Could Comic Vine Use a Staff Manga Reviewer?

Could Comic Vine Use a Staff Manga Reviewer?

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Manga are never really ever covered or reviewed on Comic Vine, but I've been sort of pleasantly surprised by how often the topic has been brought up in questions to the weekly podcast. During the Big Live Show, I was in the Comic Vine chat, and I enjoyed talking with the users about manga. It certainly means people are curious. I don't mean to make this sound as if I'm registering any sort of complaint that these series aren't being covered at all. I adore the work done by the Comic Vine staff. It would be unreasonable to think they have the time to jump into the deep end of these series, along with all their regular review work. I just wish to pose the question to the community or any staff that may read this. Could Comic Vine Use a Staff Manga Reviewer?

In Japan, this volume sold 2 Million in three days
In Japan, this volume sold 2 Million in three days

I originally never thought much about the idea of someone on the Comic Vine staff reviewing manga series, given they had Anime Vice for that. But now the sites are no longer associated -- in the business sense. Though, even when Anime Vice was a member of the Whiskey Media family and had in house staff. These staff writers hardly ever reviewed many manga. In fact, it wasn't until shortly before they left that they had mentioned in podcasts that they were just beginning to read series such as NARUTO and ONE PIECE. That was kind of a big shock to me. These are two of the biggest manga series running, and they admittedly never read them or reported on them. Could you image if Comic Vine had been run by staff who had never read BATMAN, X-MEN, or SPIDER-MAN before joining? When the former AV staff did review a manga, they'd cover the first volume then never return to the series. When Tom Pinchuk covered the AKIRA manga over on AV a few months back. He covered the entire series for review. I thought that was a great way to do it.

Don't underestimate the growth of manga reading in America or the rest of the world. Are there comics from different nations that have as large a footing in America? When I was younger, I would often see comics in the news stands of the supermarkets -- though they were often weeks out of date. Now, I go to the store and see no comics, but I often see the US edition of SHONEN JUMP or the latest volumes of NARUTO. My local book store has several bookcases filled with various manga, and it seems to grow with the passing months. The American publisher VIZ made a concerted effort to increase several of their publications to be mere months behind the Japanese releases.

How could you look at this cover and not be curious?
How could you look at this cover and not be curious?

People in the Western world often draw a line between manga and comics, but manga are just comics from Japan. The only real difference is the language they're originally written in. If you look on the Japanese Amazon website, all manga are categorized as コミック (Komikku). So, why do we separate the two here? Would we classify comics from France or Mexico as something so different? Isn't BATMAN still a comic when it's translated and published in Japanese? Manga and comics share a similar history in their entomology. I remember my grandmother seeing me reading comics as a kid and being confused as she'd call them "funny books". Things weren't very funny in X-MEN, at the time. That's becasue some of the earliest comics were intended for printing humorous comic strips. Manga are as old in Japan as the 18th century, and the literal translation of the kanji that make up the word means "whimsical drawings". I never subscribed to the sense of tribalism that I'd see. That if you were into comics you couldn't be into manga. I'm well into both and proud of that.

ONE PIECE: Nami, post time skip
ONE PIECE: Nami, post time skip

Even on the chance that this could actually ever happen, this reviewer should have some history in the series they'd be covering. The way Comic Vine has always hired comic lovers to review them. It would also be to cover some of the largest series, and be reviews of the official U.S. releases. Remember that Comic Vine doesn't cover every comic that comes out in the week. They focus on the biggest titles and the odd rarity. Which I think is a perfect balance. Manga volumes, as they're published in the US are often done months apart. Easily, the biggest series in the US right now are NARUTO, BLEACH, and ONE PIECE. Being familiar with all these series histories is no easy task. They're all rather large. Even over on Anime Vice, I think I'm one of the only real active users that has read up to date on all three.

I've written several manga reviews on AV, but I've been considering bringing those to CV. I've already added two of my more recent reviews, and I plan to add more when I have a bit more time.

