Tag Archives: manga

New Manga Series – Behind the Scenes!! – Launches from VIZ

BehindTheScenes-01VIZ Media is bringing creator Bisco Hatori’s dramatic new manga comedy to English readers with the launch of Behind the Scenes!! on February 2nd.

The new shojo series by the famed creator of Ouran High School Host Club and Millennium Snow will be published in print and digital editions under the Shojo Beat imprint. Behind the Scenes!! is rated ‘T’ for Teens, and will carry a print MSRP of $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN. The series also launches digitally on February 2nd via VIZManga.com and the VIZ Manga App, as well as from the Nook, Kobo, Kindle, iBooks, comiXology, and GooglePlay stores. Subsequent volumes of the continuing series will be published in English twice a year.

In Behind the Scenes!!, Ranmaru Kurisu comes from a family of hardy, rough-and-tumble fisherfolk and he sticks out at home like a delicate, artistic sore thumb. It’s given him a raging inferiority complex and a permanently pessimistic outlook. Now that he’s in college, he’s hoping to find a sense of belonging. But after a whole life of being left out, does he even know how to fit in?!

As Volume 1 opens, it’s two months into Ranmaru’s college career, and if he’s learned one thing, it’s that he’s really uncomfortable around other people. But when he stumbles into a zombie mob attack, he’s totally forced out of his comfort zone! Of course it’s just a movie shoot, but when he wakes up from his ignoble faint, he’s been whisked away behind the scenes with the Art Squad! Could this group of weirdos be what Ranmaru’s been looking for all his life?!

VIZ Media Releases New Manga Series School Judgement: Gakkyu Hotei in February

SCHOOL JUDGMENT GN Vol. 1VIZ Media delivers tense courtroom drama straight from the pages of Weekly Shonen Jump as it announces the launch of School Judgement: Gakkyu Hotei on February 2nd.

The new series was created by writer Nobuaki Enoki and Takeshi Obata, the famed manga artist who achieved international acclaim for the hit series Death Note, Bakuman and All You Need is Kill. School Judgement: Gakkyu Hotei will debut in print under the Shonen Jump imprint and will carry an MSRP of $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN. The series also launches digitally on February 2nd via VIZManga.com and the VIZ Manga App, as well as from the Nook, Kobo, Kindle, iBooks, comiXology, and GooglePlay stores. New volumes will be published three times a year.

School Judgement: Gakkyu Hotei is set at Tenbin Elementary, where there is only one way to settle a dispute – in a court of law! All quarrels bypass the teachers and are settled by some of the best lawyers in the country…who also happen to be elementary school students. In the opening volume of the series, the accused this time is a boy named Tento. His crime? The murder of a beloved member of the classroom! Luckily for him, the state has sent him a defense attorney–Abaku Inugami. But is this wild young lawyer skilled enough to get his client off the hook?

Fashion Spotlight: Punch is Coming, Ichiraku Ramen, Dragon Selfie

Ript Apparel has three new designs! Punch is Coming, Ichiraku Ramen, and Dragon Selfie, by Soulkr, Fanfreak, and 2mz, are on sale today only! Get them before they’re gone!

Punch is Coming

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Ichiraku Ramen

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Dragon Selfie

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This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Demonic Moonlight Arrives at Dark Horse

In spring 2016, Dark Horse Comics will deliver the first volume in the prequel to the Blood-C saga from CLAMP, Production I.G, and artist Ryo Haduki: Blood-C: Demonic Moonlight!

Paying homage to the previous Blood series—but telling a wholly new story—Blood-C: Demonic Moonlight is the prequel readers have been waiting for.

In occupied Japan in 1946, an American military investigator is sent to Yokohama Base to research a number of bizarre deaths. His encounters with a mysterious, sword-wielding stranger and a series of supernatural events lead him to believe that the murderer isn’t human. Something more sinister lurks within the shadows!

Dark Horse has sold over 70,000 copies of Blood+, a series perfect for fans of horror, suspense, and mystery. CLAMP’s contribution to the Blood-C saga continues with Blood-C: Demonic Moonlight, based on CLAMP’s original story line and character designs.

Blood-C: Demonic Moonlight Volume 1 is in stores May 11, 2016

Blood-C Demonic Moonlight!

Dark Horse to Publish Shinji Ikari Raising Project Omnibus

Following the major success of previous manga omnibus editions, Dark Horse will deliver a new collected format of Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji Ikari Raising Project in summer 2016.

The famous final episode of the Neon Genesis Evangelion anime TV show imagined the show’s main characters in an alternate world where friendship and romance could be as important as their task to pilot the Evangelion. That premise forms the story line of Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji Ikari Raising Project.

Stunning, hotheaded Asuka Langley Soryu has been friends with Shinji Ikari since they were little. And she always sort of assumed they’d stay together—until the day the beautiful, brilliant Rei Ayanami showed up in class! When Shinji starts to get curious about Rei, Asuka needs to figure out if she wants to be just friends with Shinji, or something more. But why are so many people keeping an eye on these relationships—people like homeroom teacher Misato, school nurse Ritsuko, and Shinji’s mother—NERV’s chief scientist, Yui Ikari . . . ?

