Seven Seas Entertainment Announces New Manga Licenses

Seven Seas Entertainment has announced that it has licensed the Dungeon Builder: The Demon King’s Labyrinth is a Modern City! manga, the Our Dining Room manga, and the Reincarnated as a Sword manga.

Seven Seas will release Rui Tsukiyo and Hideaki Yoshikawa’s Dungeon Builder: The Demon King’s Labyrinth is a Modern City! (Maō-sama no Machizukuri ~Saikyō no Dungeon wa Kindai Toshi~) in print and digitally, and the first volume will debut on January 7, 2020.

The publisher will release Mita Ori’s Our Dining Room (Bokura no Shokutaku) manga in print and digitally on December 3, 2019.

Seven Seas will release Yuu Tanaka and Tomoo Maruyama’s Reincarnated as a Sword (Tensei Shitara Ken Deshita) manga in print and digitally beginning with volume 1 on December 17, 2019.

Source: ANN

VIZ Media Welcomes Summer With New Anime and Manga Releases for June 2019

June 2019 anime home media debuts include Season 5 of Sailor Moon, Sailor Moon Sailor Stars Part 1 on Blu-ray and DVD, and the complete series run of the boxing anime, Megalobox on Blu-ray and DVD. The series finale of the long-running ninja action saga concludes in Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 38.

New manga publishing titles for June 2019 include Komi Can’t Communicate, a coming-of-age drama about a high school girl’s struggle to overcome her severe social anxiety. A bold art book exploring the widespread impact of Neon Genesis Evangelion on popular culture arrives with Evangelion Illustrations 2007 – 2017.

Under license from The Pokemon Company International, Pokemon the Movie: The Poiwer of Us—Zeraora’s Story, prequel companion to the animated film Pokemon the Movie: The Poiwer of Us, also debuts in June 2019. Meanwhile, Akira Toriyama fans can look forward to collecting reissues of the Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z manga box sets. Each box set includes a special bonus booklet and poster along with Son Goku’s iconic adventures.

New Home Media Releases for June 2019:

SAILOR MOON SAILOR STARS PART 1 Blu-ray & DVD Sets
Limited Edition Blu-ray MSRP: $79.99 U.S. / $93.99 CAN · Standard Edition Blu-ray MSRP: $69.99 U.S. / $81.99 CAN · DVD MSRP: $39.99 U.S. / $51.99 CAN
Available June 18, 2019

Sailor Moon and the Sailor Guardians are about to face their greatest challenge yet—high school. But as the girls take their next big step in life and Chibi-Usa prepares to return to the future, a mysterious force frees the evil Queen Nehalennia. While the struggle to contain her old enemy will be difficult, it may be Mamoru’s year of studying abroad that hurts Usagi the most. But there’s even more to take Usagi’s mind off of long-distance love with the arrival of the villainous Sailor Anima Mates and the heroic Sailor Star Lights. Who could be behind this new wave of evil? And why are the Star Lights resistant to working with Sailor Moon? Usagi has her hands full, but she’ll always make time to write a love letter to her beloved Mamo.

MEGALOBOX Blu-ray & DVD Sets
Limited Edition Blu-ray MSRP: $69.99 U.S. / $81.99 CAN · Standard Edition Blu-ray MSRP: $44.98 U.S. / $52.99 CAN · DVD MSRP: $39.99 U.S. / $51.99 CAN
Available June 25, 2019

Bored, resigned, and unfulfilled, a young man with neither name nor past survives by fighting in underground matches of a sport called “Megalobox,” a form of boxing that utilizes powered exoskeletons. Calling himself JNK.DOG, he feels trapped in a world of crime, poverty, and ecological collapse. All that changes when he has a chance encounter with Yuri, the reigning king of Megalobox. Now, obsessed with proving himself, JNK.DOG becomes a man driven to do whatever it takes to fight his way to the top of the rankings and take on the champion.

NARUTO SHIPPUDEN DVD SET 38
DVD MSRP: $39.99 U.S. / $51.99 CAN
Available June 11, 2019

It’s the final Naruto Shippuden box set. The Fourth Great Ninja War is over, and now the Hidden Leaf Ninja return to their daily lives. Some tackle dangerous work—like Sasuke, who tries to uncover the truth about mysterious exploding humans. Others, like Shikamaru, face the difficulty of adjusting to a post-war life. And for Naruto and Hinata, it’s wedding bells.

