Netflix has been trying to get me into this anime forever. Seriously. Netflix has been like that aggressive aunt who is always telling you about that nice boy she met at the deli who she thinks would be so perfect for you. Add to that, Tumblr, who is like some teenaged best friend who is like, “OMG, girl, just try it!”
So, I tried the first episode, and thought: my friends are all insane.
But, Toyko Ghoul kept popping up on my Tumblr feed making me feel weirdly guilty that I wasn’t more into it, so when I saw the first tankōbon at the library, I thought: “Maybe I can READ it.”
And, I was right. For me, the manga is far more preferable than the anime.
The things that turned me off about the first episode were much less problematic in print. For one, the manga builds slowly, so I have some time to get to know (and like) Ken Kaneki. The story is still a splatter fest, but I can linger less on that part of the plot, and focus more on the slowly developing ghoul culture.
The first volume doesn’t take us very far. The manga mostly reads like any old been-there-done-that vampire story, but I can see the potential better. I will definitely get the second volume from the library, and if that’s engaging, see if I can find the rest of the story as well. Wikipedia tells me the story is complete at fourteen volumes, though I haven’t checked to see if all of them are available in English yet.
So, I would say, if you’ve had the same problem I have and you want to try Tokyo Ghoul, the manga might be the thing for you, as well.