Zombies have been as inescapable in the real world as they are in the media. While the craze for the undead has died down since its peak over a decade ago, they’re still out there. They may be the classic living corpses as seen in The Walking Dead, rage monsters like in 28 Days Later and its sequel, or people with the world’s worst fungal infection, a la The Last of Us.

They also turn up in anime and manga. Highschool of the Dead made them fodder for the fanservice-toting leads. Seoul Station showed what happened in Korea’s capital prior to the cult movie classicTrain to Busan. Then the (in)famous horror mangaka Junji Ito created GYO, his sealife-based undead tale of terror. But there are still some zombie manga that haven’t become anime yet.


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Updated April 9, 2024 by David Heath: Usually, a popular manga will eventually get adapted as an anime at one point or another. It took 24 years for Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure to get animated beyond Part 3: Stardust Crusaders. Pluto became the second Naoki Urasawa work to receive an anime after Monster. Even The 100 Girlfriends Who Really, Really, Really, Really, Really Love You got an animated series in 2023.

However, none of the zombie series from this list have gone beyond print and the occasional live-action movie. Not even highly-rated entries have had any news, let alone the more underrated entries like Reiko the Zombie Shop and Magical Girl Apocalypse. But perhaps it’s a matter of time. MGA‘s spin-off Magical Girl Site got animated, so there’s always hope for them, and for this list’s new entries as well.

16 KoLD8: King Of The Living Dead

MyAnimeList Score: 5.74

Zombie Manga Without Anime- KoLD8

  • Written and illustrated by Pageratta
  • 3 Volumes, 24 Chapters
  • Available in English via MANGA Plus

Appearing in Shonen Jump+, KoLD8: King of the Living Dead sees the undead as the backup for a new kind of anti-hero. After Japan falls to the zombies, Eito “8” Hasaba joins his mom and little sister on the road to reach a blockaded safety zone called a “sector.” They’re allowed in, but after Eito gets into an argument, he’s grievously wounded and left for dead outside the sector.

As the zombies start shuffling towards him, he hopes to die of his wounds before he gets eaten. But after he passes out, he survives, recovers, and discovers he has the ability to control the undead. With these new powers, he dispenses justice within the sectors to keep those in charge from abusing their status. It did get an English translation via MANGA Plus, though it only goes up to Chapter 23.

15 Kingdom Of Z

MyAnimeList Score: 5.91

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Kingdom of Z

  • Written by Saizo Harawata
  • Illustrated by Lon Watanuki
  • 6 Volumes, 45 Chapters
  • Available in English via Seven Seas Entertainment

If King of the Living Dead is too shōnen for one’s taste, they might prefer a harem story that gives its lead more than they can handle. Seven Seas Entertainment officially translated an example of that in Kingdom of Z. It’s a manga where its unlucky lead might have a better chance of survival with the zombies than with the women who saved him.

After Japan fell to the zombie apocalypse, Masaru thought he’d be eaten alive. Instead, he was rescued by Karin and Miki, the most attractive girls at his high school. Unfortunately, he soon finds out Karin is a psychopath underneath her happy-go-lucky exterior, and Miki wants to turn the zombie hordes into her own private army and take over the country. Until he can find a way to escape, Masaru is stuck serving their whims as their underling.

14 Are You Alive Honda-Kun?

MyAnimeList Score: 6.10

Zombie Manga Without Anime - Are You Alive Honda-kun

  • Written and illustrated by Yoshiki Tonogai
  • 3 Volumes, 36 Chapters
  • Fan Translations only

The world may be overwhelmed by the undead, but that doesn’t mean love still can’t bloom. It’s what made The Last of Us: Left Behind quite compelling, and this idea at the center of the rom-zom-com Are You Alive Honda Kun? Written for Shōnen Gangan, the story sees a young girl called Alice try to live an ordinary life in a world overrun by zombies. She can be a bit ditzy at times, though not ditzy enough to prioritize romance over survival.


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When Honda confesses to her, love, sadly, isn’t on the cards. But that might change as they help each other survive. Provided Honda can come clean about his own secrets. Yen Press has translated Tonogai’s other works, like Secret and Doubt, but they’ve yet to touch Honda-kun as of this writing.

