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Zankoku na Kami ga Shihaisuru  
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Zankoku na Kami ga Shihaisuru portrays the tale of two step-brothers - Jeremy and Ian, as they strive to discover their separate paths towards redemption.
Jeremy, a sensitive but outgoing 17 year old, is delighted to hear the news of his neurotic and excitable mother's remarriage to a wealthy British man. However, much to his horror, his sweet-talking new step-father Greg, soon begins to exhibit a disturbing trait...he is a sadistic pedophile and loses no time in making Jeremy his target. Months of horrific, systematic abuse drives Jeremy to desperation; he sabotages his step-father's car with the hope of eliminating him. The resulting accident, however, kills his mother along with Greg.
Jeremy's shocked and guilt-stricken behaviour arouses the suspicions of Greg's free-spirited son, Ian. He unearths enough evidence to tie his step-brother to the crime; but in doing so, also discovers the details of Greg's sexual abuse of Jeremy.
Caught in a moral dilemma -- between punishing the criminal and atoning for his father's sins, Ian soon finds himself haunted by lust for Jeremy. Is it lust...or love? He wonders whether he shares his father's proclivities, but finds himself helpless to resist being drawn into a passionate and painful relationship with Jeremy.

Note: Won the first Osamu Tezuka Culture Award Excellence prize in 1997.


Related Series

Associated Names
A Cruel God Reigns
A Cruel God Reigns in Heaven
A Cruel God Rules in Heaven
A Savage God Reigns
After Us, the Savage God
Zankoku na Kami ga Shihai Suru

Groups Scanlating

Latest Release(s)
v.17 c.86 (end) by carfish over 3 years ago
v.17 c.85 by carfish over 4 years ago
v.17 c.84 by carfish over 4 years ago
Search for all releases of this series

Status in Country of Origin
17 Volumes (Tankoubon - Complete)
10 Volumes (Bunkouban - Complete)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter

User Reviews

3 topics, 15 posts
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User Rating
Average: 8.9 / 10.0 (402 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.72 / 10.0
 52% (211 votes)
 19% (75 votes)
 13% (53 votes)
 8% (31 votes)
 2% (7 votes)
 2% (8 votes)
 1% (3 votes)
 1% (3 votes)
 1% (4 votes)
 2% (7 votes)

Last Updated
May 17th 2017, 7:43pm PST



Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Petit Flower (Shougakukan)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #309 increased(+77)
Monthly Pos #452 increased(+20)
3 Month Pos #477 increased(+14)
6 Month Pos #482 decreased(-24)
Year Pos #461 decreased(-35)

List Stats
On 724 reading lists
On 689 wish lists
On 428 completed lists
On 47 unfinished lists
On 427 custom lists

Note: You must be logged in to update information on this page.

Forum Posts
Thoughts and reactions over 2 years ago
Jeremy look alike IMO over 5 years ago
Painful to read over 7 years ago

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User Comments [ Order by usefulness ]

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Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by Ealya
September 6th, 2013, 3:18pm
This series is very disturbing, but it is also one of the best series I have read so far. The mangaka does not shy away from depicting the abuse and the psychological consequences of it, so it is not for the faint hearted. However, the realistic and detailed way of depicting it is also what makes this story such a good read. It is really impressive, and it leaves you numb and raw from emotion after reading it.

The most special thing about this story is the psychology behind it. At first, I expected the story to start after the actual abuse, but the author shows the abuse from start to finish in 36 chapters. Many people in this comment thread find this long, but I found this necessary to accurately depict the psychology behind it. It depicts how Jeremy is influenced by the abuse, how he deals with it, the distress signals he sends out to his environment, and how everybody in his environment either fails to pick up the signals or chooses to ignore it. This is very realistic, as often in the case of an abusive father the mother chooses to ignore the evidence, or people don't want to believe someone (of good reputation) would actually do such a cruel thing. It is very disturbing, but the accuracy of the depiction is also stunning.

