Is DMP on the verge of folding? That’s the question on Krystallina’s mind as she looks at the publisher’s less-than-stellar track record of fulfilling its promises to customers who supported Kickstarter campaigns for series such as Kimagure Orange Road, Kodomo no Jikan, and Wonder 3. Her most damning observation is that the company’s crowdfunding efforts were poorly handled, focusing too much on cool swag and not enough on the main attraction: the manga. “Make the base goal digital, stretch goal unlocked physical, and then upgrades on covers, paper quality, color inserts, etc.,” she notes, rather than asking supporters to pony up $140 or $170 for a series that might not be published in full. She also points to distribution issues, a sentiment echoed by ANN’s Mike Toole:
it is _insane_ to me that Alabaster, arguably the last of Tezuka's solid, relatively short works for adults to see an English release, was never really available to bookstores, comic stores, or the library. HOW
— Mike Toole (@MichaelToole) March 1, 2018
DMP has made some Tezuka titles available through ComiXology — among them Barbara, Crime and Punishment, and Swallowing the Earth — though you’ll have to search for them by Tezuka’s name; they aren’t listed with the rest of DMP’s offerings.
So what do the tea leaves suggest? That’s harder to say; DMP’s heavy dependence on crowdsourcing doesn’t bode well, nor does the company’s poor communication with customers about project delays and missing merchandise. Stay tuned for further developments.
MANGA NEWS AND COMMENTARY
Seven Seas just announced two new manga acquisitions: Now Loading…!, a rom-com about game designers, and Oops! I Messed Up and Made the Wrong Person Into a Magical Girl!, a “hilarious parody about a foul-mouthed delinquent getting magical powers—and the world paying the price!” [Go Manga]
MyAnimeList has teamed up with VIZ Media and Kodansha Comics on a new project: digital manga stores. The first debuted on March 8th in Canada, and more are in the works for the United States, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. [@TheOASG]
Deb Aoki, Zandra, and the Manga Maven joined the Black Manga Critic for a round table discussion on the state of the publishing industry. [The Black Manga Critic]
Speaking of round table discussions, the AiPT! gang list the manga they’d like to see translated into English, from Billy Bat to Hajime no Ippo. [Adventures in Poor Taste]
Translator Jocelyn Allen takes a gander at Hikaru Cho’s Strange, Funny Love, a “new and fresh and weird” anthology featuring characters with tattoos. [Brain vs. Book]
Yayoi Kawatoko sits down with author Shin Kibayashi to discuss his contributions to Kindachi Case Files and The Drops of God. [The Japan News]
Feeling hungry? Marianna Ruiz offers her two cents on Oishinbo and The Solitary Gourmet. [Geek Dad]
This profile of the Virginia State University Anime and Manga Club feels like something out of time machine; I swear my campus newspaper probably ran an article like this in 1990 or 1991, when anime fandom was a less visible part of college life. [The Spectator]