual review now.
As you may notice, the setup is rather run of the mill, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. This specific setup is right up my personal alley, and I think it lays a great groundwork for a good, mature plot line, and some great character development. Because there are not many chapters, we only have a taste of what's to come. Is there an organization chasing them? What are the laws among the vampires that we're getting glimpses of? What's going to happen to the MC's friend? What about the MC's family? There's a lot to explore, and I hope to see the world continue to grow.
I think the art is perfect for the series. It's no frills, and beautiful at the same time. It's decently realistic, and never awkward looking. The characters' emotions are very easy to perceive, and the characters are easy to distinguish. The way the artist paints the skies through "vampire vision" (for lack of a better phrase) reminds me of Van Gogh's Starry Nights. This creates an abstract beauty that really brings the world to life. The art is slightly sketchy, and has a lot of personality. It's just really nice to look at overall.
As I stated before, the groundwork for the characters is VERY solid. The characters feel exceedingly real, and you can really feel their emotions through their interaction and the art. I expect this to be a very psychological manga, with a LOT of character development. From what we've seen so far, the main character isn't some puny kid, but very normal. He is confused and terrified of himself, trying to understand what his life is going through. He is torn between staying home and running away. He is trying to juggle his humanity with this terrible beast within him. It's an absolute joy to watch him struggle. The other characters are also very vivid as well, and I expect to see more background on them, especially a certain someone who may or may not be the antagonist (sorry, my lips are sealed!). The development of the characters and how their psychological state shifts is what is currently keeping the plot going, while government(?) institutions are brewing in the background.
If you're like me, seeing a character be psychologically torn apart while becoming something inhuman is an absolute pleasure to read. I love how they're setting up vampires as being decently traditional, with a strong thirst for blood. The way the creator depicts these urges as well as any instabilities is very original, and great to read. It's a primal pleasure to watch the MC squirm in agony, confusion and thirst. One that is far too often left out in vampire manga. It's gruesome and intriguing. Paired with a blooming plot, this could easily be a manga that I'll be on the tips of my toes for.
If this manga keeps going like it is, it's going to be one of my all time faves. I just hope and pray the manga-ka doesn't mess it up *cough*tokyoghoul*cough*
If you like Ajin, Tokyo Ghoul and/or Parasyte, this manga is sure to please. If you're looking for a vampire manga with actual vampires, you'll surely love this.
I'm extremely excited to see where this manga takes us!
Happiness was what i would consider the pinnacle of good manga. It had a story that was short,sweet, and most of all pack with content. Each chapter asked as many questions as it answered and left me with a vague sense of wonder. To put it simply, it was an incredible experience.
Warning: very minor spoilers
Story 7/10 : I felt that the story was quite short featuring few real conflicts. However, it was great seeing the world develop as you slowly see the world become affected by the main character. You see the world shift due to their actions and how the world bites (heh) back.
Overall, the story could have been longer and built upon more things. But it was still enjoyable and pretty easy to digest.
Art 10/10: Wow...just wow. While the characters themselves have very realistic proportions and the blood is drawn very well, the real beauty is in the backgrounds. During one of the MC's many points of hysteria, you can see the background is similar to the famous artist Vincent van Gogh. This creates an amazing feeling of loss and confusion for the reader that helps emulate how the MC is perceiving the outside world.
Character 8/10: The manga goes through many time skips especially near the end. It gives us a good sense of conclusion for each major character and allows us to feel some closure that would have not gotten under usual circumstances. Every surviving character has come to terms with their situation and is trying to live their best life. They are living each day trying to find happiness(heh) in some form or another.
Overall 9/10: I would highly recommend this manga to anyone who has the time
I have read Aku no Hana and I remember being entranced by the story like it haunted me in a way. It had a captivating drive that I could not understand.
With Happiness, it's less, but that captivating essence is still there.
