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Manga / Remina

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Have you seen the rest of me?
An astronomer in a Japanese observatory, peering into his telescope one night, becomes the first person to witness a planet emerging from a wormhole. He names the planet after his daughter, Remina, and both become world-famous thanks to the unprecedented discovery. However, things take a turn for the worse when the planet enters a collision course with Earth... and the stars along the way seem to be disappearing...

Remina (Hellstar Remina) is a 2005 single-volume manga by Junji Ito. Like the rest of his works, it's filled to the brim with plenty of Body Horror, Eldritch Abominations, and general horror.

The official English translation was released in December 2020 from Viz Media.

This manga contains examples of:

  • Action Survivor: Pretty much all of the protagonists, but especially Remina who endures a cavalcade of torment for most of the story but survives all of it and is one of only a few humans still alive by the story's end.
  • Air Jousting: Once Planet Remina licks the Earth and makes the planet spin out of control, it's Remina and The Hobo vs. most of humankind.
  • Alien Landmass: The surface of Remina is a hellscape full of toxic gasses and fog, intestine-like tubes, and "trees" which look more like writhing balls of tentacles. Nearly all of it is black as midnight, and that's not getting into the fact that Remina has eyes, tongues, and at least one mouth.
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  • An Aesop: Surprisingly enough for a Junji Ito story, it ends with a clear and uplifting one. No matter how badly things have gone, no matter how bleak the future seems, so long as you are still alive there is hope for something better.
  • Apocalypse How: Physical Annihilation of the Solar System by Planet Eater, to be exact. Given that stars go out in Planet Remina's wake, it presumably dishes out Stellar-class apocalypses casually. Remina seems to play with its food in the case of the Earth, leading to devastation from deflected missiles and then extremely-accelerated rotation.
  • Artistic License – Physics: At one point, the Earth is spun around so fast that the stars blur in the sky like the hyperspace lines in Star Wars. Aside from everyone not instantly dying from this, there is even a scene where a huge group of people are able to use the centrifugal force to fly through the air all the way around the Earth and back, and some of them even survive falling back to the ground. If the rest of the Earth moves with you, you're not going to die from a little spinning. But if only the Earth is spinning, and the air isn't, then...
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  • Asshole Victim: Literally everyone in this book other than Remina, her father, her manager and the hobo are assholes who disregard her agency and act in their own self-interest.
  • Ass in a Lion Skin: Played deadly serious. One of Remina's tongues inserts itself into a discarded spacesuit to lure in the Mineichi family to get them to let their guard down so it can devour them, which is especially effective because the suit belonged to an astronaut they had come to believe was an estranged son. It's likely the humanoid figures from the probe footage were actually a similar trick.
  • The Apocalypse Brings Out the Best in People: Painfully deconstructed.
  • The Assimilator: Any human (and presumably anything else organic) that becomes exposed to Planet Remina's toxic atmosphere will melt horrifically in a matter of seconds, then mutate to become part of the millions of fleshy growths adorning the surface of the planet.
  • Attempted Rape: Mineichi's son shows Remina the airtight room, claiming she'll be protected in there...and then tries to rape her. She fights him off, but he claims she came on to him when his parents find them, and Remina is thrown back to the mob, the son's story believed.
  • Badass Bystander: The hobo who rescues Remina from the mob.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Goda gets a moment of this when he saves Remina in the midst of missiles and an earthquake. Then Mood Whiplash kicks in again.
  • Bilingual Bonus: As people from across the whole world are involved in the Air Jousting sequence against Remina and the hobo, several of them yell at our heroes in numerous foreign languages.
  • Broken Bird: Remina falls a bit into this, especially after witnessing the public murder of her father.
  • Burn the Witch!: The mob re-ties Remina to one of their crosses and sets a fire to kill her and the hobo when she is recaptured. They even call her a witch.
