Yoshihiro Tatsumi's 1956 thriller Black Blizzard provides us a look into his past, when he was still a raw and inexperienced writer and mangaka.
Tatsumi, in several interviews, never hides the fact that he has
'conflicting' feelings about Black Blizzard to which he described it as
"nostalgic for the past, for the days of my youth" but it's also "like
exposing something shameful and private" that he would rather bury and
have "hidden from sight."
But the work in itself is not bad for a twenty- one year old aspiring
and struggling writer- cum- cartoonist. On the contrary it probably
revolutionized the alternative comic scene in Japan in those days that
eventually made him a gekiga pioneer.
Tatsumi's unorthodox visual narrative is like a study in contradiction;
it was simple but is actually ahead of his time. The focus and angles
are like those that can be seen from the eyes of a master filmmaker; the
drawings speak for themselves.
The plot and storytelling are light and direct to the point. Even the
dramatic moments were handled and told in a straightforward manner and
avoided the melodramatic traps.
What turns out next was both ordinary and extraordinary. The choices
that they have to make are grim and the struggle that goes with them can
make one cringe. But the twist in the end will make us heave a sigh of
The story was simple, short and sweet.