There is no central plot or story. There is no final goal, there is no happy ending. This is a story where different characters collide and shit goes to hell. There is no good or evil, there is no 'hero' and there is no 'villain'. There is no superhero.
Everyone just lives theirs lives as like anyone
else would, but when shit starts blowing up, there is no return.
That is the charm, the essence of this story that captivates me. Most stories have a sense of security, where you know the characters will be okay. But here, no one is safe. It's dark and gruesome, there is no room for empathy, only fear. Past, present and future all destroyed in a blink of an eye, there is no more happiness.
That fear of complete destruction to the point of no return, with every action leading to a series of never ending consequences, knowing you will never be the same ever again. This is the type of mental and psychological fear that entrances you to read more and more.
This is no average shounen manga, the main character is no super hero, just an average everyday loser, a loser that continues to lose.
Here's my take after reading 33 chapters of the psychological vampire drama Hapiness by Shuuzou Oshimi.
The story is about the timorous high-schooler Makoto Okazaki who's the favorite target of the school bullies until one fateful day when he was bitten by the "vampire" Nora whom uncharacteristically left him to decide his fate; "living" or dying.
Nowadays, every media is saturated with vampires and it already reach to a point that people got tired of the concept. However, you should not let that turn you down with Happiness.
My first impression on reading this was "It feels similar to Tokyo Ghoul."; however, reading further, Happiness is no
Tokyo Ghoul and vise versa.
Happiness focuses on the characters motivation and action rather that what can the vampire aspect can provide to progress the story.
Characters, especially Makoto and Gosho still have a long way to develop their characters but after the time skip that opened the recent volume I can say that I am slowly being more connected to each of them.
The art is good for the presentation of the story it's dark, gloomy and has that nostalgic feel even though you have not been to the location, setting and experiences of each of the characters.
It has still yet to develop at this point so I could not say more for the story although I am enjoying every chapter I have read so far.
So with that said at this point, I would give Happiness 8 bloody corpses out of 10.
“Don’t ever... Leave me alone... Promise me... Let’s just run man... Let’s go where ever the fucking wind takes us...” -The Bipolar Yuki.
A heads up before I start as you can tell by the first quote this manga is definitely nsfw so be weary about that. Another small note is I do hint at stuff that happens in the manga quite a bit so be cautious.
Hapiness isn’t the right term to describe this gore fest. Just like the quote the author of this really did whatever he wanted to make you feel pain or just be disgusted. A better term for this manga is Dispair.
As every single character gets screwed over in some way or another. Some simply lose a friend by bullying, or they could be eaten alive because a cult lead by a serial killer believes you are god. So as you can tell torture is common occurance for the main cast as they never learn from their naïve mistakes leaving them in the same spot they were in 10 years ago. I’m looking at you Gosho! But ignoring the literal dissection of characters it’s very intriguing. Making you wonder where this is all going and what is the purpose. As you show mental instability reading Hapiness all you can do is look back at what you’ve read and think “Wowzers, this is messed up!”
Think of Tokyo Ghoul. Not the anime but the manga. It has the solid art, interesting ideals, sociopathic characters, gore, and most of all torture. It’s insane how similar they can be as one is about ghouls and the other is vampires. These vampires can straight up regenerate an entire body back just from a severed head without nutrients or any help in ten years. It might not sound crazy but sometimes it seems the manga goes a tad to op on the vampires.
Now for how I rated it:
As I think back to the most recent chapter I can assure you it’s better to just wait till this one finishes or is near completion as nearly each chapter ends in on cliff hangers. Plus the story at the moment could go to full on dispair or turn a bit happier, it’s tough to tell. All that I do know is that Hapiness is a interesting case that goes at any chance to turn a happy relationship into a tragedy. Be safe, wait it out, and see where the wind goes for the main cast.
At the time I'm writing this review, I've already read 27 chapters.