Perhaps the most famous anime and manga franchise of the last 20 years, Evangelion celebrated its twentieth anniversary in 2015, and a new movie is coming soon!

Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji Ikari Raising Project Omnibus Volume 1 (978-1-61655-970-0) is in stores August 10, 2016.

SHINJI IKARI RAISING PROJECT

Dark Horse to Release RG Veda

The breakout manga that put CLAMP on the map will be released by Dark Horse in summer 2016.

With over 600 pages, this is the first book in a three-volume omnibus edition that collects the entire RG Veda story with full-color pages, high-quality paper, and a larger print format.

RG Veda (pronounced “Rig Veda”) is based on a classic Indian saga. The lush, sprawling epic follows Yasha, once a mighty warrior king but now the lord of a slaughtered people he could not save. Yasha journeys the land as the companion and protector of the genderless Ashura, although he knows Ashura’s fate is interwoven with doom for many. Together they seek the other four of the “Six Stars,” whose prophesied gathering will at last defeat Taishakuten, the evil usurper of heaven’s throne. But all prophecies are open to interpretation . . .

RG Veda Omnibus Volume 1 (978-1-61655-988-5) is in stores August 3, 2016.

RG Veda Omnibus Volume 1

Tsuruta’s Wandering Island Flies High at Dark Horse

Dark Horse Comics has announced the publication of the first new work by Kenji Tsuruta in English in 20 years: Wandering Island!

Wandering Island is a retro flying adventure in the spirit of Hayao Miyazaki. With eight pages in color, this special edition features an extended wraparound cover with French flaps.

Mikura Amelia is a free-spirited young woman who lives alone with her cat and operates an air delivery service, flying her vintage seaplane to Japan’s small island communities located hundreds of miles out in the Pacific.

When her beloved grandfather passes away, she discovers he left her an undelivered parcel, addressed to an island that doesn’t exist . . . or does it? To answer the question, Mikura flies off in search of the truth behind the Wandering Island!

Wandering Island is in stores July 6, 2016.

WANDERING ISLAND

Fashion Spotlight: Dancing Dragons, Picatchu, Awesome Friends

Ript Apparel has three new designs! Dancing Dragons, Picatchu, and Awesome Friends, by Harantula and Theduc, are on sale today only! Get them before they’re gone!

Dancing Dragons

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Picatchu

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Awesome Friends

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This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Over 40 illustrious years of iconic art in Udon’s Osamu Tezuka Art books!!

UDON's Osamu Tezuka Art booksLong considered “the grandfather of manga and anime”, legendary illustrator and animator Osamu Tezuka’s enduring legacy can still be felt today in the indelible influence he has had on contemporary manga and anime creators. In an effort to ensure that his timeless work remains easily accessible to as wide an audience as possible, UDON Entertainment is releasing two of Osamu Tezuka art books: Osamu Tezuka: Anime Character Illustrations and Osamu Tezuka: Anime & Manga Character Sketchbook.

Both of these prestigious volumes are presented in an elegant hardcover format worthy of the man whose work they celebrate. Inside you’ll find a diverse collection of character designs and rough concepts from animation and manga projects representing Tezuka’s entire illustrious career, including Mighty Atom (Astro Boy), Jungle Emperor (Kimba the White Lion), Phoenix, Black Jack, and many more. In many cases these illustrations include Tezuka’s own hand-written design notes, accompanied by translations through footnotes.

Further cementing these volumes as must-own items for any fan of Tezuka’s work and of animation and manga in general, both books also feature an illuminating afterword by Tezuka Productions’ Chief Archivist Haruji Mori. Finally, most of the material in Osamu Tezuka: Anime & Manga Character Sketchbook has never been publicly available – until now.

Both books are available now.

Review: D. Gray-Man

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People really like the supernatural, well that and mildly convoluted story lines, and man, I guess D. Gray-Man has both? Written and illustrated by Katsura Hoshino, it is her first manga and has been running since 2004 and is currently still ongoing. It began serialization by Shonen Jump, then to Jump Square, and finally to Jump SQ. Crown as of 2015. It doesn’t update very often though, having gone on hiatus twice due to illness, but the story is slowly being told. It also has been given a series of light novels that ran from 2005 to 2010. It is published in America by Viz Media and the anime, which ran from 2006-2008 was licensed by Funimation Entertainment for the States.

The series follows 15-year-old orphan Allen Walker who becomes a member of an organization of exorcists, the Black Order, who use this thing called Innocence to fight Akuma, demons, and the Millennium Earl who makes them. Innocence is a substance that gives Exorcist powers like a sword arm or dark boots that give superhuman abilities. As he joins the order, the Earl starts killing important figures within it starting off a battle that’s been building for generations. With the help of other exorcists Allen has to try and stop the Earl and his family from destroying humanity completely. And in the beginning it’s a monster of the week story line, giving exposition into characters through short arcs, up until the Noah family is introduced, adding a darker layer to the story. One that has the whole world at risk as well as what Allen’s role in all of it means. As well as who Allen really is.

