Cover of the first volume featuring the eponymous Fran Madaraki
|Genre||Comedy, Horror, Science fiction|
|Written by||Katsuhisa Kigitsu|
|Published by||Akita Shoten|
|Original run||September 2006 – February 2012|
Franken Fran (フランケン・ふらん Furanken Furan?) is a comedy horror manga series by Katsuhisa Kigitsu (木々津克久 Kigitsu Katsuhisa?). It began serialization in Champion Red magazine in September 2006 and is now completed. Individual chapters are published in tankōbon volumes by Akita Shoten, with 8 volumes released in total. Seven Seas Entertainment licensed the series for publication in North America.
Fran is a girl created by Dr. Naomitsu Madaraki, the world's top biologist. Originally intended to be his assistant, she has taken over his work and home while he is away. Her life is rather uneventful until various medical cases begin falling into her lap, ranging from resurrection to aesthetic surgery.
There is a fair amount of black humor, nearly each story ending with Fran having created some sort of gruesome monstrosity or misfortune of and upon her patients, though seemingly content with the results. Continuity is often rather loose, as individual chapters rarely reference one another. Though recurring characters outside the main cast do exist, arc-based storylines are practically nonexistent.
The final chapter, entitled "Dream", was published as "Episode" 61 of the manga. Notably, the chapter features no elements of the "typical" Franken Fran formula. Instead, most of the chapter consists of Fran being trapped on a sunken ship beneath the ocean, where oxygen deprivation soon leads her to experience a surreal dream - Okita, now a normal human, is her brother, Veronica is no longer a bio-weapon, etc. The dream culminates in an enormous party, which every character to have ever appeared in the manga attends. The "party" then (from the reader's point of view) concludes just as the most important guest - Dr. Madaraki - arrives, a tearful Fran throwing open the door to welcome him in.
In the real world, Okita and Veronica manage to find the sunken ship, and spot the unconscious Fran through one of the portholes. They knock on the porthole, trying to rouse Fran with words. The final page of the manga shows Fran back at the Madaraki estate, plowing through a standard day of work.
- Fran Madaraki (斑木 ふらん Madaraki Furan?)
The protagonist of the manga, Fran lives at the Madaraki estate. Though she is often mistaken for Naomitsu Madaraki's daughter, she is actually his greatest "masterpiece." She is fitted with two sizable bolts upon her temples and marred with faint stitches, giving her a distinctly inhuman appearance. She has a unique view of morality, finding certain cases emotionally moving and experimenting out of the goodness of her heart.
While most often aloof, she has shown that she is aware that her actions ruin lives, and is very capable of using her talents to punish others, should they seriously offend her or hurt others, such is the case with a group of spies sent to steal her and Dr. Amatsuka's secrets and research. Fran is able to make her clients' dreams come true and very often their nightmares as well - the consequences of her actions are extraordinary. Even so, Fran carries on without a concern. During surgery, she is able to increase the number of her arms and operate at a greater speed. Her one oath is to never take life, believing that "regardless of the shape or form, if it can function as a living organism, it is good."
- Veronica Madaraki (斑木ヴェロニカ Madaraki Veronika?)
Veronica is a bio-weapon assassin crafted by Dr. Madaraki for his own protection. As such, she is notably violent, though bound to a humane battle etiquette and creed: "to murder while causing as little suffering as possible" and "rather a painless death than a painful life." In addition to her naturally high combat ability, she is trained in the handling of explosives and the setting of traps in the field. Wielding a huge guillotine blade in her right arm and a sharp sword in her left, she also appears to have needles on the ends of her fingertips which allow her to inject viruses into her victims. She has an X-shaped stitching across her face and a fairly benign, young appearance.
Although her first appearance is as somewhat of an antagonist, she quickly joins Fran at her home and resumes her guard duties with Fran as a charge. She does not hesitate to eliminate anything that threatens the estate, though is usually rebuffed. As she was created after Fran, Veronica regards her as "onee-sama."
- Gavrill Madaraki (斑木ガブリール Madaraki Gaburiru?)
Fran's older sister and one of Naomitsu's earliest and most dangerous projects. Gavrill has the appearance of a woman in her twenties or late teens with wild, unkempt violet hair, a line of stitching going across the bridge of her nose, and black leather clothing adorned with various arm and leg braces she presumably wears as accessories. She is what Fran calls a "Transformer," the entirety of her skeletal, muscular, organ, and nervous systems being partitioned into many smaller divisions so that she can consciously control them, which grants her the ability to manipulate her body and formidable regeneration. This suits her incredibly violent, often self-serving needs; her primary combat form being a humanoid wolf (giving her the nickname Gavrill the Wolf). However, Fran says that transformations require a great amount of willpower. As a result, the Professor has abandoned the practice due to the danger that comes with it if the subject's will is not strong enough.
She, too, is introduced as an antagonist, casually mutilating Veronica in an attempt to lure Fran. Despite her foul mouth and exceptionally violent behaviour, she is loyal to Dr. Amatsuka, vowing to murder all of his attackers and a surprisingly adept confidant during her tenure of teaching at Fran's school. Her hatred towards the Professor and her "sisters" may stem from his abandoning the Transformer practice, abandoning her in turn.
