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Around the Tubes

Magic #3

It’s a new week and we’ve got lots coming at you. So strap in and get ready! We’re kicking off the week with some news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Kotaku – The New Guardians Of The Galaxy Game: 8 Details You Might Have Missed – What’d you all think of the game reveal?

Book Riot – 5 Romantic Manga That Mystery and Thriller Readers Will Enjoy – What would you add to the list?

The Hollywood Reporter – ‘Jupiter’s Legacy’: Battles Over Budgets, Executive Purge Factor in Cancellation – This seems about right.

Reviews

That Hashtag Show – Magic #3
Talking Comics – Poison Ivy: Thorns
Collected Editions – Superman Vol. 4: Mythological

Yen Press’ JY imprint announces Big Hero 6: The Series

JY, the Yen Press kids’ imprint responsible for celebrated works such as Svetlana Chmakova’s Awkward and Disney’s W.I.T.C.H. and Wizards of Mickey, announced an August 2021 release of a graphic novel based on Big Hero 6: The Series, the animated show.

Big Hero 6: The Series, Vol. 1

Adapted by Hong Gyun An

The gang is back in an all-new adventure! Join Hiro, Baymax, Go Go, Wasabi, Honey Lemon, and Fred as they fight to protect the streets of San Fransokyo.

Filled with lovable characters and an intriguing science fiction premise, Big Hero 6 has been a fan favorite Disney property since the release of the Academy Award®-winning 2014 film. The graphic novel adaptation of Big Hero 6: The Series provides fans with fun-filled adventures with their favorite characters and is set to debut in between the end of the Big Hero 6: The Series animated show and before the highly anticipated original series Baymax!, streaming on Disney+ in 2022.

Big Hero 6: The Series is drawn by Hong Gyun An, a recent graduate of the School of Visual Arts in New York City. His range of dynamic character expressions is demonstrated throughout the pages of Big Hero 6: The Series.

Hong Gyun An

Kentaro Miura’s BERSERK carries a legacy of blood, Guts, and great manga

Berserk Vol. 1
Berserk, book 1

The passing of legendary manga writer/artist Kentaro Miura will either get veteran fans of his Berserk series revisiting the dark fantasy world he created for his giant sword-wielding warrior, Guts, or new fans looking to finally take the plunge into the sprawling epic.

Whichever the case, engaging with the first book of the series means experiencing a brutal read with monsters and other creatures that’ll make you readjust your fingers at the edges of the page so as not to touch the horrors Miura committed to it. This is certainly the case with the first pages of Berserk book 1, in which Guts is having sex with a woman that quickly turns into a monstrosity that looks like something straight out of an H.R. Giger nightmare and tries to kill him. It sets the tone for the type of story Berserk while tell.

Berserk follows the now iconic Guts, also known as the Black Swordsman, as he embarks on a journey fueled by revenge. Guts is branded with a symbol that attracts murderous demons towards him, forcing him into a life of isolation. The revenge aspect of the story centers on a character named Griffith that might or might not be responsible for Guts’ supernatural affliction.

Miura presents Guts to readers, in the first book, as the perfect man to deal with the violence and chaos that governs his medieval Europe setting. It’s a dark state of affairs that is overwhelmingly ugly and ever present. Death and gore is the status quo, which explains why Guts carries a giant broadsword that cuts people into pieces after a single swipe. The weapon is a reflection of how bad things are, and in Berserk’s case, things are quite bad.

Berserk
Berserk

We get a taste of this in the events that follow the aforementioned sex scene that opens the story. Almost immediately after the incident, Guts is faced with a group of bandits and soldiers that are throwing knives at a Pisky elf called Puck for their own deranged amusement.

Guts makes a bloody mess of the corrupt men for what seems to be a righteous motive, but it ends up being about sending a message to their leader, a humanoid snake demon that ends up giving Guts a particularly gruesome fight as he reveals his true form.

This is all meant to establish Guts as a kind of antihero character. His mission is purely personal and his commitment to the innocent people he meets along the way initially hinges on personal gain. Guts isn’t a hero here. He’s a hardened, near maniacal force of visceral violence that responds to his cursed reality in kind.

I characterize Guts as maniacal for the bleak outlook he has towards life, its worth, and how individuals who die on his watch are more a reflection of their own flaws rather than his. The Black Swordsman has little tolerance for weakness and takes no responsibility for the deaths of those who fall in combat around him. In some instances, he even laughs while explaining this, showing little regard for the misguided moral expectations others decide to put on him.