New Publishing Releases for June 2019:

EVANGELION ILLUSTRATIONS 2007 – 2017
MSRP: $34.99 U.S. / $46.99 CAN
Available June 11, 2019

Neon Genesis Evangelion is one of the most enduring and significant touchstones for anime, manga, and pop culture fans over the past two decades, thanks to the groundbreaking television series and beautifully animated movies. This book collects ten years’ worth of illustrations that showcase the wide effect Neon Genesis Evangelion has left on not just the animation industry, but on popular culture in general. Included are illustrations for film posters, CD albums, bullet train designs, video game collaborations, and much, much more.

KOMI CAN’T COMMUNICATE by Tomohito Oda
MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN / $6.99 Digital · Rated “T” for Teens
Available June 11, 2019

Socially anxious high school student Shoko Komi’s greatest dream is to make some friends, but everyone at school mistakes her crippling social anxiety for cool reserve. Luckily she meets Tadano, a timid wallflower who decides to step out of his comfort zone in order to help her achieve her goal of making 100 friends.

DRAGON BALL COMPLETE BOX SET by Akira Toriyama
MSRP: $139.99 U.S. / $179.99 CAN · Rated “T” For Teens
Available June 4, 2019

The Dragon Ball Complete Box Set contains all 16 volumes of the original manga that kicked off the global phenomenon. Also includes an exclusive double-sided poster and collector’s booklet featuring fun Dragon Ball trivia and guides as well as an interview with its legendary creator.

DRAGON BALL Z COMPLETE BOX SET by Akira Toriyama
MSRP: $219.99 U.S. / $279.99 CAN · Rated ‘A’ For All Ages
Available June 4, 2019

The Dragon Ball Z Complete Box Set contains all 26 volumes of the manga that propelled the global phenomenon that started with Dragon Ball into one of the world’s most recognizable and best-selling manga. Also includes an exclusive double-sided poster and collector’s booklet featuring fun Dragon Ball Z trivia and guides as well as an interview with Akira Toriyama.

POKEMON THE MOVIE: THE POWER OF US—ZERAORA’S STORY by Kemon Kawamoto
MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN · Rated “A” For All Ages
Available June 11th

Ash and Pikachu arrive in Fula City at the start of its renowned Wind Festival and meet Margo, the mayor’s daughter, and Dr. Hawthorn, a scientist. Through the magic of Dr. Hawthorn’s virtual reality technology, our friends experience the history of the city firsthand and meet Mythical Pokemon Zeraora and Legendary Pokemon Lugia. Why did one of them fly off, never to be seen again? And will it return in the feature film, Pokemon the Movie: The Power of Us?

Anime Expo Announces Utako Yukihiro as Guest

Anime Expo has announced that Utako Yukihiro will be a guest at their upcoming convention.

Yukihiro is the artist of the Devils and Realist manga. She is also the artist for the Uta no Prince-sama manga, and drew the original character designs for the B-PROJECT franchise. Yukihiro also provided the original character designs for the BONJOUR Sweet Love Patisserie anime.

Anime Expo will be taking place July 4-7, 2019 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California.

Source: ANN

VIZ Media and Shueisha Add the Double Taisei Shogi Manga in English

VIZ Media’s Shonen Jump website and Shueisha’s MANGA Plus site have both added Kentarō Fukuda’s Double Taisei (Futari no Taisei) manga in English. The manga has also launched in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump magazine. Double Taisei is the second of four new manga launching in four consecutive issues of Weekly Shonen Jump.

Kentarō Fukuda previously published the two-volume Devilyman manga in Weekly Shonen Jump in 2015.

Source: ANN

Manga Review: Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two collects the fourth, fifth, and sixth volumes of the manga that chronicle the story of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the franchise.

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two
Written by: Akira Toriyama
Publisher: Shueisha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: August 19, 2008

This volume continues where the first volume left off, which was during the battle between Goku and Vegeta. In fact, the entirety of the fourth volume of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the story is focused on this battle, which makes up 177 pages of this release. We then see what happens in the aftermath of this battle, and the decision to go to Planet Namek to acquire the Namekian Dragon Balls.

The story then shifts to Bulma, Kuririn, and Gohan going to Planet Namek. Unfortunately, getting the Namekian Dragon Balls isn’t easy, because both Vegeta and new villain Freeza both want the Dragon Balls for themselves so they can wish for immortality. But Freeza isn’t alone… he has powerful henchmen by his side. Goku also decides to set out for Planet Namek after he recovers and using his time in the spaceship to train so he can become even stronger.

