With only five new manga releases shipping to Midown Comics this week, what will our bloggers pick? See below to find out!
SEAN: It’s a smaller week this time around, but even if there were tons of titles, my pick would likely be the same. I found the first volume of Q Hayashida’s Dorohedoro to be my favorite out of all the SigIkki titles, and subsequent volumes have only added to my enjoyment. Its grim and unforgiving fantasy dystopia is lovingly detailed (you can pore through the backgrounds for hours), and its plot straight out of anyone’s nightmares (ever wake up with your head replaced with a giant lizard’s?). The reason that I can deal with its sordid underbelly is the wicked (and equally violent) sense of humor it has, with its main cast never seeming to let the bad things that happen to them crush their spirits. In fact, Ciaman and Nikaido, and their ‘evil’ counterparts Shin and Noi, can be quite jovial! Give this quirky series a try (if you don’t mind blood, it’s quite violent.) Plus, female creator!
MJ: This is a tricky pick for me, with nothing I’m really excited about shipping into Midtown Comics this week. With that in mind, I’m going to go completely off the list and get into the spirit of this week’s Manga Moveable Feast by recommending that everyone pick up something by Fumi Yoshinaga. My rereads this week include favorite older series Flower of Life and Antique Bakery, but there is plenty of newer or current Yoshinaga to check out if those are hard to find. Both Yen Press (Not Love But Delicious Foods Make Me So Happy) and Viz Media (Ooku, All My Darling Daughters) have served up recent helpings of Yoshinaga that should be relatively easy to acquire. I recommend keeping some snacks handy. Reading Yoshinaga always makes me hungry.
DAVID: It might have escaped your notice, but our long, national nightmare is finally over, and the Eisner Awards have finally given a prize to Naoki Urasawa. After an enormous number of nominations, he won a 2011 Eisner for 20th Century Boys. Conveniently enough, the 16th volume of this series arrives this Wednesday. Equally convenient is the fact that this is my favorite Urasawa title to be released in English, so I have no problem recommending it. One of my few complaints with Urasawa’s work is his inclination toward over-seriousness, so the generally wry tone of this series is especially welcome. It’s a great thriller that doesn’t neglect humor as it spins its various yarns. (Oh, and if you happen to have the Viz app on one of your various devices, you can now read Oishinbo in that format. This is something that bears repeating.)
KATE: After reading Bluewater’s unauthorized bio-comic of Lady Gaga, I’m morbidly curious about Fame: 50 Cent. The Lady Gaga comic was almost impossible to describe: it featured a middle-aged rock journalist who reluctantly agrees to write an article about Gaga, only to have a surreal experience when he listens to “Bad Romance.” (He actually imagines that he’s Lady Gaga; the sight of a balding, hairy man in one of Gaga’s most outre costumes was worth the cover price alone.) I don’t know that the 50 Cent story lends itself to such an avant-garde presentation, but given the sheer weirdness of Bluewater’s other Fame comics, I can’t imagine it will be boring.
MICHELLE Sometimes I feel like the only person who likes Bokurano: Ours. Indeed, it is very grim—there are quite a few similarities with Ikigami, actually—and somewhat repetitive, as members of a group of children sit quietly in the background until it is their turn to sacrifice their life piloting a giant robot that is ostensibly defending Earth. As you might expect, this is very depressing, but some creepy circumstances surrounding the arrival of the aliens makes me question is any of this even real? In addition to being cruel and horrible, is all of this just futile? Just a game? It’s this underlying mystery that keeps me coming back despite the need for a fluffy shoujo transfusion I typically feel afterwards.
Readers, what looks good to you this week?