What’s impressive about how Miura introduces Guts to readers is that a considerable portion of his character development comes through violence rather than expository text. We get to know this man through the carnage he rains down on his enemies, and it’s not all done for the sake of bloodletting.

Berserk

There’s a kind of sadness to his existence knowing he doesn’t fight for glory or for the safety of others. By fighting for revenge, Guts is put on a road of no return, and he seems to be aware of it. Ruin is sure to follow and we as readers are given the necessary story elements to be able to foresee this and think on the cruelties of fate. It’s just awe-inspiring how Miura manages to achieve this level of storytelling through action rather than dialogue or narration.

Kentaro Miura’s Berserk has one of the best first books of a series in the history of manga and it does an admirable job of setting up a world and a main character that have no choice other than being iconic. Forget about the reasons you need to experience this book, just make sure you do and know that there’s a lot more waiting for those brave enough to stay the path.

Yen Press Announces Ten New Series

Yen Press has announced a slate of upcoming releases that includes several manga (The Hero Laughs While Walking the Path of Vengeance a Second Time, Let This Grieving Soul Retire, Namaiki Zakari, I’ve Been an Omega Since Today, The Splendid Work of a Monster Maid and Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Wraith Arc,) and light novels (Magical☆Explorer, Cross-Dressing Villainess Cecilia Sylvie, The Girl I Saved on the Train Turned Out to Be My Childhood Friend and Rust-Eater Bisco). All announced titles are scheduled for November 2021 release.

The Hero Laughs While Walking the Path of Vengeance a Second Time (manga)

Story by Kizuka Nero
Art by Yamo Yomoya

Kaito has been summoned into another world as a hero, and though all goes well for a time, one day, his entire party betrays and mercilessly kills him. So when he suddenly gets a chance to redo his life, starting from the point he was first summoned to this world, he swears to exact vengeance on everyone who stabbed him in the back…

The Hero Laughs While Walking the Path of Vengeance a Second Time is a dark isekai tale based on a Yen On light novel scheduled for an October 2021 release. Fans of dark fantasy manga are sure to enjoy this upcoming release that does an amazing job adapting the highly-anticipated light novel.

The Hero Laughs While Walking the Path of Vengeance a Second Time (manga)

Let This Grieving Soul Retire (manga)

Story by Tsukikage
Art by Rai Hebino
Character Designs by Chiko

This man—is he an extraordinary hero or an ordinary person?

“What I’m seeking is to be the world’s one and only strongest hero.”

Cry had made an oath together with his childhood friends to become the strongest hero, but he realized right after that he has no talent.

Nevertheless, for some reason, the expectations of those around him keep rising rapidly every day. And (at least according to Cry), things will always head in an outrageous direction!?

Let This Grieving Soul Retire is a manga adaptation of the fantasy light novel series by Tsukikage, the creator of Defeating the Demon Lord’s a Cinch (If You’ve Got a Ringer) and The King of the Dead at the Dark Palace by Yen On. This comedic adventure about a reluctant hero appeals to fans of the recently released Hazure Skill: The Guild Member with a Worthless Skill Is Actually a Legendary Assassin.

Let This Grieving Soul Retire

Namaiki Zakari

Story and art by Miyuki Mitsubachi

Basketball club manager Yuki has a secret—she’s in love with the team captain! But when Naruse, her cheeky kouhai, discovers her big secret, she’s in a tight spot! Just how long is he going to keep teasing her about it!? Stupid pretty playboy…

Namaiki Zakari is a gorgeous romantic comedy shojo filled with charming boys and love triangles. With a story filled with adorable romance and school-life elements, much of which revolves around the events of the characters’ basketball team, Namaiki Zakari will surely be shojo fans’ next favorite series!

Namaiki Zakari

I’ve Been an Omega Since Today

Story & Art by Maiki Sachi

It all starts with your typical childhood friend love story—average Kanade pining after his dandy best friend, Munechika. There’s just one big problem with their high school romance—Kanade’s a Beta and Munechika’s an Alpha! And everyone knows that Alpha/Beta pairing just aren’t compatible…on a physical level. But when Kanade goes into heat as an Omega for the first time, will Munechika be there to give him a helping hand?

