Die is a short story manga written and illustrated by Kaori Yuki. The synopsis of the story is very simple a young man reads a letter from his recently deceased sister who killed herself. None of the characters are given any names. The main inspiration behind the story was from a song by Japanese band Buck-Tick, one of the author’s favorite bands. The art style, like many of Kaori Yuki’s works is great as the author is more focused on visual storytelling. The earlier chapters look somewhat messy and this was due to her having to rush through deadlines.
The character designs are generally good and more or less the same seen in many of her works. The location plus the use of shadows really gives the story a dark and brooding atmosphere. Despite the manga not having many characters, some mysteries were left unresolved so the story felt a bit incomplete.
Incest and forbidden love, common themes of Kaori Yuki, are put in full focus. Ever since the brother and sister were young, they always had a close relationship with the sister always receiving presents from her brother. She was in love with another man who was remarkably similar to her brother hence why she chosen him. However, the brother has a secret of his own. When he found that his sister was engaged to the other man, he kidnapped her and had her shackled to a bed on the basement. He went mad from jealousy. The sister ended up killing herself because of her brother’s mistreatment.
You learn about the characters pasts and what their lives were like briefly before the events of the story. It ends pretty abruptly as well as the brother kisses the corpse of his sister and the police starts to show up. The sister wrote a letter planning her brother’s downfall and the dialogue comes from the letter instead of the characters speaking.
It’s a short story so don’t expect any multidimensional or complex characters. You can't really figure out the motivations or personalities of the characters due to the short length. It is clear that the brother is self-righteous, delusional and suffers from some personality disorder.
It’s a decent short story and certainly one of the most messed up Kaori Yuki has written. The story shows how messed up humanity can be and that nobody in the story is really a good person and everyone is just irredeemable in their own way.
It gets 3 stars out of 5.
As a movie it would work.