Manga Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

Pokémon teams with Junji Ito to give you nightmares

pokemon-ito-cropped

Every once in a while, a Pokémon emerges that makes you reconsider the notion of catching them all. After all, not every one of them is as cuddly as Pikachu, and some of them are just plain disturbing.

Consider the Banette, a grudge-holding doll-like Pokémon possessed by “pure hatred.” That’s troubling enough, but now consider the Banette as drawn by Junji Ito, the wonderfully twisted mind behind such horror manga Tomie, Uzumaki and Gyo.

For Halloween, the Pokémon Company is teaming with the horror master for “Kowapoke,” or “Scarypoke,” a seasonal promotion on the company’s website trumpeted with Ito’s Banette illustration, which can be downloaded as a free wallpaper or purchased as a T-shirt. More content is on the way.

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Tokyo manga apartments may soon be an option for tourists

manga apts

Manga lovers planning a trip to Tokyo may soon be able to stay at lodgings designed specifically for them.

According to Nikkei, the Tokyo company Slow Curve plans to buy leases for condominiums and apartments in the city’s Akihabara, Ikebukuro and Nakano neighborhoods, and stock them with as many as 2,000 manga.

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NYCC | Yen Press announces ‘Prison School,’ ‘Emma’ & more

prison-school1

Yen Press announced at New York Comic Con a late of new licenses that includes Prison School, adaptations of the light novels Chaika, The Coffin Princess and Trinity Seven, and a new project from Svetlana Chmakova.

The Hachette Book Group imprint will also reissue Kaoru Mori’s Emma — previously released as part of DC Comics’ CMX line — in a series of five hardcover omnibus editions.

A full list of the announcements, and their descriptions, can be found below.

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NYCC | Vertical Inc. launches Vertical Comics imprint

harsh mistress of the cityVertical Inc. has announced the launch of Vertical Comics, an imprint dedicated to manga and anime-related books, leaving the publisher’s primary line to focus on contemporary Japanese prose works in crime fiction, fantasy and sci-fi.

According to Publishers Weekly, beginning in the fall, the new imprint will publish 20 new manga titles over the next year, with plans to expand to 30 t0 40 manga and anime-oriented works.

The New York-based company also announced at New York Comic Con that, following the release next summer of the Attack on Titan – Before the Fall: Kyklo light novel prequel, it will publish Attack on Titan: Harsh Mistress of the City, written by Ryo Kawakami, with illustrations by Range Murata. Yes, Range Murata.

Vertical also confirmed the release of the manga Prophecy, Vol. 1, by Tetsuya Tsutsui in November and My Neighbor Seki by Takuma Morishige in January, the anthology Dream Fossil: The Complete Collection of Satoshi Kon in summer 2015, and A Sky Longing for Memories: The Art of Makoto Shinkai in May.

‘Attack on Titan’ posters swap humans for fast food

attack-on-titan1

Hajime Isayama’s manga Attack on Titan is as popular as it is gory, with enormous creatures that devour humans in the same way we might dig into a bucket of KFC — only with a lot more indiscriminate bone-crunching. Needless to say, those probably aren’t the kind of images you want to plaster throughout the Tokyo subway.

So what do you do if you’re tasked with promoting an art exhibit at a Tokyo museum devoted to Attack on Titan? Well, Rocket News24 reports the designers cleverly avoided complaints about graphic imagery by covering the unfortunate humans on each of the posters with a photo of fast food — pizza, burgers, fried chicken and the like. I suppose there’s an argument to be made those are even more horrific than the originals.

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‘Naruto’ manga to end next month

Naruto, Vol. 70

Naruto, Vol. 70

Naruto, Masashi Kishimoto’s bestselling ninja manga, will come to an end next month after a 15-year run. The final chapter will be published Nov. 10 in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump.

The impending end doesn’t come as a surprise to most readers, as Kishimoto announced in 2012 that the “series is rising towards its climax,” and just last year revealed Naruto was “in its final phase.”

