San Diego Comic-Con 2014: Best & Worst Manga Picks!
Saturday night at San Diego Comic-Con brought out the manga fans to Room 23ABC, as this year’s edition of the Best and Worst Manga panel gathered to rant and rave, cheer and diss the best and the worst Japanese comics (in English) available in North America over the past year, and to shine a light on a few under-appreciated gems and some coming attractions.
First, meet the panelists:
David Brothers, Blogger at 4thLetter.net, formerly with Comics Alliance. Also on Twitter as @hermanos and on Tumblr at http://tumblr.iamdavidbrothers.com/
Brigid Alverson, journalist/blogger at Robot 6 / Comic Book Resources, School Library Journal: Good Comics for Kids and MangaBlog. She’s also on Twitter as @BrigidAlverson
Christopher Butcher, blogger at Comics212.net, manager at The Beguiling, Toronto’s finest comics shop, and Marketing guy for Udon Entertainment. He’s also on Twitter at @comics212
I’ll be posting a more complete list with the panelists comments on why they loved (or hated) these titles, but for now, here’s the list of books for your shopping convenience!
My Love Story!! Vol. 1 | ORE MONOGATARI!! © 2011 by Kazune Kawahara, Aruko/SHUEISHA Inc.
Best New Manga for Kids / Teens (for readers age 8 to 15)
Best New Manga for Grown-ups (For readers age 16+ older teen to adults)
Best Continuing Series for Kids/Teens (at least one new volume published between July 2013-2014)
Vinland Saga Vol. 3 | © Makoto Yukimura / KODANSHA
Best Continuing Series for Grown-ups
- Wolfsmund by Mitsuhisa Kuji (Vertical) – David Brothers
- Sunny by Taiyo Matsumoto (VIZ Media) – Chris Butcher
- Summit of the Gods by Jiro Taniguchi (Fanfare Ponent Mon) – Deb Aoki
- Thermae Romae by Mari Okazaki (Yen Press) – Brigid Alverson
Worst Manga (for anyone, anywhere)
- Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign by Takaya Kagami, Yamato Yamamoto, & Daisuke Furuya (Shonen Jump / VIZ Media) – David Brothers
- Wolfsmund by Mitsuhisa Kuji (Vertical) – Brigid Alverson
- High School DxD by Ichiei Ishibumi, art by Hiroji Mishima and Zero Miyama (Yen Press) – Deb Aoki
Under-Appreciated Gems (Under the Radar Manga That Deserve Your Attention)
In Clothes Called Fat | © Moyoco Anno
Most Anticipated New Manga (licensed for print release August 2014-2015)
- Jaco the Intergalactic Patrolman by Akira Toriyama (Shonen Jump / VIZ Media) – January 2015 – David Brothers
- In Clothes Called Fat by Moyoco Anno (Vertical) – July 2014 – Chris Butcher
- A Silent Voice by Yoshitoki Oima ( Kodansha) – Spring 2015 – Deb Aoki
- Assassination Classroom by Yusei Matsui (Shonen Jump/VIZ Media) – December 2014 – Deb Aoki
- Opus by Satoshi Kon (Dark Horse Comics) – November 2014 – Brigid Alverson
- Dream Fossil: Short Stories by Satoshi Kon (Vertical) – Summer 2015 – Brigid Alverson
Most Wanted Manga (As yet unlicensed for publication in North America)
- Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – All Parts after Part 3 by Hirohiko Araki (Shueisha)
- Ping Pong by Taiyo Matsumoto (Shogakukan) – David Brothers – Chris Butcher
- Kakukaku Shikajika by Akiko Higashimura (creator of Princess Jellyfish) (Shueisha) – Deb Aoki
- Steve Jobs (manga based on his biography by Water Isaacson) illustrated by Mari Okazaki (Kodansha) – Deb Aoki
- Sherlock (manga based on the BBC series), illustrated by Jay (Kadokawa Shoten) – Deb Aoki
Favorite Digital-Only Manga (Manga that’s only available in digital format, not available in print)
Stay tuned — will try to post the audio of our panel, or offer up some of the quotes from our discussion, so you know why we picked these manga for your consideration.
Agree or disagree with our picks? Or have your own suggestion for the best and worst manga of 2014? Add ’em below!