31 Horror Manga Recommendations for Halloween

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If you were following along on Twitter last year, you might have seen my horror manga megathread. If not, don’t fret! I’m here to recap all the scary manga that you should get your claws on the next time you’re in the mood for a chillingly good time.

So without further ado, let’s check out 31 of my favorite horror manga!

Eko Eko Azarak

1. Eko Eko Azarak

Original Title: エコエコアザラク
Author: Shinichi Koga
JPN Publisher: Shōnen Champion Comics (1975-1979)
US Publisher: N/A

Known by her classmates as a model student, young Misa Kuroi harbors a secret: she’s actually a witch! Whenever she chants the cursed phrase, “Eko Eko Azarak,” terrible things come to pass.

Since its publication, Koga’s hit series has been adapted into several live action films and shows, the most notable being the 1997 TV drama starring horror actress favorite Hinako Saeki.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

Lychee Light Club

2. Lychee☆Light Club

Original Title: ライチ☆光クラブ
Author: Usamaru Furuya
JPN Publisher: Manga Erotics F (2005-2006)
US Publisher: Vertical, Inc.

Tucked away inside an abandoned factory, a gang of misguided boys works tirelessly to build a mechanical man that runs entirely on lychee fruits. The machine’s purpose: to kidnap beautiful young girls. But unresolved tensions within the club threaten to throw the operation into disarray. Power struggles, paranoia, and perversion all come to a bloody head in this eroguro manga.

Fuan no Tane

3. Fuan no Tane

Original Title: 不安の種
Author: Maasaki Nakayama
JPN Publisher: Champion RED (2002-2005)
US Publisher: N/A

Shadow figures, cursed photographs, ghostly stalkers, and many more terrifying tropes manifest in Fuan no Tane (The Seeds of Anxiety), Masaaki Nakayama’s collection of horror manga shorts.

In 2013, notable horror filmmaker Toshikazu Nagae wrote and directed a live-action adaptation starring Anna Ishibana, Kenta Suga, Kodai Asaka, Kanji Tsuda, and Shimako Iwai.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

K no Souretsu

4. K no Souretsu

Original Title: Kの葬列
Author: Maki Kusumoto
JPN Publisher: Cocohana (formerly called Chorus) (1994)
US Publisher: N/A

Mikaya moves into Apartment 301, unaware that the previous tenant, K, has died. Or at least that’s what everyone believes, as no one ever found K’s corpse. Quickly, Mikaya becomes wrapped in the mystery surrounding K’s disappearance. Maki Kusumoto’s stark illustrations perfectly form this manga’s gothic atmosphere.

Mr. Arashi's Amazing Freak Show manga

5. Mr. Arashi's Amazing Freak Show

Original Title: 少女椿
Author: Suehiro Maruo
JPN Publisher: Seirindo (1984)
US Publisher: Blast Books

In this grotesque manga, eroguro darling Suehiro Maruo revisits one of kamishibai’s classic heroines, shojo tsubaki (少女椿), or “The Camellia Girl.” After losing her mother, young and penniless Midori joins a freak show troupe to survive. Abused by the troupe’s members, Midori feels that all is lost, until an enigmatic magician joins the show.

Mr. Arashi’s Amazing Freak Show inspired Hiroshi Harada’s infamous 1992 independent anime, Midori. In May 2016, film director and designer TORICO produced a live-action adaptation of Shojo Tsubaki starring fashion model Risa Nakamura.

6. Goth

Original Title: ゴス
Author: Otsuichi and Kendi Oiwa
JPN Publisher: Shōnen Ace (2002-2003)
US Publisher: Tokyopop , Viz Media

Adapted from the horror novel by Otsuichi, Goth is a teen detective story with an edge. High school students Kamiyama and Morino share similar interests: mystery and murder. Together, they attempt to thwart the most heinous criminals terrorizing their town, from a man with a knack for collecting severed hands to a gardener who’s burying people alive.

You can read a free preview in English at Viz Media.

7. Cat Eyed Boy

Original Title: 猫目小僧
Author: Kazuo Umezu
JPN Publisher: Shōnen Gaho (1967-1976)
US Publisher: Viz Media

“Whenever I appear, something frightening happens. It must be that terror summons me.” So says Cat Eyed Boy, an otherworldly halfling living in the shadows between humans and demons. As Cat Eyed Boy wanders the world, he encounters plenty of ghouls, goblins, and monsters, often saving innocent people from deadly fates.