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Jiro Taniguchi to be guest at Angoulême comics festival

Jiro Taniguchi

Jiro Taniguchi

Jiro Taniguchi, creator of The Walking Man, A Distant Neighborhood and more than 40 other manga, will be a special guest in January at the 42nd Angoulême International Comics Festival, which will include a major exhibit of his work — the first of its scale in Europe.

Titled “Taniguchi, l’homme qui rêve” (“Taniguchi, the dreaming man”), the exhibition will cover four decades of Taniguchi’s work, which includes the memoir A Zoo in Winter, the conquest-of-Everest tale Summit of the Gods, the time-travel story A Distant Neighborhood, and the mystery The Quest for the Missing Girl.

Not only does Taniguchi’s work span most of the major graphic novel genres, the official press release points out, but he has crossed over to become an author with universal appeal. Indeed, Laurent Duvault, director of international media development for the publishing group Media Participations, told me at this year’s festival that “Taniguchi was the first Japanese artist to have his own area, not in the manga section but in the French section [of bookstores]. It was a graphic novel approach, not a manga approach.” He attributed this in part to the fact that Taniguchi’s work is flipped, so it reads left to right, making it more accessible to readers of European languages. Taniguchi is no stranger to Angoulême: A Distant Neighborhood was awarded the Alph’Art prize for best scenario at the 2003 festival, and he was one of the nominees for the Grand Prix this year.

Taniguchi, who has four new books coming out this year in France, will be present at Angoulême to open the exhibit and participate in the program; after the festival is over, the show will go on tour around France and the rest of Europe.

Design a new food for Toriko to conquer

Corn on the Bone

There are a lot of battle manga, and there are a lot of food manga, but Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro’s Toriko is one of the few where the hero battles the food — literally.

The series, which runs in both the American and Japanese versions of Shonen Jump, is about a gourmet hunter who tracks down the rarest foods in the world. Like the lead character in the foodie manga Oishinbo, Toriko is trying to assemble the greatest meal ever, but that’s where the similarity ends.

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UDON announces line of manga literary adaptations

manga classics

UDON Entertainment will introduce Manga Classics, a new line of adaptations of literary classics geared toward a young-adult audience.

The line launches in August with the release of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, featuring art by SunNeko Lee, with an adaptation by Crystal Silvermoon and an English script by Stacy King, and Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, with art by Po Tse and an adaptation King.

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‘One Piece’ has now sold 310 million volumes in Japan

one piece-v74Not that we necessarily required an further evidence of the popularity of One Piece, but now comes word that with the release of its 74th volume, Eiichiro Oda’s pirate manga has sold more than 310 million copies in Japan alone.

It’s worth noting that it was only November when Shueisha Inc. and Viz Media took out newspaper ads trumpeting the 300-million copy milestone (with another 45 million outside of Japan). Earlier that same month, it was revealed that One Piece has sold 130.15 million copies in Japan just since 2009, the year that market research firm Oricon began reporting book sales.

So what’s the secret behind the success of the world’s bestselling manga? Its sometimes-manic mix of action, comedy and sorrow, a seemingly magic formula the 39-year-old Oda attributes his short attention span. “The thing is, I get bored easily,” he told The Japan Times last fall. “So if my manga was just about the action, or comedy, or tear-jerking moments, I would get bored. I change the style of the series to keep up my motivation to draw. [...] Humans can only come up with new ideas when they’ve reached their limits. When I finish a manuscript, I am completely exhausted.”

Oda, who’s been drawing One Piece since 1997, just announced that he’s placing the manga on hiatus for two weeks while he has his tonsils removed. “Since I’m having this surgery anyways, I plan to have a bazooka installed on my shoulder,” he said in a message to fans. “I’ll be back with my body stronger, so I can clear my workload in the latter half of this year. I’ll be right back, so please come play with me again.”