Fans of boys love rejoice! Following hot new releases, such as Sasaki and Miyano and I Cannot Reach You, Yen Press is releasing I’ve Been an Omega Since Today. This standalone title is filled with beautiful artwork and omegaverse elements—truly irresistible to the growing boys love fanbase!

I’ve Been an Omega Since Today

The Splendid Work of a Monster Maid

Story and Art by Yugata Tanabe

Sumire, a “nekomata” phantom, has lost her beloved master. After wandering alone, she stumbles into…a foreign demon world!? Now Sumire serves under the president of a company, alongside an undead named Rose and an android named Ivy. In order to get back that “certain someone,” Sumire’s splendid work begins!

The Splendid Work of a Monster Maid is a fantasy slice-of-life manga surrounding the events of maids in the demon world. With art and story that are both beautiful and very unique, this series is reminisicent of the likes of Black Butler and Kaori Mori’s Emma.

The Splendid Work of a Monster Maid

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Wraith Arc

Story by Magica Quartet
Art by Hanokage

All the witches in the universe, past and future, may have disappeared, but in their place, emotion-eating “wraiths” prey on humanity. The magical girls fight to protect Mitakihara City once more…

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Wraith Arc is a spin-off of the iconic manga and anime property, one which takes place between the events of Puella Magi Madoka Magica and Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion, with much of the story told through the perspective of fan-favorite Homura Akemi. This series debut follows the recent omnibus release of Puella Magi Madoka Magica and Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Wraith Arc

MagicalExplorer (light novel)

Story by Iris
Illustration by Noboru Kannataki

Reincarnated as a character in the legendary eroge title “Magical☆Explorer,” our hero ends up as an unlucky side-character instead of the game’s lady-killer protagonist. Not to worry, though! Armed with his deep knowledge of the game (not to mention a few cheat codes), he’ll do whatever it takes to win the hearts of the game’s heroines and emerge as the most accomplished student at the Sorcerer’s Academy.  

Magical☆Explorer is an isekai light novel series that involves a protagonist using his expertise of visual novels to dominate the world when reincarnated within the game. Fantasy isekai and romantic comedies are among the most popular genres in the world of light novels, making Magical☆Explorer a series that will appeal to a wide range of readers.

Magical☆Explorer (light novel)

Cross-Dressing Villainess Cecilia Sylvie (light novel)

Story by Hiroro Akizakura
Illustrations by Dangmill

Reincarnated as a villainess in an Otome game, Cecilia realizes that as the heroine’s rival, she’ll die no matter what route she takes. Convinced that she can avoid her death flag by becoming a man, she crossdresses and takes on a new identity. In the process, however, she ends up replacing her brother-in-law as the knight charged with protecting the heroine! Now the prince who should be condemning her to death wants to hang around her all the time…?! Cecilia will do whatever it takes to achieve a peaceful and carefree life, but if her guise ever slips, it’s Game Over!

Cross-Dressing Villainess Cecilia Sylvie takes the isekai concept of being reincarnated in the world of an otome game and turns it on its head! In order to save her life, our protagonist masquerades as a man—a choice which leads to a whole lot of chaos in this fun-filled light novel series!

Cross-Dressing Villainess Cecilia Sylvie (light novel)

The Girl I Saved on the Train Turned Out to Be My Childhood Friend (light novel)

Story by Kennoji
Illustration by Fly

While on his way to school one morning, high school second-year Takamori Ryo saves his childhood friend Fushimi Hina from a sexual harasser on a crowded train. Although the two are practically opposites in appearance and popularity, not to mention the fact they haven’t spoken since middle school, Hina finds herself smitten with the oblivious Ryo. A frustratingly sweet, zero-stress romantic comedy!

The Girl I Saved on the Train Turned Out to Be My Childhood Friend is a sweet slice-of-life light novel that tells the story of love interests who reconnect in high school after years of separation from their middle school days. This rising star in the light novel world is written by Kennoji, the author of Hazure Skill: The Guild Member with a Worthless Skill Is Actually a Legendary Assassin, and illustrated by Fly, the artist of Bottom-tier Character Tomozaki.

The Girl I Saved on the Train Turned Out to Be My Childhood Friend (light novel)

Rust-Eater Bisco (light novel)

Story by Shinji Cobkubo
Illustrations by K Akagashi and mocha

In the far future, a disaster known as the “Rusty Wind” has transformed the majority of Japan into a barren desert and left civilization in tatters. After his teacher falls prey to the rust, the roguish Bisco Akahoshi embarks on journey through the sandy wastes to obtain a mushroom known only as the Rust Eater, rumored to cure the ailment. Together with the dashing young doctor Milo, the pair will have to contend with the unforgiving environment and their fellow wanderers in order to make it back alive.

