A manga junkie's recommendations on titles Company B can't or won't license.
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Chorus October 2006 Issue
2006.08.31. (Thu) | Edit |
In Chorus October 2006 issue, Pride is getting more doki doki.

Shio gets caught in the wave & gets pulled out into the ocean. Ranmaru goes after her even though Moe tells him not to go. Moe ties a rope around her waist, jumps into the water & helps Ranmaru pull Shio back to shore.

Takashi Jinno rushes to the hospital even though he had been drinking alcohol at his parents' home for New Year's.

He gets to the hospital & learns that Shio will be okay. When he goes out to make a phone call to his parents, Moe confronts him about making a contract for the promise he made (CD deal after she comes back from her study abroad in Italy). Takashi tells her it's fine, but she will have to get 3rd place in the national opera contest.

Moe asks Takashi to drive her back to the hotel she's staying at, since she jumped into the winter ocean to save his fiancee. While driving, Moe tells Takashi that Shio still likes Ranmaru, which agitates him.

When Moe tells him that he passed the street, he backs into a young mother on a bicycle with a toddler in a child basket. The mother & child are slightly injured, but Takashi tells Moe not to get out of the car & drives off.

Moe decides to use the hit-and-run to blackmail Takashi. She asks him to invite him into his bedroom.

Kyaaaa~, Moe is getting more & more evil. I'm actually feeling pretty bad for Takashi, who's not the guy to root for. Moe's going to continue to blackmail him for the rest of his life!

In Ice Age, the story about student Ai continues. Ai's older brother takes a picture of Micchi (math teacher) and Ishihara-sensei (Naomi, nurse's office teacher) coming out of their apartment & sends it to the PTA. They get called into the principal's office & Micchi convinces Ishihara-sensei that they should get married. She finally gives in to his marriage proposal.

Eiji tells Micchi that the person who dropped the cell phone is named Ai Kousaka & Micchi says that's his student's name. Micchi talks to Ai, who says her older brother did it so she wouldn't have a crush on Micchi anymore. She also tells Micchi that she's grateful to her brother b/c for a quiet, normal student like her, Micchi wouldn't have taken the time to talk to her one-on-one like this.

Meanwhile Eiji goes back to the okama bar where he met Ai (older brother). Ai worries that Eiji told his sister about the okama bar hostess job, but Eiji assures him that he understands it's difficult to talk about it with loved ones. Ai kisses Eiji.

Eiji heads home & sees Inui-sensei waiting for him. She brought some home-made miso to share with him, when she notices lipstick stain on the side of his lips. She gets mad & leaves, and Eiji tells her it's not a woman but a man... and Inui-sensei gets even more mad & leaves.

I'm a slow reader, so I didn't read the rest of Chorus. There's Seigi no Mikata (正義の味方) to read. I haven't gotten into Massugu ni Ikou (まっすぐにいこう), which is a series I used to read in Margaret but there's a blank from where I left off to when it re-started in Chorus. And I can't get into Hachimitsu to Clover (ハチミツとクローバー) because I haven't read the story at all when it was running in Bouquet.

Oh, I did read Omu-8 (Omukae Made 8-jikan, おむかえまで8時間) by Yoko Gendai. It was a tour of Shueisha's new building & they mentioned an archive room filled with all the magazines that was published in Shueisha's 80-year history.

I want to go in there and read all the nostalgic manga.

Next is Cookie October 2006 issue!

2006/08/31 21:16 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (0) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Sunadokei vol 10
2006.08.30. (Wed) | Edit |
It took me a little bit of courage to pick up Sunadokei (砂時計) vol 10. It's the final volume, although the main story ended at vol 8.. and vol 9 and vol 10 were side stories & epilogue to the main story.

Sunadokei is a your-eyes-are-puffy-the-next-day manga. And being the last volume, I knew I was going to cry my eyes dry.

The story is about a young girl (12) named An who moves back to her mother's home town in Shimane after her parents divorce. She becomes friends with local boys Daigo and Fuji and Fuji's younger sister Shiika.

An gets used to the country, but her emotionally sensitive mother has trouble adapting to the close-knit town. One winter day, An's mother goes out for a walk and doesn't come home. The villagers find her dead in the mountain & An finds a suicide note from her mother.