So, let me pose the question to you all. Would you like to see some official staff reviews of a few manga series every few months on Comic Vine? Are there any series that you'd like to learn about?

-Kristoffer Remmell (FoxxFireArt) is a freelance graphic artist, writer, and over all mystery geek.- Follow for news updates: @ FoxxFireArt

47 Comments

47 Comments

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PikminMania

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Edited By PikminMania

No. That's what Animevice is for. Plain and simple.

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Mercy_

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Edited By Mercy_

I have no interest in it at all.

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YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

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No. That doesn't fit in Comic Vine.

^ That's where it belongs.

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FoxxFireArt

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Edited By FoxxFireArt
@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.
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NlGHTCRAWLER

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Edited By NlGHTCRAWLER

@FoxxFireArt: Even though they aren't associated, it's still there.

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Haaydrian

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Edited By Haaydrian

@FoxxFireArt: How would the person in question go about doing this? I've only gone to AV a couple of times. I know that they review weeklies, but do they do more than that?

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YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

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@FoxxFireArt said:

@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.

Oh I read it all right.

I'm just staying. There isn't a purpose for it if there is Anime Vice.

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Blood1991

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Edited By Blood1991

We would be stealing Animevice's thunder "Our guys would totally out review them". This would be more up to the staff here if they wanted to also cover manga. I wouldn't be opposed I like manga, but they don't review every comics series out right now and many users are strictly western comics. You could always group together some users who would like to and start a monthly Manga review or something on those lines I'd like to hear about some series. Also I like your initiative.

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pikahyper

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Edited By pikahyper  Moderator  Online

a staff reviewer doubtful, something else though maybe, I've got ideas.

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CrimsonAvenger

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Edited By CrimsonAvenger

Since the Whiskey Media family of sites is no more then I say yes I would like to see one. I've always felt ComicVine could use more staff (especially in comparison to Giant Bomb) and I don't think having someone to review Manga would be a bad idea.

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RedheadedAtrocitus

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I think the thought is a nice one even if I've never been much for manga myself. I think you should be applauded for your appeal though. Thumbs up!

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Twentyfive

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Edited By Twentyfive

Yikes. I'm no big fan of manga, but I'm not narrow-minded. The reception from an honest, well intended post is just sad to me. There are lots of things people on this site don't like, but that shouldn't stop the users from writing reviews in their blog sections.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek: that's like saying there isn't a need for Comic Vine because there is CBR or IGN
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YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

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@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek: that's like saying there isn't a need for Comic Vine because there is CBR or IGN

That's different. Those are completely different websites. Anime Vice used to be a part of Whiskey Media, but it still has the exact same interface, and has some of the Comic Vine users on it as well.

I see no reason for them to use extra time and resources to make an Anime Section in the website if there is already a huge independent website dedicated to it.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous
@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek: that's like saying there isn't a need for Comic Vine because there is CBR or IGN

That's different. Those are completely different websites. Anime Vice used to be a part of Whiskey Media, but it still has the exact same interface, and has some of the Comic Vine users on it as well.

I see no reason for them to use extra time and resources to make an Anime Section in the website if there is already a huge independent website dedicated to it.

and Anime Vice and Comic Vine are totally independent. The CV's interface is getting remodelled in the next few weeks also. There wouldn't be an "anime section" (largely because anime are cartoons) nor a manga section, they just wouldn't draw a line between manga and comics as there one and the same. Having more coverage on manga would bring more users and encourage some current users to be more active.
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pikahyper

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Edited By pikahyper  Moderator  Online

@Jonny_Anonymous: by the time I'm done CV will have way more manga then AV, we might already with as much as I've been adding, I see no reason not to use the Whiskey split as an opportunity to improve CV and one of the ways I've been doing that is adding manga and foreign comics in the thousands. Eventually I'll be recruiting writers to improve on the manga character/creator pages and hopefully story arcs.

