Sunday, January 29, 2012

Commentary: Jump Next!

(All rights belong to their owners. Images used here for review purposes only.)

I'd mentioned a few weeks ago that it's hard to document all of the manga magazines. First, because they come and go so much. Ones with declining readership get discontinued and new titles start up every so often to target new readerships or feature new artists or stories. Second, simply because they are so many of them. There's a good 60 magazines just for women, maybe another 60 for kids, etc. Third, because there are those pesky special issue releases.

Right around New Years, I was at 7-11, and I noticed several "Jump" titles that I wasn't familiar with, including Grand Jump, and the following Jump Next. Rather than buy any of them outright, I went home and did a web search, where I found out that Jump Next, at least, is a seasonal title that comes out on national holidays. It's used as a vehicle for giving amateur and budding artists an option for exposure to an audience. So, I went back, and even after several weeks there's still lots of copies at both conbini and regular bookstores. I figure that this is as good a time as any to take a look at it.

Jump Next!. It's kind of difficult making comments on specific artists or stories because I don't know any of these names, and most of the stories are one-shots. There is a definite "amateur feel" to the entire magazine. Very little of the artwork is polished, and a lot of it isn't very good. The stories are marginal at best, with a few being about sports, the rest covering school life or fantasy adventures. The cover story makes almost no sense, being a battle between a new student and the class rep (I guess, I didn't bother reading it all that closely), with both sides using magical attacks. The "hero" shoots out screws and bolts, making for some very easy "cheap shots" about people getting screwed. The art varies between "not bad" and "not that good".

The one story that I did find amusing featured a loser who accidentally summons the demon "Cupid God of Love", and then has to deal with Demon Cupid moving into his house and accompanying him to school. As a gag story it could work in Weekly Shonen Jump pretty well.

Otherwise, there's nothing in this issue that I much care for. It was worth buying Jump Next! to get a feel for it, but I probably won't do it again. There's just too many other magazines on the market to wade through first.


Dates for 1/30 to 2/5:

Birthdays (15):
Dick (Rowan and Martin) Martin, 1/30/1922
James Franciscus, 1/31/1934
Franz Schubert, 1/31/1797
Terry Jones, 2/1/1942
Thomas M. Disch, 2/2/1940
Ayn Rand, 2/2/1905
Tom Smothers, 2/2/1937
Shelly Berman, 2/3/1925
Victor Bouno, 2/3/1938
Alice Cooper, 2/4/1948
Red Buttons, 2/5/1919
John Carradine, 2/5/1906
H. R. Giger, 2/5/1940
Christopher Guest, 2/5/1948
Alex Harvey, 2/5/1935

Died (8):
Gordon Dickson, 1/31/2001
Edmond (writer on Superman comic) Hamilton, 2/1/1977
Werner Heisenberg, 2/1/1976
Buster Keaton, 2/1/1966
Edgar ("West of the Sun") Pangorn, 2/1/1976
Mary ("Modern Prometheus") Shelly, 2/1/1851
Boris Karloff, 2/2/1969
Alex Harvey, 2/4/1982


Michael Martin said...

I dunno how people can tell the different incarnations of Jump apart, considering that the logos are usually two-thirds covered up!

TSOTE said...

Yeah, you either have to look at the spine, or the inside table of contents. The only other distinguishing factor is the stories in each issue, assuming that you know what each story title is.