Sunadokei is a story about a girl growing up with huge emotional scars of her mother's suicide, friendship and love she finds and loses along the way.

An spends ages 12 to 16 in Shimane. Then goes to live with her father in Tokyo during high school. She gets a job after high school & gets engaged, which falls through in the end. She gets tired of trying too hard, goes back to the beach near the sand clock museum that her mother took her to when she was 12, and cuts her wrists.

An lives in the end (or that would be a really crappy story!) and gets together with her childhood sweetheart Daigo.

Sunadokei vol 9 is mostly about An's mother, Daigo's mother & Fuji's mother as older teens & young adults in the small town in Shimane.

Sunadokei vol 10 is a two-part story about Daigo's students (he becomes an elementary school teacher) and how he hopes he can become a good influential person in his students' lives, like his teacher was when he was young.

Oh, there's so much to write, since the story covers 10+ years of An's life! But I can't write it all here, so I'll write about each volume in pieces. (I learned my lesson trying to write "short synopses" for Cat Street. It can't be done!)

Company V is currently releasing SOS by the same author as Sunadokei. If they don't release Sunadokei, there's something wrong, wrong, wrong with manga licensing in the US!

Of course my opinions don't matter anyway, since I don't buy US manga (I'm not a consumer, so my opinions don't matter).

Author: Hinako Ashihara
Volumes: 1 - 10 complete
+ fan book
Publisher: Shogakukan

Likelihood of Company B to license: 0
Like Cat Street, it's Company V's title. I hope one day I can work on a shoujo manga this good.


2006/08/30 21:56 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (6) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Cat Street vol 5
2006.08.29. (Tue) | Edit |
Cat Street is a new manga series by Hana Yori Dango author Yoko Kamio.

It's a story about a former child star named Kate who gets betrayed by her best friend & rival child star and becomes a hikikomori or recluse. Kate is now 16, her family is barely holding together and her only human contact is a waiter/bartender of a bar.

One day, Kate is eating at the bar when a strange middle-aged man asks her if she goes to school. He tells her to follow him & he takes her to a "free school" called El Liston.

The man is the superindentent of El Liston, which is a private institution where kids who couldn't go to school for various reasons come to do what they want to do. The students can take naps, read books in the library, make crafts or continue to study.

At El Liston, Kate learns to trust others & slowly comes out of the shell she's been in for so many years.

I decided to read Cat Street vol 5 first among all the manga that came in this week. Even though Cat Street is very tear jerk-y (or maybe I just cry over anything), it's a very feel-good tear jerker.

Aside from being a former child star, Kate is a typical teenager who hates life (well, maybe a little excessively) and blames all of her troubles on her parents and rival child star / former best friend Nako. But because she stopped going to school & having any social interaction since elementary school, Kate is pure & simple, but timid.. and at times dumb. Dumb in a cute way that you love your dumb cat.

The other characters are very likeable too. Like Rei, a former high school star soccer player who dropped out because he couldn't get along with his teammates. And Momiji, a girl who's into gothic-lolita attire who dropped out of high school because she felt suffocated in a school uniform and the social structure of classmates. And Koichi, a genius programmer who quit high school because the curriculum was too easy and boring for him.

There's also side characters like Taiyo, a former classmate of Kate from elementary school who helps her come out of her shell. She also falls in love with him, only to get her heartbroken (and almost goes back into her shell) when he starts dating his classmate Hirano-san.

And of course Kate's former best friend & current teen actress Nako makes an appearance.

Manga author Yoko Kamio took a long break (1-1/2 years?) after Hana Yori Dango ended. I was disappointed with how Hana-Dan was dragging on during the last few volumes (I didn't even bother reading the final volume! I need to pick it up), so I'm glad she started a new series that I like just as much as when I was reading Hana-Dan.

It's a good series & I hope Company V decides to release Cat Street in the US even if Hana-Dan doesn't do well. I think Cat Street is a great series that it will bring new readers to the older Hana-Dan series.

Since I don't plan on going back to review Cat Street vol 1 - 4, I'll write a short synopsis in the "read more" section for each volume, and a longer chapter-by-chapter synopsis of vol 5.


