A Guide To Dark Horse Manga

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a guide to dark horse manga

Table of ContentsAppleseed & the Works of Shirow Masamune . . . 5Astro BoY . . . 7Berserk . . . 8Blade of the Immortal . . . 9Blood . . . 10The Works of CLAMP . . . 11Eden . . . 13Gantz . . . 14Gunsmith CatS . . . 15Hellsing & the Works of Kohta Hirano . . . 16The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service . . . 18Lone Wolf and Cub & the Works of Kazuo Koike . . . 19MPD-Psycho . . . 22Neon Genesis Evangelion . . . 23Oh My Goddess! . . . 24Old Boy . . . 25Oreimo . . . 26Trigun & the Works of Yasuhiro Nightow . . . 27Other Notable Japanese Worksfrom Dark HorseThe Works of Yoshitaka Amano . . . 30Blade of the Immortal ART BOOK & Novel . . . 33Blood Illustrated Novels . . . 34THE Dirty Pair Illustrated Novels . . . 35Gungrave . . . 36Oh My Goddess! First End Novel . . . 37Samurai Champloo . . . 38Vampire Hunter D Illustrated Novels . . . 39

GLOSSARYanime—A general term for animated Japanese television shows andmovies.bunkobon—A small manga format, about 4 x 6 inches.flopped—A format in which the manga artwork has been floppedto read left to right. This adjustment to fit the reading style of Westernaudiences was often made in the days when manga were targeted to thedirect market.josei—Manga intended for adult women.manga—A general term for Japanese comics, sometimes usedincorrectly to refer to all Asian titles.manga-KA—Creator of manga.manhwa—Korean comics. Although often grouped with manga, thesetitles have a distinct culture and style that differs from Japanese books.otaku—A self-imposed term for a die-hard manga fan.seinen—Manga intended for adult men.serialization—A process in which episodes in an ongoing seriesare distributed weekly or monthly before being collected into a tradepaperback.shojo—Manga intended for young women or teens.shonen—Manga intended for young men or teens.tankobon—Today’s standard manga trade paperback format,about 5 x 7 inches.unflopped—A format that keeps the original Japanese right-to-leftreading style. This is currently the standard for publishing manga.

Years of MangaDid you know that Dark Horse Comics has continuouslypublished manga longer than any other American publisher?You might also be surprised to learn that Dark Horse hasthe longest-running manga series in this country, KosukeFujishima’s Oh My Goddess!, as well as the second-longestrunning series, Hiroaki Samura’s Blade of the Immortal. Infact, Dark Horse is the only company in this country to haveactually set up offices in Tokyo; in partnership with JVC, wecreated our own manga anthology, Super Comic Maker,designed specifically for the Japanese market. The truth is,manga has been an important element of our publishing plansalmost from day one, something that often gets overlookeddue to the incredible variety of content in our line.Over two and a half decades, Dark Horse has published manyof the most influential Japanese titles in comics history, alist that includes such works as Kazuo Koike and GosekiKojima’s Lone Wolf and Cub, Masamune Shirow’s Ghostin the Shell, Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira, Yasuhiro Nightow’sTrigun, Osamu Tezuka’s Astro Boy, and Hiroya Oku’s Gantz.During that time, we’ve worked with a virtual who’s whoof Japanese talent, creators such as Yoshitaka Amano,Kentaro Miura, Kohta Hirano, Yoshikazu Yasuhiko, HideyukiKikuchi, and supergroup CLAMP. The list goes on and on.Our move into the world of Japanese comics all those yearsago was no accident. Nor was it fueled by a chance to cashin on the manga craze; in fact, it predated the craze. No,our interest in manga was the result of a long-standing loveof Japanese pop culture. The movies of Akira Kurosawa,the many samurai legends and films, early anime, evenJapanese toys and products were all influential in thosestartup days of Dark Horse. It was only natural that wewould pursue comics from the Land of the Rising Sun.Our very first manga publication was a six-issue adaptationof the film The Return of Godzilla. Unable to track down atranslator willing to adapt the series, and facing a loomingdeadline, I took home issues 1, 3, and 5, and editor RandyStradley took home issues 2, 4, and 6, and, using theillustrations as our guide, we created our own translations.Our accuracy was based on our knowledge of the manyfilms that had come before.Previous to Dark Horse, I personally had acquired a set ofWeekly Manga Action comics featuring Lone Wolf and Cub(known to us back then only as the “baby cart series”), andonce I was a publisher, I immediately set out to track downthe rights. An errant word to a rival publisher delayed ouracquisition of the title, as well as my friendship with KazuoKoike, for nearly a decade. The series would eventually sellover a million copies for Dark Horse in the states. Our mangadivision has grown since those early days, and our editorialstaff for manga projects now includes Chris Warner, PhilipSimon, and Jemiah Jefferson, as well as director of Asianlicensing and translator Michael Gombos and our residentmanga historian, editor Carl Horn.As you might guess, publishing manga for twenty-fiveyears has resulted in many more stories than I have roomto tell here. Those years are also responsible for dozens oftreasured friendships. All of this is to say that Dark Horse ismore than just a manga publisher; we are manga fans, andwe will continue our quest to publish the best and brightestJapan has to offer.Mike Richardson

