Since its inception in the 1989, Ghost In The Shell, the cyberpunk saga has become one of the most popular manga stories in the world. The first anime adaptation arrived in 1995 to critical acclaim, depicting the fantastic mid-21st century journey of Major Motoko Kusanagi and her cohorts in the elite counter-terrorism force, Public Security Section 9. At the end of this month, the official Hollywood adaptation is slated to arrive in theaters worldwidew, introducing cinema-goers to a new realm of wonder in the big-budget, science fiction romp. Those curious about the intriguing, action-packed franchise set in the fictional dystopian Niihama City, can already flip through several volumes of the classic manga series before the movie lands on March 31.
However, fans looking to dig deeper int the series are in luck, as they can now follow the further exploits of Section 9, as originally told in the television saga, Ghost In The Shell: Stand Alone Complex in a newly released online format.
In a Screen Rant exclusive, Kodansha Comics announces the launch of the first two (out of five) volumes, collecting the translated version of Stand Alone Complex on comiXology Unlimited. Ghost fanatics and those interested in finding out more about the film can head to ComiXology Unlimited – which is offering a complimentary one-month trial (otherwise, membership is just $5.99 a month). Starting today, fans can catch up on the further adventures of Major Motoko and her elite squad as they track down an elusive serial killer. Take a look at the SAC summary below:
Stand Alone Complex takes place in the year 2030, in the fictional Japanese city of New Port. The story follows the members of Public Security Section 9, a special-operations task-force made up of former military officers and police detectives. The manga presents individual cases that Section 9 investigates, along with an ongoing, more serious investigation into the serial killer and hacker known only as “The Laughing Man.”
Also, get an exclusive preview of the interiors from Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, as well as character designs from artist Yu Kinutani:
Created by legendary manga creator Masamune Shirow, Ghost in the Shell tells a complex and intellectual saga of a cyborg cop trying to thwart a dangerous hacker capable of infiltrating our very minds. When Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex was released in 2002, the television show expanded upon the popular Section 9 narrative, furthering the adventures of the Major and her cohorts. The manga adaption of the series available on comiXology Unlimited was drawn by artist Yu Kinutani.
Creator of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex Manga adaptation, Kinutani, recently discussed his love of the saga, as well as its cultural impact, leading into the upcoming film:
What was it like working on the manga Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex?
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex was one of the most monumental works in the history of TV animation in Japan. Each episode was a conclusive story, but there were several plot lines throughout the series, which made the overall story very dense. Also the concept of “Stand Alone Complex” advocated by the director, Kenji Kamiya, created a fresh and deep philosophical theme throughout the series.
I made the manga hoping to supplement the worldview of the GITS:SAC anime and to see it from another perspective.
How do you feel about The Ghost in the Shell becoming a Hollywood movie?
I think it’s wonderful that the near-future science-fiction created by the great Japanese comics artist Shirow Masamune is getting adapted into a Hollywood movie and that it’ll be watched all over the world. I am quite happy about that.
Any comments to the fans of GITS overseas?
The world of The Ghost in the Shell can be enjoyed in so many ways, whether through the original graphic novel by Shirow Masamune, the animation adaptations, the comics based on the animation series, videogames, and the upcoming Hollywood movie. If you can enjoy my manga as a part of that world, I would be very honored. Thanks.
Between the movie and the debut of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex on comiXology Unlimited, the classic manga franchise could attract all sorts of new audiences. In addition to the live action and more traditional formats, Kodansha recently revealed an upcoming anthology arriving in 2018 (via CBR), titled the Ghost in the Shell: Global Neural Network. The collected tales will feature numerous talented Western artists and writers to explore more of the near-future realm. With so much new material on the way, there’s a lot of potential for new generations to discover this exciting and provocative tale.
