This Week in Manga 10/17-10/23/09

Manga Publishers Go APE!

Even though APE, the Alternate Press Expo, is mostly for comics and graphic novels, a couple of manga publishers showed up to pawn some of their less mainstream wares.  Vertical, Inc. had a table there, with Ed Chavez hocking their books, and selling out titles left and right.  By the end of Sunday, the last report from him was Guin Saga manga and Black Jack v2-7 were all that was left.  Not bad!  Viz was there too, with titles from their Signature line, and reports from the floor sounded favorable to them.  They also had a panel on Sunday for their Ikki line.  Deb Aoki was on the floor both days reporting, so check out her twitter page if you don’t follow her already.

A Scoop of Shojo Berry

Deb Aoki, after expressing some doubts about the Shojo Berry project on Twitter, got in contact with the publisher Garrett Boast.  She had a Q & A with him, and posted the resulting interview.  While Garrett tries to clarify how the magazine will work, cost and pay for itself, there aren’t a lot of details yet.  Not that anyone can blame him.  They are still working details out, and if you’re starting a new venture, it doesn’t hurt to get feelers out for who is going to be interested.  But the skeptical reception the project has gotten can’t be blamed either.  We’ve seen a lot of talk with poor follow through or taking on more than can be handled in the mangasphere.  For myself, I find the project interesting, but really only on the level of a fanzine.  Now, that doesn’t mean a fanzine can’t be successful.  G-Fan, a fanzine for Godzilla has been going for 17 years and is available by subscription and through Diamond Distributors.  It has its contributors and advertisers and even has a comic for its mascot G-Fantis!  If these guys do things right, they might be successful.  And I don’t think getting Doujin or OEL titles is bad.  If it’s entertaining and informative, that’s all that matters to me.

What’s Your Shojo/Shonen/Seinen Life?

This was just a bit of fun we had on Twitter Tuesday night.  It started with a tweet from Deb Aoki and then took on a life of its own.  Search for the phrases or hash tags #myshojolife (shoujo)/#myshonenlife (shounen)/#myseinenlife  on Twitter to see the responses, or add your own in the comments.

FTC Backpedals Clarifies It’s Guidelines

The mangasphere wasn’t the only group potentially affected by the FTC’s guidelines on disclosure of review items on the net.  There are lots of sites that do book reviews of all sorts.  Kitlitosphere had a conference on October 17, 2009 and was able to get the Associate Director for Advertising Practices Mary Engle to speak to the attendees.  When asked specifically about the guidelines, Engle said in no uncertain terms that the guidelines DO NOT apply to independent blogger that do not have advertisers.  That covers most of the mangasphere.  While I know this won’t change anyone’s mind about disclosure.  It’s a personal decision as far as I’m concerned, at least no one should worry about getting hit with an $11,000 fine if they don’t.

Rumiko Takahashi Speaks scored an interview with Rumiko Takahashi, where she answered questions submitted by fans.  It’s a typical interview with safe questions about Rin-ne and Inuyasha, her two most recent titles.  You might think an interview like this would be up on TheRumicWorld, where Rin-Ne is serialized.  But has quickly become home for 3 Takahashi titles: Ranma 1/2, Mermaid Saga, and Inuyasha, as well as linking to Rin-Ne.  What Takahashi fans should really be hoping for is to see Urusei Yatsura to appear, unflipped and uncut.  That would make this site perfect!

New titles at SigIkki and Shonen Sunday

And the new titles just keep coming! SigIkki has debuted a new title, the mysterious What is the Answer.  It has gotten mixed reviews from Twitter, but it sounds like something that must be experienced.  Definitely check it out.  Also new to Shonen Sunday, are two titles that have been coming out from Viz for a while.  Hayate the Combat Butler and Case Closed (Detective Conan).  While I love mysteries and Detective Conan is so wonderfully addicting, Viz’s decision to change the main characters names to match the Funimation anime release still irks me, and the fact that the online version, where they could fix it and do right, keeps these changes irks me even more.  This was a poor decision and should be fixed!

Then Nobody Can Read It!

The “geniuses” at the Wicomico County, Maryland school district have decided if elementary school students can’t read Dragon Ball, then nobody can!  At least, that’s the impression they’ve given by taking all copies of Dragon Ball from the shelves of their elementary, middle and high school libraries.  Yeah, that’s a rational way to deal with the issue.  Just take it away from everyone so there won’t be any problems.  Cause they sure aren’t explaining why they are taking away books rated for young adults away from young adults.  And the Principal’s weak defense of graphic novels in this light isn’t going to help more get adopted.  This is stupidity in action.  Thanks Wicomico County for proving once again that the American school system has no backbone.  You and Scholastic ought to get along great.

NYT Best Selling Manga

The two top selling manga this week are holdouts from last week.  Naruto vol 46 likes it at #1 and hold on there.  Vampire Rosario vol 9 likewise holds on to #2.  Jumping in at #3 is newcomer Yu-Gi-Oh! R vol 1, pushing Chibi Vampire vol 14 back one to #4.  Vampire Kisses vol 3 holds on to #5 and Fullmetal Alchemist vol 20 falls back to #6, which then pushes Skip Beat vol 19 back to #7.  Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol 12 makes it’s debut to the list at #8, and Bleach vol 28 returns at #9.  These push last week’s #8, One Piece vol 22 back to #10.  It’s once again a list dominated by Viz and Tokyopop, though Viz gains it’s higher ratio of 8/10.  Though the fact that Tokyopop’s titles hold up in the top 5 is respectable.  Unlike the writer of the descriptions of the manga for NYT.  An example:

Ichigo Kurosaki sees dead people and must help usher them safely into the afterlife.

Yeah, Sixth Sense references went out of style years ago.

Manga For Your Ears

Sesho’s Anime and Manga Reviews

Spiraken Manga Reviews

This Week at Manga Village

What I’ve Been Reading

  • Goong v5-7 (Must Buy!)
  • Sarasah v2 (Would Trade For)
  • Angelic Runes v1 (Must Buy!)
  • Happy, Happy Clover v3 (Must Buy (for kids)!)

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