Thursday, January 04, 2007

Best Comics of 2006, part three

Oy. Remind me why I decided to do this again?

Anyway, here's

This particular list, has a lot of horror titles on it. That because that's mainly the type of manga I read this year. So my apologies to all the shonen and shojo and yaoi fans out there.

OK, on with the list:

1. “Ode to Kirihito” by Osamu Tezuka.
Well duh. How can you not put an expansive epic like this in the number one spot? Especially when it's by Tezuka and contains some of the best panel sequences you've ever laid eyes on? I mean, like, really.

2. “Abandon the Old in Tokyo” by Yoshihiro Tatsumi.
These handsomely designed books are a forceful reminder of the diversity that exists in manga. I know D&Q only plans on publishing a few more volumes of these, but I do hope that more Tatsumi is planned somewhere down the line.

3. “The Drifting Classroom” by Kazuo Umezu.
OK, now I get why Umezu is such a big deal in Japan. Over the top in all the right ways, utterly fearless and designed to make you feel as uneasy as possible, "Classroom" is unlike any manga I've ever read.

4. “Monster” by Naoki Urasawa.
Yes, Urasawa's "Fugitive"-style thriller is given to melodrama and sentimentality at times. But it's also a compelling page turner that is chock full of memorable characters and some great cartooning.

5. “Dragon Head” Minetaro Mochizuki.
Almost lost this one when Tokyopop declared it an online exlusive. Thankfully, the rethought the matter and now we can all enjoy the apocolypse from the comfort of our local comic shop.

6. “Museum of Terror” by Junji Ito.
Ito's work is scary, no doubt. But it's also suffused with a real absurdity; a black sense of humor which captivates me and puts this series up on the list.

7. “Golgo 13” by Takao Saito.
Ideally I'd like oto see more of the ridiculous Gogol stories and less of the "Gogol interacts with major historical events," but I'll take what superassassin sleuthing stories I can get.

8. “Life” by Suenobu Keiko.
Self-mutilation, teen-age suicide and general angst are the subjects of Keiko's shojo series, but it never comes off as maudlin or weepy, mainly due to her excellent use of visual metaphor.

9. “Dokebi Bride” by Marley.
This series really went under the radar for a lot of people and that's a shame. This touching tale of a young woman who must follow in her grandmother's footsteps and learn to be a shaman was one of the more thoughtful, smarter comics I read this year.

10. “Crying Freeman” by Kazuo Koike and Ryoichi Ikegami.
I think Jog said something along the lines of this being the "best book about naked people knifing each other." That about sums it up for me.

Tomorrow: The End.



At 3:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This really has no relevancy to the post at hand (although I am currently branching out into manga and I've noted some of the items on your list to explore), but I'd just like to say that I stop in from time to time from your blog and enjoying perusing your comic reviews. So do keep it up - there is an appreciative - albiet it silent - audience out there.

At 8:00 PM, Blogger Chris said...

Well thanks anonymous. That's always nice to hear.

At 8:17 PM, Anonymous Sirena-Lune said...

I'm glad to see LIFE on your rec list! XDD

It's deliciously dark!


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