Beginning Wednesday, the streaming anime website Crunchyroll will offer digital manga from Japan’s biggest publisher, Kodansha — some of them on the same day they’re released in Japan.
The service will kick off with 12 series, including Attack on Titan, which is one of the top-selling manga in the United States right now, Fairy Tail, and Ken Akamatsu’s new series UQ Holder. And they will be available in 170 countries, including the United States (where many of the same titles are published in print by Kodansha Comics, which also releases them digitally on Kindle and other e-book platforms). Readers will be able to access the manga via a web browser and can read them on Android or iOS devices as well as desktop or laptop computers.
Not all struggling actors are waiters — there’s one who’s a superhero.
Next week Monkeybrain Comics will launch a new series centering on out-of-work actress Miranda Turner and her double life as a superhero, fittingly titled The Double Life of Miranda Turner. Originally released as a webcomic by artist George Kambadais, he’s changing gears and enlisting It Girl & The Atomics writer Jamie S. Rich for this ongoing digital series coming out every six weeks.
“Jamie wrote a really fun introductory adventure for our debut issue,” Kambadais said in a statement. “It captured the irreverence and joy I think we both wanted and that is often lacking in the bigger superhero titles. There’s going to be room for plenty of emotion and character growth in The Double Life of Miranda Turner, but the first rule is to entertain. We want the exploits of Miranda and Lindy to be as much fun for you to read as they are for us to make.”
Starting today, UK underground comics publisher Knockabout Comics and digital-comics publisher Sequential are teaming up to publish Neil Gaiman’s Lost Tales, a collection of Gaiman’s comic strips from the 1980s, for free—and they will donate 50 cents to charity for every download.
The 100-page collection, which is available only via the Sequential iPad app, includes stories from Outrageous Tales from the Old Testament and Seven Deadly Sins, as well as a science fiction story from 2000AD and other material. Some of the comics are collaborations with other creators, including Bryan Talbot and Dave McKean, and many are long out of print. Also included is a 1988 interview with Gaiman.
The first issues of Lion Forge Comics’ digital revivals of 1980s TV dramas Airwolf and Knight Rider are now available for download from iVerse Media’s Comics Plus app.
Announced in July, the agreement between the St. Louis-based company and NBCUniversal Television also includes comic based on Miami Vice, Punky Brewster and Saved by the Bell.
Digital comics company Red Giant Entertainment (Buzzboy, The First Daughter) will launch its true-crime anthology series with a graphic novel based on Blue Caprice, the psychological thriller that depicts the 2002 Beltway sniper attacks from the perspective of the shooters.
Directed by Alex Moors, the independent film stars Isaiah Washington (Grey’s Anatomy), Tequan Richmond (Everybody Hates Chris), Tim Blake Nelson (The Incredible Hulk) and Joey Lauren Adams (Chasing Amy), and is produced by two of Red Giant’s board members. The graphic novel will be penned by the film’s screenwriter R.F.I. Porto and illustrated by “the art team behind Red Giant’s Katrina” (whose names I can’t seem to find anywhere).
The plan, according to Deadline, is for the company to release Blue Caprice as a webcomic “in the next few months” before collecting it for print. It will be the first release in it Public Enemies series, which Red Giant says will explore “the tangled motivations of the killers and the legacy of their violence.”
Characterizing itself as “an innovative intellectual property company,” the Orlando-based Red Giant states that its goal is “to become the largest comic book publisher in the world.”
This Halloween, DC Comics’ digital line is going to get broodier, bloodier and more dramatic, as Elena, Stefan and the rest of the residents of Mystic Falls make the leap to comics.
First announced in San Diego this summer with additional details shared today at the New York Comic-Con, The Vampire Diaries digital first anthology series will feature stories by B. Clay Moore, Colleen Doran, Leah Moore and John Reppion, Tony Shasteen and Cat Staggs, among others. Some of Shasteen’s character sketches can be seen below, and for more check out the official Vampire Diaries Facebook page.
Less than six months after bringing Calvin and Hobbes, Pearls Before Swine and others to mobile phones and tablets with its GoComics app, Andrews McMeel Publishing and Universal Uclick have announced they’ll release three collections of Bill Watterson’s beloved comic strip as e-books.
It’s another digital first for Calvin and Hobbes, which made its (legal) debut on mobile devices in April with GoComics.
The three collections, The Essential Calvin and Hobbes (1988), The Authoritative Calvin and Hobbes (1990) and The Indispensable Calvin and Hobbes (1992), will go on sale for tablet format only on Nov. 12 for $12.99 each. The hardcover and paperback editions have sold a combined 10 million copies.
Out of all of the comiXology announcements made in the past few days — and there have been few — this one stands to make the biggest impact: Female readership has increased dramatically since the digital-comics platform launched in 2007.
TechHive reports that six years ago, women represented less than 5 percent of comiXology users; now that figure has rocketed to 20 percent. What’s more, the company knows exactly who this reader is: “She’s 17-26 years old, college-educated, lives in the suburbs, and is new to comics. She prefers Tumblr to Reddit. She may have never even picked up a print comic.”
