Blue Phobia is a 2017 science-fiction manga by Eri Tsuruyoshi, based on a one-shot of the same name.
On an island somewhere in the pacific, a strange blue sea ore is found, coming from blue human skeletons. The ore's attributes make it a precious, valuable resource the world is trying to get their hands in, however, the ore causes Indigopathy, a disease infected by those that touch it, which will turn the infected's limbs and muscle blue before turning their very bones into more sea ore.
In the one-shot, set in the 1930s, Americans have taken over the island and sent death row inmates and people with life sentences to mine for it and die to become more ore. A soldier named Credo takes a liking for a kid born on the island, whom he teaches to fight in a bid to get him out of the island.
In the serialization, set in the modern-day, an amnesiac man named Kai wakes up being tied down in a lab facility and is rescued by a girl with blue hair and limbs. The two escape to an underground prison where she reveals he was a doctor in that facility and she was a test subject, and they were planning to escape in 3 days to leave the island.
The manga ran until May 2018, ending with 2 volumes and 18 chapters.
- Adaptational Name Change: In the one-shot, the Sea Ore is called just that, in the proper serialization, it gets the name of "Sea Sapphire".
- Amnesiac Hero: Kai has no memories of who he is.
- Artificial Limbs: Kisui has robotic arms which use the ore already on his body as a power source.
- Bald of Evil: Dr. Kisui is the Big Bad of the story and seems to have no hair beneath his hat. This is likely to hide he'd have blue hair from his Indigopathy.
- Bittersweet Ending: Kai sacrifices himself to make sure nothing is left of the research into the Sea Sapphire and the 1107 formula, but he manages to get Fukami and Meer out of the island, who break the story out to the world about the true nature of the ore and start sinking the plan to mass-produce it.
- Category Traitor: Kisui. He's a descendant from the boy of the one-shot, who started a tribe of people with Indigopathy. He was kidnapped and experimented on by the lab, but he sold out his tribe for the chance to become a doctor.
- Central Theme:
- The sacrifices made for progress and whether they're actually justifiable.
- Science is good, but humanity can use it for evil.
- Escaped from the Lab: Meer is trying to escape with Kai's help from a lab that experiments on her.
- Evil Plan: For his mistreatment for being infected with Indigopathy, Kisui intends to infect the entire world with Indigopathy so nobody can look at him as if he's different.
- Evil Smells Bad: The strange creature that follows Kai and Meer, N-004, is a corpse-like being whose smell of rotting carcasses in the ocean is so bad it makes Kai puke when they're in a closed room with it.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Kai stays back on the island that is being destroyed by Fukami's bombs because he still remembers the formula for the creation of the formula 1107 that accelerated Indigopathy in others, by staying behind and dying with the island, he makes sure that every bit of knowledge about that research and the entire research into the Sea Sapphire is destroyed with him.
- Human Resources: One of the main conflicts in the premise: In order to get more of the ore, people need to be infected by it and die so their bones can be harvested for more ore. In the 1930s, inmates were infected to make more ore, in the current era, a drug is being developed to mass infect and accelerate Indigopathy in people to create a supply of Sea Sapphire.
- Humanoid Abomination: N-004, one of the experiment subjects, has turned into a skeleton-like, emaciated monster with ore for teeth that does nothing but hunt the people with Indigopathy.
- The Mole: Fukami is a high-ranking member of the Blue Energy Committee that realizes the big societal danger that their plan to make humans mass-produce ore using people's bodies poses and how it might widen the gap between the average person and the wealthy, so he decides to crush the whole thing from the inside.
- Power Source: Seasapphire emits so much energy that even small amounts of it can power up a country, being described as energy in itself. They become the hope for humanity's energy crisis.
- Prison Break: Both the one-shot and the serialization focus on characters trying to escape the prison island they're trapped in.
- In the one-shot, a young boy born on the island is taught by a disillusioned soldier overseeing the workers how to punch so he can escape.
- In the series, an amnesiac doctor and a girl with Indigopathy have three days to prepare an escape to get to his contact outside the island and flee.
- The Reveal: What 1107 means. It's a formula that Kai was working on as a member of the crew, intended to hasten and spread Indigopathy to start mass-producing Sea Ore.
- Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Meer's ore bones have a number of side effects in her body. For example, she sinks in water because her bones make her just too heavy, and her feet constantly hurt from the extra weight.
- White Sheep: Kai was the only doctor that actually cared for Meer, and planned for their escape together after seeing how much suffering she endured.
- You Are Number 6: Meer is called N-007 in the lab, and all the doctors refer to her as such.