Despite being quite generic at the start, this manga isn't like you average "vampire-like creature living amongst humans" shounen. Yes, the protagonist is a shy student not so sociable that turns into a supernatural creature. Probably you've seen this a lot. But this manga drives to something different. It's more about interactions and relations between characters than fighting or gore, like others from the genre.
"Happiness" is something that the characters don't have, for they are on fucked up situations. And this is good, since give us a feeling of danger and fear. Anyone can
die at any moment. It's not bad being generic or using cliches if it works well, if its well done. Keep that in mind. The only complain I have is that, a few times, it happened to have some plot devices that doesn't were exactly needed.
The art is not generic nor that gorgeous, but it's good to see, the details and expressions are good and, sometimes, realistic.
If you like good stories were the characters feel real and don't win every conflict, this is a manga for you.
Over the years the idea of the vampire has been muddled. Through the Twilight series and multiple cheesy to bad films such as Dracula Untold, vampires have grown out of style and lost the sort of magical and tragic mythos that used to surround the monsters of the night. Enter this series, simply called Happiness that delivers on what has the potential of being one of the greatest works of vampire fiction since Anne Rice's vampires series.
The only reason I cannot give this a perfect is because it is still a series with potential, but it has no direct plot yet. Throughout the
series, it builds up the tension and the horror slowly, giving us time to appreciate small details that lead to bigger revelations down the line for certain characters. The story is slowly building up intrigue but leaves just enough at the end of each chapter to keep you interested, and uses its time to build up the world around it, building up mysteries and leaving threads that could lead to this story running for a while, which while a monthly series makes this a definite time consumer, it feels worth the wait.
When i first discovered this series was a monthly, i had hard time wondering why. I read the first few chapters and didn't notice it at first, but after i had to catch up on the series i began to notice just how beautiful the art in this series is. It's breathtaking, and if there was a word i had to use to describe it, it would be "Soft". Theres a roundness and a very peaceful sort of tone and shading that really makes the character design pop and give a sort of crispness to the details of it. It also makes the graphic scenes that much more terrifying as the author really gives a Tokyo ghoul vibe of art and uses different styles for emotions that really emphasize the horror of the situation.
The characters are where I feel the author somehow must've been at least partially inspired by Anne Rice. The characters in this story are full of so much life and energy that it feels as if they are real human beings. Each character goes through a wide range of experiences and emotions that can lead to changes that are both revolutionary and heartbreaking. From the first chapter you'll meet characters that you dislike who go through radical changes that will leave you stunned at their growth, especially in just 30 chapters. There were characters who'd appear for 3 or 4 chapters, go through massive development and you'll be along for the ride.
If you're a fan of vampire stories, i'd recommend this, if you're a fan of human stories, you'll enjoy this. For fans of the film Thirst, the Anne Rice novels, Vampire manga like Shiki, and other great vampire works, this is a series you should keep your eyes on. It has the makings of a great series like I Am a Hero which for me changed the idea of a great modern zombie telling.
if you already liked Oshimi Shuzo hstuff like Aku no Hana and Boku wa mari no naka, you should read this one too.
since its a Vampire typical manga, I was really didnt look at this one, untill more chapter I read, it proves me wrong. Oshimi Shuzo-san really break a boring Vampire manga in his way.
Background and terrain its not Oshimi Shuzo type, the manga itself is all dark and full of shadiness, really suits for the story, and the character progression is the one that made my expectations wrong too. this is a decent manga, and the one that really should make an anime
Happiness is a manga that follows a high school boy by the name of Makoto Okazaki, someone everyone walks all over and takes advantage of, but that soon changes when his whole world is shook as he gets bitten by a vampire and becomes a bloodsucking creature of the night. Soon a secret government agency comes snooping after the bodies of the innocent keep pilling up, and a psychopathic murderer emerges from the shadows with sinister intentions of his own and the question of how Makoto deals with all of it poses itself, but not only that, it will also affect the lives of his
beloved ones and we're thrown into all of it thinking whats going to happen and how is it all going to end. It's written by Shuuzou Oshimi who's most famously known for Aku no Hana, is about 50 chapters long and is still a waste of your time, but you'll soon learn that yourself.
