Giacomo Lee is a London writer based in South Korea. His upcoming novel Funereal will be about the dark side to Seoul, surgery and staged funerals — find it on Signal 8 Press in 2015, and follow on Twitter @elegiacomo.
Inspired by Subject Object Verb’s review of indie manhwa Kafe Limbo by Kim Han-min — a book which I’d really love to read in English, by the way - I was inspired to post about another odd and untranslated Korean comic, the Nudl Nude ( 누들누드 ) series by Yang Yeong-sun. I found this in the small 만화 library section of a love motel I was forced to stay at due to being in between homes, and picked it up as it was the only Korean book in the collection (the other comics being hangul translations of manga from Japan). The cover also caught my eye, admittedly:
Whereas Kafe Limbo is strange in a surreal sense, Nudl Nude books are strange in a bawdy style that reminds me of saucy old comics from France and Belgium. These books date back to 1997 when Korea was caught up in the Asian financial crisis, so perhaps they were a much-needed source of titters and tits during that dark period. Have a look at some pics I took of cartoons from various Nudl Nude collections, with more info available in their captions.
Nudl Nude was also transformed into two animated movies for the hentai (変態) market, and there are Nudl Nude condoms out there you can buy. The second installment of my two part look at ‘odd school’ Korean comic strips will explore a more current webtoon that’s caught my eye with its unique aesthetics.