Manga for Maddow

I really admire Rachel Maddow and think she’s brilliant, and I’m thrilled to learn that she loves comic books and graphic novels. But her list of favorites? The usual suspects.

So this has me wondering what manga I’d recommend she read. She seems to like stories with political underpinnings (no surprise there), so here are some starting points:

  • 20th Century Boys, written and illustrated by Naoki Urasawa. You could basically recommend anything by Urasawa, but I like this series best.
  • Real, written and illustrated by Takehiko Inoue. It’s not especially political, but it’s really good, and I just like recommending it to people, especially if there’s a chance they might mention it in a YouTube video.
  • Ooku: The Inner Chambers, written and illustrated by Fumi Yoshinaga. It doesn’t get more political than this, really, Fakespeare aside.
  • Tekkonkinkreet, written and illustrated by Taiyo Matsumoto. GoGo Monster is actually better, but I think this title’s urban underpinnings might appeal to Maddow.
  • Thoughts?

    9 Responses to Manga for Maddow

    1. Eagle: The Making of an Asian-American President is a fun, pulpy political thriller about the first Asian-American candidate for the Oval Office. Great art, lots of political scandal, and a story that moves at breakneck speed.

    2. Lyle says:

      Phoenix seems her style, as does Adolf, though I’m not sure about Tezuka’s other work. (Though I guess someone would have to lend her their copy of Adolf.) Both titles have the political undertones that often appeal to her.

      I have a feeling she’d get a kick out of the novelty of Project X, the big drama over intellectual challenges like finding a way to dehydrate noodles would probably appeal to her inner infrastructure geek.

      I can also see Death Note appealing to her, with the moral debate, the governments’ attempts to deal with Light and the dense plotting.

    3. judi(togainunochi) says:

      Ooku is a great choice, but I would add Monster. This has everything you could want with hospital politics, cold war politics, and a really great villain. It’s a real page turner for me.

    4. hniu says:

      Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind
      Got lots of political references and some urban themes. This series hooked me on manga and I would recommend it to everyone ))

    5. […] Hideo Kojima’s recent visit to the UNIQLO store in Soho… and David Welsh asks readers to recommend manga for graphic novel enthusiast Rachel Maddow, and suggests a manga she might like, were it available in English: Love My […]

    6. Jade Harris says:

      Hmmmmm…..Dave, I don’t mean to be a party-pooper, but I’m not sure I would recommend any of your titles to the uninitiated, save, possibly, Real. All of them are darlings for existing manga fans, but much of the charm and legibility lies in their fresh takes on conventional concepts.

      Without any knowledge of tokusatsu cliches, 20th Century Boys may come off a bit goofy; without ever having seen a Kazuo Koike book, Ooku won’t seem as genre-busting and revolutionary as it does to you and me. Can a fresh reader appreciate the titles anyway? I can’t say, but there are ground-floor titles that don’t require that gamble. Why hand them books that hang on what we already know from manga convention and history?

      How about Monster instead of 20th Century Boys? House of Five Leaves is a good chick-friendly primer to the Crazy Bushi Hair Era without presenting alternate history right out of the gate. Slam Dunk is the reason readers were willing to give Real a shot…no pun intended…ok, maybe, I’m not sure anymore, heee. Just about anything is easier to decipher than Tekkonkinkreet, I’ll even suggest Soul Eater as a superior title just to drive home my lack of faith in it drawing new readers. :3

    7. Jade Harris says:

      Ack, sorry for spamming up your comments, but I’d suggest either Yotsuba if they like cute or Domu for generally anyone. In my experience, Domu has appealed to anyone of all shapes and sizes and both titles have left new readers hungering to read more.

    8. ABCBTom says:

      What about Eden: It’s An Endless World. It’s political, plus I’d love to see it get mentioned on a cable broadcast.

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