  • But What About the Astronauts?: Inverted. The astronauts residing on Mars and the Moon are the first to go, since Planet Remina has been destroying/devouring the celestial bodies in front of it on its way to consume Earth. The astronauts that landed on Planet Remina to investigate it, as well as VIPs that followed them there also suffer horrific fates.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The Mineichi family's bomb shelter. It ultimately allows the last survivors to escape Planet Remina's gluttonous maw.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The Mineichi family's long-lost elder son, now a hobo.
  • Clothing Damage: By the end of the story, Remina has just enough of her dress left to cover all the important bits.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Remina meets up with a hobo, who just happens to be the Mineichis' long-lost son who wanted to be an astronaut, whose family also just happens to have some sort of bomb shelter in their basement which ends up saving Remina, the hobo, and a few others. When they end up in space, the hobo's knowledge from his astronaut days promise to come in handy.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Mineishi. He's happy to sponsor Remina to boost his popularity, but he's just as happy to turn her over to an angry mob once associating with her threatens him.
  • Cosmic Horror Story: Without doubt. Although the ending ultimately defies the usual message of cosmic horror — human life is indeed important, because with it comes hope, the potential for things to be better.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: Remina, her father and the hobo are all tied to a cross so they can be sacrificed. The angry mob stabs her father with spears, and then lights Remina and the hobo on fire in their second attempt to kill her.
  • Deadline News: An anchorman is reporting on the situation with Planet Remina and the riots all over the world. Just after mentioning that an angry mob is hunting down Remina, he is attacked by two Malevolent Masked Men.
    Cultist: We interrupt this broadcast to bring you a message. We represent a concerned group of citizens who love Mother Earth. [...] There remains but one way to save the Earth. Find Professor Oguro and his daughter Remina. Destroy them.
  • Death World: The planet's surface, a toxic jungle of aggressive alien flora, a horrifically caustic atmosphere, and strange figures looming out of the fog...
  • Determinator:
    • The hobo. No matter how bleak things may seem, he never gives up.
    • The lead cultist is a villainous example. He is ready to go round the world to hunt Remina down, and he never, ever, ever stops.
  • Detonation Moon: Remina eats the moon.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The official translation is simply titled Remina, equally referring to the planet and the girl.
  • Downer Ending: The planet Remina succeeds in eating Earth, wiping out basically all life in the known universe. There are a few human survivors that escaped Earth's annihilation thanks to a bunker, but it only has enough supplies to last them for a year and all they can do is pray for a miracle to save them, and Remina is still distraught by the deaths of her father and manager.
  • Dirty Coward: Kunihiro Mineichi abandons Remina and her manager in danger, which he attempts to deny upon their reunion.
  • Dramatic Unmask: At one point, the head cultist's whip accidentally wraps around his hood and rips it off, revealing him to be...a resentful Goda, former president of Remina's fanclub.
  • Easily Swayed Population: Almost everyone on Earth wants to kill Remina once the cultists spread their message.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The titular Remina is a planet-sized devourer of worlds rather than an actual planet.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: Once people realize that Remina is coming towards Earth this is the immediate concern everyone has, and not only does it turn out to be accurate, by the end of the story it comes to pass with Remina devouring Earth after wreaking havoc on its surface.
  • Explosive Decompression: From the inside out, for the poor human survivors who got attacked on Planet Remina by the crewmember they purposely let die. Or they had all their internal organs crushed by the tentacle. Either way, it was painful.
  • Expy: The planet Remina is extremely similar to Ghroth, an Outer God of the Cthulhu Mythos.
  • Facial Horror: The poor injured sap whose helmet gets removed by other astronauts as a test for Planet Remina's breathability. Short version, his face gruesomely melts into the planet and turns into eyes and a tongue on the surface due to something in the atmosphere.
  • Fanservice: By the last couple chapters, quite a bit of Remina's dress has been torn away thanks to all her various hardships. There are even a couple Panty Shots.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • The lead cultist is seemingly quite angered by Remina embracing the hobo. This is because he is Goda, and is still as possessive of Remina as before, just driven homicidal by rejection.
    • The hobo knows a lot about astrophysics as he observes the effects of the planet Remina on the Earth. He is the Mineichis' long-lost son who wanted to be an astronaut.