Cat Street
Author: Yoko Kamio
Volumes: currently up to 5
Publisher: Shueisha

Likelihood of Company B to license: 0
Well, it's Company V's title. Even if it's not licensed, it's on Company V's platter. If heaven and earth flip over (what a Japanese saying!) and pigs fly, we'd have a teeny chance of getting it (which I'd pick up in a nano second).

PS. Tee-hee. I did a search on "El Liston" to make sure I spelled it right... and the first Japanese website Google gave me was a host club website. I must say the No. 1 guy Aito is pretty cute.


2006/08/29 20:04 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (6) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Happiness is More New Manga
2006.08.25. (Fri) | Edit |
Buyer K of Company B sent out an email to the staff w/ new manga coming in next week.

My sister's been waiting to read more of the Takumi-kun series, and a bunch of them (five) are arriving next week. We initially looked at a few volumes for licensing purposes, but Kadokawa told us that they licensed it already.

I'm looking forward to Sunadokei (砂時計) vol 10, which is the final volume of the tear-jerker series. I've been holding off writing about this series, so I can pour my heart out about it. I hope Company V releases it in the US. Shoujo fans deserve to read this!

Then there's Cat Street vol 5. I've been itching to write about this series here too.

And finally Pride vol 6. I read it every month in Chorus, but I like to read them all at once every so often. So that's why I get the comics too.

There are a few more I look forward to reading, but they're licensing related, so I can't talk about it here. If everything goes well, you'll read about it in Company B blog. If not, I'll pour my broken heart here.

I'm looking forward to next week.
Maybe they'll arrive Tuesday. Maybe Wednesday.
I hope the weekend goes by quickly.

2006/08/25 23:12 | About Site | Comment (0) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Happy! vol 23
2006.08.24. (Thu) | Edit |
Happy! is an old manga series, but I never had the chance to read the last volume. Until today.

My sister found the last volume in the $1 section at Book Off, so we immediately bought it. Along with few more volumes of Oishinbo.

Happy! by Monsters author Naoki Urasawa is a tennis manga.

My sister plays tennis, so she likes to pick up any tennis manga. Although we recently haven't read Prince of Tennis. But we do like to read it every so often for laughs.

Anyway, Happy! is about a young female tennis player named Miyuki. Her father taught her tennis & sent her to an expensive private school that had a good tennis program. But her father passed away & she has to take care of her younger siblings... until her older brother gets in trouble with loan sharks & Miyuki is responsible for paying all the money. Or the yakuza loan-sharks will sell her brother's organs, then put life insurance on him and kill him.

Miyuki's only hope of paying back the large sum of debt is to win tennis tournaments & get the prize money.

One thing about Happy! is that it starts out pretty sad & gloomy. And the sadness & gloominess continues throughout the series. It's one of those "oh, she's finally found happiness... oh, but someone gets in the way & she's a little deeper in the hole again" type of story.

And Miyuki is a nice, sweet girl so you want to cheer her on. But the girl's got lots of bad luck. She should have gone to an oharaishi to have all her bad luck washed away first.

And there's an evil girl named Chouko (蝶子) who tries to take down Miyuki in every way possible. I wonder if her name was supposed to be a play on O-chou Fujin (お蝶夫人)from Ace wo Nerae, which is a classic tennis manga. I haven't read Ace wo Nerae, but O-chou Fujin appears in lots of pop culture references.

But in the end, I'm happy with how Happy! ended.

I did read everything out of order, so I should re-read from the beginning. But we're still missing some volumes. We still need to dig through the $1 shelves at Book Off to get the rest of them.

Author: Naoki Urasawa
Volumes: 23
Publisher: Shogakukan

Likelihood of Company B to license: 0
Even though there are no cultural barriers for sports, sports manga just doesn't do well in the US. Is it because otaku are indoor people? Sports manga always has kandou (感動), the touching moment, where you can cry your eyes out... aah, mottainai. Let's sweat together & cry together with sports manga!

2006/08/24 20:28 | Sports Manga | Comment (0) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Jelly Beans vol 1
2006.08.23. (Wed) | Edit |
I really didn't know Moyoco Anno's manga when I was an ordinary manga junkie.