I also like the way the author depicts the interplay between Jeremy and Ian after the murder.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
As with the abuse, the author succeeds in accurately depicting the psychology of both characters: Jeremy in dealing with the aftermath of the abuse and the guilt of murdering his mother, Ian in dealing with the fact that Jeremy was abused by his father and with his growing feelings for Jeremy. Despite the heaviness, I actually liked to read how they both evolved and entered the road to recovery. Jeremy can not move on, as he tries to forget/ignore everything while he is at the same time still stuck in the pain of the abuse. Ian forces Jeremy to deal with the situation and to stop running away from it, and he forces him to tell everything that happened to him. Especially the part where they both face the pictures is painfull, but important. The fact that there is a person like Ian who supports him unconditionally and to whom he can tell everything that happened is the key to his road to recovery.

The story is almost fully translated by now (up to chapter 84), I am curious about the ending. I would recommend this series to other people, but only if you can digest it's disturbing content.
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Dark side of the world   
Rating: 9.0 / 10.0
by doorknobfae
July 28th, 2013, 1:44am
If you're in the mood for emotional torture and depressing tearjerker, you're at the right place.

What this story offers is pure tragedy. Exactly the kind of shit can possible happen to people out of blue. How everything will not go the way you want. Ever. What happens to the protagonist is the worst case scenario, and trust me on this, this happens in the world everyday.

The way characters interact is so realistic; how they try to reason, deny, and find solutions to the problems. Their flaws makes them humane and at the same time, makes them extremely frustrating to follow. It gives them depths.

I, for one, would like to read it till the end to see how to author wrap this story up. It's a heavy one to read, but it is worth the time.

... Last updated on July 28th, 2013, 1:45am
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@wintermelon: are you serious?   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by lilyann1984
June 15th, 2013, 1:13pm
I don't think you have the right to belittle Hagio Motos work. The slowly progress of the story makes sense. I'm sure the author wanted to show us how Jeremy changed over time and how much he had to suffer, so we can understand his character and his development, even though it's a very tragic and painful read. Some people enjoy reading disgusting things. Yeah, maybe you're right and it belongs more in the horror genre.

But I seriously don't think it's true that Hagio Moto draws the abuse scenes every 10 pages. If it is true than I cannot remember it. And to be honest I don't remember ANY of the rape scenes in detail. So hopefully I'm not a psychopath, who admires how children get abused. I read this because it is the most interesting story I ever come across and that's not because it is about child abuse. Hagio Moto is a very talented storyteller. You just want to know what happens next.

If you cannot appreciate her work, well, that's fine. But to bash it this way...
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Edited. (Psychopathic Behaviour In a Graphic Book)   
Rating: 1.0 / 10.0
by wintermelon
June 12th, 2013, 7:50am
^ I am entitled to my opinion. As it is rightly based on what I read and felt, so perhaps it is worthwhile to respect another person's thoughts, even though it might differ from yours.
I was driven to write my comment after reading 6 volumes bigrazz will tone down a few things I said, but I maintain my stance on this title.
Last thing: I was only commenting on this manga and not the mangaka or her skills per se! Please keep that in mind.

Oh and this manga did not give me anything worthwhile in the long...or short run, so I don't recommend it.

People like this book because they may think it is touching some "deep" topics.
It's not "deep", if deep means something that is valuable to your growth as a human being. The things depicted in this manga is criminal, and you can only look at it with a sense of horror. (and obviously from that you can assume my position of reading some horrors too. Though I think a horror here and there won't kill you - but seriously, six books of it?). I will explain what I mean.

You can say it simply belongs to the "horror" genre or "tragedy" genre...but does categorising the "genre" justify writing six graphic books about a fictional child's destructive pain?
Six volumes, just the same things happening to the character again and again and again.
And yes, there are a lot of scenes of abuse.

You can argue that it raises awareness to the horror that child abuse is, but more than 400 pages of it is going too far. Awareness to child abuse is different from prolonged depiction of it for the sake of profit - which is what this manga was published for - money, selling a book that depicts graphic images of child abuse for profit?

