It’s been a slow week for news, part of which can be blamed on the Twitter DDOS attack Thursday and Friday. My reading list is way down too. I spent the week writing my Black Jack thesis and reading graphic novels for Good Comics for Kids Summer Reading Challenge. I should be back to reading more manga this week. Maybe.
Why I’m Not Dumping Otaku USA
Sesho over at his blog wrote about the disappointment he feels about Otaku USA. Mainly that is’t not reporting about recent news. I think he’s totally missing the point. Print magazines can’t do what he wants them to, report about what new and upcoming in anime and manga, because it takes too long to get to print. A mag has to have everything down and to the printers at least 2 months before it scheduled to come out. You can’t be recent and newsworthy doing that. As Sesho points out, the web does that much better. What makes Otaku USA worthy to me, is the manga and anime reviews. I don’t have time to search out and read all the manga and anime reviews, old and new, online. Having them in a magazine I can read anywhere (at work, while making dinner), is more convenient to me. And I love the short manga reviews from Jason Thompson. He gets to the heart of things, and gives good reason for and against a titles in just a few sentences. I also really like some of the feature articles about manga genres we don’t get to see (wine, etc), and love the Tokasatsu articles. No magazine has given that genre the attention it deserves. While I agree some of the articles haven’t been the most informative, there is more in the magazine I like than dislike that will keep me subscribing to it.
Twitter is Where the Cool Kids Hang Out!
Erica Friedman of Okazu writes about how she uses Twitter. She starts out with the business side of Twitter, which it can and has been used successfully by many companies. In the anime and manga scene, many companies have embraced Twitter as a way to reach out to people. And, as she points out, it’s the people that make Twitter a great place to hang out. It’s not all about what you had for lunch (though it does come up), there are a lot of good, intelligent conversations going on. That’s why I use Twitter as one of my sources for this news roundup.
Vertical Vednesday Meet Up
Couldn’t make it NYC? Live on the West Coast in the middle of nowhere with no way of getting there? Well, fortunately for you (and me), @Japanator tweeted a post that linked to a complete write-up of the last Meet Up regarding Light Novels. It’s a very thorough write-up with pictures! It sounds like there was a lot of good discussion and was a lot of fun. Why can’t Vertical be located in California? In the Inland Empire….
SDCC Reports still rolling in
At the about.manga blog, Deb Aoki has her full panel report on the Yen Press panel, including Kurt Hasslers full comments on scanalations. Check it out to see what started all the fuss. Also check out pictures and descriptions of Yen’s new titles announced at the panel. She also posts her interviews with Stan Lee and Hiroyuki Takei and Ikki Editor Hideki Egami. And she shared some good news on Twitter. The Women in Manga panel that she thought she had lost has been found! So we can look forward to a full transcript of that great panel in the future.
Tokyopop Webinar 1.0
Thursday afternoon, Tokyopop held it’s first webinar for fans to sit in, hear about what was going on with them, and ask questions. I, like a lot of bloggers, had to work through this (newsflash: 2pm PST doesn’t work for us Westcoasters). But Lissa Pattillo of Kuriousity was kind enough to give a detailed report. I agree with Lissa, this is a great way for publishers to communicate with not just the press, but with fans. It sounds like they didn’t get a lot of people (time of day no doubt) as Ken H (LostPhrack on twitter) was able to join in easily 1/2 way through the session. The first half was dedicated to releases dates and descriptions of new titles, and the last was used for questions. Genju no Seiza MUST come out. Come on people, it ‘s fantastic series! And it has Count D in it! You love Pet Shop of Horrors, love this one too! Lissa asked the question about the TP website. How about getting a fan to redesign for free manga?
I Still Think They’re Nuts!
ICv2 talked with Viz VP of Sales and Marketing Gonzalo Ferreyra about the Naruto and One Piece speed ups. With the Naruto speed up, they got a lot of support from retailers (No, really? Isn’t Naruto a license to print money? Even at retail?) But they still saw an individual volume slow down with overall volumes being up. So, is that good or bad for our slower selling manga? Will Naruto still support my Saint Seiya? As for One Piece, they think 5 volumes a month will grow the fan base? I can maybe see some of the volumes of stand-alone arcs selling, but not people going back wholesale to catch up on the entire series. The manga trading sites/book swapping sites might see an increase though. While I think it’s great that One Piece is finally getting the attention it deserves, I’m afraid it might be too late for the crew of the Merry Merry.
News From Japan
Manga to Anime: Fairy Tail Voice Cast Announced
ANN has reported that the voice cast for the anime Fairy Tail, has been chosen. I’ve been loving the manga from the first volume and can not wait for the anime! It’s set to premiere this fall.
New Manga from creator of Mugen Spiral
Mizuho Kusanagi has started a new manga in Hakusensha’s Hana to Yume magazine reporst ANN. Called Akatsuki no Yona (Yona of the Dawn), it’s a “fantasy romance set in a ruined country”. There a four page preview available on Hana to Yume’s site. I’ve read some of Kusanagi’s titles, Mugen Spiral and NG Life, both releases by Tokyopop, who also has started releasing another of her titles, Game x Rush. I loved Mugen Spiral, and really wished it had gone on for more than 2 volumes, and I’ve found my liking the first NG Life, even though I didn’t expect to. From the preview, this new title looks interesting. The fastasy is what I like, with a historical chinese style of dress. I just have to work more on learning to read Japanese to see if the story is good as well.
Twin Spica Manga Ends
ANN reports that Futatsu no Spica or Twin Spica has ended with the September issue of Media Factory’s Comic Flapper Magazine. The manga followed the coming of age story of Asumi, a girl going to a space academy to become an astronaut. The series has been running since 2001, and the 16th and final volume will be released in October. It’s inspired an anime and a live action tv series that just ended. I bring this up because I would love to see it licensed in the US. We need more science fiction manga dammit!!
NYT Best Sellers Manga
This week’s list is like a game of hopscotch! Only one title didn’t move, Fullmetal Alchemist vol 19 stayed at #3. Naruto vol 45 and Fruits Basket vol 23 did their switch-a-roo again putting Naruto back on top. And then there were the new arrivals. Vampire Knight vol 7 flew all the way up to #4, sending Negima! vol 23 down to #6, and another Viz title, with Rosario+Vampire vol 8 right behind at #5. Vamps of a feather I guess. Tokyopop gets another title in the top 10 with the long awaited D.N.Angel vol 12 debuting at # 7, and Del Rey jumps in with Air Gear vol 13. Viz still rules with half the list being their titles. But how long can Tokyopop keep more than Fruits Basket on there?
What I’m Reading:
- Nana volume 12