Not long ago, the first manga series an AI wrote was released by name Cyberpunk: Peach John. This was a dawn of a new era in which people who didn’t even have a talent for drawing could draw significantly well using AI.
But the reaction of the ever-great Junji Ito to this is unique, unlike any other industry person or mangaka. According to Ito, AI can never create horror from a regular thing, which makes his job unique and not something AI can steal.
On 5 May 2023, Junji Ito was interviewed by the famous Japanese Game Website 4Gamer. In this interview, he was asked what are his views on AI and how AI will dominate the future. Junji Ito at first gave the same reaction as every other person that he feared AI would dominate manga industry in the future.
He added that AI cannot do anything with “originality” in it as it always uses references for everything it does. This is a grave issue, but Junji Ito still agrees that AI can draw better than humans and might make something better than Junji Ito’s creations in the future.
The central part of the interview began after this as Junji Ito explained modern horror and how AI cannot draw like him.
Modern Horror and its Affect on Manga Fans
Junji Ito started by saying that people’s fears have not evolved much since the old days, as people are still scared of scary stuff. He used the word “hitokowa,” which in English means “unmasking,” to explain his point.
He explained that people are more interested in horror manga series like Uzumaki, which show the dark side of humans, and this fear was not as intense before in the old times. Ito added that he does not understand this aspect as much because this emotion does not have a particular definition.
But Junji Ito said that he always tries to learn about this emotion whenever possible and portray it in his manga series, just like Uzumaki and much other manga series of him. This enables him to create something well-appreciated and something people prefer to buy.
Junji Ito’s Originality and Future of AI
This was the central part of the interview when Junji Ito explained how originality is the main selling point of his manga series, so AI can never replace him in the future. He gave the example of his ever-famous manga series named Uzumaki.
He explained that he always wanted to create something unique, something no one had ever thought of, which led to him creating Uzumaki.
In Uzumaki, Junji Ito has portrayed a fear of spirals, which is not something you think of scary. But because of the manga series, the spiral shape now seems scary to most people. So, he proves his point that AI’s unoriginality can never replace his unique and classy artwork.
This whole interview is the reason why I love Junji Ito so much. The way he makes something so ordinary, so scary, and creepy is something not everyone can do. Besides Uzumaki, there are other examples of simple things he has portrayed as creepy in his works.
He portrayed the cat (the cutest creature in the world) as a sinister being in “Soichi’s Beloved Pet.” He portrayed dreams (a wonderland for everyone) as a never-ending prison in “The Long Dream.” There are also other examples, but you get the point on how unique and original concepts Junji Ito uses for his manga series.
Junji Ito started his journey as a mangaka in 1987 and became the king of horror. His works portray a sinister vibe to the reader, which makes anything he draws scary and creepy. In English Publications, his works are released in collections as books like “Smashed” “Shiver” “Venus in the Blind Spot” and “Tombs.” His latest collection book, “Soichi, ” will be released on 25 July 2023.
What are your thoughts on this? Do you think having such an optimistic approach to the future against AI is correct? Let us know in the comments down below.