The Manga "The Walking Man" by Jiro Taniguchi is an unusual Manga to say the least.
There is no Story as such, no action or romance, no thrills or excitement, no sex and violence, no fast cars, aliens or robots or the usual Boys-Toys that are so familiar to every reader of Japanese Manga.
So whats it about ?
A man takes a walk..... that´s it !
Now how can that be Fun to read ?? A man takes a walk !!!
Yep, a man takes a walk. He lives in a Japanese suburb in a nice house with a garden, has a wive and a dog and he goes for a walk with his dog, goes to the bakery and buys a cake, climbs a tree, takes a swim, watches the people around him, gets cought in the rain and so on.
In fact just ordinary every day activities that are almost always excluded from stories.
It´s all about Being, and not Doing, and draws heavily from Zen and Taoistic philosopy that the essence of mans live is To Be and not To Do.
A famous Taoistic saying is "the usufullnes of uselessness".
Of course what makest this Manga Such a Treasure is the fabulous talent of Jiro Taniguchi, he is a superb artist and his drawings are such a visual treat, he manages to tell interesting stories with hardly any text but simply through pictures. There is so much feeling and atmosphere here, you really get a feel for the heat of a Japanese summers day and the Manga is just infused with a calm meditative flow, simply Beautiful.
This is Graphic Story telling at it´s Best and I can Highly recommend it.