Of course by the time I got out of college (many years ago) I heard about Happy Mania. But I wasn't interested in reading it until a certain director T of a certain Adult Swim anime F told me that main female lead H's design was modeled after Moyoco Anno's manga style.

Well, just the eyes.
Corrected character designer S.

I never finished reading Happy Mania. I have up to vol 3, and I'm struggling with the idea of buying the rest at an used book store or not. It's cheaper to buy the manga at a used book store, but the manga author doesn't get any royalties off of those sales. Once the manga author is somewhat familiar to you, it's hard to buy used manga.

I don't know anyone who knows the manga author or Oishinbo, so I have no problems buying that used.

But I digress.

I was rummaging through retail store A's warehouse manga shelves, looking for new manga to buy. And that's when I noticed Jelly Beans.

Jelly Beans vol 1

I was interested enough to buy the first volume, and decided I'll buy the rest if I like the first.

The story is about a young girl (14) named Mame who dreams of becoming a model. She heads out to Tokyo because she was selected as a "reader model" - where magazines select cute girls who read their magazine to try on clothes. Basically an amatuer model.

Mame gets lost, ends up at the publisher's offices, meets teen model Miri-chan & Hikaru-kun. Mame is having the best day of her life... although nothing amazing happens, b/c they just send her back home on a train.

I was never into fashion as a little girl, but it's fun reading about girls who are into fashion. I don't know why it's more fun reading about fashionable teen girls at age 30+, compared to reading Gokinjo Monogatari (ご近所物語) as a teenager.

Anyway, Mame ends up giving up her dreams of being a model (she's short), but dreams of being a fashion designer. And Mame's daydream sequences are weird. Surreal & colorful... even if it's a black & white manga.

Each chapter of Jelly Beans is 8 pages long.
Which is rather short for a shoujo manga, since most of them run 30 pages (for a monthly).

It's probably because the manga series ran in a fashion magazine called Cutie. Kinda like how Paradise Kiss ran in Zipper.

Now wouldn't it be cool if Nana ran in Seventeen (I was a Seventeen reader) or YM or other teen fashion magazines I don't know the names of? If anyone could pull it off, it would be Company V. Kitai shiteru ze (I'm counting on you), Company V!

Back to Jelly Beans.
I like the tempo of this manga, although it takes a little getting used to. It's very fast paced (well, each chapter is only 8 pages), and thoughts & actions & friendships change frequently. A lot like the conversation train of thought of teen girls, I s'pose.

It also reminded me of Kisekae Yuka-chan (きせかえユカちゃん), another manga about a fashion-obsessed tween girl. Kisekae Yuka-chan is more of a gag manga, but the tempo is a lot like Jelly Beans. Kisekae Yuka-chan is one of the manga series I look forward to in Cookie.

Jelly Beans
Author: Moyoco Anno
Volumes: 1 - 4
Publisher: Kodansha

Likelihood of Company B to license: 2
I'm guessing Company T already has this picked up. And if not, I'd like to recommend Company DR to pick it up. Sugar Sugar Rune is cute, but I liked reading this more.

Click on "read more" for chapter by chapter synopsis of Jelly Bean vol 1.


2006/08/23 14:45 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (2) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Ren-ai Catalog vol 31
2006.08.18. (Fri) | Edit |
I was trying to remember how I got into reading Ren-ai Catalog (恋愛カタログ).

I must have picked up Betsu-Ma (Betsusatsu Margaret) after it took me a long time to grow out of reading Ribbon. It's a monthly magazine, so it was probably easier to subscribe to than bi-weekly Margaret.

I've stopped reading Betsu-Ma, but Ren-ai Catalog is one of the manga series I still continue to buy.

Actually, it's hard to stop once you've already collected 30 volumes.

The story starts off with a somewhat shy high school girl named Mika who goes to a gou-kon with her best friend. She is intrigued by a guy named Takada-kun & she doesn't want to regret not talking to him ever again so she asks him out. Takada-kun says yes, and they get together.

Or I that's how I remember how it started. I think there was something more touching & shoujo manga-like (he helped her out when someone teased her; said some comment that made her feel more relaxed... something like that), but I can't remember off hand.

I should go back and re-read the first volume, but I think I got the gist of it.