(Perhaps then it’s no coincidence that comiXology abandoned its long-running blog, and launched a very active one in July on Tumblr.)
In North America, Viz has chosen to go it alone with its own self-contained manga app, available for iOS, Android, Kindle, Nook, Kobo and the web. In fact, although almost all major comics publishers (Dark Horse being the notable exception) have signed on with comiXology, the big manga publishers (Viz, Yen Press, Kodansha Comics), as well as the smaller Vertical, have not. ComiXology does have some manga content — Digital Manga, Seven Seas and Udon, and it’s the only place you can get Tokyopop’s Hetalia — but that’s it.
The deal announced today brings Viz Media Europe and Kazé titles to French-speaking European countries, including France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Monaco.
ComiXology and Avatar Press announced they’ve struck an exclusive digital distribution agreement covering “English language single issues.” And like clockwork, this morning comiXology went live with about 50 Avatar titles, including Extinction Parade, Uber, Black Summer and God is Dead.
Avatar joins, well, nearly every other comic publisher out there, from DC Comics to Image to Udon to Scholastic’s Graphix line, on the digital distributor’s platform. The press release notes that at least 20 of Avatar’s titles are “too extreme for mobile” and will only be available via the comiXology website. Earlier this year comiXology made headlines when it removed many comics from its app to “comply with the Apple App Store guidelines regarding adult or inappropriate content.” So comics liked the always-controversial Crossed and Neonomicon can only be bought on comiXology.com.
Check out the full release, which has a full list of Avatar titles that are now available, below.
It’s been more than three months since we last saw a new installment of The Private Eye, the name-your-own-price digital comic by Brian K. Vaughan, Marcos Martin and Muntsa Vicente, but now the wait is over with the release of the fourth issue on Panel Syndicate.
Planned for “around 10 issues total,” The Private Eye is a sci-fi detective story set in a not-too-distant future where surveillance is so prevalent, and privacy so sacred, that everyone possesses a secret identity. Against that backdrop, the protagonist — an unlicensed journalist, akin to a private investigator — is drawn into a mysterious plot.
You can check out a preview of the 30-page fourth issue below.
DC Entertainment announced today that it’s making nearly 100 graphic novels and collected editions, ranging from perennial bestsellers like Watchmen and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns to New 52 releases like Aquaman and Dial H, available for download from comiXology and Google Play.
Although the offerings are heavy on Batman and Superman, readers can also find such Vertigo titles as American Vampire, The Sandman, Punk Rock Jesus and The Unwritten, and recent DC Universe collections of Wonder Woman, Animal Man, The Flash and Catwoman. You can see the complete list below.
“This expanded distribution furthers DC Entertainment’s goal to offer our readers convenience and choice,” DC Entertainment Co-Publisher Jim Lee said in a statement. “ComiXology is a clear leader in delivering digital comics, while Google is one of the biggest mobile content brands in the world. We’re very excited to bring bestselling DC Comics and Vertigo graphic novels to their customers.”
Viz Media is making its entire digital manga catalog available for download on Amazon Kindle devices, meaning readers will be able to access more than 1,500 volumes from 160 different series.
Launch titles include Naruto, Bleach, One Piece, Bakuman, Demon Love Spell and Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic. New volumes, generally priced at $6.99 each, will be added each week, with future Kindle Store manga titles and print editions receiving near-simultaneous domestic release.
“We are strong advocates for the continued growth of digital manga content, and are very pleased to partner with Amazon to bring the world’s best titles to millions of avid readers and fans in North America,” Viz Media’s Gagan Singh said in a statement. “We invite Amazon Kindle users to explore VIZ Media’s extensive offerings, one of the most current, diverse, and also historically deep manga catalogs available anywhere.”
If, in the more than four years since its premiere on iTunes, you never got around to watching the 12-part motion-comic adaptation of Superman: Red Son, now’s your chance — for free: The fan site Superman Homepage notes that Warner Bros. has released the entire serial on YouTube, so you can judge for yourself how the 2003 Elseworlds miniseries by Mark Millar, Dave Johnson, Kilian Plunkett and others makes the transition.
Fair warning, though: It’s spread over 25 videos, and this 2009 adaptation may seem a little rough when compared to some more recent motion comics. But, hey, it’s free!
Today 2000AD debuted all 20 volumes of the Judge Dredd: The Complete Case Files series on its iOS app, making three decades’ worth of stories available for download on iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch. A 21st volume will be published next month, with subsequent tomes to follow.
Retailing for $13.99 (£9.99), The Complete Case Files feature work from the likes of John Wagner, Grant Morrison, Garth Ennis, Dave Gibbons, Mark Millar, Brian Bolland, Carlos Ezquerra, Mick McMahon, Alan Grant, John Smith, Brendan McCarthy and Garry Leach.
You can see a selection of pages below.