- Dr. Naomitsu Madaraki (斑木尚允 Madaraki Naomistu?)
The creator of Fran and her "siblings." An unseen character, he owns the mansion that Fran lives in but has not lived there for a long time.
During the second World War, Naomitsu worked for the Biochemistry Division, earning fame and the moniker of "Devil of Biology" and "Spider's Thread" due to the nature of his experiments. He is considered a top-class thinker in the field of biotechnology. Given his service in the war, he is presumed quite old, constantly traveling the world for the sake of his research. His current whereabouts are unknown to Fran. Dr. Madaraki defines World War II to be "a war to kill the gods" because of its promotion of scientific development and the erosion of religion accompanied by it.
- Dr. Amatsuka (天使-先生 Amatsuka?)
A friend of Madaraki's since the days of the old Japanese Empire, his various achievements have earned him the title of Viscount in England. He has an open bet with Madaraki on the existence of God. Amatsuka is also the one responsible for Gavrill's check-ups in order to keep her superhuman abilities stable. Gavrill appears to show some respect for him despite the fact that Gavrill constantly badmouths him for his age and his cautionary warnings towards her. He is later assaulted by a group of agents who are hired by corrupt politicians. However, Fran is able to save his life with immediate treatment. When Gavrill finds out that Amatsuka was attacked, she vows revenge against the politicians responsible.
- Rumiko Kuhou (久宝るみ子 Kuhou Rumiko?)
A bespectacled female investigator who has the occasional interaction with the Madarakis, much to her terror. She first meets Fran in order to get help in tracking down a possible murderer; the second she undergoes surgery in order to heighten her senses and eliminate the clones of one of Fran's previous experiments, though this may be a stress-induced nightmare following her interaction with Fran.
After isolating Gavrill on an island, Rumiko was cloned and genetically coded to undergo a form of mitosis, creating an endless force. She is also used as a base for Fran's artificial humans and was constantly cloned. She had also attracted a rich island owner Matsumae Tadashi.
- Okita (沖田 Okita?)
One of Fran's engineered companions, Okita has the head of a handsome young man with the body of a cat. He works along with Fran, supporting or making fun of her. Outside of the estate, his head is grafted onto a human body, taking the guise of a perfectly normal adult man. He is sometimes bewildered by Fran, but in general he supervises her actions in silence.
- Adorea (アドレア Adorea?)
Another of Fran's companions, she serves as a flexible reserve of organs. Stock is collected through her "face", which when not concealed with her full-body bandaging, is nothing more than hundreds of tentacles used to tear and collect reagents from the patient before death, keeping them fresh and viable. They are accessible via zippers in her skin.
Her origin is revealed in an extra chapter; originally a beautiful, though terminally ill girl, she had a handsome lover in a similar condition. Due to their love for each other, they agreed to give each other their organs upon death, so that the other could live, but the man went back on his word, and took all of Adorea's organs for himself. Dr. Naomitsu Madaraki, the surgeon in charge at the time, modified Adorea into her present condition so she could reclaim her organs with interest.
|No.||Japanese release date||Japanese ISBN||English release date||English ISBN|
|1||November 20, 2007||ISBN 978-4-253-23311-8||February 16, 2016||ISBN 978-1-626923-03-4|
|2||July 18, 2008||ISBN 978-4-253-23312-5||February 16, 2016||ISBN 978-1-626923-03-4|
|3||February 20, 2009||ISBN 978-4-253-23313-2||May 31, 2016||ISBN 978-1-626922-3-03|
|4||October 20, 2009||ISBN 978-4-253-23314-9||May 31, 2016||ISBN 978-1-626922-3-03|
|5||June 18, 2010||ISBN 978-4-253-23315-6||—||—|
|6||January 20, 2011||ISBN 978-4-253-23316-3||—||—|
|7||August 20, 2011||ISBN 978-4-253-23317-0||—||—|
|8||February 20, 2012||ISBN 978-4-253-23318-7||—||—|
- "Prologue" ( プロローグ?) - (1:43)
- "PART1 CHRYSALIS - Islander - " ( 蟲?) - (19:58)
- "PART2 MY LITTLE SISTER - sister - " ( 妹?) - (13:20)
- "PART3 LUST" - lust - ( 肉欲?) - (16:40)
- "Epilogue" ( エピローグ?) - (2:24)
- Champion Red. 「木々津克久先生にインタビュー！！」 January 2011. 年1月号、610頁. Japanese language
- "Seven Seas Licenses Dark Parody Manga Franken Fran". Anime News Network. April 28, 2015. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Green, Scott (April 28, 2015). "Seven Seas Licenses "Franken Fran" Manga". Crunchyroll. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- フランケン・ふらん 第1巻 [Franken Fran volume 1]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- "Franken Fran". Seven Seas Entertainment. Retrieved September 30, 2015.
- フランケン・ふらん 第2巻 [Franken Fran volume 2]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第3巻 [Franken Fran volume 3]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第4巻 [Franken Fran volume 4]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第5巻 [Franken Fran volume 5]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第6巻 [Franken Fran volume 6]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第7巻 [Franken Fran volume 7]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.
- フランケン・ふらん 第8巻 [Franken Fran volume 8]. Akita Shoten (in Japanese). Retrieved July 25, 2012.