Robot 6

Comics A.M. | Why ‘One Piece’ is world’s most popular manga

"One Piece" newspaper ad

“One Piece” newspaper ad

Manga | Roland Kelts looks at the international popularity of One Piece, whose sales number 300 million volumes in Japan and 45 million in the rest of the world. The piece includes an interview with creator Eiichiro Oda — he says he writes what he imagines his 15-year-old self would like to read — as well as editors from Viz Media, the American publisher of One Piece, who discuss the reasons for its popularity overseas as well as the global impact of manga piracy on these manga pirates. [The Japan Times]

Conventions | Which shows are money-makers for creators, and how much do they make? The answers, broken out into a handy infographic, may surprise you. [The Devastator]

Boxers & Saints

Boxers & Saints

Publishing | Heidi MacDonald talks to several retailers about whether serial comics are a better format than original graphic novels, and a fascinating discussion, with participation from readers, creators and more retailers, ensues in the comments section. [The Beat]

Webcomics | Kevin Tang delves into the early days of webcomics with a look at T.H.E. Fox, Sluggy Freelance and other pioneering strips from “the odd and lovely nerd utopia of the 80s and 90s interweb.” [BuzzFeed]

Creators | Robert Crumb talks about his taste in music. [Red Bull Music Academy]

Creators | The rock band Rush gets its own comic next year, when BOOM! Studios publishes Clockwork Angels, based on the concept album of the same name. Brian Truitt talks to writer Kevin J. Anderson and Rush lyricist and drummer Neil Peart about how they turned Rush’s songs into a sequential story. [USA Today]

Popeye: Classic Newspaper Comics, Vol. 1

Popeye: Classic Newspaper Comics, Vol. 1

Comic strips | Andrew Farago, curator of the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, discusses the Library of American Comics collection of classic Popeye comic strips, for which he wrote the introduction. [Westfield Comics]

Comics | Former DC Comics Publisher and President Jenette Kahn talks about her experiences in the comics world in a video interview recorded as part of the Chicago Humanities Festival. [Forbidden Planet]

Gift guides | The Good Comics for Kids bloggers present their 2013 gift guide. [Good Comics for Kids]

Retailing | Owner Eric Kirsammer is looking to expand Chicago Comics, in order to display even more comics and toys. At the moment, part of his extensive selection of back issues is stored in boxes in the basement, which can present a problem “Sometimes we have customers ask for a comic and we say, ‘Sure, we’ll go find it.’ By the time we do, they might already be gone,” Kirsammer says. [Lakeview Patch]

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3 Comments

The story says one of the reasons “ONE PIECE” is popular is the themes aren’t strictly japanese. I would say yes but also the look. This must be one of the reasons why Naruto, and anime like TRIGUN & Cowboy Bebop are popular(bebop and trigun more over seas than in japan)

One Piece is that unique amalgam of all things that make good stories. THAT is why One Piece is so popular. Yes its a manga, but it isn’t just a manga. Yes its about pirates, but it ins’t just about pirates. Yes, it has action but it isn’t just about action. Much like Dragonball and other unique series like that and very much unlike American superhero comics, One Piece isn’t one thing, it brings a lot of things to the table. The book has humor, adventure, action, great storytelling, characters you can get behind, and while the pacing of manga is ridiculously slow, One Piece does what most comics don’t. It progresses. And yes, Luffy doesn’t have to age to give the illusion of progression. He’s still a goofball into volume 27 which I’m presently reading.

One Piece allows a lot of different readers to enjoy the story. It isn’t mired in angst like Naruto. It doesn’t dwell in dark and seedy places for too long. It is a mixture of a lot of different things which is why it can appeal to a wide audience.

The fact that it doesn’t ape every other manga in style doesn’t hurt it, quite the contrary it helps to shine a light on the big difference that One Piece is. Perhaps other mangaka might consider that Akira and Dragonball as well as One Piece now have all been global manga phenomenons exactly because stylistically most obviously but int he storytelling as well, they are VERY different from everything else they are published alongside.

I think the moral here is, try to appeal to a wide audience and don’t be afraid to be different.

One Piece is my favorite comic right now, in my opinion it is one of the greatest shonen manga series ever made

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