I only picked this up because it seemed as if I stumbled upon a japanese version of the swedish film "Let the Right One In", alas that was hardly the case because I walked into something far, far worse. It's a story that tangles familiar themes to anyone that is somewhat familiar with bigger vampire works, movies like Coppola's Dracula, Herzog's Nosferatu and what have ye, only it's not remotely as interesting and is closer to titles like Tokyo Ghoul and the rest of the crew made for edge loving teens that mistake violence and excessive gore, for mature and thoughtful writing.
Predominant themes are loneliness and the curse of immortality. Oshimi explores how their state affects the characters psychologically, how crushing the sheer loneliness of their existence is, and what a torment it is to live for hundreds and hundreds of years while watching everyone you know, or will come to know, dies as you endure through the ages, slowly losing what tiny shred of humanity you may have left. But that's only true for the first 20ish chapters or so, then it completely forgets what it wants to be or just doesn't give a shit, and what follows is an exercise in sheer stupidity considering the story keeps progressing in such laughably bad ways that it becomes borderline absurd.
The main issue with Happiness lies that it constantly introduces new ideas and stuff that it wants to tackle, meanwhile it forgets about the things it previously had in mind and it just ends up being an overall fucking mess in which everything goes wrong and then some. That's more than evident if we were to examine the relationship between Makoto and Nora. It starts out by Nora converting Makoto and later saving his ass from another vampire that is introduced, then quickly disposed off until the plot calls for him later near the end. Nora tells Makoto she had chosen him because he reminds her of the time she was a human, and that's something to build on, yet that never happens. Nora never gets fleshed out, just like their relationship, and is cast aside quickly after we get a chance to actually get to know her a little.
The same thing happens to the secret government agency that's specialized in vampires. They're first introduced when looking for Makoto once the killings start, then they vanish and are never heard of again until the plot needs them. They're just left as a generic vampire hunting task force that gets murdered by our protagonists. Another plot device within Oshimi's arsenal that he uses because he has no idea what to do with the story and everything he had set up so far, which is something he perpetuates constantly through Happiness' mere 50 chapters.
The biggest sin has to be the second half, that is best described as a enormous clusterfuck that keeps getting worse somehow and you're left wondering with what the fuck am I reading, holy shit. Makoto and Nora stop being the main characters and the story shifts focus to Makoto's friend, Yukiko Gosho, and also introduces the main villain that can be boiled down to a one dimensional psychopathic murder hobo that jerks himself off to slitting little children's throats because he thinks he'll catch the eye of a vampire, whom he considers to be gods, and be turned into one of them. He later also forms a cult for praising vampires and waiting the day they all get turned, and keeps being an annoying edgy cunt because that's simply exquisite writing and definitely what the story needs.
Everything is just such a terrible mess in this manga that it's really hard to make sense of any of it. It starts out simple and very typical for a vampire story, then Oshimi starts to needlessly complicate all of it by getting in over his head and making one terrible decision after another continuously until it ends. Filled to brim with half baked ideas, concepts barely tackled, if at all, that are only used as a plot device when he doesn't know how to save his characters from the situation he put them in and it quickly gets tedious, then continues to remain so until you're just fed up with everything. And that saddens me because it had potential in the beginning, not to mention more than a few nice little character moments that made it seem like it was about to get good, but then it didn't. It got worse, way worse than you could have hoped for, and it's abysmal by the time you reach the ending. The bad guy dies, our vampire couple is free to roam together and share their curse, while Yukiko gets married and lives a happy life, and I assume I'm suppose to cheer and be happy for 'em, but all I was feeling when I finished it was utter disgust for what I just read. Avoid wholly, unless you're a masochist like myself thanks to the wonderful Hellraiser movies.