  • Genius Loci: The titular Remina is a planet...well, actually more like an Eldritch Abomination the size of a planet.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Ikeuchi the astronomer, once he realizes just what Planet Remina is. He was just observing the unusual path of the planet, looking at it through a telescope...and Planet Remina looked back.
    Ikeuchi: I met Remina's eye...
  • Guilt by Association: The mob will also kill anyone who's with Remina. However, if that person turns against Remina (like Kunihiro), the mob immediately accepts them or otherwise leaves them be. But if that person wants nothing to do with the craziness (like the bum initially), the mob will try to kill the person anyway.
  • Guilt by Coincidence: Remina was born on the same day the planet emerged from the wormhole. This leads the public to believe she and her father are responsible for its appearance or controlling it somehow without any solid evidence.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Yasumi does this by taking a knife in the back for Remina.
  • How We Got Here: The manga begins with Remina tied to a cross, surrounded by a huge crowd and a couple of shadowy figures who want to kill her, while two monstrous eyes watch the scene from the sky.
  • Humans Are Bastards: For the most part, anyway. Panicking at the thought of the coming apocalypse, the populace direct their anger towards Remina and her father, brutally murdering the latter and chasing the former around the Earth.
    • Perhaps somewhat justified in that the angry masses were being egged on by the cultists, but otherwise yes - this trope is played fairly straight.
    Bum: They get you, they don't, don't mean a thing to them. They'd never stop with you now that they got a taste for it.
    • Said hobo's point becomes even more poignant when it's also pointed out that sooner or later, everyone would turn on each other in the vain hope of sparing their own skin.
  • Informed Ability: Remina (the person) becomes famous because of her association with Planet Remina. She (reluctantly) uses the fame to become a famous idol. It's never made clear what she does beyond standing on a stage/in front of cameras and looking pretty. It's possible people are paying to see precisely that, making her career An Aesop about the insanity of fandom, or something.
  • Insane Troll Logic: People have somehow come up with the idea that sacrificing a girl named Remina will appease an entity that, from a point before being named the same, has already been roaming the galaxy consuming planets and stars.
  • It Can Think: There are implications that Planet Remina is fully aware of the humans trying to survive. The supposed message from the astronauts thinking that humans can live on its surface was the planet itself luring victims with human-shaped forms.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Goda claims he'll save Remina's life, even if she loved Yasumi instead. He's lying.
    • It's possible that he meant it at the time that he said it, only to change his mind later when he comes to believe that Remina hates him. It's because he was the head cultist.
  • Jerkass: Kunihiro, who is clearly only tolerated by Remina and her friends because he's got the resources to help them out. Until the attempted rape, anyway.
  • Jerk Ass Has A Point: Goda attacks Kunihiro and calls him a scumbag for abandoning him and Remina to the cultists. While this causes Remina to turn on Goda and call him the "worst", he turns out to he right when Kunihiro tried to rape Remina before handing her over to the mob.
  • Lecherous Licking: While Planet Remina "licks" the surface of Earth with its tongue, the main cultist does the same to Remina's face, with a tongue that's weirdly similar to the planet's own.
  • Left Hanging: As is common in both Cosmic Horror Stories and Junji Ito's, whatever the hell Planet Remina was is never revealed. Nor is, for that matter, the identity of the first three cultists who wanted to sacrifice Remina.
  • Legacy Character: It's actually two separate people who take on the role of the masked leader of the cultists, first being unknown, and the second one being Goda.
  • Macross Missile Massacre / Nuke 'em: The military fires a few dozen nuclear warheads at Planet Remina's tongue. They bounce off and return to sender.
  • Malevolent Masked Men: The cultists, with their black cloaks and hoods similar to those of the Ku Klux Klan.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Planet Remina. Behold the horror.
  • Negative Space Wedgie: Planet Remina came to our region of space through a wormhole, therefore proving the phenomenon's existence. Not that such a breakthrough in astrophysics actually helps anyone, considering the fact that they didn't have a chance to record or study the phenomenon...
  • Neutral Female: Remina does little to nothing to protect herself or defend her own life. The male character she happens to be following at the time is the one making all of the plans and doing the work to keep them both alive, with her simply being led by the hand except on rare occasions.