For readers who have watched the anime, they already know how long of an arc there is going into the Planet Namek portion of the story. Yes, the anime did add in some filler, but the portion of this arc that appears in this volume isn’t bogged down by filler in the anime. When an anime viewer reaches the end of this volume and realize how much there still is to go for this portion of the story, they know it’s going to have to cover at least one more of the VIZBig omnibus volumes.

Obviously, the Vegeta and Goku fight at the beginning of this volume is one of the highlights. Near the end of the volume, a battle between Vegeta and Zarbon (one of Freeza’s henchmen) gets underway but doesn’t quite finish. Outside of these two big battles, there are some action sequences, but they’re nowhere near as intense as the two battles that bookend the volume. Probably the closest to these two would be the attack that Freeza and his henchmen launch on a Namekian village in order to obtain its Dragon Ball.

I would recommend the manga to readers who are only familiar with the story from the Dragon Ball Z anime, because it allows them to see just how much the anime was stretched out by “filler” and slowing the pacing down. While watching Dragon Ball Z Kai can also help with this, I think it’s better to go to the original source material and see how the author intended the story to be told.

Square Enix to Launch an English Manga Imprint in Fall 2019

Penguin Random House Publisher Services has announced that it has reached a multi-year sales and distribution agreement with Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd.’s American subsidiary Square Enix, Inc. to launch a line of English-language manga, novels, and art books. The line is slated to launch worldwide in Fall 2019.

Square Enix previously licensed manga such as Fullmetal Alchemist, Soul Eater, and Black Butler to United States publishers. However, the new agreement marks the first time that Square Enix will directly publish books in English under its own name.

The imprint will debut with the FINAL FANTASY XV: The Dawn of the Future novel, which shipped in Japan on April 25, 2019. Other launch titles for the imprint will include the Hi Score Girl, A Man and His Cat (Oji-sama to Neko), and Soul Eater manga.

Source: ANN

Manga Review: Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume One

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume One collects the first three volumes of the manga that chronicle the story of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the franchise.

Dragon Ball Z VIZBIG Volume One
Written by: Akira Toriyama
Publisher: Shueisha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: June 3, 2008

This volume begins with the arrival of an alien named Raditz, and he’s looking for his brother, Kakarrot. He tracks down his brother, who turns out to be Goku, at Roshi’s place. Also introduced early on in this volume is Gohan, Goku’s young son. Yes, it turns out Goku had a tail in the first series because he wasn’t an Earthling… he’s from a race known as the Saiyans. When Goku refuses to go with Raditz, his older brother defeats him and kidnaps Gohan.

For those who are familiar with the Dragon Ball Z franchise know that this is the beginning of this portion of this franchise. The story continues in this volume with the death of Goku, Gohan displaying that he has latent powers that he’s unaware of, and Piccolo training Gohan. Goku may be dead, but he’s training in the afterworld with Kaio-sama. Goku, Gohan, and the other Z-Fighters are preparing for the arrival of two other Saiyans who will come in one year.

This three-in-one also gets to the arrival of Vegeta and Nappa, the two Saiyans, and the various fights they have with the Z-Fighters. We even see Goku return from the afterworld to start battling the Saiyans. This omnibus volume ends in the middle of Goku’s battle with Vegeta.

Since I saw the anime well before I ever began reading the manga, I was pleasantly surprised by how much quicker the story progresses in this omnibus edition. It really made it clear just how much filler was included, as well as how much some of the scenes were stretched out, in the anime adaptation of this first arc of Dragon Ball Z. As I recall from seeing the early episodes of Dragon Ball Z Kai, the remake anime follows the manga much more closely, so has a similar pacing to what you see when you read these first three volumes of the series.

The manga telling of this story, especially when you look at this omnibus volume, has a good mixture of character building, dialogue, and action that keeps the reader wanting to read more in order to find out what happens next. Even though I was already familiar with the story from watching the anime, I still found myself engrossed while reading this first omnibus edition of Dragon Ball Z. And the deaths of certain characters hit me just as hard as they did when I first saw this story when watching the anime for the first time a little over a decade ago. Oh, and I can’t neglect to mention just how cute and little Gohan was in this early arc of the series.

This omnibus release is worth it for fans of Dragon Ball Z that want to own the manga but don’t want to spend the time or money to chase down the original individual volumes of the series.