The big news in the manga blogosphere today is EW’s announcement about the upcoming Twilight graphic novel from Yen Press. Adapted by Korean artist Young Kim with Stephanie Meyer “reviewing every panel,” the character designs so far resemble manhwa versions of the film actors without the over-the-top movie-star perfection. Though comments on the EW article online are mixed, this announcement is undoubtedly a cause for many fans of the book to rejoice over yet another means by which to experience the source material.
For manga/manhwa fans… maybe not so much. Buzz in the Twitterverse was heavy on despair. My take on it is pretty simple, though, and overwhelmingly positive. This is likely to be a huge moneymaker for Yen Press (provided, as one reviewer mentioned, teens actually buy the books instead of just reading them in the aisle at Barnes & Noble) and that can only be a good thing.
After all, despite the popularity of series like Naruto and Bleach, manga is still a niche market. Something like this has the potential to reach a huge and powerful demographic, introducing countless teenage girls (and their moms) to comics while also putting their money straight into the pockets of a manga publisher. From my perspective, this is 100% win! Will those same girls take the opportunity to check out other manhwa or manga titles? Maybe, maybe not. But Yen Press will still have their money, giving Yen a whole lot to spend on licenses for stuff the rest of us might dearly love to read. Where is the downside, I ask you?
Okay, there is one. We’ll all have to review it. :) Still, that seems a small price to pay for making a manga publisher rich (or at least that’s what I’m telling myself). Having never read Twilight, I admit I cringed at dialogue from the book quoted in the EW article like, “His dazzling face was friendly; open, a slight smile on his flawless lips. But his eyes were cautious.” On the positive side, since the GN artist can simply show us Edward’s dazzling face and flawless lips, we should not have to hear so much about them. Right?
So, friends, what do you think?
julie saysJuly 15, 2009 at 5:09 pm
I agree that it’s a win. Anything that gets more people interested in graphic novels is a good thing. I haven’t read Twilight or seen the movie, but if this property gets more kids, girls specifically, reading GNs, than more power to Yen Press.
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 6:03 pm
I really do hope it will end up introducing new readers to comics! I mean, maybe some (or even most) of them won’t ever look at other titles, but there must be *some* who will!
jaci saysJuly 15, 2009 at 7:20 pm
I can only hope that it would be an improvement over the original. UGH.
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 7:29 pm
Ooooooh HAHA I’d forgotten how much fun your entry about that was! :D *heart*
And yes. It seems like it can hardly be worse from what I hear, right?
badzphoto saysJuly 15, 2009 at 8:14 pm
“It seems like it can hardly be worse from what I hear, right?”
Well, one can only hope …
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 11:06 pm
PS: Since I was just urging Michelle to read your Twilight, uh, review, it became clear that I should also urge you to read hers. :D
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 11:31 pm
Er. And now I have fixed that link so it actually works. Oopsie.
Travis saysJuly 15, 2009 at 8:17 pm
I agree that it will probably be at least a lot better than actually reading Stephenie Meyers’ prose. XD
And yeah, hopefully it will sell well!
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 10:13 pm
I admit I’m grateful that if I finally have to read it, I will be spared that prose! :D
Michelle Smith saysJuly 15, 2009 at 10:56 pm
Although if it includes my favorite line—”his expression folded into a mask of ancient sadness”—I will cackle with glee.
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 11:00 pm
HAHAHAHA I am already cackling NOW! :D
Michelle Smith saysJuly 15, 2009 at 10:55 pm
That was my take on it too, Travis. Perhaps we’ll be spared the endless descriptions of Edward’s gorgeousness if we can just *see* it and have done with it.
Though the idea of panel after panel consisting entirely of close-ups of his bronze hair, chiseled features, etc. does kind of amuse me.
Ed Sizemore saysJuly 15, 2009 at 9:30 pm
Melinda, I agree this has great crossover potential for manga & manwha. I would like to see them serialize the first couple of chapters in Yen Plus to help boost circulation and increase the crossover oppurtunities.
Melinda Beasi saysJuly 15, 2009 at 10:14 pm
Yeah, I saw a couple of you talking on Twitter about this… seems like it would be a great idea for Yen.
Jett saysSeptember 27, 2009 at 1:17 am
Since I read/love both manga and Twilight, this is a melding of both of the worlds I love for me. Plus, Yen Press uses super-high quality paper for their graphic novels (unlike the newsprint kind that some of the other comic/manga companies do), so it will last longer…I’ll probably buy 2 of them though.
Melinda Beasi saysSeptember 30, 2009 at 11:27 pm
Their paper *is* really nice, isn’t it? :)
Nyte saysDecember 26, 2009 at 9:53 pm
I for one can’t believe this is happening. Already all the twilight fans are so hypocritical when it comes to vampire stories. For instance this girl in my school was talking about how Twilight was so awesome and then she started bagging on me and my friends for reading GOOD vampire books. I really hope it isn’t going to be the same for the manga as well. We’re already bagged on enough for reading it so I REALLY REALLY don’t want this to happen. It just makes me really mad when someone is hypocritical (madder then when they just bag on you for liking manga)