Saturday, March 5, 2016

Brutus 02/15 issue comments

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

Brutus is a men's magazine along similar lines with GQ, with lots of fashion ads, and then one or two big feature articles. Very occasionally they'll design an issue around a major anime movie release, or do a manga tie in. For the Feb. 15 issue, the editors decided to create a "state of the art" section on the last 20-30 years of manga titles. The feature starts with an interview between Naoki Urasawa (Yawara, Pluto, 20th Century Boys, Billy Bat) and Mitsuru Kuramoto.

(Urasawa and Kuramoto interview.)

This is followed by a review of manga history, from Tezuka, Yoshihiro Tsuge and Akatsuka Fujio up through Shigeru Mizuki and Tatsuhiko Yamamoto, to Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira) and Urasawa. There's a two-page spread of modern manga covers, and page markers for those titles sampled in the rest of the section.

(Intro to Tezuka.)

The sampled manga are I Am Hero (kids versus zombies), Blue Giant (musician wannabees try to become professional jazz players), Tonkatsu DJ Agetarou (kid eats pork cutlets and tries to be a mix DJ), Yukibana no Tora (female samurai drama) and the first chapter of Billy Bat.

(Page on Otomo.)

There's a short overview of some other lesser manga titles, and Urasawa and Kuramoto demonstrate their approaches to drawing a couple panels of artwork. The final sample chapter is a high school boys drama called Machida-kun no Sekai.

(2-page spread of manga covers.)

Nothing really earth-shattering, but it is nice having some of the sample works to look at. I'm not going to change my reading habits because of any of the samples, but I might try reading the Urasawa interview to see what he talks about. Brutus. 680 yen, 256 pages.

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