APPLESEEDTITLES: APPLESEED, APPLESEED: HYPERNOTES,APPLESEED IDWRITER/ARTIST: MASAMUNE SHIROWFORMAT: B&WAGE: 14 VOLUMES: 1–4 (APPLESEED); 1 (HYPERNOTES); 1 (ID)World War III is over, and nomad soldier Deunan Knute and hercyborg partner Briareos struggle to survive in the abandonedcities and demilitarized zones of a postwar wasteland, the Badside. Matters appear to be on the upswing, however, when theyare found and brought to Olympus, an urban utopia and centerpiece for the reconstruction of civilization. Deunan and Bri jointhe Olympus police, a force that seemshardly necessary in such a paradise. But,like in most pretty pictures, perfection isan illusion, and Olympus’s peaceful façadehides a dark secret, a violent struggle between human and cyborg that could onceagain plunge the world into war . . . andgenocide.Written and drawn by Masamune Shirow,creator of Ghost in the Shell—one of thehighest-grossing anime of all time—Appleseed was one of the first manga to havean anime release in the US. Appleseed isknown, along with Ghost in the Shell, as defining the cyberpunk genre and cyberpunkproblematic. Several cinematic incarnationsof the Appleseed franchise, including themost recent, Appleseed: Ex Machina, produced by John Woo, have given the franchise a continuing cultural relevance. 5

ORIONTitle: OrionWriter/Artist: Masamune ShirowFormat: B&WAge: 14 Volumes: 1In the mighty Yamata Empire, magic and technology are oneand the same. Now, the empire is preparing its ultimate featof psychoscience: the destruction of all the negative karma inthe galaxy! But will this mystical purification be the salvation ofhumanity—or the trigger of its ultimate destruction? Only onebeing can save the empire from its folly: Susano, the god ofdestruction. Wild, arrogant, and homicidal, Susano has cometo teach the world the true nature of power!Orion is Shirow at his wildest. Publishedin right-to-left reading format, as originallypublished in Japan, this book also includesa variety of great bonus features, includingan art gallery, Orion glossary, and notes onthe text composed by Shirow himself! 6

ASTRO BOYTitle: Astro BoyWriter/Artist: Osamu TezukaFormat: B&WAge: 8 Volumes: 1–23; Volumes 1 & 2 OmnibusDark Horse proudly presents another of the crown jewels ofinternational graphic fiction—Astro Boy! Created by the late OsamuTezuka (the “God of Manga,” a revered animator and cartoonist whocreated over 150,000 pages of comics in his career!), Astro Boywas the first manga series to be adapted to animation and becamea worldwide phenomenon, making Astro Boy the Mickey Mouseof anime—a jet-powered, superstrong, evil-robot-bashing, alieninvasion-smashing Mickey Mouse, thatis! Exciting, whimsical, and touching,Astro Boy harks back to the classic era ofcomics and animation, featuring storiesthat readers young and old will enjoy!Astro Boy Volumes 1 & 2 are now availableas a value-priced omnibus edition to helpget you into manga’s most beloved seriesright away!Timeless and definitive of manga, OsamuTezuka is often likened to Walt Disney(although it should be the other wayaround). Astro Boy, which establishedthe foundation of Japan’s “robot culture,”is a classic for younger readers and olderreaders alike. A CGI-animated Astro Boymovie was released in 2009.24ASTBOYOMV1.indd 248/4/08 3:07:49 PM 7