Also having it here does encourage users, when I started adding foreign comics long time foreign users started coming out of their shells and adding their local comics cause they didn't know they were allowed to, I've started seeing it with manga too and it is awesome.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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@pikahyper said:

@Jonny_Anonymous: by the time I'm done CV will have way more manga then AV, we might already with as much as I've been adding, I see no reason not to use the Whiskey split as an opportunity to improve CV and one of the ways I've been doing that is adding manga and foreign comics in the thousands. Eventually I'll be recruiting writers to improve on the manga character/creator pages and hopefully story arcs.

Also having it here does encourage users, when I started adding foreign comics long time foreign users started coming out of their shells and adding their local comics cause they didn't know they were allowed to, I've started seeing it with manga too and it is awesome.

that sounds awesome to me 
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pikahyper

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Edited By pikahyper  Moderator  Online

@Jonny_Anonymous: people tend to forget AV is the competition now :P and now that Screened and AV are gone I really wish CV would embrace more media and make this a super site and expand the wiki and add new types for movies, tv shows, cartoons, anime, books. Cover more stuff bring in more money get more staff and just keep growing.

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YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

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@pikahyper: @Jonny_Anonymous: Hmm.. I guess so. I didn't know Anime Vice was actually competition now. In that case that would be a good thing to have an Anime/Manga section. However, I don't know how so many Whiskey Media websites were lost.

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pikahyper

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Edited By pikahyper  Moderator  Online

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek: not really lost, three got bought by one company and two by another, I dunno the politics of how the sites were chosen though, I think GB was headhunted first and that was all they wanted, Braum wanted the platform and Tested and Screened to bring in to their media family and CV and AV were just left floating and unwanted so Braum picked up AV (I think cause they had more staff crossover) and CBSi picked up CV (probably cause Dave of GB and G-Man built CV together). I think CV could have survived independently, wouldn't have been easy though.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous

I'd like more manga

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MajinBlackheart

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Edited By MajinBlackheart  Moderator

I always thought we should focus on manga as well. I always added and spotlighted them in the new releases. Now with AV not associated with us, I think it would be a good idea. There's no reason to think of manga and comics as separate.

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Cavemold

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Edited By Cavemold

Meh , they barley have time to cover most dc/marvel/etc books. So get in line Basically. They need add more staff or pick few people to headline reviews , and news. They miss a lot of comic news.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous
@jloneblackheart said:

I always thought we should focus on manga as well. I always added and spotlighted them in the new releases. Now with AV not associated with us, I think it would be a good idea. There's no reason to think of manga and comics as separate.

Exactly and there doesn't have to be a "manga section" or anything, they just need to be spotlighted a bit more with reviews and 3min experts and the like.
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PikminMania

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@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek said:

@FoxxFireArt said:

@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.

Oh I read it all right.

I'm just staying. There isn't a purpose for it if there is Anime Vice.

This

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SmoothJammin

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Yea. Do it.

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FoxxFireArt

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Edited By FoxxFireArt

From reading some of the comments. It's very obvious who were the people who didn't even read the article before commenting. They probably just read the title, commented, then left.

@Haaydrian said:

@FoxxFireArt: How would the person in question go about doing this? I've only gone to AV a couple of times. I know that they review weeklies, but do they do more than that?

Well, I hadn't thought too deeply into the details since I don't work for the site. I was just thinking up a concept and raising the question. I was mainly thinking about having a more freelance writer, in the image of Mat (Inferiorego), posting a review ever month or for some of the bigger series and some reviews of others. Only really focused on the official US releases. Though, I feel it needs to be someone who's already familiar with these series.

@pikahyper:

I don't see why having a freelance staff writer posting reviews for manga wouldn't work? I'm not talking about the current staff trying to take that on along with their other duties.

You want to grow the manga database here, and you didn't even talk to me? Dude, I have 918,000 points on AV. Ethan (RedLamp) also had me create the wiki style guide of Anime Vice.

@RedheadedAtrocitus:

Thanks for being open to the idea.

