Royal treatment

May 2, 2007

Tom Spurgeon pointed to this piece at Forbidden Planet International about French presidential candidate Ségolène Royal’s dim view of comics from Japan, providing an overview and some additional context:

“However, when Royal met Fukushima Muziho, president of the Japanese Social-Democrat party, in December 2006, the Japanese press recalled this vehement attack. While talking about women’s rights in Japan, Royal asked Fukushima if the problems in that domain didn’t stem from ‘the manga’.”

Here’s a Google translation of the ActuaBD article that sparked the FPI entry. And here’s an older article from The Japan Times on Japanese Foreign Minister and manga fan Taro Aso’s view of Royal’s… views.


Wednesday morning links

May 2, 2007

There are some interesting articles in the latest Publishers Weekly Comics Week, including Kai-Ming Cha’s report on the China International Cartoon and Animation Festival in Hangzhou, Brigid Alverson’s interview with Viz’s Cammie Allen on the upcoming Naruto push, and an byline-less article on the first Kids Comic-Con, memorable mostly for this… memorable quote:

“Speaking about comics as educational tools, Scholastic executive editor Sheila Keenan said, ‘For more literate people, when you read a novel you kind of see the movie in your head. But for others, it’s like reading music note for note—you don’t see the bigger picture. Comics can be a way to present that bigger picture.’”

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MangaCast runs through the nominees for the 11th annual Tezuka Awards, with images, commentary and other useful information:

“Is it too early for to ask Viz, Vertical and FanFare to pick up these titles fast? Death Note is already here and I am sure the only thing holding Ohoku back is how to market Yoshinaga as seinen/josei (I am sure that is why her other cooking manga haven’t been announced yet).”

Wait… there’s another Fumi Yoshinaga cooking manga out there, waiting to be licensed? Haven’t we reached the point when the only thing you need to do to market a Yoshinaga series is to put Yoshinaga’s name on it? (Okay, maybe that wouldn’t work with everyone, but it does with me.)

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ICv2 has details on some upcoming shôjo series from Viz scheduled for September 2007 and January 2008, including Kawahara Kazune’s Koukou Debut:

“The first new Shojo Beat release of 2008 will be High School Debut (Koukou Debut) a slice-of-life high school comedy romance about a tomboy who, when she gets to high school decides that she wants to get a boyfriend — the only problem is that she doesn’t know how, so she asks a popular guy to show her the way — his only condition, that she doesn’t fall in love with him. High School Debut appeared in the Japanese shojo anthology Margaret, where the stories tend to be a little more mature than those in other popular shojo magazines such as Ribbon and Hana to Yume.”

MangaCast has an in-depth preview of another of the titles on the slate, Maki Minami’s Special A.

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At Crocodile Caucus, Lyle continues his “Shojo Peek” series with a look at the recently-published preview of increasingly ubiquitous Chika Shiomi’s Yurara, contemplating some of shôjo heroine tropes in the process.