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Proper Japanese Title: イノサン

Originally serialized in Weekly Young Jump, it ended after ninety-nine chapters (nine volumes) and switched magazines to begin a sequel series, Innocent Rouge. Blurring the line between historical fact and fiction, Innocent tells the story of the fourth generation of the Sanson lineage (a family of executioners in French history).

Specifically, the story follows Charles-Henri Sanson and later his younger sister Marie-Joseph Sanson with the former tying much more into historical accounts while the latter is mostly fiction.

The series builds up to the French Revolution throughout its run (a number of time skips of various lengths taking place) without ever reaching it and often features cameos of historical figures who would later have some important role in it, giving the impression many of the key figures of this period of French history were all involved in each others lives (such as Sanson befriending a young Louis XVI, who historically he would later execute).

The first half of the series (primarily through the eyes of Charles-Henri) is often focused on the horrors of being an executioner at a young age and having to learn to kill people, often in a brutal fashion, reaching its climax in depicting the lengthy torture and execution of Robert-François Damiens (including nods to the historical event such as a cameo of Casanova who witnessed the real-life execution).

The second half becomes a political drama as many characters introduced in the early series have aged and the focus is shared between Charles-Henri, his sister, Marie Antoinette, Louis XVI, and a number of others. Through Marie-Joseph, a much less historical narrative is presented but a consistent message of female empowerment surrounds her.

In the early volumes of the series, where depictions of things like gore and rape are more common, Shinichi Sakamoto's art style regularly blends these horrible events into artistic interpretations of a more beautiful nature. Using many two-page spreads that rely on the art to tell the story, the series finds its own way of self-censoring while still depicting brutal events.

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9 issues in this volume Add Issue Reverse sort

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