BerserkTitle: BerserkWriter/Artist: Kentaro MiuraFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–36 (ongoing series)His name is Guts, the Black Swordsman, a feared warrior spoken of only in whispers. Bearer of a gigantic sword, an ironhand, and the scars of countless battles and tortures, he alsohas flesh indelibly marked with the Brand, an unholy symbolthat draws the forces of darkness to him and dooms him astheir sacrifice. But Guts won’t take his fate lying down; he’ll cuta crimson swath of carnage through the ranks of the damned—and anyone else foolish enough to oppose him! Accompaniedby Puck the elf, more an annoyance thana companion, Guts relentlessly follows adark, bloodstained path that leads onlyto death . . . or vengeance. Created byKentaro Miura, Berserk is manga mayhemto the extreme—violent, horrifying, andmercilessly funny—and the wellspring forthe internationally popular anime series.Not for the squeamish or the easily offended, Berserk asks for no quarter—andoffers none!A seinen mainstay in Japan, with over tenmillion copies sold, Berserk is Japanesepublisher Hakusensha’s number-one seinentitle. Like Beowulf, 300, and Lord of the Ringsin the West, Berserk is manga’s great epicaction/fantasy saga, and can be likened tothem in scope and scale. 8

Blade of the ImmortalTitle: Blade of the ImmortalWriter/Artist: Hiroaki SamuraFormat: B&WAge: 16 Volumes: 1–26 (ongoing series)“To end his eternal suffering, he must slay one thousandenemies!” Manji, a ronin warrior of feudal Japan, has beencursed with immortality. To rid himself of this curse and end hislife of misery, he must slay one thousand evil men! His questbegins when a young girl seeks his help in taking revenge onher parents’ killers . . . and his quest won’t end until the blood ofa thousand has spilled!Creator Hiroaki Samura is revered amongAmerican comics fans for his style andpacing skill. Winner of the 2000 EisnerAward for Best US Edition of ForeignMaterial, Blade of the Immortal reinventsthe samurai epic (see Lone Wolf and Cub)in a modern style. A progenitor of hitslike Samurai Champloo, this series hasa traditional historical fantasy element,along with a hip, anachronistic touch.See page 33 for info on Dark Horse’scollector’s-edition The Art of Blade of theImmortal hardcover, as well as the Blade ofthe Immortal: Legend of the Sword Demonnovel!BOIMS TPB177/12/04,37BBOIMS TP4:36 PM7/12/04, 4:31 PM 9

BlOOD Title: Blood , Blood : Adagio, Blood : KowloonNightsWriter: VariousArtist: VariousFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–5 (Blood ); 1–2 (Adagio); 1 (KowloonNights)The Blood mythos originated in Hiroyuki Kitakubo’s Blood:The Last Vampire, an anime acclaimed by The Matrix’sAndy Wachowski. Blood is a multimedia sensation, withan animated series that aired on Adult Swim. Several otherspinoffs (also published by Dark Horse) have had immensesuccess in Japan. Asuka Katsura’s manga series successfully expands upon the original ProductionI.G/Aniplex feature, delivering momentsof jarring violence and thrilling action in atale that spans several centuries.Saya Otonashi lives as a seemingly normal high-school student with her adoptivefamily in Okinawa, aside from horriblenightmares of a past life. Chiropterans—powerful shape-changing creatures whoneed and crave blood—threaten humanityonce more, and a mysterious organizationcalled the Red Shield needs Saya’s deadlysword skills and mysterious powers to aidin the fight against these beasts. As Saya’ssubmerged abilities begin to reawaken andshe seeks to regain her memories, Chiropteran warriors are guided by a mysterious leaderto threaten Saya and her loved ones.See page 34 for info on Dark Horse’s Blood illustrated novel series! 10

