On March 31st, Townsend Media placed Comics Alliance on indefinite hiatus. From a manga lover’s perspective, this news was neither sad nor welcome; in its most recent incarnation, Comics Alliance focused primarily on mainstream comics — think DC, Marvel, and BOOM! Studios — collectibles, gaming, and blockbuster movies. There were still occasional manga reviews and cosplay photo essays, but little regular coverage of the manga industry aside from licensing announcements.
Before Townsend takes down the site archives, however, I encourage you to to check out one of the best writers to ply his trade at Comics Alliance: David Brothers. Brothers could find an interesting angle for any book he reviewed, from Blood Lad and Slam Dunk to Heart of Thomas. If I had to name my favorite Brothers essay, I’d nominate his article on Stan Sakai’s lettering, both for the casual elegance of Brothers’ writing and the depth of his insights.
In other news…
Did the whitewashing controversy tank the box office for Ghost in the Shell? Gregg Kilday investigates. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Seven Seas announced plans to publish Anti-Magic Academy: 35th Test Platoon in a single omnibus edition this November. [Crunchyroll]
File this under Reviews I Wish I’d Written: J. Caleb Mozzocco explains why Nagabe’s The Girl from the Other Side is such a compelling read, whether you’re twelve or twenty-seven. [Good Comics for Kids]
Also worth a look: Jocilyn Wagner’s heartfelt review of Canno’s Kiss & White Lily for My Dearest Girl. [Experiments in Manga]
Film critic Ella Taylor declares that Your Name “shimmers with the magic of a fairy tale, yet also has its feet firmly planted on the ground of Japan’s past and present.” [NPR]
Ginnis Tonik explains how Yuri!!! On Ice helped rekindle American fans’ interest in figure skating. [Women Write About Comics]
And speaking of everyone’s favorite skating series, L.M. Zoller posts an intriguing essay about “overcoming homonormativity” in Yuri!!! On Ice. [The Lobster Dance]
On April 24th, MIT will screen Momotaro, Sacred Sailors, a 1944 propaganda film that’s widely considered the first feature-length anime. The event is free and open to the public, and will be followed by a Q&A session with scholar Ian Condry and FUNimation Brand Manager Jennifer Fu. [Anime News Network]
I would wear the hell out of this Wonder Woman jacket. [The Nerds of Color]
Ten years after DC Comics’ failed Minx comics line, Papercutz has announced that it will be producing its own line of graphic novels for tween girls. The Charmz line will be helmed by Mariah Huehner, and will focus on such perennial themes as crushes and cliques. [The Beat]