Otakon License Roundup

Another week, another con, and another passel of new manga titles coming your way. I’m also throwing in Seven Seas’ new titles, as they generally don’t do con panels, but simply announce their titles on social media.

So starting with them, we have a new yuri title from Morinaga Milk, author of Girl Friends and the Kisses, Sighs and Cherry Blossom Pink anthology. The premise sounds at first like it may have a bit of a Sukeban Deka series, but it looks quite light-hearted in tone, as a newly undercover police officer at a high school (a new recruit filled with justice) finds that her school already HAS an undercover police officer there, who insists this is her turf. It looks like a great cute title for those who loved Morinaga’s other cute titles.

A few weeks earlier, they also announced another four Alice in the Country Of titles, as it’s a series that has sold quite well for them, and there are still many titles available out there. (In fact, I suspect one of the main reasons for their license of the Crimson Empire series is that half the Alice volumes have CE side-stories in the back.) We get one volume for familiar harem protagonists Eliot March (the March Hare), Julius Monrey (whose first focus manga, The Clockmaker’s Story, is out this month), and Ace (whose series will hopefully focus a little more on the psychosis that makes him interesting.) We also get a volume devoted to Nightmare, the somewhat puckish ruler of dreams who sort of fills the caterpillar role in these books. This is honestly a whole lot of Alice, but I’ve found little gems interspersed among the more obvious cash-ins, so they’re worth checking out.)


As is standard lately, the big announcement of the day came from our friends at Vertical, who have licensed the Fumi Yoshinaga manga Kinou Nani Tabeta?, aka What Did You Eat Yesterday?. This seinen slice-of-life manga runs in Kodansha’s Morning magazine, and tells the story of a longtime gay couple (one dour and the straight man, one carefree and outgoing). What makes it compelling is that the story is told around the edges, as each chapter is mostly about the two men eating and cooking food, and recipe tips are interspersed throughout. Yoshinaga is mostly known over here for two things: BL and food. This 7+ volume series combines the two of them, and has been a much coveted license for quite some time. It’s also a rare seinen license from Kodansha, which makes me very happy. I can’t wait to read this one.

Lastly, Viz mentioned that they will be re-releasing the Monster manga in omnibus format next year. This Naoki Urasawa title is quite dark indeed, involving a doctor who saves the life of a young child only to find he grows up to become an insane madman. It ran in Big Comic Original, one of the few licenses from that seinen Shogakukan magazine. It was intensely popular online with manga and comics bloggers, but didn’t really catch on as much in terms of sales – perhaps this new omnibus, which will be in a larger trim and 2-volumes-in-1, can give it the audience it deserves – I think fans of Death Note who have grown to want more mature stories would really get a kick out of it, as well as Urasawa fans who discovered him via Pluto or 20th Century Boys. Hey, if it sells really well, maybe we can finally see Yawara: A Fashionable Judo Girl! Or even Happy!, one of the most depressing sports manga ever written.

What appeals to you most here? My guess is the foodie title.

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  1. I was actually at the Vertical panel! Quite expectantly, I freaked right the hell out when they announced that one! Ironically enough, Ed was wearing a cape with his cosplay, and I’ve always said it’s like Vertical is wearing a super hero cape at all times, this was pretty close.

  2. Zoe Alexandra says

    I’m excited about Monster being rereleased! Though I don’t normally read scanlations for series that have been licensed in English, some of the OOP volumes are just so expensive I made an exception to my rule. Now with these new omnibus edistions, I can stop (I was in the middle of Vol. 8) and own the series legally, which is fantastic. Can’t wait!


  1. […] and Viz is going to reprint Naoki Urasawa’s Monster in omnibus format. Sean Gaffney has a roundup of the Otakon news and some other recent manga license announcements at his […]

  2. […] were more licenses announced from Vertical and Seven SeasThis blog post has a round up, including Vertical bringing out Fumi Yoshinaga’s Kinou Nani Tabeta?, aka What Did You Eat […]

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