I guess I would say the same for hentai and other published material that demean the value and worth of a human being, so if any one who is reading this is a supporter of absolutely no boundaries in published material, then they would not agree with anything I say.
(Flicking through the pages now to see when the prolonged abuse will end. Just waiting to see something different, hopefully, from the past 400+ pages.)

Perhaps the main reason that this disagreed with me was the extent that it related to real life, and to make money out of drawing abuse for entertainment? I think contemplating on the age group who has access to this manga also bugs me. It is potentially desensitizing (as are some horror genres) on the true pain that real people feel after going through traumatic experiences. People write novels about their own lives and recovery from abuse, but how old are the typical readers of those books compared to those reading this manga?

... Last updated on September 23rd, 2013, 8:28am
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deep plot, great understanding   
Rating: N/A
by LouEngine
June 9th, 2013, 3:39am
I admire the author because she understands the feelings and actions of people so well. I see myself in this manga, the feelings are described so well, that's exactly what it feels like... her story telling is good but it gets quite messy sometimes. Despite that, you can't help but 'feel' the characters, you can feel their pain, anger... all sort of emotions are conveyed..
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Just perfect   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by CuthienSilmeriel
May 29th, 2013, 6:08am
Really, I cannot praise this enough. It is heartbreakingly sad, and disturbingly realistic, in its portrayal of Jeremy as a young, naive victim, and Ian as a well-meaning but completely out-of-his-depth supporter.

People who complain that it is too angsty, too heavy, or that the actions of the characters were cowardly or nonsensical simply do not understand what it is like to be abused and completely powerless to stop it. It is actually quite insulting to suggest that Jeremy's behaviour is overly dramatically or irrational given the depth of the trauma he has, and I can only attribute such callousness to the sickening frequency with which "rape = love" is used as a plot device in yaoi manga, because in real life, abuse victims act like Jeremy. Not always, but a damn sight more often than the all-too-commonly-seen yaoi reaction of "You raped me, and I felt violated and ashamed, but now you told me you love me I understand and forgive you. Let's be together forever! And sure you can ostracise me from all my friends and family, because you love me." This is a serious manga, and such reactions should never be taken seriously. If this bothers you, don't read this manga.

Jeremy's downward spiral is very authentic. He is a young boy who has grown up with a suicidal mother pushing all her burdens onto a small child (think about it, she woke him up in the middle of the night when he was 10 years old to show him her slit wrists for Heaven's sake!). His father has died, so he alone became responsible for keeping his mother on track, even calling her Sandra to sound less like a son. When Greg comes along, he is dealing with all this and going through the generally painful teenage years. He is told "sleep with me or your mother will die", and when he refuses, Greg breaks up with his mother who promptly tries to kill herself again. So he does. This is just the first example of how Greg, ever so skilfully and slowly managed to box Jeremy into a corner until speaking out becomes impossible, finding help is unthinkable, and running away would be akin to murdering his own mother. Greg is very practised at exercising his domination and sadistic abuse over his victims in such a way that he holds their weakness and they feel compelled to keep silent.

On top of all this, he is in a new country, with a new school and new family, so he has absolutely no one to rely on, no one who knows him well enough to recognise the warning signs bar his mother, who is too screwed herself to actually be a good mother to her son and admit that the man she loves is abusing him. The new family around Jeremy isn't of help because how are they to know that he has become withdrawn when they only met him after the abuse started? Besides, Greg has managed to psychologically screw with everyone in the household in some way so they believe every word he says and follow him despite knowing how violent he can be. After everything he goes through Jeremy is shattered emotionally, and can only deal with the trauma by repeating it (a very common phenomenon actually). Cue Ian's clumsy attempts to heal wounds he cannot possibly understand after ripping them wider, and you have a very touching emotional manga.