You can read a free preview in English at Viz Media.

8. Devilman: The Classic Collection

Original Title: デビルマン
Author: Go Nagai
JPN Publisher: Weekly Shōnen Magazine (1972-1973)
US Publisher: Seven Seas Entertainment

In Go Nagai’s acclaimed Devilman, demons have escaped the realm of the underworld and threaten to annihilate humanity. The only way to save mankind from destruction is to harness the demons’ powers, but that’s easier said than done. Only someone with a pure soul can hope to become a devil and still keep their humanity intact. Is the softhearted Akira Fudo up to the task?

This classic manga inspired the 2018 Netflix anime series, Devilman Crybaby.

The Poe Clan

9. The Poe Clan

Original Title: ポーの一族
Author: Moto Hagio
JPN Publisher: Betsucomi (1972-1976)
US Publisher: Fantagraphics

In this gothic shojo drama, the Poe Clan, a race of immortal beings known as vampirnella, live in a village untouched by time. Abandoned by their birth family, siblings Edgar and Marybelle Portsnell are taken in by the Poes and join the ranks of the vampirnella. Fated to live forever, Edgar must hide his adopted family’s darkest secrets throughout the years.

Homunculus Volume 1

10. Homunculus

Original Title: ホムンクルス
Author: Hideo Yamamoto
JPN Publisher: Big Comic Spirits (2003-2011)
US Publisher: N/A

In exchange for 700,000 yen, down-and-out Susumu Nakoshi lets medical student Manabu Itoh drill a hole into his skull. The procedure, known as trepanation, is said to awaken a person’s sixth sense. A skeptic, Itoh believes this experiment will disprove the existence of the supernatural. But soon after the operation, Nakoshi begins to see strange phantoms known as homunculi.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

Panorama of Hell manga

11. Panorama of Hell

Original Title: 地獄変
Author: Hideshi Hino
JPN Publisher: Hibari Shobo (1983)
US Publisher: Blast Books

Based loosely on Hideshi Hino’s own life, Panorama of Hell is a nightmarish exploration of human suffering. The narrator, an artist who paints with his own blood, indulges in conveying his family’s twisted story. From domestic abuse and alcoholism to mutilation and atomic warfare, Hino doesn’t shy away from controversial subject matter.

Tomie by Junji Ito

12. Tomie

Original Title: 富江
Author: Junji Ito
JPN Publisher: Monthly Halloween, Nemuki (1987-2000)
US Publisher: Viz Media

With her long black hair and signature beauty mark, the gorgeous Tomie has a tendency to drive men to madness. Jealousy and passion lead many suitors to murder in Tomie’s name—and sometimes even destroy Tomie herself. But no matter how many times they kill her, the world will never be free of Tomie.

You can read a free preview in English at Viz Media.

Hiki manga

13. Hiki

Original Title: ヒキ
Author: Banana Nangoku
JPN Publisher: Shinshokan Wings (2007)
US Publisher: N/A

One day, Rin discovers a sketchy map hidden inside his desk. Naturally, he and his friends decide to head into the mountains to find where the mysterious map leads. When they reach the location of the “treasure,” they discover… a chest of drawers? Maybe it’s best not to look inside.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

The Skullman manga

14. The Skullman

Original Title: スカルマン
Author: Shotaro Ishinomori
JPN Publisher: Weekly Shōnen Magazine (1970)
US Publisher: Ishimori Pro

In this precursor to Kamen Rider, Shotaro Ishinomori lays out a violent tale of revenge and self-destruction. After his parents were murdered in cold blood, seventeen-year-old Tatsuo Kagura dons the mantle of the Skullman, a masked antihero. Together with Galo, a shapeshifting mutant, Skullman sets out to terrorize those connected with his parents’ deaths.

You can read a free preview in English at Comixology.

Until Your Bones Rot Volume 1

15. Until Your Bones Rot

Original Title: 骨が腐るまで
Author: Yae Utsumi
JPN Publisher: Manga Box (2016-2018)
US Publisher: Kodansha Comics

When they were eleven, five friends killed a man and buried his body in a cave. Since then, the kids returned to the scene of the crime to perform a yearly ritual over the bones. But on the fifth anniversary of the murder, they discover something’s amiss: the body is gone. With their secret in jeopardy, the friends realize their may be a traitor in their midst.