@Twentyfive:

That's the very sense of tribalism I was speaking to in my article. It doesn't make any sense to segregate manga from comics. I read and enjoy both.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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@PikminMania

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek said:

@FoxxFireArt said:

@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.

Oh I read it all right.

I'm just staying. There isn't a purpose for it if there is Anime Vice.

This

So there is no need for Comic Vine because of CBR and IGN right?
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InnerVenom123

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Edited By InnerVenom123

@PikminMania said:

No. That's what Animevice is for. Plain and simple.

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Rumble Man

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Edited By Rumble Man

The other site died when Gia Manry and John Martone are laid off

so have a go

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Haaydrian

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@FoxxFireArt said:

@Haaydrian said:

@FoxxFireArt: How would the person in question go about doing this? I've only gone to AV a couple of times. I know that they review weeklies, but do they do more than that?

Well, I hadn't thought too deeply into the details since I don't work for the site. I was just thinking up a concept and raising the question. I was mainly thinking about having a more freelance writer, in the image of Mat (Inferiorego), posting a review ever month or for some of the bigger series and some reviews of others. Only really focused on the official US releases. Though, I feel it needs to be someone who's already familiar with these series.

I think that CV either should expand fully into the market, or not.

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Cavemold

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Edited By Cavemold

Bleeding cool , newsrama do the best job at covering comic news. Cbr has it forums that's about it . Comicvine has it's podcast and videos.

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PikminMania

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Edited By PikminMania

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@PikminMania

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek said:

@FoxxFireArt said:

@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.

Oh I read it all right.

I'm just staying. There isn't a purpose for it if there is Anime Vice.

This

So there is no need for Comic Vine because of CBR and IGN right?

The difference is that CBR and IGN are from different companies. It would be like if the DS (Comic Vine) started competing with the Wii (Animevice) for most wii games. It makes no sense, since the Wii was solely made to make wii games and the DS was made to make DS games.

Why would the same business try to outdo each other.

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Jonny_Anonymous

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Edited By Jonny_Anonymous
@PikminMania said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@PikminMania

@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek said:

@FoxxFireArt said:

@PikminMania@YourNeighborhoodComicGeek Well now, I can see at least two people didn't make it past the first paragrapgh before commenting.

Oh I read it all right.

I'm just staying. There isn't a purpose for it if there is Anime Vice.

This

So there is no need for Comic Vine because of CBR and IGN right?

The difference is that CBR and IGN are from different companies. It would be like if the DS (Comic Vine) started competing with the Wii (Animevice) for most wii games. It makes no sense, since the Wii was solely made to make wii games and the DS was made to make DS games.

Why would the same business try to outdo each other.

Um Comic Vine and Anime Vice are owned by two completely different company's, there not even slightly connected 
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Strider1992

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Edited By Strider1992

@PikminMania said:

No. That's what Animevice is for. Plain and simple.

This

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Deranged Midget

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Edited By Deranged Midget

Depends on the demand of Manga.

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FoxxFireArt

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@Deranged Midget:

A good test of that is to go into your local bookstore and see what has a larger section, manga or comic trade paperbacks. All the bookstores in my area of Northern Kentucky have several 6 ft. tall cases filled with manga, but maybe two cases for comic trades. Often those trades aren't even up to date. The only up to date SPIDER-MAN trade I saw last time was OMD. Though, I guess that could also just mean no one wants to buy that one. You can also find manga in public libraries.

@Haaydrian:

I don't see why they wouldn't want to expand. It only seems like a positive to grow your community by expanding it. There is a manga audience in the US that they aren't even scratching. You don't grow your community by holding up in your own clique and only including people who look, think, and act like yourself.

It would be like Giant Bomb saying they aren't going to cover Wii games. Sure, they aren't as hard core as the XBox 360 or PS3 titles, but they're still games.

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Deranged Midget

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Edited By Deranged Midget

@FoxxFireArt: That's notable, the Indigo in my area has quite the section of Manga, although I know very little so I don't know how updated it is. Both Indigo and my LCS are updated regularly with trades and obviously issues(comics).