ComiXology Unlimited: March 2017 Additions/Subtractions
A&A: The Adventures of Archer & Armstrong Vol. 1 and #1-#4 by Rafer Roberts and David Lafuente (Valiant Entertainment)
Ajin: Demi-Human Vol. 1 by Sakurai Gamon, Miura Tsuina, Sakurai Gamon and Miura Tsuina (Kodansha Comics)
ALIVE Vol. 1 by Tadashi Kawashima (Kodansha Comics)
Baltimore Vol. 1-2 by Christopher Golden, Mike Mignola and Ben Stenbeck (Dark Horse Comics)
Comic Book History of Comics #1-#2 by Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey (IDW Publishing)
Creeple Peeple #2-#3 by Matt Anderson, Patrick D. Pidgeon and Tim Patrick Lattie (IDW Publishing)
Cyberines #1 by Joe Martino, RJ Micheals, Cory Hamscher and Pow Rodrix (Red Anvil Comics)
Dean Koontz’s Frankenstein: Storm Surge collection and #1-#6 by Dean Koontz, Chuck Dixon, Rik Hoskin and Andres Ponce (Dynamite)
Dorothy of Oz Prequel #3-#4 by David Tipton and Blair Shedd (Dynamite)
Felony Comics #2-#3 by Josh Burggraf, Harris Smith, Amy Searles and Various (Negative Pleasure Publications)
Gakuen Prince Vol. 1 by Jun Yuzuki (Kodansha Comics)
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex Vol. 1-2 by Yu Kinutani (Kodansha Comics)
King: the Phantom #1-#4 by Brian Clevinger and Brent Schoonover (Dynamite)
Legend of the Mantamaji Book 1 by Eric Dean Seaton, Brandon Palas and Andrew Dalhouse (“And . . Action!” Entertainment)
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Pink #1-#2 by Brenden Fletcher, Kelly Thompson and Daniele Di Nicuolo (BOOM! Studios)
Owlgirls #1 by Robert J. Sodaro, Rachele Aragno and Dave Ryan (Red Anvil Comics)
Patricia Briggs’ Alpha & Omega: Cry Wolf Vol. 1 and #1-#8 by Patricia Briggs, David Lawrence and Jordan Gunderson (Dynamite)
Predator: Life and Death collection and #1-#4 by Dan Abnett and Brian Thies (Dark Horse Comics)
Princess Resurrection Vol. 1 by Yasunori Mitsunaga (Kodansha Comics)
Pumpkin Scissors Vol. 1 by Ryotaro Iwanaga (Kodansha Comics)
Shadowflame #1-#2 by Joe Martino (Red Anvil Comics)
Star Trek (2011-2016) Vol. 3 by Mike Johnson, Claudia Balboni and Stephen Molnar (IDW Publishing)
Street Fighter II Vol. 1 and #0-#6 by Ken Siu-Chong, Alvin Lee and Arnold Tsang (UDON)
Template: The Complete First Season by Quinton Miles and Andres Quezada (QAM! Comics)
The Hidden GN by Richard Sala (Fantagraphics)
Vinland Saga Vol. 1 by Makoto Yukimura (Kodansha Comics)
War of the Independents #1-#2 by Dave Ryan, Franchesco! and Dave Ryan (Red Anvil Comics)
Yozakura Quartet Vol. 1 by Suzuhito Yasuda (Kodansha Comics)
IMAGE 25 Additions available Monday, March 6
The Manhattan Projects Deluxe Edition Vol. 1-2, Vol. 1-6 and #1-#25 by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra (Image Comics)
The Manhattan Projects: The Sun Beyond the Stars #1-#4 by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra (Image Comics)
Pax Romana Vol. 1 and #1-#4 by Jonathan Hickman (Image Comics)
The Sword Complete Deluxe Edition, Vol. 1-4, and #1-#24 and Jonathan Luna and Joshua Luna (Image Comics)
Abandoned Cars GN by Tim Lane (Fantagraphics)
Athos In America GN by Jason (Fantagraphics)
Dead Drop collection and #1-#4 by Ales Kot and Adam Gorham (Valiant Entertainment)
Dean Koontz’s Frankenstein: Prodigal Son #1-#5 by Dean Koontz, Chuck Dixon and Brett Booth (Dynamite)
Hit: 1957 #1-#2 by Bryce Carlson and Vanesa R. Del Rey (BOOM! Studios)
I Don’t Get It GN Shannon Wheeler (BOOM! Studios)
I Told You So GN Shannon Wheeler (BOOM! Studios)
King: Flash Gordon #1-#4 by Ben Acker, Ben Blacker and Lee Ferguson (Dynamite)
Low Moon GN by Jason (Fantagraphics)
Night Fisher GN by R. Kikuo Johnson (Fantagraphics)
Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson: Homecoming collection and #1-#4 by Patricia Briggs, David Lawrence and Amelia Woo (Dynamite)
Potter’s Field collection and #1-#3 by Mark Waid and Paul Azaceta (BOOM! Studios)
Street Fighter #1-#6 by Ken Siu-Chong, Kaare Andrews, Joy Ang, Hanna Chen, Hyung-Tae Kim and various (UDON)
The Returning #1 by Jason Starr and Andrea Mutti (BOOM! Studios)