The lead character is Allen Walker, a 15-year-old Innocence user, who was raised by Mana Walker, his adoptive father, who saved him from working in the circus. After Mana died, Allen attempted something awful and was given a Pentacle (An Akuma mark) over his left eye. Because of this he is able to see souls that are trapped within Akuma, often rendering him a bit more sympathetic towards saving people. Because of a traumatic experience Allen’s hair became white, making him our traditional tragic white haired anime boy. He was then trained by a man to become an exorcist before heading off to join the Black Order officially. Allen has a parasitic type of innocence that caused his entire left arm to look sorta… Like a bad burn, red and veiny. But his arm can become a sword and more, called a Cross and later Crown Clowd.

Yu Kanda is Allen’s “rival?” And that’s a question because really Kanda was just super hostile towards the other. He is also just cold and quick to anger. There’s a whole arc covering his backstory, which I won’t spoil. Kanda has a sword for his anti-Akuma weapon, named Mugen, and has several techniques. Overtime he and Allen become friends in their own way. There’s not a lot I can say that won’t ruin the story arc surrounding him.

Lenalee Lee is an exorcist from China who becomes one of Allen’s first friends. She is kind but to a fault, where it seems to cloud her views on certain subjects and people. Often making her unable to see past things at times. Which is important to have in mind when you’re reading, especially the more we learn about her. Her anti-Akuma weapon is her Dark Boots, which gives her super powered legs that help her kill akuma. Her brother is also part of the Black Order, but not as an exorcist. She is sort of the stereotypical girl character at first, but slowly becomes more involved with the world and story unfolding. She still is very… The damsel in distress but not as much as she was before. Lenalee does get stronger, but not without having to do so in a stereotypical female story line.

Lavi is Exorcist but also a Bookman (a person who records hidden histories and has to be trained from a young age to achieve that goal.) Lavi isn’t even his real name, rather an alias that he has to maintain to become a Bookman. He has to throw away who he was to fully dedicate himself to his job. His anti-akuma weapon is a hammer, titled Tettsui, which can grow and extend. He is also one of Allen’s first friends at the Order. He’s pretty chill, though even that could be a facade alongside his name. Not much is known about Lavi and his Bookman senior, but they do help the story with information.

As usual, there’s a whole lot of other characters, who both add new dimensions to Allen’s journey. Though, at this point it seems a bit long winded.

The art for this series is another example of if you draw it long enough soon it will be gorgeous and boy did it get beautiful. It was already pretty good art to begin with, not overtly awkward, but as time went on Hoshino’s ability as an artist grew. The lines got thicker, to accentuate certain aspects, such as the lips being darker in their shading. The eyes she drew also became increasingly beautiful, irises having more detail the closer into the shot we’re given. However, in the anime, which ran during a very specific time in animation, had sort of pretty animation. It wasn’t overly impressive though, instead it was sort of expected for the most part, there were better series but this one did have a style all its own. The anime was directed by Osamu Nabeshima and produced by such groups as Aniplex and TV Tokyo. The second season was not licensed by Funimation, but it is available for streaming. Though art wise, I think the manga is far stronger as it has become increasingly beautiful to look at.

The sound for the anime was composed by Kaoru Wada, known for his work with Inuyasha and Samurai 7. Abingdon Boys School did the first opening theme Innocent Sorrow, which was then replaced by Nami Tamaki’s Brightdown. Honestly the opening and ending themes were not overly impressive, instead they just were a good look into what the series was setting up to be. There’s nothing from the series that really stands out in terms of music. I have not heard the Japanese version of the series, at least not all of it, but Sanae Kobayashi played the lead character, and she is better known for her role as Lucy from Elfen Lied. The dub, which I watched, was at least a step in the right direction in terms of sound. Todd Haberkorn played Allen and he’s known for his work in xxxHolic as Watanuki or Hetalia’s Italy. He gave a great performance and really grew as a voice actor. There’s also Travis Willingham as Kanda, known most for his role in Fullmetal Alchemist as Roy Mustang, who always shines in many of the roles he is given. The dub overall was just generally impressive, but it’s also not the best. There are points where it could be better, but this anime was a step in increasingly amazing dubs done by Funimation. This anime definitely is an example of where the company was beginning to go.

The series is ultimately enjoyable and still has an appeal to see where it may be headed. As it is ongoing, we’re left watch the climbing action wondering a lot. Still, there are things about the series that needs a lot. The manga is definitely the way to go, as you’ll get the full story that way, but the anime is also a good way to go. Ultimately, there’s just a lot that needs explaining that can still be told as the story goes along. And as far as those things go, Hoshino is very good at explaining why certain things are as important as they are, as well as developing unique characters. As far as the series go, it’s definitely worth a try.

Overall Rating: 7

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