CLAMPTitles: Angelic Layer, Blood-C, CardcaptorSakura, Chobits, Clover, Gate 7, Magic KnightRayearth, Tokyo BabylonWriter/Artist: CLAMPFormat: B&W with colorAge: 14 Volumes: 1–2 (Angelic Layer); 1 (Blood-C, ongoingseries); 1–4 (Cardcaptor Sakura); 1–2 (Chobits); 1(Clover); 1–3 (Gate 7, ongoing series); 1–2 (MagicKnight Rayearth); 1–2 (Tokyo Babylon)Satsuki Igarashi, Mokona, Tsubaki Nekoi, and Nanase Ohkawa,the female supergroup known to their millions of fansworldwide as CLAMP, have worked together to produceaward-winning, best-selling manga. Dark Horse first begana partnership with CLAMP by collectingthe previously published works of thisgroup of manga-ka royalty into highlysought-after omnibus editions, includingClover, Chobits, Tokyo Babylon, AngelicLayer, Cardcaptor Sakura, and MagicKnight Rayearth, as well as Mokona’sOkimono Kimono. In addition, Dark Horseis proud to be the exclusive Americanpublisher of CLAMP’s latest work, Gate 7,releasing just months after its Japanesepremiere! In 2013, Dark Horse will publishBlood-C, produced in coordination withProduction I.G, creators of the Blood and Blood-C anime, and continuing thesaga begun in the Blood series of novels,anime, and manga. 11

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EDENTitle: EdenWriter/Artist: Hiroki EndoFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–13Eden is both a brilliant love song to the postapocalypticsurvival genre and a deep exploration of man’s role in thenatural order. In the near future, a brutal virus that hardens theskin while dissolving internal organs wipes out a huge portion ofhumanity. Those who aren’t immune are either severely crippledor allowed to live with cybernetically enhanced bodies. Takingadvantage of a world in chaos, a paramilitary force known asPropater topples the United Nations and seeks world domination. Elijah, a young survivor searchingfor his mother, travels toward the AndesMountains with an artificially intelligentcombat robot. When he encounters agroup of anti-Propater freedom fighters, amaelstrom of unique characters unfolds.Graphic, cyberpunk, and philosophical,Eden is a place where endearing heroesface a constant struggle for survival andviolent surprises wait around every corner.Hiroki Endo’s Eden receives constant recognition and critical acclaim, from Wizardmagazine naming it the Best Manga of2007, to Newtype magazine calling it “thebest manga that American money can buy.” 13

GantzTitle: GantzWriter/Artist: Hiroya OkuFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–26 (ongoing series)How long will you stay in the game? The last thing Kei andMasaru remember was being struck dead by a subway trainwhile saving the life of a drunken bum. What a waste! And yetsomehow they’re still . . . alive? Or semialive? Maybe they’vebeen reanimated . . . by some kind of alien orb with a nastymessage . . . “Your lives are over. What you do with your newlives is up to me!” And what this orb called Gantz intends todo with their lives is make them play games of death, huntingall kinds of odd aliens, alongside a bunchof other ordinary citizens who’ve recentlymet a tragic semiend. The missions theyembark upon are often dangerous. Manydie—and die again. This dark and actionpacked manga deals with the moral conflicts of violence, teenage sexual confusionand angst, and our fascination with death.Gantz has been one of the most popularadult anime in recent years, with nearlyhalf a million copies sold, and the mangaruns in the Japanese magazine WeeklyYoung Jump, which has a record circulationof over three million readers. Gantz was themost heavily requested title for publicationin English of all time. 14

Gunsmith CatsTitle: Gunsmith Cats Revised Editions, GunsmithCats: BurstWriter/Artist: Kenichi SonodaFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–4 (Gunsmith Cats Revised Editions); 1–5(Gunsmith Cats: Burst)Kenichi Sonoda’s sexy stories about two bounty-hunting girls onthe dangerous streets of Chicago have always been a favoriteof manga fans. Rally Vincent and Minnie-May Hopkins are experts in their respective fields of marksmanship and explosives,but they’re so cute you’d never know—and neither would theperps unlucky enough to be their prey. Presented in the authentic right-to-left Japanese format, thesevolumes are action packed, unaltered, andsure to please gun nuts, auto buffs, andmanga maniacs alike.“All in all Gunsmith Cats is an excellentseinen manga and anyone looking for theequivalent to an 80s action movie shouldcheck it out.”—Japanator 15