  • No Biochemical Barriers: Completely averted. Whatever passes for an atmosphere on Planet Remina's surface is incredibly toxic and acidic, and horribly melts a dying refugee the others use to test the air.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: Of the many, many deaths in this story, only the real fate of the Mineichi family isn't shown. Stranded on planet Remina after fleeing there to try and escape the in-progress apocalypse, they're lured to what appears to be a surviving astronaut from earlier but is actually a tentacle attached to the planet, which quickly reveals itself and the last we see of the Mineichis is them screaming at it in terror. We don't see what the tentacle actually does to them, all we know is that they are screwed.
  • Oh, Crap!: The astronomers' reaction every time Planet Remina eats something. When they realize that Planet Remina is headed for Earth, they also remember that the way light from far off in the universe works means that it's actually been coming towards Earth for some time and that they're only just now figuring this out.
  • Only Sane Man: The Hobo soon becomes one of the few sane people left, who also happens to be remarkably intelligent and aware about the whole situation. He's revealed to be the elder Mineichi son, aka the one who sought to become an astronaut.
  • Only the Leads Get a Happy Ending: Probably one of the most extreme examples out there.
  • Our Wormholes Are Different: Planet Remina came from Another Dimension through one of them. And if the title is an actual description...
  • Planet Eater: Obviously.
  • Plot Armor: The entire human race gets spun into the stratosphere (literally), and all of them are out to kill Remina and the Hobo. The latter two manage to land unharmed on the numerous corpses of their pursuers.
  • President Evil: The Prime Minister of Japan abandons Japan for Remina as soon as it becomes apparent Earth will be destroyed.
  • "Ray of Hope" Ending: In one of the more hopeful endings to a Junji Ito work, the manga ends with Earth being eaten, but Remina, the hobo, and a few others somehow managing to survive (albeit stuck in a tiny bomb shelter drifting into the depths of space). Remina herself is pessimistic about their odds of survival, but the hobo muses that since it was already a miracle that they managed to survive all the preceding insanity, another miracle occurring before all their supplies runs out in a year wouldn't be out of the question.
  • The Reveal: The tenacious cultist is Goda, the president of Remina's fan club, and the hobo is the older Mineichi brother.
  • Red Herring: It's implied that one of the astronauts that land on Planet Remina is the long-lost son of the Mineichi family, who dreamed of becoming a astronaut and ran away from home after his father forbade it. He's not, the son is actually The Hobo.
  • Sanity Slippage: An increasingly large fraction of humanity undergoes this as Planet Remina moves ever closer to Earth. Soon enough, the only sane people left alive apart from Remina are a handful of bystanders and the elder Mineichi son. They also become the sole surviving members of the human race in the end.
  • The Scapegoat: The hobo explains that this is why the people have latched onto the idea that Remina the person is responsible for Remina the demon planet threatening the Earth, and that killing her will make it stop. They can't accept that they're going to die and there's nothing they can do to stop it. They can't accept that what's going to kill them is some vast unknowable thing for no great reason other that it sees them as food. They target Remina for having the monster named after her because they're trying to find something, anything that they can do that might save them. As the hobo puts it, it's the desperation to survive that causes them to scapegoat her.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale: How does a Jupiter-sized organism form and not crush itself from its own gravity? There's a reason solid planets don't form that large—they would destroy themselves from their own gravity. Even though it's actually nowhere near Jupiter size. Further, how does the Hellstar travel faster than light, let alone do so without killing itself? How does it withstand the vacuum of space, especially its gigantic, sensitive eyes, or its tongue? Lastly, how does it eat a planet like Earth or Jupiter without killing itself from the extreme heat, pressures, gasses and solids, radioactive material, and everything else from what it eats? All those questions were asked inside the story by the scientists who discovered and observed it. Nobody knows. They did say it was from another universe, maybe it operates by different physics. Or...y'know...
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: While society at large crumbles, the government and what's left of civilization attempt to jump ship for Planet Remina hoping to rebuild there. It goes as well as you'd expect.
