Hungry for stories about the nefarious deeds of S.F. authors? Then you'll love this lushly-illustrated manga about a Japanese author who pretends to be the long-lost heir to a fortune – and squanders the money creating a bizarro island paradise.
Fabled graphic novel publisher Last Gasp announced this week that they will be publishing a translation of weird manga The Strange Tale Of Panorama Island, created by Suehiro Maruo.
According to manga translator Ryan Sands:
Panorama is an adaptation of a novella by Japanese detective fiction godfather, Edogawa Rampo. The story takes place at the end of the Taisho era, and follows an unsuccessful science fiction author with an uncanny resemblance to a former classmate/son of a rich industrialist family. When the industrialist's son dies, the author fakes his own death, digs up and hides the other man's body, then washes himself up starving on a beach in a town where the dead man's family lives. After some more intrigue and scheming, he proceeds to take redirect all of their money to build a mysterious pleasure palace island, and live like a sensual weirdo king. Crazy and amazing stuff!
This sounds fantastic to us. There's much nothing more dangerous than a failed a science fiction writer who blows a bunch of money creating fake paradise – I think there may be some parallels between this manga and the story of Scientology.
And this isn't the only tale of a criminal science fiction author coming out soon. The upcoming movie Gentlemen Broncos> features Jemaine Clement as a famous SF author who plagiarizes ideas from a student. (You can see a fake web site for this fake author here – it's hilarious, filled with videos of Jemaine Clement.)