HELLSINGTitle: HellsingWriter/Artist: Kohta HiranoFormat: B&WAge: 16 Volumes: 1–10There’s a secret organization somewhere in England created todefend queen and country from monsters of all kinds: Hellsing,an agency long in tooth, with the experience, know-how, andequipment to handle the problems that arise when vampiresand ghouls take on these dark forces. “What equipment?” youmay ask. How about a vampire with an appetite for destructionand a giant pistol loaded with special silver bullets? Yeah, thatshould do the trick.Mainstream anime series of bothHellsing and Hellsing Ultimate makeHellsing, along with titles like Trigun, astaple of the current anime and mangaculture. Whether it’s Nazis, vampires, orancient secrets of the church, creatorKohta Hirano takes old clichés and turnsthem into shocking story lines.“Kohta Hirano has told an epicmasterpiece of the ultra cool kind andHellsing’s ten volumes is proof of that.”—Animanga Nation 16

DriftersTitle: DriftersWriter/Artist: Kohta HiranoFormat: B&WAge: 16 Volumes: 1–2Imagine a world of magic and wonder, full of elves and hobbitsand dragons and orcs. Inside this world there is a great war beingwaged, using warriors from human history as chess pieces in abloody, endless battle. Kohta Hirano’s concept gathers famouswarriors from throughout history, puts them on both sides ofgood and evil, and then turns them loose in a bloody melee ofmadness. Featuring historical characters such as Joan of Arc,Hannibal, and Rasputin, this new series drops these heroes intoan enchanted land where humans subjugate the nonhuman races. After pittingthe Catholic Church against vampires,Nazis, and Great Britain, and filling thestreets of London with blood, Hellsing creator Kohta Hirano returns with an all-neworiginal series!“Drifters is a fun mix of historicalcharacters and fantasy, with some greatover-the-top moments stitched togetherby a solid story idea.”—Comics Bulletin 17

The Kurosagi CorpseDelivery ServiceTitle: The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery ServiceWriter: Eiji OtsukaArtist: Housui YamazakiFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–13 (ongoing series)Your body is their business! Five young students at a Buddhistuniversity, three guys and two girls, find little call for their jobskills in today’s Tokyo . . . among the living, anyway. But allthat stuff in college they were told would never pay off—youknow, channeling, dowsing, ESP—gives them a direct line tothe dead . . . the dead who are still trapped in their corpsesand can’t move on to the next reincarnation. The five form the Kurosagi (“BlackHeron”—their ominous bird logo) CorpseDelivery Service: whether suicide, murder,accident, or illness, they’ll carry your bodywherever it needs to go to free your soul!Kurosagi stands alone as a story, but alsoties in to the same author’s MPD-Psycho,with which it shares a main character—arare example of “universes” in manga.Controversial, contemporary horror withblack comedy, Kurosagi is described as“Scooby-Doo meets Se7en.” 18

Lone Wolf and CubTitle: Lone Wolf and CubWriter: Kazuo KoikeArtist: Goseki KojimaFormat: B&WAge: 16 Volumes: 1–28Sales: Lone Wolf and Cub is Dark Horse’shighest-ever-selling series, with over1.3 million units sold.Dark Horse Comics is proud to present an authentic landmarkin graphic fiction, Lone Wolf and Cub, published in its entirety for the first time in America. An epic samurai adventure ofstaggering proportion—over seven thousand pages—LoneWolf and Cub (Kozure Okami in Japan) isacknowledged worldwide for the brilliantwriting of series creator Kazuo Koike andthe groundbreaking cinematic visuals ofthe late Goseki Kojima. This unforgettablepartnership has influenced a generation ofvisual storytellers both in Japan and in theWest.A personal favorite of the likes of FrankMiller and Quentin Tarantino, Lone Wolfand Cub is regarded by many in the industry as the single greatest piece of graphicfiction ever created. By Koike’s request,Miller’s original-art covers adorn not onlythe English editions, but the Japanese editions as well. In 2013, Dark Horse will beginan omnibus program to collect this extensive body of work.31LWCUB #1 12PR PG 136LWCUBPR#1 12PG Don’t miss this monumental release, twentyeight volumes, with each collection approximately three hundred pages. 19

