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‘Gannibal’ showcases manga, horror & Japanese entertainment

By Erin Chew, AsAmNews Staff Writer

Gannibal is one of the most-watched series on Disney streaming services in Japan. This shouldn’t come as a surprise considering the number of genres the series falls into – drama, horror and mystery, as well as how skilled the Japanese entertainment industry is at making these type of series scary to the max.

Based on the hit manga series – Gannibal follows Daigo Agawa (Yuya Yagira), a newly hired police officer in Kuge Village. He wrestles with his job and guilt over a traumatic event that led to his daughter becoming mute. Life in Kuge Village is quiet and peaceful till a series of alarming events quickly leads Daigo to the horrifying realization that something is deeply wrong with the villagers.

Having watched the series on Hulu, it definitely doesn’t disappoint. The series does well in integrating community/villager relationships with emotion and balances all this out with the horror and mystery behind the ‘what ifs’. Yagira’s acting performance as the primary protagonist was convincing and he made the series even more suspenseful and fluid.

In a recent interview with AsAmNews, Yagira spoke about his character ‘Daigo Agawa’ and how guilt and misfortune made him more protective of family and determined to find out the truth about the village.

“Even though the series revolves around cannibalism and incites fear, there is a lot of depth to all the characters, especially to the character I play, Daigo Agawa, who is all about family and seeing out the truth”, said Yagira. “He has a sense of justice, and pride in his job as a police officer, but is so protective due to bearing the burden of guilt for his daughter being mute”.

Hulu. Daigo Agawa (played by Yuya Yagira) held at gunpoint by Mutsuo Goto (played by Yoshi Sakou)

Anyone who is a horror fan or who appreciates scary and gory scenes would know that Asia has perfected the art of horror and fear that literally will send shivers down the spine. Japan is one of those Asian countries which has become adept at creating films and series which scare someone to the point it becomes a memory imprint.

“I am bias, but I will say that Japan is one of the best at creating scary films and shows. However, Gannibal is not the usual horror series where you get scared by ghosts and the unknown, but it expresses the scary sides of possessed humans. I think that is one of the most scariest concepts”, Yagira discussed.

Finally, Yagira expressed that he hopes audiences who are watching the series will appreciate Japan more, and what the country’s entertainment industry can provide. He attributed manga (Japanese comics) as Japan’s gift to the world considering most Japanese films, anime and shows are based upon famous manga comics, like ‘Gannibal’ is.

“When the rest of the world thinks of Japan, manga is probably the first thing they think of. Gannibal is based off manga and I think manga has really opened up the world’s interest in Japan and what we have to offer”.

You can check out all episodes of ‘Gannibal’ on Hulu and Disney+.

Editor’s Note: The original version of this story misspelled the name of the movie. We apologize for the error.

AsAmNews is published by the non-profit, Asian American Media Inc. Follow us on FacebookX, InstagramTikTok and YouTube. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our efforts to produce diverse content about the AAPI communities. We are supported in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs as part of the Stop the Hate program. To report a hate incident or hate crime and get support, go to CA vs Hate.

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