13 Hour Of The Zombie

MyAnimeList Score: 6.29

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Hour of the Zombie

  • Written and illustrated by Tsukasa Saimura
  • 9 Volumes, 46 Chapters
  • Available in English via Seven Seas Entertainment

Originally titled Igai: The Play Dead/Alive, Hour of the Zombie also involves love and high schoolers with zombies, only it gets a little more complicated. It starts with Akira, a student with a crush on his childhood friend Kurumi, who loves Akira’s friend Umezawa. As jealous as Akira gets, he values both Umezawa and Kurumi’s company and keeps things friendly.

Then some students start attacking others, with the wounded turning into man-eating monsters. Kurumi and Umezawa fall victim to it, and Akira expects to be killed next. But when Kurumi goes to bite him, she and the other “zombies” suddenly go back to normal, leaving the school split between the bitten and unbitten. But why did they snap? And will they snap again? Those interested can find out via Seven Seas Entertainment’s official English release.

12 Versailles of the Dead

MyAnimeList Score: 6.39

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Versailles of the Dead

  • Written & Illustrated by Kumiko Suekane
  • 5 Volumes, 38 Chapters
  • Available in English via Seven Seas Entertainment

Zombies can turn up in the strangest places. If it’s not enough for them to invade an inverse-harem manga, or a survival romance story, how about when they turn up in an historical, cross-dressing romance? Versailles of the Dead imagines what it would have been like if pre-revolutionary France was also overrun with zombies, as they capture Marie-Antoinette’s carriage as she’s on her way to Versailles to marry the French Dauphin (later King Louis XVI).

The only survivor is Marie-Antoinette’s (fictional) twin brother, Albert. They resembled each other so much that she used to force him to act as her double, from her makeup to her dress. But now that she’s gone, he can use the resemblance to assume his sister’s identity and live a rich life among the French nobility. Some of them know what happened and accept the disguise to prevent a scandal breaking out. Others think he murdered Marie-Antoinette to take her place deliberately. The only way to know for sure is to check the manga out.

11 Kyō Kara Zombie

MyAnimeList Score: 6.47

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Kyou Kara Zombie

  • Written by Yugo Ishikawa
  • Illustrated by Tsukasa Araki
  • 2 Volumes, 24 Chapters
  • Fan translations only. Available in French as Zombie From Now On via Chatto Chatto.

Not to be confused with Kyō Kara Maoh, or Kyō Kara Ore Wa!!, or Kyō Kara Hitman, Kyō Kara Zombie has a more tongue-in-cheek take on the undead. It’s more akin to Zombie Land, but without the arcane ritual and time-displaced pop idols. The story follows Puuka, a bikini model who’s having trouble getting her career off the ground. Things take a turn for the worst when she and her manager hit a zombie with their car on their way to a photoshoot. As they try to escape, Puuka gets bitten and, slowly but surely, becomes a zombie herself.


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However, it isn’t too bad compared to other zombie stories. The zombies here aren’t dumb, shambling, brain-eaters, but act just like any ordinary person. They’re just excluded from the rest of society, though that isn’t good either. Puuka practically has to give up her old human life and start from scratch in the zombie village. But maybe she can help change people’s minds about the undead, or at least become the next zombie pinup sensation.

10 Tokyo Zombie

MyAnimeList Score: 6.48

Zombie Manga That Do Not Have An Anime (Tokyo Zombie)

  • Written and illustrated by Yusaku Hanakuma
  • 1 Volume, 9 Chapters
  • Published in English by Last Gasp

Not to be confused with Tokyo Ghoul, which did get animated, Tokyo Zombie is more of an out-and-out comedy. It somehow got adapted into a live-action movie in 2005, despite it being a rather short, if crazy, story. It follows Fujio and Mitsuo, two factory workers who dream of becoming martial arts masters and traveling the world. Things go wrong when they accidentally kill their boss and try to hide his body in Dark Fuji, a giant mountain of garbage.

Things only get worse when, unbeknownst to them, Dark Fuji gets contaminated with industrial waste – waste that brings their boss back from the dead, alongside every other body that was stuffed inside it. They slowly infect and take over Tokyo until the city has become a feudal-era-like wasteland. As a result, Fujio and Mitsuo ironically get their dreams granted when they have to fight off the zombies for the upper class’ amusement. But how long can their fun last?

9 Maou na Ore to Ghoul no Yubiwa

MyAnimeList Score: 6.71

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Mao na Ore to Fushihime no Yubiwa

  • Written by Yusura Kankitsu, based on their original light novel.
  • Illustrated by Yaya Hinata
  • 3 Volumes, 19 Chapters
  • Fan Translations only

Maou na Ore to Ghoul no Yubiwa, or “The Demon King and the Zombie’s Ring” in English, was originally a light novel by Yusura Kankitsu and Shugasuku. Then it was redrawn in comic form by Yaya Hinata for Comic Dangan using Kankitsu’s original dialogue. It sees Kusumi Chiharu receive a message saying he’s been chosen as a “Monster Tamer” and must pick his partner to help him quell monster attacks.