HOA.Path of the AssassinTitle: Path of the AssassinWriter: Kazuo KoikeArtist: Goseki KojimaFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–15If you think you have a tough job, try taking a pudgy, shelteredyoungster and making him into the leader who will unite Japanunder his single rule! Hattori Hanzo, the fabled master ninja, hasbeen assigned this difficult task and must protect TokugawaIeyasu, the young shogun-to-be who is destined to unite Japaninto one great nation. But protecting his young master doesn’tjust mean guarding him from physical harm; it also means beingthe secret caretaker of Ieyasu’s reputation and serving as Ieyasu’s teacher inthe ways of the world!A touching and action-packed coming-ofage story of two young men bound to anation’s potential future at a time whenJapan was in transition from a warlikefeudal state into an era of bureaucracyand infighting, Path of the Assassin offersup a fascinating look at a turning point inJapanese history. Another quasi-historicaltale from the masters of Japanese samurai manga—Lone Wolf and Cub creatorsKazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima—Pathof the Assassin is published in the popular pocket-sized manga format and packshistorical fiction and fine art in yet anotherclassic samurai series from Dark Horse.AHOOM.HA HA HAHA HA HAHA HA .SY.iT’S EAAHOOM.HEH HAHA HA HAEHEE HEE.HEE HEPOTA #15.indd 662/27/09 3:21:39 PM42 /21/0611:58:41AM20

.qxdSamurai ExecutionerTitle: Samurai ExecutionerWriter: Kazuo KoikeArtist: Goseki KojimaFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–106/30/048:45 AM–Before Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima created Ittoō Ogami,they created Kubikiri Asa, better known to Lone Wolf and Cubreaders as Decapitator Asaemon. He was the equal to Itto, andbearer of the sword Onibocho, the man charged with the dutyof testing the swords for the shogun. Samurai Executioner isbased on the Decapitator’s life before his fatal duel with LoneWolf. Expect the same legendary drama, frantic action, andstoic samurai stature, combined withthe exemplary art and storytelling thatmade Lone Wolf and Cub one of the mostpopular and influential comic books in theworld.Page 21From the highly respected, Eisner Award–winning team behind Lone Wolf and Cubcomes Samurai Executioner, the backstoryof Kubikiri Asa. Just as compelling andbeautiful as its companion title, SamuraiExecutioner is a must-have for any dedicated manga fan and the prequel to oneof the most seminal works of manga, LoneWolf and Cub.21 21

MPD-PsychoTitle: MPD-PsychoWriter: Eiji OtsukaArtist: Sho-u TajimaFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–10If Takashi Miike’s MPD-Psycho television series still has youconfused and reeling, the original manga series that inspiredthe show is sure to take you on a longer, darker journey intomadness.Police detective Yosuke Kobayashi’s life is changed forever aftera serial killer notices something “special” about him. That samekiller mutilates Kobayashi’s wife and setsoff a “multiple personality battle” withinKobayashi that pushes him into a complex tempest of interconnected deviantsand evil forces.One of the most controversial mangaever created, the series was deemed tooshocking for its former US publisher torelease. Dark Horse Manga is proud topresent the series uncut and uncensoredin all of its controversial and unflinchinglygrotesque glory! 22

Neon Genesis EvangelionTitles: Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji IkariRaising Project, Neon Genesis Evangelion:Campus Apocalypse, Neon Genesis Evangelion: ComicTributeWriter: VariousArtist: VariousFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–12 (The Shinji Ikari Raising Project); 1–4(Campus Apocalypse); 1 (Comic Tribute)Since it first hit Japanese TV screens in 1995, the multimediaNeon Genesis Evangelion phenomenon has never faded. The legend has only spread further in the last decadewith the North American release of the Evangelion serieson DVD and its subsequent airing onAdult Swim. Evangelion’s revival continues with a brand-new slate of moviesentitled Rebuild of Evangelion. The firstfilm, Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone,the top-selling anime DVD release of 2008in Japan, moved 219,000 copies in its premiere week! Dark Horse began publishingthis hit series in manga shortly afterwardin 2009, to continued praise from the online manga community. The Neon GenesisEvangelion publishing line at Dark Horseconsists of the ongoing Neon GenesisEvangelion: The Shinji Ikari Raising Projectand the four-volume saga Neon GenesisEvangelion: Campus Apocalypse.In 2013, Dark Horse will publish NeonGenesis Evangelion: Comic Tribute, which isan officially authorized one-shot anthology ofparody stories assaulting Evangelion fromall directions. 23