So Mika & Takada-kun go through the new couple thing of getting to know each other. Then the what-should-couples-do when-they-should-be-studying-for-college-exams thing. Then Takada-kun got into College K, but Mika is on the wait-list thing. Then it's-hard-to-spend-time-together-when-we're-in-different-majors thing.

Of course there's obstacles that pop up here & there, like Takada-kun's ex-girlfriend who is rumored to be super cute. Or Mika & Takada-kun volunteer for children's summer camp & another male volunteer starts to like Mika.

Ren-ai Catalog has the older generation shoujo manga feel, where there's a lot of doki-doki before they kiss (although it doesn't take them the entire series to kiss). But I think they don't have sex until the 20th volume or so.

Rather unusual for shoujo manga of these times. But I guess Tsukushi & Doumyoji never had sex too.

Ren-ai Catalog is for otaku girls who grew up falling in love with male characters from shoujo manga (like Makabe-kun from Tokimeki Tonight, Irie-kun from Itazura na Kiss, Shin-chan from Oh My Darling).

There are tear-jerking moments where you cry because Takada-kun says the sweetest things to Mika. And you giggle at the awkwardness of boys and girls.

Vol 31 is mostly about Mika's younger sister Tane, who is dating Takada-kun's younger brother Ryuji. Tane-chan is in her 2nd year in high school, so she's s'posed to be thinking about college exams. But she's a carefree character who doesn't like to study & she's considering not going to college.

Tane-chan takes her New Year's money and decides to go to Hokkaido for a trip. Dragging along Ryuji, of course. Tane-chan's main purpose was to eat good food, and they end up at a dairy farm where the family makes fresh ice cream.

Hmmm. Makes me want to go to Hokkaido.

I'm surprised Ren-ai Catalog lasted so long, but by shifting some of the storyline to Tane & Ryuji, I guess the younger readers of Betsu-Ma can relate to the two in high school. While the older readers (although I'm long out of college) can read about Mika & Takada-kun.

Ren-ai Catalog
Author: Masami Nagata
Volumes: currently up to 31
Publisher: Shueisha

Likelihood of Company B to license: 1
(on a scale of 1 to 10)
Too long = it would take 8 years releasing the books quarterly. And it's Shueisha, although Company V probably won't release it in the US.

2006/08/18 23:23 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (1) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Chorus, Cookie September 2006 Issue
2006.08.15. (Tue) | Edit |
We received the import book shipment at Company B today.

So I received my monthly subscription to Chorus and Cookie.

Chorus Sept 2006 issue included a special chapter of Kimi no Inai Rakuen (君のいない楽園), which is a series that recently ended. It's a girl-grows-up story about a tomboy named Tomoe. Her father was a world famous photographer who died in an accident when she was young, and she is raised by her mother & her father's apprentice Kazuya.

The title gets its name from letters Tomoe's father wrote to her while he was away taking photographs. He always signed off as "From dad, in heaven without you." Which sounds weird literally, but is basically a poetic way of saying how he misses her.

The series started when she was in elementary school, and ended with her starting college. The special chapter was about her college life.

Of course I started reading Chorus when I learned that Yukari Ichijo was drawing manga for the magazine. I grew up reading her manga in Ribbon, such as Yuukan Club (有閑倶楽部)and other shorts. Her current series is called Pride, a story about two opera students - one is a former wealthy girl (her father's business failed) named Shio and a poor girl named Moe.

In the Sept 2006 issue, Shio, Moe and Ranmaru get together once again as singing unit SRM to shoot a commercial. The recording session goes smoothly, and they have to shoot the commercial by the beach in the middle of winter (and pretend it's summer). Shio doesn't want to be branded as the wealthy girl who can't work professionally, tries to do everything asked of her, and ends up getting caught in the wave.

My guess is in the next issue, Ranmaru takes care of Shio who catches a cold from the winter ocean and their tense romance re-kindles. Then Shio's fiancee shows up. Kyaa! Kyaa!

Ice Age wasn't that exciting this month, so I'll talk about it next month. Utena's Marriage was about Iona, so skip-skip. I hope they get back to Anon's romance.

