Hard times

At Comics212, Christopher Butcher has posted a list of over 1,000 items, all from Viz, that Diamond will no longer be carrying. I have asked the Viz folks for some clarification of what this means from their end, and when they come through I’ll post what they have to say. In the meantime, two observations: 1. These are mostly old series that ended over a year ago and may not be picking up new readers, and 2. The books will still be available through other channels, such as bookstores and Amazon. I searched for a handful of these on Amazon today and most were listed as in stock. Diamond distributes to comics stores, but who goes to a comics store to buy Boys Over Flowers or Inu Yasha anyway? At Savage Critics, Brian Hibbs makes a different point: He says the books aren’t selling anyway. Simon Jones has some additional thoughts and questions at the Icarus blog (possibly NSFW). At The Comics Reporter, Tom Spurgeon looks at the larger implications of all Diamond’s recent moves, while David Welsh makes some general comments and takes a long, hard look at the causes and possible effects of the manga slump.

Erica Friedman puts a different spin on the business news at Okazu, looking at five things that niche companies (including Viz!) are doing right. And then she rounds up the week’s yuri news for us.

At Manga Recon, Erin Finnegan turns in a thorough report on the ICv2 Graphic Novel Conference (part 1, part 2), with lots of good facts, figures, and quotes.

One of the most fun things I did at NYCC was participate in a bloggers’ roundtable (literally!) with Scott VonSchilling of Anime Almanac, Alain and Kate (a.k.a. Hisui and Narutaki) of Reverse Thieves, and Greg (who doesn’t seem to have a website), hosted by Evan Minto of Ani-Gamers. The resulting lively discussion is now online for your listening pleasure, and I highly recommend it; this was a smart bunch of folks who know their anime and manga (and other comics as well).

Deb Aoki files her Viz and Yen Press panel reports from NYCC, with a lot of the details that didn’t get mentioned in the first rush of reporting. (At right: The cover of Natsume Ono’s Not Simple, one of the new titles Viz announced at NYCC.)

The MangaCast team skim the cream of last week’s new manga. Also, Ed Chavez takes a look at the lineup, with art, for the alt-manga anthology AX.

At Japanator, God Len looks at this week’s new releases.

And if you need to make room for those new releases, Kate Dacey has some suggestions for selling your manga on E-Bay at Precocious Curmudgeon.

Lissa Pattillo takes a peek at DMP’s new cover designs at Kuriousity.

The Eastern Edge translates parts two and three of Quick Japan’s interview with Naoki Urasawa.

Congratulations to Danielle Leigh on the first anniversary of her Manga Before Flowers column at Comic Book Resources.

At Advanced Media Network, Serdar Yegulalp has an in-depth interview with Camellia Nieh, the translator of Black Jack, MW, and the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex novels, with lots of shop talk and interesting insights into the process. Fun stuff. (Hat tip: John Thomas.)

Udon will publish a newly translated edition of Silent Mobus, including three volumes that were previously unreleased in English translation.

The Dreaming creator Queenie Chan will supply the manga for a “hybrid manga/advice book,” The Boy’s Book of Positive Quotations.

Scratching your head over why everyone is making such a fuss over Yotsuba&!? At Anime Vice, Gia explains it all to you in this short video made in Hawaii, apparently just to make the rest of us jealous.

Lori Henderson discusses Calibre, a cross-platform e-book manager, at Manga Xanadu.

News from Japan: Canned Dogs has some interesting magazine news: A report on the demographics of the top three shonen magazines, and word that the delay in release of Dragon 9 has left some empty space in Famitsu magazine. ANN notes that Oishinbo is back from hiatus, and Gia reports that D.Gray-Man will be back in the March issue of weekly Shonen Jump, after creator Katsura Hoshino took a break due to health problems. Also, Naoki Urasawa is such a great creator, even his characters can draw their own manga. Ed posts last week’s doujin rankings at MangaCast.


Everyone’s talking about Monster, and be warned, both these links include spoilers, because the end of the book is a big part of the discussion. Christopher Butcher has some thoughts on the ending and the series as a whole at Comics212; Lissa Pattillo reviews the entire series at Kuriousity. I reviewed the last volume for the final issue of Comic Foundry, so you’ll have to wait for that to come out to see what I thought. Looking ahead, Jog takes a look at Naoki Urasawa’s two new (to the U.S.) series, 20th Century Boys and Pluto, at The Savage Critics. Carlo Santos also kicks off his latest Right Turn Only!! column with a look at vol. 1 of 20th Century Boys.

At his blog Madinkbeard, Derik Badman analyzes two pages of Mushishi. The Manga Recon team turns in another set of pithy Manga Minis. Other reviews of note:

James Fleenor on vol. 2 of .hack//XXXX (Anime Sentinel)
A Library Girl on vol. 4 of After School Nightmare (A Library Girl’s Familiar Diversions)
Connie on vols. 24 and 25 of Berserk (Slightly Biased Manga)
Connie on vol. 3 of B.O.D.Y. (Slightly Biased Manga)
Justin Colussy-Estes on vol. 1 of Golgo 13 (Comics Village)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 3 of Hero Heel (The Comic Book Bin)
Julie on vol. 8 of High School Debut (Manga Maniac Cafe)
Connie on vol. 10 of Hoshin Engi (Slightly Biased Manga)
Snow Wildsmith on Hot Steamy Glasses (Manga Jouhou)
Connie on vol. 7 of Human Club (Slightly Biased Manga)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 16 of Kekkaishi (The Comic Book Bin)
Erica Friedman on Kitsune to Atori (Okazu)
Connie on vol. 8 of Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Slightly Biased Manga)
Carlo Santos on vol. 8 of Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (ANN)
Kris on L’Etoile Solitaire (Manic About Manga)
Lissa Pattill on vol. 2 of Love Recipe (Kuriousity)
AstroNerdBoy on The Manga Guide to Databases (AstroNerdBoy’s Anime and Manga Blog)
Leroy Douresseaux on Millennium Darling 2006 (The Comic Book Bin)
Julie on vol. 3 of Monkey High! (Slightly Biased Manga)
Rio McCarthy on vol. 1 of Nora: The Last Chronicle of Devildom (Japanator)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 3 of Nora: The Last Chronicle of Devildom (The Comic Book Bin)
Lissa Pattillo on Object of Desire (Kuriousity)
Dave Ferraro on Orange (Comics-and-More)
Michelle Smith on vols. 2 and 3 of The Palette of 12 Secret Colors (soliloquy in blue)
Johanna Draper Carlson on vol. 6 of Parasyte (Comics Worth Reading)
Tangognat on vol. 1 of Phantom Dream (Tangognat)
Connie on vol. 2 of Pluto (Slightly Biased Manga)
Cynthia on Red Blinds the Foolish (Boys Next Door)
Julie on vol. 3 of Silver Diamond (Manga Maniac Cafe)
Julie on Sweet Regard (MangaCast)
Kris on Time Lag (Manic About Manga)
Cynthia on vol. 1 of Tomcats (Boys Next Door)
Dan Polley on vol. 3 of Toto (Comics Village)
Cynthia on Tricky Prince (Boys Next Door)
Michelle Smith on vol. 3 of Two Will Come (soliloquy in blue)
Connie on vol. 2 of Vagabond, Vizbig edition (Slightly Biased Manga)
Kris on Wagamama Kitchen (Manic About Manga)

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