So I was happy to get an Ultraman Manga figure for Christmas. As a companion piece to my review of the trade, I wrote a guest-review of the figure on my son’s action figure blog, The Figure in Question.
I don’t read a lot of Manga. I’ve read a half-dozen of them in my life. I have nothing against the genre, it just doesn’t often grab me. Even when a sort of hybrid Manga is produced, which stars characters I know from other media, the product usually doesn’t reach out and grab me.
According to Wikipedia, by the way, “Manga” simply refers to comics created in Japan; so the word “Manga” then wouldn’t necessarily refer to a body of work whose members all share the same characteristics, any more than American comic books all share the same characteristics. It would seem a bit silly to say that Neil Gaiman’s Sandman and My Little Pony are the same genre. But the Wikipedia article does specify that Manga works do conform to a particular style developed in late 19-th Century Japan, so I guess I’m not insane for thinking of them as a distinct genre.
This is a short entry. Today is my birthday (my 50th) and I’m spending it all with my family and dear friends.
A while back, I reviewed Ultraman Mebius, a series from 2007 which continued the very successful Ultraman franchise. I believe I explained then that Ultraman was a character created by Eiji Tsuburaya, also the creator of Godzilla, in 1967. The show had been imported to the US shortly thereafter, and was a big hit with kids my age in the early 70s. Mebius was the 40th anniversary tribute series, and I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it.
Since then, Tsuburaya Productions has released a couple of other series, including Ultraman Ginga. I didn’t watch it, and I got the impression it largely existed to market toys. Apparently, its premise was that all the Ultramen and all their monster foes had been turned into vinyl miniatures call Spark Dolls. None of the subsequent series seemed to hold the same interest for me that Mebius did.
So Balticon happened. I’m not really going to do a full rundown of it here. Not that it was bad. It was a very full, very successful weekend. But I’ve tweeted all the good stuff, and I prefer to keep the stuff which set my teeth on edge between, well, me and the people who set my teeth on edge. And there were only really two of them, and I don’t think they can be trained to not set my teeth on edge, so…