'Yotsuba&!' finds home at Yen Press


POSTED: Monday, February 16, 2009

Quite a bit has happened in the past few weeks as I've been recovering from a nasty cold, so let's dispense with the introductions and get right to the news and commentary:

» “;Yotsuba&!”; fans, rejoice: The series has been rescued from ADV Manga limbo and will henceforth be released by Yen Press, starting with Volume 6 later this year. Unfortunately, there's still no official word on the fate of ADV Manga's other two notable licenses in limbo, “;Gunslinger Girl”; and “;Cromartie High School,”; nor of the publisher's fate itself.

» Now that manga artist Rumiko Takahashi has finished “;Inu-Yasha”; and taken some time off, it's time for her to get back to work on another regular series. Not much is known about this series beyond the fact that it will be serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday magazine starting this spring.

Despite this lack of tangible information, Viz, the U.S. licenser of all things Takahashi, already has picked up the license to this new series and promises to release the first volume toward the end of the year.

I'll predict this much: It'll probably be released with a garish yellow “;From the creator of 'Inu-Yasha'”; sticker partially blocking part of the cover image.

» Viz, CMX, Del Rey and Yen Press all filled their panels at the recently completed New York Comic Con with news of new licenses. Vertical acknowledged it was having some financial problems but promised to continue releasing new volumes of “;Black Jack,”; a series that is always welcome. And Tokyopop announced ... a new manga based on the character Domo-kun.

One has to wonder exactly what Tokyopop's strategy is going forward, and whether it includes a growing number of manga fans worried about their favorite series going on hiatus. Original series are nice, but they aren't exactly a confidence-builder.

» Finally, voice actor and former Kawaii Kon guest Greg Ayres, 40, is recovering at home in Houston after suffering a mild heart attack during the IkkiCon anime convention in Austin, Texas, on Feb. 7. Ayres, who came to Honolulu in 2007, is best known for his roles as Negi Springfield in “;Negima,”; Hideki in “;Nerima Daikon Brothers,”; Kaoru Hitachiin in “;Ouran High School Host Club”; and Koyuki in “;BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad.”;

Allow me to add my thoughts and prayers for a full recovery ...


Meeting Roll Call

» Aiea Library Anime Club: 3 p.m. Saturday at the library, 99-143 Moanalua Road. This month, librarian Diane Masaki hopes to screen the first few episodes of the romantic school comedy “;School Rumble.”; For more information or to RSVP, e-mail Masaki at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

» Oahu Anime Explorer: 6 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday at HMC Academy, 555 N. King St. Visit www.oahuanimeexplorer.com for more details.


Coming up Sunday

Tag-team partner in fandom Wilma J. is heading to the kitchen to whip up a review of the manga “;Kitchen Princess.”; Have a taste of her culinary criticism served up in “;Drawn & Quartered”; in the Sunday Today section.