  • Sealed Room in the Middle of Nowhere: Once Planet Remina eats the Earth, the only survivors are trapped in an airtight fallout shelter drifting through the now-empty solar system. They have enough supplies to last a year.
  • Shout-Out: That's no moon!
  • Significant Name Overlap: The Mineishis assume that Daisuke Kaneishi is their estranged son Daisuke Mineishi now using a different last name because his personal name is the same and because he's an astronaut like their Daisuke wanted to be. Turns out Daisuke Mineishi is the hobo helping Remina on Earth; there are two men named Daisuke in the story.
  • So Beautiful, It's a Curse: The other cause of poor Remina's many problems.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • When Remina, the Hobo and the mob are flying around the Earth, one member shoots the two of them and is sent hurtling away by the recoil. Another tries to hit them with a flying car, misses and turns around to try again, only for the wind to blow him into the ocean. The Hobo even states these exact reasons why their attempts failed.
    • As it turns out, trying to colonize the planet-eating abomination is a bad idea, and its large mass makes for stronger gravity, as Kunihiro complains.
    • The elder son of the Mineishi family had been determined in becoming an astronaut and left his home. The Mineichi family mistake a dead astronaut as their long-lost son on the surface of the hellstar. The real son failed to fulfill his dream and becomes a hobo Remina meets.
  • Taking the Bullet: Yasumi dies protecting Remina from the mob.
  • That's No Moon!: One member of the mob literally says this when planet Remina appears.
  • The Stars Are Going Out: The first clue about Planet Remina's true nature is when astronomers notice that the surrounding stars "disappear".
  • Too Dumb to Live: An enormous monster planet devours most of the solar system and several stars on the way over, and intends to consume Earth as well. Clearly, that same monster planet is the top choice to flee to and colonize (to be fair, it's also the only place that will survive its rampage, since it obviously can't eat itself). Some of the refugees even believe that it'll be a utopia, based on a few reports from the first explorers (before said reports stopped very suddenly).
  • Torches and Pitchforks: And knives and fire axes and the occasional gun.
  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The story takes place in "July 20XX". While things don't look radically different from the real life modern day at first glance, the setting still has things like Flying Cars, jetpacks, colonies on Mars and the Moon, humanoid robots, and wristwatches that can display video (the manga was serialized in 2004/2005, before smartwatches became real).
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The original three cultists disappear after Remina's attempted crucifixion. It's possible they died when Planet Remina deflected all of Earth's missiles.
  • When Trees Attack: On the surface of Remina, gigantic tree-like organisms can be seen in the distance moving around. Whether they’re illusions or not is never confirmed, but let’s just say the people who land on Remina don’t stand a chance against them if they are real after all.
  • Whip It Good: The head cultist's weapon of choice.
  • Whole Plot Reference: To When Worlds Collide such as a planet coming to destroy the Earth, the mass panic that results from the impending doom, an attempt to escape to the new planet via spaceship, and the astronomer's daughter being one of the protagonists. Although in this case the giant planet about to destroy Earth and the planet that the rocket ships plan to escape to are one and the same.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: The cultists have many, many occasions to kill Remina, but never actually get around to it. Somewhat justified since, being batshit crazy cultists, they want to make her demise a ritualistic sacrifice during which she has to go through as much suffering as she supposedly brought to the people of Earth. It's also likely the mob would have torn her apart were it not for the cultist acting as their leader insisting that Remina has to die via "ritual," likely just to prolong her agony.
  • Witch Hunt: Invoked by the cultists and mob when Remina is tossed outside by Kunihiro.
    • Somehow justified. By that point, what's left of humanity has generally become so desperate and far gone that they're willing to do anything to put an end to their misery. It's honestly a mercy that nearly all of them die.
  • Yandere: Goda, who tries to kill Remina after she rejects him.
  • Zeerust: The architecture and technology appear to have come straight out of the '60's-'70's era sci-fi. It even includes a Retro Rocket as a means to evacuate VIPs from Earth.

Alternative Title(s): Hellstar Remina