Rust-Eater Bisco is a compelling, post-apocalyptic light novel series with excellent world building complemented by amazing illustrations. An anime adaptation of this award-winning series was recently announced for future release.

Rust-Eater Bisco

eigoMANGA Will Publish “Oldman” Graphic Novel

eigoMANGA has acquired the rights to adapt and publish Oldman as a multi-volume graphic novel manga series in English. Oldman is an award-winning and internationally acclaimed series created by Taiwanese writer and illustrator Chang Sheng. The publication was originally published by Taipei, Taiwan-based Tongli Publishing.

The story is about a beautiful queen who rules her country with an iron fist. Unmarried and without an heir, she adopts orphans as a way to prove that even commoners can reign as kings. Yet, as the years progress, she shows no sign of aging. Only one man knows the dark secret to her eternal youth: Oldman, a bearded magician the queen has locked in her darkest dungeon.

One night, Oldman steps through the bars of his prison and disappears before the queen’s very eyes. Enraged, she sends her army after him to keep her secret hidden in a desperate campaign. Having tricked the guards (and not actually having left the dungeon), he rescues a neighboring prisoner, a sword maiden rebel whose arms and legs were amputated, and left to rot in her cell.

Upon taking her to an underground doctor who fits her with mechanical arms and legs, they together vow to take revenge on the Queen that wronged them.

Oldman won numerous awards such as the International Manga Award in Japan, as well the Golden Comic Award for Best Shonen Manga. Oldman Part 1 is projected to circulate to retailers on November 8th, 2021.

Review: I Was a Bottom-Tier Bureaucrat for 1,500 Years, & the Demon King Made Me a Minister Vol. 1

The title says it all really. The story is about Beelzebub who is plucked from her bottom-tier job by the new Demon King to be the Agriculture Minister.

Story: Kietsu Morita
Art: Meishi Murakami
Character Design: Benio
Translation: Jasmine Bernhardt
Letterer: Chiho Christie

Get your copy now! To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
Kindle
comiXology
Bookshop


Yen Press provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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

Review: I’m the Catlords’ Manservant Vol. 1

The title says it all really. An orphaned high school student becomes the manservant of a bunch of shapeshifting chats!

Story: Rat Kitaguni
Translation: Alexandra McCullough-Garcia
Letterer: Rochelle Gancio

Get your copy now! To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
Kindle
comiXology
TFAW
Bookshop


Yen Press provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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

Around the Tubes

Shadowman #1

The weekend is almost here! What geeky things will you all be doing? Sound off in the comments below. While you wait for the weekday to end and the weekend to begin, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

The Beat – A Year of Free Comics: Enter BLACKOUT CITY – Free comics!

VIZ Media – Get the Demon Slayer, Vol. 1 digital manga free for a limited time! – More free comics manga!

Reviews

That Hashtag Show – Brzrkr #2
That Hashtag Show – Critical Role Vox Machina Origins Vol. 3 #2
CBR – The Marvels #1
Comic Book – Shadowman #1
That Hashtag Show – Shadowman #1
The Beat – Witchblood #2

NBA Star De’Aaron Fox and eigoMANGA Team Up To for Swipa the Fox

eigoMANGA has announced that the company will publish a manga-influenced comic book with NBA point guard for the Sacramento Kings, De’Aaron Fox.

Together, eigoMANGA, De’Aaron Fox, and his agency Family First Sports Firm will create and publish the comic book Swipa The Fox. The comic is written by Natashia McGough Clarke (EdD) and Nnamdi Ikeakor. The artwork is produced by Harrier Studio.

The story starts off with De’Aaron partnering with a video game company to develop his first basketball video game. He wears an experimental motion capture suit and a VR head-set to play-test the game. While playing, an accident causes him to transport into the game. He has to harness all of his world-class basketball skills to play his way out of the digital game and return to the real world.

Conversely, the video game’s version of De’Aaron has switched bodies with the real De’Aaron Fox; he is living lavishly in the real world unbeknownst to De’Aaron’s family, friends, and teammates.

The first installment of Swipa The Fox is slated to be released in the Summer of 2021.

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