Oh My Goddess!Title: Oh My Goddess!Writer/Artist: Kosuke FujishimaFormat: B&WAge: 12 Volumes: 1–44 (ongoing series)Alone in his dorm on a Saturday night, Nekomi Tech’s KeiichiMorisato dials a wrong number that will change his life forever—reaching the Goddess Technical Help Line. Granted one wishby the charming young goddess Belldandy, Keiichi wishes shewould stay with him always! After the new couple is tossedout of the male-only dorm, the hapless student and his mysterious “foreign beauty” ride around looking for a new place tostay. How is his new “exchange student”companion going to be received on theNIT campus? A little too well for normallife to ever return . . .Oh My Goddess! is the longest-runningmanga series in English, by the creator ofYou’re Under Arrest. A pioneer in relationship-comedy stories in the US market, OhMy Goddess! is popular among both maleand female readers and continues to attractfan letters and art. Highly recognized, theanime counterpart is a perennial bestsellerfor Media Blasters and ADV.78 24

OLD BOYTitle: Old BoyWriter: Garon TsuchiyaArtist: Nobuaki MinegishiFormat: B&WAge: 18 Volumes: 1–8Ten years ago, he was taken. For ten years, he was confinedin a private prison. For ten years, his only contact with the outside world was a television set and the voices of his jailers.Never told why he was imprisoned, or by whom, in time he losthimself. He changed . . . transformed into something else . . .something hard . . . something lethal. But just as suddenly asit began—and with just as little explanation—his incarcerationhas ended. Sedated, stuffed inside atrunk, and dumped in a park, he has beenreleased. When he awakes, he is free toreclaim what’s left of his life, but all that’sleft is an unwavering desire for answersand revenge.An intense, bare-knuckled urban thriller inthe tradition of Pulp Fiction and Paybackand a captivating hard-boiled whodunittrue to the finest film noir, Old Boy was theinspiration behind acclaimed Korean director Chan-Wook Park’s 2003 release Oldboy,a film which was awarded the Grand JuryPrize at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival. TheEisner Award–Winning manga series iscurrently in development as an all-new filmfrom visionary director Spike Lee! 25

OREIMOTitle: OreimoWriter: Tsukasa FushimiArtist: Sakura IkedaFormat: B&WAge: 16 Volumes: 1–3 (ongoing)Based on the popular anime and series of light novels, Oreimo isthe story of a teenage brother and sister brought closer togetherafter he discovers her greatest secret—she’s an otaku! Full ofoutrageous laughs and surprises, the story follows Kyousukeand his little sister Kirino as they attempt to keep her classmates and parents from discovering her love of anime and video games, a secret that could tarnish her squeaky-clean imageboth at school and at home. With nosyclassmates closing in and a strict fatheron the lookout, Kyousuke soon finds outthere is so much more to his kid sisterthan her grade-point average and teenmodeling career! Tsukasa Fushimi’s Oreno imouto ga konnani kawaii wake ga nainovel series has sold over 950,000 copiesin Japan.Praise for the anime:“[Oreimo] proves to be clever andquite funny as it provides a surprisinglyentertaining and satisfying explorationof both covert otakudom and siblingrelationship dynamics.”—Anime NewsNetwork46 26

TRIGUNTitle: TrigunWriter/Artist: Yasuhiro NightowFormat: B&WAge: 12 Volumes: 1–2TRIGUN #1 B&N LAYOUTLAYOUT4/26/0412:29 PMPage 214/26/041:31 PMPage 157Comedy, science fiction, and western gunslinger actioncongregate within the pages of Trigun. Created by YasuhiroNightow, this compound of genre-bending ingredients hasturned the Trigun anime into a wildly popular series. Somehow, the past has placed a sixty-billion-double-dollar bountyon Vash’s head, and the gunslinging pacifist can’t seem to getaway from money-grubbing, itchy-trigger-finger citizenry. Findout why Vash is worth so much money dead! Feel the clumsyworry of the unfortunate citizens of theplanet Gunsmoke! Follow the follies of anunlikely hero in a forbidding world! JoinVash the Stampede—with his troubledpast and uncanny ability to dodge a gazillion bullets—and a cavalcade of unluckycharacte

Fujishima’s Oh My Goddess!, as well as the second-longest-running series, Hiroaki Samura’s Blade of the Immortal. In fact, Dark Horse is the only company in this country to have actually set up offices in Tokyo; in partnership with JVC, we created our own manga anthology, Super Comic Maker, designed specifically for the Japanese market.