He brushes it off until he receives another, larger package containing a scantily clad woman. This turns out to be Zonmi-chan, a ghoul who intends to be his monster-taming partner, and she wants to start with the creatures hiding in plain sight at Kusumi’s school. Some of them would rather take Zonmi’s place as Kusumi’s partner instead. If a harem series with supernatural creatures is up one’s alley, this manga will have them covered.

8 Magical Girl Apocalypse

MyAnimeList Score: 6.78

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Magical Girl Apocalypse

  • Written and illustrated by Kentarō Satō
  • 16 Volumes, 64 Chapters
  • Available in English via Seven Seas Entertainment

Kingdom of Z twists the harem/romcom deal by making its lady leads worse than the zombies. Magical Girl Apocalypse does something similar to magical girls by turning them into zombies. At first, it looked like Kogami was going to have another ordinary day at high school. Then he looks out of the window and sees what looks like a little girl smashing a teacher’s head apart like a piñata.


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He flees to the restroom, thinking he’s dreaming. When he heads back to class, he sees another girl murdering his classmates, all while muttering the word “magical.” Even worse, his friends’ dead bodies rise back to their feet, mumbling the same word as they stalk after him. The only survivor he finds is his childhood friend Tsukune. Together, they have to find other survivors and uncover what happened to their school. It remains unanimated, but it has a spin-off, Magical Girl Site, about a website that gives schoolgirls magical powers with a catch.

7 Reiko The Zombie Shop

MyAnimeList Score: 7.01

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Reiko the Zombie Shop

  • Written and illustrated by Rei Mikamoto.
  • 11 Volumes, 58 Chapters.
  • Previously available in English via Dark Horse.

Most zombie tales are horror stories, naturally. Seeing the dead rise from their graves isn’t exactly the most cozy sight. But they aren’t restricted to horror. Reiko the Zombie Shop uses them as part of a josei murder mystery tale when the town of Shiraike is struck by a serial killer. They’ve killed 29 girls in the grisliest ways, but they left no viable clues as to who they are or how to catch them.

Hope comes in the form of a curious young woman who just happens to drop into town. She’s called Reiko Himezono, better known as ‘Reiko the Zombie Shop.’ She’s a necromancer for hire who can raise the dead for a price. In this case, she can bring the dead girls back as zombies to provide better leads towards the serial killer. But she’s not liable for whatever the girls will do once they’ve switched from being dead to undead.

6 Mōryō no Yurikago

MyAnimeList Score: 7.09

Zombie Manga That Do Not Have an Anime- Moryo no Yurikago

  • Written and illustrated by Kei Sanbe
  • 6 Volumes, 41 Chapters
  • Fan Translations only

People have seen zombies in shopping malls, mansions, and whole cities. So, why can’t they be on a ship too? Written & drawn for Square-Enix’s Young Gangan magazine, Mōryō no Yurikago sees students Makoto, Yuya, and the rest of their class on a cruise for a field trip. All was well until the ship suffered a zombie outbreak, which left the cruise liner adrift at sea.

It’s up to the survivors to find out how the zombies got aboard and survive long enough for help to arrive, which is a tall order, as the undead are bloodthirsty and will kill any living creature they see. The manga hasn’t been officially translated into English, but Francophones can check out the official French translation via Ki-Oon as Le Berceau de Esprits (Cradle of Spirits/Monsters).

5 Cinderalla-chan

MyAnimeList Score: 7.12

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Cinderalla-chan

  • Written & Illustrated by Junko Mizuno
  • 1 Volume
  • Available in English via Viz Media

Junko Mizuno is famous for her ‘kawaii noir’ or ‘gothic kawaii’ art style, where she draws cutesy figures with dark twists. It worked well with Pure Trance, a post-apocalyptic sci-fi story with torture, poisonings, monstrous brain creatures, and a nutritional aid that makes women even hungrier. So, what happens when she plays with fairy tales like Cinderella? She makes Cinderalla-chan, or Junko Mizuno’s Cinderalla. Unlike her glass slipper-wearing forebearer, Cinderalla runs a yakitori restaurant with her beloved father.


