manga bookshelf

7 Mouth-Watering Food Manga

When Khursten Santos announced that this month’s Manga Movable Feast would be… well, a feast, that provided me with a swell excuse to highlight my favorite food manga. I attribute my interest in the genre to my brief but intense infatuation with Iron Chef in the mid-2000s. I had always found cooking shows uninteresting: why […]

The Best Manga You’re Not Reading: I’ll Give It My All… Tomorrow

I’m not a big fan of squirm-inducing comedies like The Office; it’s hard to root for a loser who makes everyone uncomfortable with his general lack of self-awareness and humility. Yet The Office was undeniably compelling, even if it was sometimes hard to watch. The genius was in Ricky Gervais’ performance: he embodied a type […]

MMF: An Introduction to the VIZ Signature Imprint

If TOKYOPOP was the company that first embraced the teen market, licensing Sailor Moon and bringing manga to big chain stores, then VIZ was the company that first wooed adult readers, using distinctive packaging and punchy trade names to help older manga fans distinguish stories about boy ninjas from stories about disillusioned samurai. VIZ wasn’t […]

MMF: An Introduction to Osamu Tezuka

February 9, 2012 marked the twenty-third anniversary of Osamu Tezuka’s death. His career in the manga industry spanned five decades, from the early days of the akahon market to the industry’s zenith, when comics accounted for nearly 40% of all books sold in Japan. Over the course of his life, Tezuka produced more than 150,000 […]

MMF: GeGeGe no Kitaro

From the early 1920s through the late 1950s, before television became a fixture in Japanese homes, audiences flocked to kamishibai performances on street corners and parks around the country. A kamishibaiya (storyteller) would pedal from village to village with a butai (small wooden stage) perched on the back of his bicycle. When he arrived in […]

Rumiko Takahashi’s Rumic Theater

Most American readers know Rumiko Takahashi through her work in Shonen Sunday, but Takahashi has a foot in the seinen world as well. Maison Ikkoku ran in Big Comic Spirits from 1980-87, alongside Area 88 and Wounded Man, while short stories such as “To Grandmother’s House We Go” and “One Hundred Years of Love” appeared […]

Sexy Voice and Robo and Harriet the Spy

First published in 1964, Harriet the Spy featured a radically different kind of heroine than the sweet, obedient girls found in most mid-century juvenile lit; Harriet was bossy, self-centered, and confident, with a flair for self-dramatization and a foul mouth. She favored fake glasses, blue jeans, and a “spy tool” belt over angora sweaters or […]