Early voting

In last week’s Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast, NPR’s Monkey See crew discussed (among other things) the advent of “Best of” season and greeted it with the weary resignation of people who will be writing and editing at least a few before December comes to a close. And, as if they uttered “Candyman” three times as they faced the mirror, the first few graphic novel lists have arrived:

  • Amazon’s manga-free Best Books of 2010: Comics
  • Publishers Weekly‘s Best Comics List
  • Like Christmas advertising, these things seem to arrive earlier and earlier each year. I’d guess this means we’ll probably see the companion Best Manga list in this week’s edition of Publishers Weekly Comics List.

    I was chatting with people about these lists on Twitter, and some trends emerged:

  • Moto Hagio’s A Drunken Dream and Other Stories (Fantagraphics) didn’t seem to make much of an impression outside of dedicated manga readers, which is disappointing to me as a dedicated manga reader.
  • While many fine comics from established talents arrived in 2010 (or at least in the ten months of the year so far), there were fewer big, splashy debuts or career-redefining turns by known quantities than there were in 2009.
  • Your thoughts? Any particular Japanese comics you would have liked to see on these more general lists?

    3 Responses to Early voting

    1. [...] David Welsh also has commentary on these lists. Similar Posts: Best of 2008: How Early Is Too Early? § PWCW Best of 2009 § How to Get a Bestseller? Media, Baby! § Best of the Year? Already? § Too Many Comics? Comment now » [...]

    2. Jim says:

      Glad to see the Ax Anthology on the list although I agree that it is surprising that A Drunken Dream is missing. I hope to see Ax feature prominently on the glut of best of lists that will come in the next few months. I also hope that A Drunken Dream will feature, too.
      As for other titles, I think, because so many manga titles are long running narratives split over multiple volumes it is tough for a lot of list makers to pick an individual volume. First volumes are (obviously) the best jumping on point so I would like to see Saturn Apartments, Peepo Choo and Cross Game get a few shout outs.
      Another book I feel has been unfairly looked over is The Box Man by Imiri Sakabashira. Although I think this was officially released in 2009, copies didn’t appear in UK comic shops until early 2010. Not sure if it was easily available in the US before this. Either way, I wish this book could get a bit more recognition then it has had.

      • davidpwelsh says:

        I have to say, Box Man is one of those books that I’m glad is available for people who like that sort of thing, but I’m not one of the people who necessarily likes that sort of thing. I’m much more drawn to conventional narrative and character development.

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