Estimated read time: 6-7 minutes
Looking for the non-mainstream seinen manga that you haven’t read yet? Here are some amazing seinen drama manga out there that haven’t been adapted for the screen—at least not yet.
With the huge successes of anime and manga like Attack on Titan, Demon Slayer, and Jujutsu Kaisen in the last 3 years, a lot of people begin to consume anime and manga as mainstream entertainment media. Today, as the immense rising of many anime and manga fans, the demand of its contents is also rapidly increasing.
There are a ton of manga that had adapted into a TV anime series. According to the survey, more than 6,000 Anime produced in Japan, and its numbers are increasing every day. However, there are some brilliant well-written manga series that still have not been adapted into anime. Sometimes, these manga are overlooked due to huge catalogue of manga and other reasons.
By far the shounen is the most popular “genres” of both anime and manga. the majority of its series have huge successes. This fact alone, makes other genres such as seinen genre overshadowed by shounen in general. Several fans may not be familiar with seinen because it have littler exposure and hype compared to shounen.
And that’s why I wrote this article. I am sure some of you are fed up by many of shounen series, so in this article I will give you my recommendation list of Seinen drama manga. Unlike the shounen demographic that touches your inner child, seinen manga will expose the truth, harsh reality about adulthood. Well not every manga, but most of it.
Without further ado, here are the list of 7 must read seinen drama manga that do not have an anime adaptation in 2022:
My Dearest Self With Malice Aforethought
MAL score: 8.02
You probably shouldn’t read this because a sole fact that once you pick it up and read it, it’s going to be nearly impossible to put it back down. It is another top notch thriller manga that is able to keep you to your toes all the time. I also think this manga has more twists than almost any other stories that I have read so far. So, what does My Dearest Self With Malice Aforethought’s story has to offer?
Eiji has pretty tragic backstory, being a son of the serial killer. He is going through lot of mistreatment and abusement in his life. Being his state of innocence is one that put into question once he see that date started skipping and he blacked out, not remembering thing that happened in several days. As his life is thrown into a spiral of disarray, he embarks on a journey to resolve the mess of the last three days and get his girlfriend to accept his past.
Three Days of Happiness
MAL score: 8.80
What if your contribution in your life, your happiness, your influence can be sell? If your entire worth as a human being could be boiled down to a single monetary value, what would you do with it? would you sell it or would you keep it?
This is exactly Three Days of Happiness explores, and might be one of the most impactful short manga I’ve ever read. So, what the synopsis is about?
Kusunoki is a 20-year-old guy who suffers from a deadly medical condition. Working a dead-end job for table scraps, one day while trying to sell his possessions for money he hears about a place where he can get some extra money. A store that will buy your lifespan, time or health for fast cash. Skeptical but well desperate, he decides to give it a shot. Kusunoki is crushed when he finds out the true monetary value of his lifespan—totaling a meager three hundred thousand yen. After heading home with the money, he is greeted by Miyagi, the one tasked with the job of observing him until the last three days of his life.
MAL score: 9.04
Goodnight Punpun or Oyasumi Punpun is one of those series that if you read it, it hits you and it stick with you. You read it once and it becomes a part of you. But, I have to warn you that you will be sad for a while after read this manga. Like a REALLY sad.
The author, Inio Asano, really did a hell of a job to portray life in continuous changing setting with full of emotional and moral spectrum. Another brilliant thing is that how Asano also shown Pupun, the main protagonist, as a metaphor in his manga.
Punpun is a young boy living in 90s Tokyo. The manga follows his daily life throughout his childhood and teens where he has to deal with all sorts of trials and tribulations. Meeting new friends, having a crush, stressing about school, etc. So far so mundane, but what this story is about? Simple, It’s about life.
MAL score: 7.54
If you are looking for a manga with constant intense battle along with gore visual, Jagaaaaaan could be your best option. The troupe of using enemy’s power against them is not a new thing, but Jagaaaaaan tells it with a fun and exciting way, but also build up the hype in every battle.
In the bizarre world where human could turn into a monster or super human because of alien frog, people began to take advantage of it to fulfill their desires. This leads into existential crisis of what is right and wrong among people.
The story revolves around Jagasaki, a police officer who hates his job and ordinary life. One day, a frog-like creature fell from the sky and enter people’s bodies. One of those people turned into a monster and massacre everyone whose near it. Jagasaki happen to be there shocked and watch it helplessly. Suddenly, for some reasons his right hand turned into unidentified canon-like weapon. in a frightening situation, He incidentally blast the monster’s head into pieces.
Sachiiro no One Room
MAL score: 7.83
Have you heard of Stockholm syndrome? It is condition where hostages develop a psychological bond with their captors during the captivity. Sachiiro no One Room uses this premise as its main plot that supported with many harsh aspects of reality.
This drama manga will tickles your heart with both tragedy and wholesome moments from its two problematic protagonists. So, what happens between the captors and the hostage in this manga?
After stalked a young girl for some times, a stalker suddenly kidnaps her on her way home. The girl’s parents are desperate and wish police will find and return her to home, but in reality she agreed to live with her kidnapper. She did not want to go back to her parents because the truth is they are abused her physically and mentally without anyone knowing it. They promised to get married if they successfully escape the police and her parents.
You can buy Sachiiro no One Room legally on Ebay.
Oshi no Ko
MAL score: 8.49
I think we can all agree that the world of entertainment is an absolutely bizzare one. We can idolize celebrities and obsess over them that sometimes it may seem like they are some unreachable objects that can be sold and objectified. Because of it, there are some of us that can forget that they are just people like us.
What is it like behind all the lights and glamour? how much of what we’ve shown is based on lies and deceit? And what is it like to be these celebrities? Oshi no ko is manga that explores these topics along with more bizzare plot that you hardly can even imagine.
Gorou Honda is a countryside gynecologist and a big fan of a talented and beautiful idol, Ai Hoshino. So when the pregnant idol shows up at his hospital, he is beyond confused. Gorou promises Ai a safe treatment upon her condition. However, a mysterious figure suddenly appears and kills him without any clarity whatsoever. Opening his eyes, Gorou finds that he has been reborn as Ai’s newborn son!
20th Century Boys
MAL score: 8.95
Imagine when you are growing up as a kid you play hero and villains with your friends, some would play as a hero and some other play as villains. Normally in cartoony plot, super villains, they try to take over the world and the hero would stops them. But what if you could make this very childish plot believable? What if somehow it’s become realistic and terrifying in the real world?
20th Century Boys is one of my favorite manga of all time. It lived up to everything and more to its reputation. I personally believe this manga is like a magnum opus of piece of work. The way the story unravels in this manga is like you’re given pieces just to make senses how deep the mystery goes and how far it runs. And I found it’s incredible for how big this mystery has, it’s like starring into an abyss, you wouldn’t know how deep it went. It also amazing how every lesson and messages this manga tried to say is spoke to me personally as well.
The story begins with an ordinary convenience store manager, Kenji Edo, lives peacefully along with many of his childhood friends. But something strange keep appears around him after he received a letter from one of his childhood friends who suddenly committed suicide. A new cult led by a figure known as “Friend” is becoming more notorious, Kenji starts to feel that something isn’t right. With a few key clues left behind by his deceased friend, Kenji realizes that this cult is much more than he ever thought it would be.
And that’s would be the end of this list of Seinen Drama Manga that don’t have an anime adaptation. I hope this article is useful and gives you manga recommendations you would love to read. Feel free to let us know what’s your favorite manga that you would like to share in the comment section or maybe give us feedback about this article.
Don’t forget to share this article to your fellow manga/anime fans, and happy reading!