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Viz to publish new ‘Battle Royale’ graphic novel

BattleRoyale-AngelsBorderBefore there was The Hunger Games, there was Battle Royale, the novel, manga and film about a teenagers subjected to a deadly elimination game. And now there’s more.

Viz Media has announced it will publish Battle Royale: Angels’ Border, a new graphic novel by Koushun Takami, author of the original Battle Royale novel. The two-chapter story is complete in a single volume and features artwork by Mioko Ohnishi and Youhei Oguma. It’s a stand-alone story about six of the girls who lock themselves in a lighthouse during the competition, and like all of Battle Royale, it deals with the precarious balance between the need to unite with others and the need to kill them in order to survive.

In the original, an authoritarian government transported a high-school class to a deserted island, gave them deadly weapons and instructed them to fight each other to the death; only one student could survive. Viz published the original novel in 2003, and this year released a new translation, Battle Royale: Remastered, under its Haikasoru science fiction imprint. The manga was published in 2003 by Tokyopop, which re-released it four years later in Ultimate Edition format.

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‘Oishinbo’ editor defends controversial Fukushima story

Oishinbo

Hiroshi Murayama, editor of the popular food manga Oishinbo and managing editor of the weekly magazine Big Comic Spirits, defended the series’ portrayal of possible radiation dangers in the area around the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which was damaged in the March 2011 earthquake.

The story has stirred controversy, resulting in complaints and angry letters from Fukushima government officials and residents, who fear it will lead to prejudice against those who live there and will make Japanese consumers even more wary of food from the region. The series has been suspended indefinitely, although it’s not clear whether that was a response to the controversy or a previously planned hiatus.

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‘Oishinbo’ manga suspended after Fukushima controversy

Oishinbo

Oishinbo

The long-running foodie manga Oishinbo will be suspended after protests from the government and residents of Fukushima prefecture over a storyline that suggests radiation from the damaged nuclear plant there could be making residents ill. Nonetheless, the final chapter of the controversial story arc will run in this week’s issue, according to The Japan Times.

An announcement is scheduled to appear today in Shogakukan’s Big Comic Spirits magazine that the manga will not appear as of May 26. Anime News Network reports the series was scheduled to go on hiatus anyway, so it’s not clear whether the editors are taking advantage of a planned break. In addition to the final chapter, this week’s issue of the manga magazine will include a note from the editor pledging stricter review of storylines; a 10-page section (the link is in Japanese) of interviews with government officials and experts on the topic; and letters from Fukushima residents. In addition, Asahi.com reports the editors have agreed to scrutinize such stories more closely in the future.

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Viz Media to roll out ‘World Trigger’ in print this fall

world trigger

Viz Media has announced the fall release of print editions of World Trigger, the sci-fi action series by Daisuke Ashihara that’s been serialized in the publisher’s digital magazine Weekly Shonen Jump.

Set four years after a mysterious portal to a parallel universe opened in Makado, allowing invincible monsters called Neighbors to invade, World Trigger centers on Osamu Mikhumo, a geeky teen who isn’t necessarily the best of the elite warriors devoted to defend Earth. But with a feisty humanoid Neighbor named Yuma, he’ll co-opt other-dimensional technology to do whatever it takes to fight back. Continue Reading »

Sakuracon | Dark Horse announces CLAMP, Satoshi Kon manga

Legal DrugWhile its colleagues were off at WonderCon Anaheim, Dark Horse’s manga team was busy at SakuraCon making a couple of interesting new title announcements.

The first is CLAMP’s Legal Drug, previously published in the United States by Tokyopop, and the sequel, Drug & Drop. Legal Drug will be published as a three-in-one omnibus, while Drug & Drop will be released as single volumes.

CLAMP is a four-woman creative team with a lot of projects, and Drug & Drop has been put on hiatus twice, but there are two volumes out in Japan so far. The series was big news when it was announced three years ago; at the time, the bet was that Dark Horse would get the license, as it has a number of CLAMP titles in its catalog already. Speaking of which, Dark Horse will also start releasing its other CLAMP titles digitally later this year.

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