Axel-In-Charge: "Secret Wars" Jam Session Talking "A-Force," "Ultimate End" and More
Greetings everyone! This month, Melinda, Michelle and I return to discuss volumes 17 and 18 of NANA. Michelle decides she likes Miu, Danielle has a Yasu-epiphany, and Melinda takes on Takumi and Reira’s dysfunctional relationship.
Welcome back to the NANA project! After a brief hiatus, Melinda, Michelle and I return to discuss volumes 15 and 16. We tackle Yazawa’s view of popular art, Nana and Ren’s disintegrating relationship, and loving Nana in the past, present and future.
Manga Moveable Feast is currently going on this week and the star attraction is one of my favorite shonen manga, One Piece. “MMF,” as it has come to be known, is a monthly event where manga bloggers are invited to have their say on one manga title that has been chosen in advance. It’s basically like the best reading group ever and the diversity of responses to a single work is always awe-inspiring.
David Welsh, who loves One Piece even more than I do, is hosting this month, updating everyday with lots of wonderful links to essays that delve into every nook and cranny of One Piece. Or if you prefer, you can go can see the ever-accumulating wordpress posts with the tag “Manga Moveable Feast.” Finally, here’s my old review of volumes 24-28 of the title, which I enjoyed writing quite a bit.
Although I’m still technically hiatus-ing from the blog (applying for jobs, trying to finish the dissertation), not a day goes by I don’t find some manga-related release, event, industry meltdown, etc., that I really want to share with you all. Manga minutes will be my way of sharing little tidbits and keeping manga part of the conversation here on the blog.
Today, I note that North America is in for a brand new, rather epic-looking, Osamu Tezuka release by Vertical Publishing, titled Ayako.
Welcome back to the NANA project everyone! This week we talk about three “controversial” couples that take center stage in volumes 13 and 14 of NANA. Join us as Michelle puts on her detective’s cap, Melinda redeems “bad girl” Yuri, and Danielle gets fed up with whiny rock stars.
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I’m happy to welcome everyone back after a brief hiatus from the NANA project! We took a very interesting detour last time to discuss the various ways the NANA manga had been edited for the North American marketplace. This time around, Melinda, Michelle and I discuss the new emotional status quo between Nana and Hachi in volumes 11 and 12, as well as each Nana’s perspective on love, marriage and personal commitment.
Those who follow the U.S. manga industry probably already know that May was a terrible month (big lay-offs, one manga imprint shut down, and one company pretty much gone).
Today I review the latest volumes of two of my favorite on-going shojo series — Kimi Ni Todoke: From Me to You volume 4 and Natsume’s Book of Friends volume 2.
This time around we take a break from our usually scheduled NANA Project to discuss an instance of censorship in Viz’s release of Ai Yazawa’s NANA in the U.S. Danielle tracks down the anime adaptation to find out what exactly has been cut from the manga, while Melinda theorizes about why these cuts might have been made and then we all discuss the challenges of adapting Japanese comics for the American marketplace.
In Dorohedoro, manga creator Q Hayashida takes a matter-of-fact approach to dismemberment, human experimentation and beheading by reptile jaws, resulting in a wickedly funny gross-out comic.
CLAMP’s latest series — Kobato coming out in May by Yen Press — might be mistaken for primarily younger readers, but by the end of the first volume there are some interesting hints at dark clouds on the horizon for the plucky heroine.
Youka Nitta’s latest series to hit stateside is a supernatural mystery that defies easy classification. Because it is published in Wings it is technically considered “shojo,” but besides the fact the male characters are a little too pretty, the story feels more like it straddles the shonen / seinen line.
Even though I make an attempt to review manga titles aimed at adult readers — or manga that I think has a lot of “crossover” appeal to U.S. comic book readers — in the blog, I also don’t want to neglect my 5 year love affair with shojo. I open with this thought as I take a look at the most recent volume of Miki Aihara’s latest work, Honey Hunt, along with other recent shojo releases throughout the week, since it is Aihara’s Hot Gimmick that first sent me down this long, strange trip way back in March of 2005.
I found the first volume of Yen Press’ Spice & Wolf to be an odd mixture of mundane economic treatise and extremely explicit fan service and as a whole not quite as engaging as the anime of the same name (both the manga and anime appear to be adapted from a light novel series also published by Yen Press in the U.S.)
There’s no doubt that Naoki Urasawa and Takashi Nagasaki’s Pluto is a great comic but I think one of the things I admire most about the concluding volumes is the way they raise a number of questions but don’t offer neat answers to them.
Comics Should Be Good accepts review copies. Anything sent to us will (for better or for worse) end up reviewed on the blog. See where to send the review copies.