Tagged: Osamu Tezuka

TRY SOMETHING NEW Chapter 24: There’ll Be No Escape For The Princess This Time!

There’s a lot of good comics this week. I know you want to buy the same old ones you always buy because they feel safe and comfortable. I get that. I’m not gonna tell you to not buy the stuff you like. I’m not a jerk. But I do need you to do me a favor. You can do that, right? Sell your kidneys, sell your kids, agree to do illegal stuff for unsavory men, sell your fillings, rob a bank. It’s time to try some new comics. I made a list of which ones you will need to buy if we want this to work out between us. You want this to work, right? You care about me, right? I care about you a lot. You are my favorite reader. I only write this for you. Want me to prove it? I make Tyler put in pretty pictures like this one to make you happy-

OCCUPY COMICS #1 is out this week.  This issue  features political and socially charged short stories by folks like Alan Moore, Mike Allred, David Lloyd, JM DeMatteis, Art Spiegelman, Ben Templesmith, Dean Haspiel, Ales Kot, Ron Wimberly, Molly Crabapple, Charlie Adlard, and a ton more. The book is a benefit for Occupy related initiatives like Occupy Sandy and Strike Debt (google them). Regardless of your personal politics this is a series well worth reading. It offers a ton of interesting viewpoints on a lot of different issues, smart social commentary that cuts across party lines and political aisles. Add to that some stunning artwork and storytelling, and some of the best and brightest in comics doing their best to say something beyond the usual “man punching another man” stories, and this is definitely something everyone who cares about the medium should be buying. Not a lot of comics are going to entertain you this much, inform you this much, and maybe help someone keep their home. Think about that when you choose to buy Red Lanterns instead and wonder why you feel like a husk of a person.

Did I mention that I like DARK HORSE PRESENTS a lot? I do. Issue 24 comes out this week. Congrats on 2 years of putting out the best book no one reads Dark Horse. Among the many great shorts in there, this issue sees the premiere of a new superhero character Blackout. Dark Horse has been doing a great job of getting exciting talent to launch new superhero books that are a fun alternative for those who feel tired of Marvel and DC’s usual fare. X, Ghost, and Black Beetle are among the best superhero books on shelves right now and hopefully Blackout will be joining their ranks. Written by up-and-comer Frank Barbiere, Blackout doesn’t feel like it’s reinventing the wheel, it doesn’t need to. It’s just really good. Barbiere has a knack for playing in genre and doing it better than most and this launch shows him doing that again with ease. Hopefully by this time next year I will be telling you “I told you so” about one of your favorite new series.

Speak of the devil. Mr. Barbiere has clearly been pretty busy. This week also sees the FIVE GHOSTS #3 out. I could write a whole bunch of snarky $#!% about Five Ghosts but I want to give Mr. Barbiere a nice quote for ads and whatnot. Five Ghosts #3 raises the stakes on this already great series in every way. Smart, tense, and beautiful, the best book of the year keeps getting better. Buy Five Ghosts or admit you are fake. Your welcome Frank.

Do you like pretty stuff? Read GODZILLA: HALF-CENTURY WAR. James Stokoe (pronounced “Stew-Coo-Ooo-Whoa-Eee”) is one of the best artists working in comics right now. Like the beautiful bastard child of Paul Pope, Geof Darrow, and Osamu Tezuka, Stokoe has earned a rabid fanbase by quality of work but not quantity of work. I am pretty sure I will never see a year with 12 issues of his work on the stands. With that understanding you should all view the arrival of a whole trade of his work as a sort of holiday. Skip work, buy some diapers and a lot of chocolate milk, get yourself a massage, and rent a new couch because it’s about to get awesome for you. In case the title didn’t make it clear, this book is Stokoe drawing a giant Japanese (Can they claim ownership of him? Should they?) dragon monster thing while it wrecks stuff. Yeah. It’s awesome.

THE PROPERTY is the new graphic novel from Rutu Modan, author of the brilliant Exit Wounds. If you have never read any of Ms. Modan’s work, her stuff reads like Tintin if Tintin was full of powerfully quiet human drama instead of, ya know, racism. It is economical in both art and storytelling, but the story never feels rushed or shortchanged. This is as elegant as comics get. The Property tells the story of 2 generations of Polish women returning to their homeland to reclaim property seized in the holocaust. As the story progresses both the cause and the meaning of this pilgrimage begin to change for the women and what results is a very touching and humorous story about peoples relationships to each other, their history, and the larger world around them.

It is that time of the week when I tell you to buy some new Image comic #1. This weeks obligatory #1 is THE BOUNCE. Joe Casey has written just about every major superhero worth writing and a lot that aren’t. He always makes books that manage to feel smarter and more fun than his contemporaries. Well now he launches The Bounce which is essentially a stoner version of Spider-Man. If there is one thing you should trust Mr. Casey to do it is both examine and deconstruct superheroes in really intelligent ways all while not letting you realize that is happening. He hides the smart storytelling in the fun. That’s smart. I’m tired. Buy this book.

