“Monkey Man,” Takuji Ichikawa’s second release from Red Circle Minis, opens with a scene at once familiar and jarring as a new student at a Japanese high school witnesses an act of bullying.

It’s a surreal introduction to Ichikawa’s world: On page one, the 17-year-old narrator, Yuri, watches the would-be victim, Tengo, bolt out of the school gates, roll uninjured across the windshield of a passing car, and wave in apology as he escapes his tormentors.

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