... Last updated on March 11th, 2014, 9:23am
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Deep, tormenting and mind blowing   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by Belladreams
March 3rd, 2013, 11:10am
This story is so complex. It is like the perfect eye opener for those whom get caught up in the fairy tale of a perfect married life and romance. So many emotions are stirred up in me i am like a raw nerve just from reading this. Not for the faint of heart true enough. I feel tho it is still a must read. The art work is wonderful the history i just love it all and as i wait for more chapters. I have such fears for not just the two young men but everyone...
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*flings salt*   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by pantomnesia
February 7th, 2013, 3:33pm
Personally dig the art. There's this decorative yet static feeling to the manga.

Also, as much as I love Yoneda Kou's Saezuru Tori wa Habatakanai, I wouldn't say it's any more believable than Zankoku na Kami ga Shihaisuru. Both are different depictions of psychological state(s) of a rape victim though I think Zankoku na Kami ga Shihaisuru confronts the more uglier aspects/details. Also, the characters here are understandably "difficult." To think that a wonderful, selfless man you love will save you from yourself and solve everything is a fairy tale. It takes more work than just romance. But anyway, both mangas are very dear to me. ...Still, a score of 2?! Really?!?!

... Last updated on February 7th, 2013, 3:35pm
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Wonderful & not for the faint of heart.   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by Namiya
January 3rd, 2013, 7:29pm
So first things first, the art is typical 90s manga art. It's not that pretty to look at.
There's a lot of weird faces, awkward anatomy and let's not forget ridiculous hairdos and outfits!
That being said, I really liked reading this manga.
It's incredibly deep, dark, disturbing. It feels very realistic, like a documentary or a real story.
This does not take place in the crazy world of manga, much less the even crazier world of yaoi land.
The protagonist suffers, a lot.
The manga is mostly about how these things gradually, slowly happen. How he reacts and how they change him, driving him slowly insane.
While not everyone might like this approach, I loved how it was just very realistic.
A boy who cares a lot for his mother and is being forced into sex and threatened with his mother's health or happiness might not be able to just say "stop".
This covers the basic themes of sexual abuse. He wants help, he wants out, but he doesn't always have the courage to just say those things out loud, especially while he knows that nobody might believe him, or that his mother and others might suffer.
The other people might seem ignorant but come on, even if you notice your child acting strangely, realistically speaking, who would honestly think of even the slightest possibility of abuse? Not many. That's why there's many many more cases of abuse happening than are recorded.
To me, his slowly succumbing mind seems very believable. He can't think straight anymore, loses his rational thinking... even thinks about his own death or ending it all by killing his step-father.
It's beautifully told, and sort of poetic sometimes.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
You'll need some patience because this just drags on and on and on, and to be honest, I skipped some text because it was just too long for me as well.
It takes forever before things start happening, like major changes, and before Jeremy finally, FINALLY confesses what happened to him, and even longer before people start believing him but those moments are very moving and so I still think it's worth the read.

Also, don't stop reading just midway, go at least to volume 9 or so, because it has some big changes that might blow your mind!

So, this is realistic, slow... it's torture for the protagonist both physically and emotionally.
Do not read this if you are looking for something light, happy or funny!
If you enjoy dark, gloomy, no-hope kind of stories though, and the theme of sexual abuse and all the details on how characters deal with it then give it a shot!
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The author is the cruel one here   
Rating: 8.0 / 10.0
by Lilith_Lancaster
December 31st, 2012, 11:42am
TOO. MUCH. TRAUMA. Jeremy never gets a break (no pun intended)! I think he didn't even smile after ch3 or ch4!

I really enjoyed the psychology themes, emotional suspense and symbolism. The homosexual tones (which aren't that graphic, explains why it's a shounen ai not yaoi) makes it better for me.

The progress is VERY slow, and things get repeated few times, but that's good to let you immerse in the story and FEEL it. Never in my whole life have I HATED a fictional character this much (maybe Akito from fruit Basket).

Definitely a gem that you won't forget.
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