Monday, October 04, 2010

Well, hell. Apparently Del Rey's bailing out of the manga publishing business, possibly in favor of packaging for Kodansha USA instead, distributing for hire. While the shift-over might conceivably occur painlessly, industry folk suggest that Kodansha has been spectacularly inept so far, and "trainwreck inside the station" is the way to bet.

This kind of sucks. I'll have to tally up the Del Rey titles I've been buying which will either be terminally delayed, or just plain terminated. Let's see...

Nodame Cantabile - no great loss here, it should have ended a couple volumes back. It's just been spinning wheels since about three volumes into the Paris continuation of the story.

XXXholic - again, this is a manga past its prime. The most interesting character has disappeared, CLAMP is relying more and more heavily on cross-overs with a separate title I honestly can't stand, and there just isn't much more life in the story.

Genshiken - actually, this title was finished, but word just popped last month that the mangaka is reviving it. A delay wouldn't affect matters here at all, since we wouldn't see a new volume for over a year regardless.

Moyasimon - this is the one which will hurt. It's a fun comic, but we've gotten two volumes in as many years. Another delay of another year will just kill interest, and thus kill the title dead.

My Heavenly Hockey Club - honestly, this comic is the second-weakest Ai Morinaga title in US release. I would gladly see this one killed dead in exchange for another volume of Duck Prince, orphaned by the CPM implosion.

Princess Resurrection - fun; but I barely noticed its failure to release. Put it in the "please don't kill her!" column, but barely.

Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei - boy, this one is snakebit in the US. The brilliant SHAFT anime adaptation is stuck in turnaround, imprisoned by MediaBlaster's slow-motion demolition. Still and all, I like it, and it was getting better with time and repetition. Jokes which were merely amusing in the first two volumes were positively lacerating by the third or fourth time around in later volumes. Repetition is very kind to Koji Kumeta's sort of humor.

the Wallflower - speaking of repetition... this manga is over twenty volumes long. If it were about anything substantial, its welcome would be long-since worn-out. But the recent volumes were what they've always been - pleasant ways to waste an hour without thinking too hard.

School Rumble - again, nothing great or grand, but the recent omnibus was a good way to kill a couple hours. It's close to the end, I hear...

Yozakura Quartet - this one just never paid off on its promise; the story was gloomy and down-beat, compared to the characterization and tone. "Tonal dissonance" and failure to make much sense left this comic an exercise in pretty nothingness.

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