October 11, 2006

Thumbs up to the ComicList. They now provide a full list of releases for the week, plus a manga-centric version. (Of course, David Taylor has been providing the latter for ages.) As the MangaCasters note, it’s a big Wednesday for manga.

NETCOMICS releases six books, including the third volume of the excellent Dokebi Bride. If you’re curious, you can enter Love Manga’s Manhwa Competition to try and win a copy, or you can visit the publisher’s site and sample the first chapter for free.

It’s not on the ComicList, but the aforementioned MangaCasters say Broccoli’s Yoki Koto Kiku gets wide release this week. Adorable, murderous triplets scheme to get their hands on the family fortune, and hatchets fly with alarming frequency. (If my shaky memory serves, you can fill out a Broccoli survey and receive a free dust-jacket for the book.)

Graphix releases the second installment of Raina Telgemeier’s excellent adaptations of The Baby-Sitters Club books with The Truth About Stacey.

Go! Comi offers two new titles this week. In Night of the Beasts, a mysterious, dark-haired figure introduces a good-hearted teen-aged brawler to a supernatural destiny. It’s ShôjoBleach! After School Nightmare is set in what has to be the worst sex-ed class ever.

CMX enters the great Train Man race with its version of Densha Otoko, the story that launched a thousand manga. That just leaves Del Rey’s, right?

Causality and coincidence

October 11, 2006

There’s interesting chatter in the comments following Heidi MacDonald’s link piece on Marvel’s track record with gay characters.

Chris Eckert provides a quick scan of the current state of LGBT representation in the Distinguished Competition:

“The thing I find more interesting is DC’s LGBT wing of its Diversity Initiative, which thus far has involved having as many chicks making out as possible in as many books as possible. Since the One Year Later jump, I am reasonably sure that the only male homosexual characters we’ve seen are a talking gorilla and his disembodied Nazi Brain lover. Meanwhile they’ve worked in two girls making out into at least four different titles. Which is totally cool, although one questions if a sensitive portrayal of diversity is the primary motive for this.”

Jordan White links to a response from Marvel Team-Up writer Robert Kirkman from the Image boards to questions about his decision to create (then kill) Freedom Ring, the latest gay Marvel corpse:

“In hindsight, yeah, killing a gay character is no good when there are so few of them… but I really had only the best of intentions in mind.”

Basically, Freedom Ring was cannon fodder who just happened to be gay, like Northstar from that Wolverine zombie ninja story. (I thought Marvel had covered the well-meaning-but-incompetent newbie territory with Gravity who, coincidentally or not, is both straight and breathing.)

In the news

October 11, 2006

There’s an audio interview with Guy Delisle up at BBC’s The World about his experiences in North Korea and his graphic novel, Pyonyang: A Journey in North Korea (Drawn and Quarterly).

Delisle’s Shenzhen: A Travelogue from China arrives in comic shops today.