You can read a free preview in English at Kodansha Comics.

Berserk Volume 1

16. Berserk

Original Title: ベルセルク
Author: Kentaro Miura
JPN Publisher: Young Animal (1990-ongoing)
US Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Kentaro Miura’s legendary tale of tragedy and sacrifice contains some of the most haunting imagery found in manga. Wielding an immense blade and burdened by a curse, Guts the Black Swordsman goes through hell and back in his endless quest for revenge.

You can read a free preview in English at Comixology.

Zashiki Onna manga

17. Zashiki Onna

Original Title: 座敷女
Author: Minetaro Mochizuki
JPN Publisher: Weekly Young Magazine (1993)
US Publisher: N/A

Regarded as one of the scariest manga since its publication in 1993, Zashiki Onna tells the story of Hiroshi Mori, a naive college student, and an eerie woman named Sachiko. This standalone manga helped popularized the “stalker” urban legend in Japanese psychological horror media.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

Ibitsu

18. Ibitsu

Original Title: イビツ
Author: Haruto Ryou 
JPN Publisher: Young Gangan (2009-2010)
US Publisher: Yen Press

Following the footsteps of Zashiki Onna, Ibitsu draws from another Japanese urban legend, “The Strange Lolita.” In this story, a girl dressed in lolita attire will approach you late at night and ask if you have a little sister. Don’t answer yes, or else she’ll torment you to death, as the main character of this manga realizes too little too late.

You can read a free preview in English at Comixology.

Hell Mother manga

19. Hell Mother

Original Title: ヘル • マザー
Author: Kanako Inuki
JPN Publisher: Kodansha Comics Friend (1990)
US Publisher: N/A

Kanako Inuki, the celebrated queen of horror manga, delivers a delightfully twisted spin on the evil stepmother story. When their father marries a beautiful woman, sisters Ellie and Lillie are thrilled. However, life takes a turn for the worse after their father dies under mysterious circumstances. In his absence, Ellie and Lillie endure unthinkable abuse by their stepmother, whom they discover has a penchant for the occult.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

Yokai Hunter manga

20. Yokai Hunter

Original Title: 妖怪ハンター
Author: Daijirou Morohoshi
JPN Publisher: Weekly Shōnen Jump (1974)
US Publisher: N/A

In this series by sci-fi mangaka Daijirou Morohoshi, former archeology professor Hieda Reijiro searches the world for proof that supernatural creatures ripped straight from ancient legends really do exist. In many of the story arcs, Yokai Hunter takes an almost educational approach to mythology and worldbuilding, offering interesting information on real-world cultural beliefs such as Japanese mythology and Abrahamic religions.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

Me and the Devil Blues Volume 1

21. Me and the Devil Blues

Original Title: 俺と悪魔のブルーズ
Author: Akira Hiramoto
JPN Publisher: Afternoon, Young Magazine the 3rd (2003-ongoing)
US Publisher:  Del Rey Manga

One night, Robert Johnson stood at the crossroads, guitar in hand, and made a deal with the devil: his soul for musical talent. What he ended up getting was more than he bargained for. Akira Hiramoto, the mangaka behind Prison School, explores the lore surrounding Johnson’s life with a distinct flair and gorgeous art.

Magical Girl Apocalypse Volume 1

22. Magical Girl Apocalypse

Original Title: 魔法少女・オブ・ジ・エンド
Author: Kentaro Sato
JPN Publisher: Bessatsu Shōnen Champion (2012-2017)
US Publisher: Seven Seas Entertainment

Kii Kogami wishes his dull school life was a bit more interesting. But the girl who comes to “grant” his request takes things a bit too far. Dressed in lolita garb and wielding a deadly parasol, the small girl unleashes hell upon the school, leaving a trail of blood in her wake.

You can read a free preview in English at Comixology.

23. Ajin: Demi-Human

Original Title: 亜人
Author: Gamon Sakurai
JPN Publisher: good! Afternoon (2012-ongoing)
US Publisher: Kodansha Comics

High schooler Kei Nagai is struck dead in a traffic accident, but he immediately revives to learn that he may not be like other humans. He’s considered an ajin, a person who possesses extreme regenerative abilities. Soon after he discovers his powers, Kei finds himself on the run from government forces who want to use him for inhumane experimentation.

