Updated to include volumes 22-24 of FREEZING and chapters 20-34 of FREEZING Zero.
FREEZING manga (24 volumes, ongoing)
FREEZING Zero (ch. 1-34), FREEZING First Chronicle, FREEZING Artbook
(Originally posted Dec 4, 2013)
It’s not uncommon at all for an anime adaptation to increase the nudity level, or even turn non-nude source material into what basically amounts to softcore porn (Kanokon, So I can’t play H, etc). Still, I found the difference between the FREEZING anime and it’s manga source striking; more than most.
For starters, the brutality level is even higher in the manga, if you can imagine that. One key difference is Satellizer’s fight with Miyabi. In the anime, Satellizer takes the high road and stabs the ground at the end, intentionally missing her. In the manga… she doesn’t miss. In some of the most recent chapters dismemberment, decapitation and other forms of mortal injury to major characters occur with shocking frequency. One such character, filling a fairly major role in season 2 of the anime, is literally vaporized from this waist up.
Of course, the shock value of these horrific events is somewhat undercut by the insane regenerative nature of these characters, who can grow back limbs and even reincarnate from fully destroyed bodies when in pandora form. Yet another thing about this manga/anime that reminds me of Claymore.
While the violence level is higher, the nudity level is much, much lower. Only 26 total nipple sightings through the first 10 volumes; roughly 1 in 50 pages. Whereas the anime relies very heavily on Ikkitousen styled combat-nudity, nipples are very rarely exposed during the manga’s battles.
And maybe I am a little crazy, but it almost felt like the nudity in this manga was somewhat tasteful. A lot of the nipple sightings were subtle, and there were plenty of chances for obvious nudity during the manga that weren’t capitalized on. It never felt like the manga was bending the story towards setting up the next nude fanservice scene.
Some people bash this manga for having Korean creators, but I personally could not care less if a mangaka is Japanese or not. The art and character design are well done, and the story, though hardly original or skillfully crafted, is much more interesting and courageous than your typical ecchi series.