By Ale Bodden
Once again NYCC is upon us, and with it we get new Manga titles announced by Kodansha Comics. The panel was moderated by Ben Applegate, Director of publishing for Kodansha, and joining him on stage were editors and Kodansha team members from both, US and Japan- including Yasuyuki Mimira (Inuyashiki and Devil’s Line).
Immediately after introducing themselves the titles started rolling out:
Regarding my Reincarnation as a Slime, A fantasy RPG about a middle aged man who dies and comes back as a blind slime. Coming out Summer 2017.
Fairy Tail: Rhodonite– A story focusing on Gajeel. Coming out Summer 2017.
Love and Lies, a dystopian future in which the government selects a life partner for teenagers as soon as they turn 16. Coming out Summer 2017.
Kigurumi Defense Squad, about costume spirits that come to life. It is a twist on the Magical Girl genre. Fantasy/Comedy/Romance. Coming out Summer 2017.
Kiss Me at the Stroke of Midnight, about a girl who who seems to only focus on her studies, but secretly yearning for romance. Reality based Cinderella story. Coming out Summer 2017.
Fraud Faust, an inventive tale that centers around the “real story” of Faust… who just happens to be a badass woman. Coming in 2017.
Wake Up Sleeping Beauty, a story about a boy who meets meets a girl… and all the ghost spirits that possess her. It is a very moving title. Mystery/Romance/Supernatural. Coming in Fall 2017.
Waiting for Spring, a classic shojo romance about a girl who is looking to break out of her shell. Summer 2017.
Ahogaru, Clueless Girl – pretty self explanatory about a very clueless girl for fans of Azumanga Daioh. Summer 2017.
Land of the Lustrous by Haruko Ichigawa. A story about a gemstone race in a fascinating setting- a deep universe with stunning art. Fantasy/Action/Slice-of-Life. Summer 2017.
From that we moved on to current titles that recently premiered or are about to:
A Silent Voice, 7 volumes- already finished. The story is told from the perspective of a bully who drove a girl who cannot hear out of school. He has to deal with the shame his actions have brought upon him. 2016 Eisner Award nominee. A film adaptation of it just premiered in Japan.
Princess Jellyfish by Akiko Higashimura. Volumes 1-3 are available now. Volume 4 comes out in January 2017. A story about feeling alone, weird, and dealing with anxiety. The English edition has color pages never before seen in the Japanese edition.
Cat Diary by Jun Ji Ito, a biographical manga about being a cat owner drawn in horror style.
Cells at Work by Akane Shimizu. It is a fast paced story with educational bits. The Manga is not out yet, but volume 1 is available for NYCC attendees.
Queen Emeraldas by Leiyi Matsumoto; a story for fans of Space Battleship Yamato, Galaxy Express 999, Captain Harlock. Two hardcover volumes of +400 pages each of an intense, Sci-Fi story. His first Manga translated to English in over 10 years. Volume 1 is available now. Volume 2: 2017.
Nekogahara, Stray Cat Samurai by Hiroyuki Takei. Equal parts cute and bloody.
Fire Force by Atsushi Okubo (Soul Eater). Set on Steampunk Tokyo and chasing a demon who is causing people to spontaneously combust. Fall 2016.
The Ghost and the Lady by Kazuhiro Fujita. All I can say is: a mystery us man in grey and Florence Nightingale. Mystery/Horror and complete at two volumes of over 300 pages each. Coming Soon.
Neo Parasite F, shojo horror.
Happiness by Shizo Oshimi. A beautiful vampire Manga. Coming Soon.
Ghost in a Shell- hardcover definitive edition. Coming in 2017.
Akira 35th Anniversary box set. Coming in 2017.
Ichi-F, a story about the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Over 300 pages.
After the titles display we got to hear about the Manga publishing process by Yasuyuki Mimura. He spoke about how Manga creators are trying to push boundaries and work relentlessly to appeal to a larger audience– not just boys and girls, but grown ups read, too. He did not get to speak for long, however, it was nice to hear about the editorial and creative team: how it is put together and how they work from beginning to end. It is about making the next chapter better than the previous one.
Ale Bodden is a freelance artist and contributing writer for Bleeding Cool and Old Man Geek. You can find her on Twitter @nerdy_faery and IG @nerdyfaery.