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At least she did until he died, but he came back as a zombie, so all was well. However, he brings along his new undead wife and daughters. Cinderalla tries to adjust to life with a zombie family, but feels like the odd one out — especially when she sees a handsome zombie prince. With the help of a fairy, she becomes a zombie herself for one night and charms the prince, only to flee just before her time is up, leaving behind a single eyeball. Keen to find his new love, the prince now seeks whoever the eye belongs to.

4 The Walking Cat: A Cat’s Eye View of the Zombie Apocalypse

MyAnimeList Score: 7.40

Zombie Manga Without Anime- The Walking Cat

  • Written & Illustrated by Tomo Kitaoka
  • 3 Volumes, 40 Chapters
  • Available in English via Seven Seas Entertainment

Zombie stories are fertile ground for all sorts of different views on the apocalypse. However, few could imagine such a story from the perspective of a cat. The Walking Cat: A Cat’s Eye View of the Zombie Apocalypse pretty much does as the title says. Human civilization is essentially over, with survivors struggling to fight off the undead and make a living for themselves.

One survivor, Jin, finds a white cat and saves it from certain death. From there, the two form a bond. Jin calls the cat Yuki, and they set off together in search of an island where Jin’s wife may have survived the chaos. The apocalypse itself is standard fare, but it tells the bulk of the story with its art. It evenly mixes the horror of the zombie apocalypse with Yuki’s funnier, cuter incidents. It’s perhaps one of the few zombie tales that could be described as ‘sweet.’

3 Fort Of Apocalypse

MyAnimeList Score: 7.48

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Fort of Apocalypse

  • Written by Yū Kuraishi
  • Illustrated by Kazu Inabe
  • 10 Volumes, 49 Chapters
  • Available in English via Crunchyroll and in e-book form via Kodansha Comics USA

Fort of Apocalypse shows what happens when zombies start running amok in a prison. Detained for a crime he didn’t commit, Yoshiaki is sent to the Shoran Institute, a juvenile correctional facility that takes in young perps from all over the Kanto region. The atmosphere there is tense and violent, leaving Yoshiaki wondering if he’ll even survive.

Things get worse when he’s pulled into a feud between the convicts by his cellmates, Iwakura, Yamanoi, and Yoshioka. It’s only then that a van crashes into the building, releasing a horde of flesh-eating zombies inside. Between the violent inmates and the undead, Yoshiaki has no choice but to find a way to make it out alive, no matter how low his chances of survival are.

2 Biomega

MyAnimeList Score: 7.48

Zombie Manga Without Anime- Biomega

  • Written and illustrated by Tsutomu Nihei
  • 6 Volumes, 43 Chapters
  • Available in English via Viz Media

Blame!, Tsutomu Nihei’s epic sci-fi tale of cyborgs, AI, and a solar system-sized Dyson sphere called the “Megastructure” isn’t exactly filled with zombies. It was also technically animated via one movie and a few animated shorts here and there. One of those ONAs was even a prologue to the manga’s events. But there’s one prequel Nihei made that’s still print-only, and it involves zombies. Kind of. Enough to rival I Am A Hero in acclaim.


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Biomega sees the world ravaged by the NS5 Virus, which turns humans into zombie-like creatures called “drones.” But some are resistant to the strain, even gaining superpowers from it. The Data Recovery Foundation (DRF) wants to gather all these resistant humans to create their own new human race of Immortals. Their rivals, TOA Heavy Industries, send the synthetic human Zoichi and his AI companion Fuyu out to rescue the resistant ones before DRF can find them.

1 I Am A Hero

MyAnimeList Score: 7.67

Zombie Manga Without Anime- I Am a Hero

  • Written and illustrated by Kengo Hanazawa
  • 22 Volumes, 264 Chapters
  • Available in English via Dark Horse

I Am A Hero is perhaps the best-known zombie manga to never get animated. Created for the magazine Weekly Big Comic Spirits, it saw three spin-offs, a 2016 live-action movie, and an anthology of short stories by other notable manga artists, including Junji Ito and Scum’s Wish creator Mengo Yokoyari. The Anime News Network even considered it “probably the greatest zombie manga ever.”

The spin-offs see other protagonists handle the same zombie plague in Osaka, Ibaraki, and Nagasaki. But the original story began in Tokyo with Hideo Suzuki, a manga artist stuck in a rut in his life. Once ZQN, a disease that turns the infected into man-eating monsters, hits Tokyo, Hideo’s life is turned upside down. Armed with just a shotgun, he and other survivors have to band together to survive and find a way to reach safety.


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