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Hazlenaut

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Edited By Hazlenaut

Anime vice does all the Japanese animation including the porn, which is allot, so they have allot on their plate. The second is that anime can be very different from the original source remember Full Metal Alchemist. Third is that there are manga that have never received an animated series. Therefore it is our part to take care of. Manga is just Japanese for comics and there is a lot that needs to be filled. Sorry that I have messed up your comfort zones but there is a lot that needs to be filled.

I there are obscure ones which I felt need more praise or at least well establish information. I reviewed Anaboshi manga which said to be a split universe of the anime series and I got psst because they said that showing allot boobs is what the manga readers want. This was deep series when it was animated and very funny too but the manga… It seems that I have to fill out the information I am going to hate myself for doing it but it has to be done. Don’t worry I will keep it clean.

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FoxxFireArt

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@Hazlenaut said:

I reviewed Anaboshi manga which said to be a split universe of the anime series and I got psst because they said that showing allot boobs is what the manga readers want.

Yeah, becasue comic books are so restrained when it comes to breasts. =D

Anime Vice covers series from the Japanese aspect. Comic Vine I feel could concentrate more on the American publications. Something that English speaking readers could have easy access to reading. Cover some of the larger series and a few of the lesser known. The way the Comic Vine staff cover all the comics that are released in a single week.

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Hazlenaut

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Edited By Hazlenaut

I feel that it is a terrible idea to narrow down that way. It is important to show all forms of comics. I think there is something that manga creators need to do to make single issues sell better and that is to make better covers. I am trying to break that wall but there is something holding it back. I or someone else should address sooner of all the obstacles that are causing the problem. I have taken care of the ones that whine of westernizing their work and proved them wrong but as I said before there is still more to do. It seems my time is short. There is allot that needs to be filled and with constant new comics it is not easy. I understand I try to fill in even though my grammar is a lot to be desired.

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takashichea

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Edited By takashichea

I'm all for equality, and the next steps is to ignite passion in Japanese comics and other foreign comics in the forums by having discussions on it. Two or more Comic Vine members writing about their favorite manga might start up ripples, a manga revolution. Maybe in the near future, we'll have a staff member writing about manga since we have manga in the wiki database.

If people don't want read it, it's fine. Just don't make hateful comments against the fans who enjoy them. Comic Vine should cater to all people regardless of where the comic book is created.

A year ago, I didn't know Comic Vine had a strong manga database until I was hunting for Shaman King and Zetsubou Sensei manga covers on Google. I saw covers from Comic Vine. Comic Vine is pretty more flexible than Anime Vice since Anime Vice's scope is more restricted towards media from Japan and Korea due to the Manhwa books.

I don't hate Comic Vine or Anime Vice. In the end, I love both comics and manga. It wouldn't hurt to cover manga.

On an off tangent note, I wonder who plagiarized Shaman King's volume 2 page.

Or Kas and GL Bertron are the same person. I haven't contacted anyone here about that incident.

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Strafe Prower

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Edited By Strafe Prower

I think it's a good idea. Manga is still comics and it's just as big here as regular comics are. Anime Vice is no longer associated with CV, so there is no reason to direct people there IMO.

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FoxxFireArt

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Edited By FoxxFireArt

@jloneblackheart said:

I always thought we should focus on manga as well. I always added and spotlighted them in the new releases. Now with AV not associated with us, I think it would be a good idea. There's no reason to think of manga and comics as separate.

Perhaps I should take the step of raising this question with the staff in either a PM or a question for the podcast? I'm not sure if any of them have seen this posting.

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Zdaybreak

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Edited By Zdaybreak

Adding manga entries into ComicVine sounds like a great idea to me.

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FoxxFireArt

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@Shotgun:

Manga are already in the database. I'm just suggesting an official staff reviewer.

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Edited By MajinBlackheart  Moderator
@FoxxFireArt The worst they can say is they aren't interested at this time.