In Cookie Sept 2006 issue, Nana is starting to move along quickly. Maybe I forgot to read the August 2006 issue? Anyway, BlaSt is having a thank-you party for a small group of fans, and the second Misato is there. Meanwhile a reporter tells Hachiko about Nana's mother, so Hachiko goes to Osaka to see if Nana's mother really does live there & has a new family. doki doki doki.

Paraparu (パラパル) is moving too slowly these days. Oh, but Paraparu vol 3 arrived in the same shipment, so maybe I'll talk about in the next two weeks.

Sometimes I get too scared to read Anoko to Issho (あの子と一緒) because I'm worried something terrible would happen to Kazumi. Or even Kanori.

And Kisekae Yuka-chan (きせかえユカちゃん) was a not-so funny episode. I hope they get back to Sadako's storyline.

Like Chorus, I started reading Cookie because there are former Ribbon authors drawing in the magazine. I grew up reading Tenshi Nanka ja Nai by Ai Yazawa (Nana) and Ponytail Hakusho by Megumi Mizusawa (Kira Kira 100%).

But Cookie is a bit too young-ish for me. Topic-wise. Too many shocking & scandalous topics for 30-something like me. It took me a while to get used to the art style for a lot of the manga too. Very Happy Mania type of art style.

Aside from Chorus & Cookie, I only had two special order manga for myself. The rest of the box is all production/licensing related for Company B. I can't talk about them here or in Company B blog (unless we end up licensing it).

I hope I find enough manga to write about here.

2006/08/15 22:59 | Shoujo Manga | Comment (0) | Trackback (1) | Top▲
anego - TV drama
2006.08.14. (Mon) | Edit |
I went to my mom's house for the weekend, since Tofu Festival is right around the corner from her place.

She had rented a TV drama series called anego (アネゴ), which is about a single 32-year old OL looking for love. Naoko Noda is called "anego" by her co-workers because she's worked at the company for 10 years & she likes to take care of people (listen to younger co-worker's work-related & personal problems, etc).

Oh, anego means older sister... although it has a different nuance than onee-chan (familiar), onee-san (less familiar), aneki (rough, boy-ish talk). It has a more y*kuza or ryoutei (Japanese restaurant) or ryokan (Japanese inn/hotel) type of nuance.

It's a word that has hierarchy, which makes sense because the kanji for "go" (御) is an honorific term.

Anyway, this is turning into a Japanese translation blog & not a manga blog. So back to the manga part.

Why I brought up anego is because of the manga-generation influences it had in the production execution.

I haven't read the original novel by Mariko Hayashi, so I don't know if the manga-ish parts were written in the story from the start... or if the screenwriter/adapter added those elements.

One thing anego had were side-subtitles of what Naoko was thinking to herself as she was talking to others. Tends to happen mostly in the awkward romantic scenes ("Is he going to confess his love to me?").

In drama and anime, thoughts are generally expressed through voice overs, but I liked the subtitled part. It's very manga-esque with lots of tsukkomi and side comments that would be hand-written on the side of the text bubble in manga.

Then there were day dream sequences, which are not uncommon in other dramas, but w/ the thought subtitles, makes it more manga-ish.

I don't check out the Japanese channel, so I don't know what dramas are running all the time... but if they air a subtitled version of anego, it's something worth watching.

PS. Rie Tomosaka (Miyuki from Kindaichi Shounen TV series) plays Naoko's former co-worker turned happily married house wife in anego. It's surprising (and shocking) to see an actress who you remember seeing play a high school student now play a role of a house wife. How time passes. And I'm now over 30 and still single. Am I an anego too? doki!

2006/08/14 12:26 | Media About Manga | Comment (0) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Arakawa Under the Bridge vol 2
2006.08.09. (Wed) | Edit |
At Company B, we keep different manga in the women's restroom to read. Well, I bring in the manga. And occasionally the other women in the office read them.

Restroom reading should be kept short.
Those are the teachings of Uncle John of the Bathroom Reader Institute.

So one of the manga I keep in there is Arakawa Under the Bridge vol 2.

Arakawa Under the Bridge vol 2

It's a gag manga about a young "elite" man who has a policy of not being in debt to anyone. But he ends up owing his life to a strange girl who saves his life.

