Tag Archives | Manga

Japanese Media, Psychedelic Yokai, and Graphic Novels

My cinematic graphic novel TRETA-YUGA—the sequel to my breakout success KALI-YUGA—is now live on Kickstarter. In light of this, I thought I’d note the ways in which Eastern lore has profoundly influenced my work in graphic novels.


From my original article at Reality Sandwich:

The Japanese have always had a distinct way of portraying supernatural encounters with otherworldly beings. The infiltration of J-horror into the stale domain of Hollywood was an early sign of amnesiac Westerners longing to learn of the old ways. Supernatural encounters with the other (often the demonic Yokai), in whatever horrific way they are experienced in media, is seen by the Japanese as a way of gleaning knowledge from forgotten ancestry and learning the delicate threads of fate. It is in these darkly psychedelic, shadow healing encounters with the Gods that mortals are forced to reconsider the meaning of time, matter, and being.

Scholar Noriko T.

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When Titans Attack The Kingdom Of Pop Culture

attack on titanAre you a fan of Attack on Titan? No? Hurry up before you’re the last person on the planet who isn’t. Adi Tantimedh describes the manga/anime sensation at Bleeding Cool:

I could have sworn I wrote about Attack on Titan last year when It began to take off, but now that it’s really taken off as a global pop culture phenomenon, it’s worth looking at it again.

I suppose I should summarise the plot for people who don’t know it. The story is set in an unspecified quasi-medieval era, possible the future, where the world’s dwindling human populations live in walled cities under constant attack from giant humanoid monsters called Titans that threaten to wreck their cities and eat them all. Their only defense is an army of specially-trained recruits whose life expectancy is unsurprisingly short. What sets the latest generation apart is the emergence of a new weapon that may be a trump card, more radical and ruthless strategies and, at last, a push to uncover the mystery of the Titans and their origins and the possibility of ending the war once and for all.

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Mom Claims Her Son Is In ‘Extensive Therapy’ After Viewing Manga in the Library

Manga MomBrian Hughes writes in the Northwest Florida Daily News:

A Japanese serial graphic novel genre popular with young teens has raised the ire of a Crestview mother whose teenage son got hold of an adult version of the genre from the Crestview Public Library. “Manga” depicts highly stylized adventure and, occasionally, violence in fantasy settings.

Margaret Barbaree, founder of a citizens’ group called Protect Our Children, presented examples from a manga book to the Crestview City Council last week that she described as “graphic” and “shocking,” taken from material she said is “available to children” at the Crestview Public Library.

“My son lost his mind when he found this,” Barbaree said of the manga book from which her examples were taken. She said her son had removed the book unsupervised from the library’s general stacks last summer and put it in his backpack. She has kept it ever since.

“Now he’s in a home for extensive therapy,” she said.

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‘Obscene’ U.S. Manga Collector Jailed For 6 Months

MangaDavid Kravets writes in Wired’s Threat Level:

A U.S. comic book collector is being sentenced to six months in prison after pleading guilty to importing and possessing Japanese manga books depicting illustrations of child sex and bestiality.

Christopher Handley was sentenced in Iowa on Thursday, (.pdf) almost a year after pleading guilty to charges of possessing “obscene visual representations of the sexual abuse of children.”

The 40-year-old was charged under the 2003 Protect Act, which outlaws cartoons, drawings, sculptures or paintings depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct, and which lack “serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.” Handley was the nation’s first to be convicted under that law for possessing cartoon art, without any evidence that he also collected or viewed genuine child pornography.

Without a plea deal with federal authorities, he faced a maximum 15-year sentence.

Comic fans were outraged, saying jailing someone over manga does not protect children from sexual abuse.

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