Anime Sweep
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Tuesday, September 27, 2005  
Anime 101.2

Anime, as I have mentioned in 101, is a growing industry here in the U.S. of Japanese animation. Behind the televised, animated entertainment though there is another layer in the form of the written word. This side of the coin is Manga.

Manga can also be referred to as graphic novels. In general you have the gray-scale, illustrated panels and the word bubbles, what you typically think a comic strip would look like. But like always there is a catch. Japanese reads right to left. Some licensors/ distributors of manga do change the images to be left to right. This is done in order to preserve the work in the way that the author wanted it to be seen.

The length of a manga series does not have a general lifespan like anime does. Anime most commonly run 23-26 episodes. Then you have what I suppose could be considered a mid season filler which would run 13 episodes. Then you have the rare ones that live into the 100’s. Manga can be as short as two volumes or go as long as 20 and not show signs of slowing down.

Lately, I have been seeing a new brand of manga emerging called Cine-Manga. This is more along the lines of graphic novels. The images are in color and are actual stills from a TV show with narrative overlay. The subjects of these particular graphic novels range from classic Disney movies like Bambi and Aladdin, to live action Disney shows like Lizzie McGuire. Some anime titles included in this style are Inuyasha, Cardcaptors, and Akira. I have not read too much into this style. Since the images and story are directly from the TV. show or movie, I’d just watch it.

Some licensing companies in the U.S. are:

Tokyopop - This company has an impressive collection of titles under it’s belt.

Vampire Game - A master vampire and warrior fight to the death. During the vampire’s death throws he vows to come back to have his revenge. But what happens when the Vampire King is reincarnated as a kitten? Can he still get his revenge? romantic/comedy, fantasy/action, vampires.
PhD: Phantasy Degree - Sang wants to acquire a magical ring. But the only way to get it is to enroll in the Demon School Hades. Will she be able to get past the Vampires, Werewolves and Demons to get what she wants? fantasy/action, sarcastic humor.

Viz - This company licenses and distributes both manga and anime. They are also in league with Shogakukan Inc. and Shueisha Inc. two publishing companies in Japan.

Bleach - Ichigo can see spirits, it’s not so strange until he meets Rukia, a shinigami who hunts Hollows. But when one attacks his family, Ichigo absorbs Rukia’s power to defend them. In so doing he becomes a shinigami himself and must fight the Hollows, bring peace to spirits and protect the innocent.
Hikaru no Go - Hikaru is an average kid until he discovers a bloodstained Go board. Now set free from the Go board, Fujiwara-no-Sai becomes a part of Hikaru’s consciousness. Will Hikaru be able to keep beating Go challengers? Will Fujiwara be able to rest in peace?

Del Rey - This company has a wide selection of science fiction and fantasy novels. It was just a matter of time before manga would find it’s way here.

Tsubasa: RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE - Sakura, the princess of Clow, has lost her memories. It’s up to her childhood friend, Syaoran to gather the feathers of her memory from different worlds with some help from other notable CLAMP characters.

xxxHOLIC - Watanuki is haunted by spirits, until one day he comes upon Yuko’s shop. He accepts her offer to rid him of the spirits, until he discovers he must work for her to pay off her service. In her shop, Yuko can help anyone . . . for a price. (Holic crosses over with Tsubasa!)

Boma at 10:52 PM

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