Gift ’til it hurts

I’m glad The New York Times is devoting more coverage to comics and graphic novels, I really am. It doesn’t seem like it was that long ago that their reportage consisted of recycled, rah-rah press releases from Marvel and DC. Now we get a weekly graphic book best seller list (which, say what you will, is no more opaque or arcane in its methodology than most of the other ones) and a fair number of meaty pieces from George Gene Gustines.

What we don’t get, at least not yet, is much qualitative discussion of comics from Japan. When you walk into the average bookstore and see at least half of the graphic-novel shelf space devoted to these comics, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to expect at least some coverage of the category beyond sales figures supplemented by sometimes carelessly written plot summaries (which are better than no content descriptions at all, obviously, but only just). At the same time, I don’t really want to force anyone to write about something that doesn’t interest them, because the outcome from that sort of thing never serves anyone very well.

But I must admit to a certain degree of irritation when I saw this Gift Guide of 2009 Graphic Novels and didn’t see a single comic from Japan. After venting on Twitter, Erica Friedman (@Yuricon) sagely suggested that manga bloggers just do it themselves. I’ll be posting mine on Thanksgiving Day (just in time for Black Friday), and I would be happy to link to anyone else’s suggestions or host yours if you don’t have a blog of your own. Just drop me a line at davidpwelsh at yahoo dot com if you’d like to throw out some recommended manga for the nerds (or non-nerds) in all of our lives.

10 Responses to Gift ’til it hurts

  1. […] Welsh is irritated that the New York Times completely ignores manga in their gift guide to graphic novels, so he’s going to do his own guide on Thanksgiving—and he invites other fans to do the same, […]

  2. Heather says:

    Wow, it does not surprise me the Times ignored manga. I think graphic novels get more attention then manga, because of the small financial investment, since the majority of graphic novels finish their story in one volume compared to manga. I look forward to seeing your recommendations.

  3. […] list of participants at Okazu. Want to participate but don’t have a blog? David Welsh will host your selections at Precocious Curmudgeon. David’s picks are already up, and I’ll post a full list […]

  4. […] could not stand, so alert manga bloggers David Welsh and Erica Friedman started a movement. A hashtag movement. On Twitter. And by the end of the […]

  5. Stan says:

    What if the New York Times did include manga for consideration for it’s Top 10 article, and simply none of it made the cut? Let’s admit it, unless you’re into yaoi or rubber pirates, there isn’t much that is going to be as gripping as something like Walking Dead (20th century boys blah blah blah–that one takes a while to really heat up).

  6. davidpwelsh says:

    I clearly disagree with that sentiment, Stan.

  7. Oharra says:

    Can’t seem to see the images in this page, anyone have the same problem? o_O

  8. davidpwelsh says:

    There aren’t any images in this post.

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