When you are a manga reader always looking forward to the next big license, summer is one of the best times of the year. This is the time of San Diego Comic Con and Otakon, big events in the manga and anime world. Many licenses are announced (or sometimes confirmed, depending on if Amazon gets too frisky) and this oftentimes has readers searching for information on the latest announcements. With that in mind, this week’s post is in regards to one of Vertical Inc.‘s latest announcements - Wolfsmund, a seinen series written by Kuji Mitsuhisa.
Wolfsmund (狼の口: ヴォルフスムント or Ookami no Kuchi: Wolfsmund) is a seinen series set in 14th century Switzerland and centered around a massive checkpoint between one land and the next. The gate, Wolfsmund (the wolf’s maw) is the location of most of the action in the series, and guards St. Gotthard’s Pass, a key travel site in the Dark Ages – it connected two regions of Switzerland, Uri and Ticino, and was also one of the most direct routes to the Germanic states or to Italy.
The entire story appears to be about rebels fighting against some invading force- possibly Austrian or Germanic. In this manga, chapters seem to be centered around commoners or knights attempting to seek refuge or escape capture through St. Gotthard’s Pass as they try to move towards Italy; but the antagonist of this series, Governor Wolfram, seems to capture all who would attempt to evade him.
From what I can tell, Wolfsmund is a fairly dark manga – brutal and unflinching in the face of what admittedly was a dark period of human history. There is nudity and decapitation; there is violence and plenty of sword fighting. The series is not a warm and fuzzy read by any stretch of the imagination.
Wolfsmund is currently being published in Enterbrain‘s Fellows! anthology, of which there is not a whole lot of data that I can find published – it appears that this month’s release marks their 24th volume of the anthology, so potentially about 2 years old at this point. What is more well known is that Wolfsmund is currently at 3 collected volumes and is currently ongoing. While I think this is a great license for Vertical, I continue to be surprised by the lack of licensure of Vinland Saga, another historic seinen manga – this license may be a concession by Vertical that this type of manga is in demand by the fan base, but seems alltogether more dark and sinister than Vinland Saga, a title published by Kodansha. (Vinland Saga’s length, ongoing at 11 volumes, may also have something to do with it).
There were plenty of other announcements this summer that I hope to explore at some point – if you have favorites, let me know, and I will see what I can find!