Is Go Nagai’s Sexy Magical Girl Manga Worth Reading?

by Tito W. James

Cutie Honey is an eechi manga by Go Nagai and features the protagonist Cutie Honey whose powers and adventures set the paradigm for the magical girl genre.

Much like superheroes, magical girls have gone from dark to kid-friendly and back to dark again. So, is Cutie Honey an avant-garde work of graphic fiction or a shameless sexploitation comic? Well it’s kind of both.

Check out the premise below:

THE BAD

There are some offensive lesbian stereotypes that just aren’t funny and come across as distracting. Also, the original series got cancelled before concluding. It doesn’t end on a cliff-hanger but the final bad guy has yet to be defeated.

THE GOOD

Honey is a badass! Her powers are cool and she uses them in creative ways to defeat her opponents. This isn’t a magical girl story where problems are solved by summoning kittens and rainbows. Honey dismembers her opponents with her sword and can turn her own saliva into sulfuric acid to spit on the graves of her enemies.

THE VERDICT

Much like Kill La Kill or Lollipop Chainsaw, Cutie Honey focuses on being entertaining rather than intelligent. The sexual content is purely exploitative rather than expressive as in Go Nagai’s other works.

However, Cutie Honey is a fun read and does have some characters and elements that could be explored further. I’d like to see the series revamped as an Anime as they did for Devilman. If they can get a visionary Anime director attached to the franchise, then we could see a really fun and dangerous magical girl story.

Tito W. James

Tito W. James writes action adventure comics for all ages that juxtapose creepy content with beautiful imagery. He is the mastermind behind CROSSBONE JONES and GANGSTERS VS GATORS. Tito’s goal is to create comics that capture the bombastic fun of old comics with the emotional resonance of new ones. ​