You can read a free preview in English at Kodansha Comics.

HIDEOUT manga

24. Hideout

Original Title: HIDEOUT
Author: Masasumi Kakizaki
JPN Publisher: Big Comic Spirits (2010)
US Publisher: N/A

After the sudden death of their son, Seiichi and Miki Kirishima decide to take a vacation as a means to detach themselves from their loss. But their retreat takes a dark turn as unresolved conflict heads into murderous territory amid the lush island landscape. This standalone manga has all the makings of a slasher film, complete with inconvenient car breakdowns, faulty flashlights, and a mysterious killer.

25. GeGeGe no Kitaro

Original Title: ゲゲゲの鬼太郎
Author: Shigeru Mizuki
JPN Publisher: Weekly Shōnen Magazine (1960-1986)
US Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly

In this classic horror-comedy manga, one-eyed boy Kitaro, the last member of the Ghost Tribe, tries to bridge the gap between humans and yokai. Throughout his adventures, Kitaro encounters many supernatural creatures from Japan and abroad. Mangaka Shigeru Mizuki adapted the Kitaro story from an earlier kamishibai tale, Hakaba Kitaro (墓場鬼太郎), or “Kitaro of the Graveyard.”

26. God's Child

Original Title: 神の子供
Author: Nishioka Kyōdai
JPN Publisher: Horror M (2009-2010)
US Publisher: N/A

Drawn with a distinctive illustrative style, God’s Child tells the story of a fictional serial killer with a god complex. From his unnatural birth to his adolescence plagued by violence, the narrator recounts the events of his life in a chillingly matter-of-fact manner. Readers are left to wonder if nature or nurture had the upper hand in shaping his nihilistic worldview.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

27. One Missed Call

Original Title: 着信アリ
Author: Yasushi Akimoto and Mayumi Shihou
JPN Publisher: Kadokawa Shoten (2007)
US Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Based on the Japanese film, this manga will have you jumping the next time your phone rings. A group of college friends receives strange voicemails, seemingly from their future selves. The messages? Screams of their own deaths. Just a few days later, the recipients die from freak accidents. Who—or what—is behind this phenomenon?

28. The Ring

Original Title: リング
Author: Hiroshi Takahashi, Misao Inagaki, and Koji Suzuki
JPN Publisher: Kadokawa Shoten (1998)
US Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

With just one week to live, a journalist must solve the riddle of an accursed video tape if she wishes to save herself from a terrible fate. The manga version of The Ring joins the ranks of media inspired by Koji Suzuki’s novel of the same name, including the Japanese film franchise and the American remake.

29. The Cain Saga

Original Title: 伯爵カインシリーズ
Author: Kaori Yuki
JPN Publisher: Hana to Yume (1992-1994)
US Publisher: Viz Media

Delve into the tortured past of Earl Cain C. Hargreaves, charismatic heir to a wealthy family full of secrets, lies, and unthinkable crimes. The Cain Saga and its sequel, Godchild, explore the dark underbelly of Victorian England’s upper crust through several story arcs, each told through Kaori Yuki’s exquisite art.

You can read a free preview in English at Viz Media.

30. Zangekikan

Original Title: 惨劇館
Author: Nori Ochazuke
JPN Publisher: Halloween (1987-1993)
US Publisher: N/A

After navigating each story within Nori Ochazuke’s horror theater, even the bravest readers out there might want to sleep with the lights on. Much like Fuan no Tane, Zangekikan (The Tragedy Manor) compiles scary shorts that play with various horror staples, including possessed dolls, abandoned buildings, and cannibals.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

31. Human Clock

Original Title: 怪談人間時計
Author: Seiichirou Tokunan
JPN Publisher:  Akebono Publishing (1962); rereleased by Ota Publishing (1996)
US Publisher: N/A

In this Kafkaesque manga short, the son of a watchmaker finds himself slowly morphing into a clock as time wastes away. Once considered a failure and abandoned completely by its creator, Seiichiro Tokunan, Human Clock has since reached cult status among horror manga fans.

You can read a free preview in Japanese at BOOK☆WALKER.

What are your favorite horror manga? Let me know in the comments below!

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