4.15.2011

Looting A Dead Corpse: 02

Yesterday, it was back to Borders for me since they ratcheted up their deep discount sale even further to 40% off most items, and even 50% on some things, like graphic novels. As I dug through the fairly picked over graphic novel section, some store workers were discussing consolidating the manga and graphic novel sections, which had been segregated, in anticipation of a busy weekend. They’re probably down to about half of the stock they started with, so if people are as ravenous with 40-50% off as they’ve been with 20-30% off, I don’t expect it to last much longer. Here’s what made it home, along with some of the pricing notes;

20th Century Boys: 01 & 02 (VIZ Media): If there’s one gaping hole in my comic book knowledge base it’s probably manga. I kept up with Hiroaki Samura’s Blade of the Immortal when Dark Horse began putting it out in the those digest sized collections, but the endurance trial this long running series presents sure is a bear. I only got to about volume 15 or so before I gave in and just never went back. I’ve also read everything I can get my hands on from Yoshihiro Tatsumi and feel quite informed about him and his work, but that’s really about it for me and manga. Most of it seemed fairly off-putting for one reason or another, but I’ve always wanted to give it another chance. I continually hear great things about 20th Century Boys, not the least of which is from David Brothers over at 4th Letter. Naoki Urasawa’s epic story about kids trying to save their future has been called the Watchmen of Japanese Comics and has even seen translation to a three part live action film. Since I’m a sucker for slick trade dress and these volumes were regularly priced at $12.99, but were marked down to around $7 with tax, I jumped in. I bought volume 01 and 02, devoured the first one last night, loved it, ordered volumes 03, 04, and 05 this morning with some Amazon credit, and will probably hit Borders again since they had everything up to volume 11. Shoot, I’m even eying the films on Amazon and considering doing a series of reviews on each volume as I read them.

Ikigami: The Ultimate Limit: 03 (VIZ Media): Since I was in the mood for trying new things and giving manga another shot, I examined the racks and found this interesting gem by Motoro Mase about a secret government program managing population control. It looks exciting, has the gravitas I’ll usually warm to, and the premise seemed really unique. I haven’t read it yet, but I’m looking forward to it. This was also regularly priced at $12.99 and only ran me $7, tax included! Borders didn't have volume 01 or 02, but did have a few copies left of volumes 04, 05, and 06 if I want to take advantage.

Hot Gimmick: 01 (VIZ Media): This was the last thing that looked even mildly interesting, because of its frank dialogue about sex and bold premise of social slavery. It was regularly priced at $17.99, but I got it for just under $10 with tax, for a whopping 550+ pages since it’s one of the VIZBIG Editions. Borders had a gap in their run, missing volume 02, but did have multiples remaining of 03, 04, and 05. I skimmed the first 20 or so pages late last night, and I’m not sure if it’s gonna’ work for me. Miki Aihara’s book is definitely in the shojo space, so I’m hardly the right demographic, and is written heavy-handed thematically and illustrated in a fairly simplistic manner, but I’ll give it a go.

Sense & Sensibility HC (Marvel): I’m hardly a Jane Austen fan, but you really can’t go wrong with Sonny Liew’s art. This was regularly priced at $19.99, and I picked it up for around $11 total. If nothing else, maybe I’ll save it for my daughter.

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