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New Manga Releases: OMG Stuff!

By Mat K.

Welcome otaku boys and girls, and I’m dry on article titles for now. Moving forward, this week isn’t very tremendous in terms of quantity of new books coming out, despite it being the first week of December, but there are definitely some desired or at least intriguing books coming in. I’ll start with some small mentions. TokyoPop puts out Lagoon Engine Volume 7 this week, a record 3 years after volume 6, (that’s right, six came out in 2007 folks), but I ranted enough about that last week. They also put out NG Life volume 7. From the Del Rey side of things, they’re continuing their omnibus editions playing catch up with their titles with Papillon Volume 5 and 6 together, and Psycho Busters volumes 6 and 7 together. I still think these are pretty neat, except you lose the art for the covers of the inside volumes. Also, Inukami Omnibus and Inubaka Crazy For Dogs volume 17 show up this week, and we are listing them as new because even though they were supposed to arrive a couple weeks ago, due to mix ups they did not, but are here now.

Now for some big ones. The sweet new premier this week is Osamu Tezuka’s Ayako, coming to us from Vertical Publishing. Ayako defies the conventions of Tezuka’s previous mangas by utilizing a completely original cast and relying solely on historical drama to drive the plot. Set in the aftermath of World War II, Ayako focuses its attention on the Tenge clan, a once powerful family of landowners living in a rural community in northern Japan. The war and American occupation have begun to erode the fabric that binds them all together. And when the family seems to have completely fallen apart, they decide to turn their collective rage on what they believe to be the source of their troubles, the newest member of the Tenge family, the youngest sister Ayako. Continue reading

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New Manga Releases: Enter The Fray

By Mat K.

Well, as I’m sure everyone in the city has experienced this week, it has been Satan’s armpit in New York City, hot and humid as all hell. Fortunately, as a small consolation, there is a few bits of awesome coming out. And what is most odd about this week, it isn’t dominated by any one publisher for once. It usually seems like they give each other space and a chance once a month to put out as much as they can, but relatively speaking, everyone is entering the fray. There is even a new book coming out from Vertical (the guys who bring you most of Osamu Tezuka‘s books these days).

Chi’s Sweet Home is the new Vertical book by Kanata Konami. And yes, this is a cute one, though also full of adventure and drama. How could a book about a lost kitten not be? That’s right, Chi is a mischievous new born kitten who, while on a leisurely stroll with her family, finds herself lost. Separated from the warmth and protection of her mother, the confused kitten becomes distraught. When Chi feels all hope is lost, she is found in a park by a young boy named Yohei. The little kitty is soon under the protection and care of Yohei’s family – the Yamadas. And kitty isn’t the only one with a little bit of a problem. The Yamadas have taken in a cat when their lease explicitly states pets are not allowed in their building! Continue reading

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The End Of Pluto: New Manga Releases from Osamu Tezuka

By Mat K.

I know it’s a gloomy week so far, and no one really wants to go out in this weather, but if there was ever an excuse to get your feet damp and squishy I believe good books are it, and this week we have some good books. Let’s start with the 8th and final volume of Pluto, the Urasawa X Tezuka collaboration event. When we last left off in Volume 7 Photon just got obliterated, and his hands survived just long enough to protect the child Wassily and the guard-bot from the explosive force. And then Atom finally wakes up, but with 6 billlion personalities flowing through his brain, will he be the same awesome robot from before he was torn to shreds? THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME! I’m just glad that I waited for the first 7 books to come out before I started reading it, because I couldn’t imagine having to wait all that time between each release. PS: If you haven’t started reading Pluto already, what is wrong with you?

Also coming out this week is Osamu Tezuka‘s Black Jack Volume 10. In this volume there’s a mummy, a bike race, a dolphin, and then Black Jack hits a bar. But after all that, who wouldn’t? For anyone still unfamiliar with this classic Black Jack is a mysterious and charismatic young genius surgeon who travels the world performing amazing and impossible medical feats. Though a trained physician, he refuses to accept a medical license. This leads Black Jack to occasional run-ins with the authorities, as well as from gangsters and criminals who approach him for illegal operations. Because he keeps his true motives secret, his ethics are perceived as questionable and he is considered a selfish, uncaring devil. Continue reading

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March On Viz

By Mat K.

Welcome boys and girls to the first release week of March, and it all belongs to Viz. The Shonen Jump and Shojo Beat go flying this week and I’m sure you’ll be getting a little giddy. First on my “things I’ve been waiting for” list is Tegami Bachi Volume 2. It’s a little annoying that it’s going to be taking so long to release the indiviudal volumes, but that’s the price we pay when a series is also being run in Shonen Jump magazine. WaqWaq and Tegami Bachi both released they’re first volumes at the same time. And while WaqWaq itself has not been entirely punctual, as much as I love it, at least it has made it as far as the third book already. Now we finally get to see the second book of Tegami Bachi, and I’m ready for more of it’s twilight watercolor style, (that’s twilight as in the time between sun and moon). Continue reading

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