Rino, the girl, believes she's a martian & lives under the bridge by the Arakawa river. So the young man ends up living there too.

The young man is named Riku, which is short for recruit (リクルート). It's a Japanese-English word used to refer to newly recruited businessman/woman.

Oh, the person who names Riku is the mayor of Arakawa Under the Bridge, who happens to be a kappa. A kappa who has a zipper showing on his back.

There are other unique characters who keep popping up in Arakawa community. Like the man called Sister because he's a nun who wields guns. Or a guy called Hoshi (trans. "star") who has a star-shaped head.

I was searching on Amazon.co.jp when I noticed they released Arakawa Under the Bridge vol 3 in June! I completely missed it.

So time to order from Tohan, so I can buy it from Retailer AG (which is operated by Company B).

Arakawa Under the Bridge
Author: Hikaru Nakamura
Volumes: currently up to vol 3
Publisher: Square Enix

Likelihood for Company B to license: - 10
(on a scale of 1 to 10)
Maybe if Cromatie HS sells like crazy. But even then, maybe.

2006/08/09 20:49 | Gag Manga | Comment (2) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Chi's Sweet Home vol 3
2006.08.07. (Mon) | Edit |
I finally got my hands on Chi's Sweet Home vol 3.

It was released several months ago, and we received it at Company B a while back. I saw it when it was unpacked, but buyer K misplaced it or something. Staffer D found it hidden behind a bunch of boxes & so I did a dance of manga joy.

So about Chi's Sweet Home.

Chi’s Sweet Home vol 3

I'm a sucker for cat manga.
Although I didn't know Chi's Sweet Home was a manga at first.

I found out about Chi's Sweet Home as a gachapon figure. I always try to look for the manufacture info, cuz that's what you do when you work in character licensing. And I noticed that the credits listed Kodansha. Then one of the pieces of paper said "manga on sale."

So that's where my search for Chi's Sweet Home began. I did eventually find it at K-Books in Akihabara. So I bought volumes 1 and 2.

Chi's Sweet Home is a story about a little kitten who gets adopted by a family comprised of dad, mom, and a young boy named Yohei. The family lives in an apartment building that doesn't allow pets, so they don't give the kitten a name at first... but as they teach the kitten how to pee ("chii" in little kid talk), it thinks its name is Chi.

What's cute about Chi's Sweet Home are the Chi-isms.
Chi has a distinct way of talking, and for people who like to talk out what their cats are thinking... well, it's just nose-bleed material.

Chi says "Pon pon ra-" (ポンポンら~) when she's full.
"pon pon" refers to having a full belly (it makes a "pon pon" sound like a drum).

Oh, one thing about this manga is that (I think) it's originally done in black & white, then re-colored for the comic book release. Or that's what it sounded like in the early volumes. 調べう(Chi-ism).

Chi's Sweet Home vol 3 came standard or limited edition. So I of course got the limited edition without knowing what it's going to be. And it was a Chi strap. Very cute.

More cat manga I'd like to eventually review:
Shippo to Tomodachi (Friends with Tails)
Orange Nikki (Orange's Diaries)
Neko Neko Fantasia

Although I don't really care for the last two. But I do own them, so I should talk about them.

Chi's Sweet Home
Author: Kanata Konami
Volumes: currently up to vol 3
Publisher: Kodansha

Likelihood of Company B to license: - 2
President K loves cats. So maybe I can convince him.

2006/08/07 22:06 | Honobono Manga | Comment (1) | Trackback (0) | Top▲
Personal Blog Begins
2006.08.06. (Sun) | Edit |
First entry of my personal blog.


Even though I run two blogs for work (getting paid to write them), I'm limited to what I can talk about.

Especially when it comes to manga I like, but Company B can't license. Or won't license.

So I decided to let my non-creative juices run to talk about manga that's not related to work.

It'll be mostly shoujo or lady's manga.
If I'm lucky to bump into some shounen or seinen manga that I like, I'll mention it here too.

I'm no writer, so I won't review manga here. Or write up clever synopses. It'll be a list of stuff I bought & read, re-read from the manga library in our living room, stuff I want to read.

2006/08/06 23:08 | About Site | Comment (1) | Trackback (0) | Top▲