Manga

11 Incredibly Exciting Manga Arriving in 2018

Remember when manga was supposed to be dead? Me neither. Last year saw an outstanding crop of new releases, and there’s more coming later this year, from the new Eternal Edition of Sailor Moon to Go Nagai’s crazy robot-girl fighting manga Cutie Honey a Go Go! Here’s a look at some other new series we are excited about in 2018.

Moteki, 1: Love Strikes!

Moteki, 1: Love Strikes!

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Moteki, 1: Love Strikes!

Mitsurou Kubo

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Moteki, by Mitsurou Kubo (April 3)
This one’s a rom-com from the creator of the manga Again!! and co-creator of the anime Yuri on Ice. “Moteki” is a Japanese word for that one point in time where you are popular with the opposite sex. For Yukiyo Fujimoto, that moment arrives on the eve of his 30th birthday, when he suddenly starts hearing from women he knew in the past: former co-workers, old crushes, and even the bad girl from his high school, who has come back to town and apparently changed her ways. This series was originally published as four volumes (plus a sequel) in Japan, but the American edition will be two 400-page omnibus volumes, with the first due out in April.

Moteki, by Mitsurou Kubo (April 3)
This one’s a rom-com from the creator of the manga Again!! and co-creator of the anime Yuri on Ice. “Moteki” is a Japanese word for that one point in time where you are popular with the opposite sex. For Yukiyo Fujimoto, that moment arrives on the eve of his 30th birthday, when he suddenly starts hearing from women he knew in the past: former co-workers, old crushes, and even the bad girl from his high school, who has come back to town and apparently changed her ways. This series was originally published as four volumes (plus a sequel) in Japan, but the American edition will be two 400-page omnibus volumes, with the first due out in April.

Dead Dead Demon's Dededede Destruction, Vol. 1

Dead Dead Demon's Dededede Destruction, Vol. 1

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Dead Dead Demon's Dededede Destruction, Vol. 1

Inio Asano

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Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction, by Inio Asano (April 17)
You might think from the cover that this is a cheery shonen school romance—maybe something to fill the void that Nisekoi left when it ended last month. Nope! Inio Asano is the creator of solanin, Nijigahara Holograph, and Goodnight Pun Pun, so that’s unlikely. DDDDD is set in a high school, true, but it’s a high school where an alien spaceship has been looming overhead for the past three years. The Japanese defense forces are unable to defeat the aliens, and the country is both at war with the outsiders and divided between itself, as some oppose the war and other support it. Meanwhile, the teenagers divide their time between studying for exams and tracking the ongoing threat on social media, leaving little time for high school hijinks. The first volume will be released in April.

Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction, by Inio Asano (April 17)
You might think from the cover that this is a cheery shonen school romance—maybe something to fill the void that Nisekoi left when it ended last month. Nope! Inio Asano is the creator of solanin, Nijigahara Holograph, and Goodnight Pun Pun, so that’s unlikely. DDDDD is set in a high school, true, but it’s a high school where an alien spaceship has been looming overhead for the past three years. The Japanese defense forces are unable to defeat the aliens, and the country is both at war with the outsiders and divided between itself, as some oppose the war and other support it. Meanwhile, the teenagers divide their time between studying for exams and tracking the ongoing threat on social media, leaving little time for high school hijinks. The first volume will be released in April.

Star Wars Lost Stars, Vol. 1 (manga)

Star Wars Lost Stars, Vol. 1 (manga)

Paperback $13.00

Star Wars Lost Stars, Vol. 1 (manga)

Claudia Gray , Yuusaka Komiyama

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Star Wars: Lost Stars, by Claudia Gray and Yuusaku Komiyama (May 1)
This manga, first published in Japan, is an adaptation of Claudia Gray’s same-titled novel. Aristocrat Thane Kyrell and commoner Ciena Ree are friends who grew up together on the planet Jelucan, which has since been annexed by the Empire. They both train as pilots at the Imperial Academy, but end up on opposite sides of the galactic war when Thane, disturbed by the authoritarian rule of the Emperor, joins the Rebellion. The characters may be new to many readers, but the story is true to the spirit of the Star Wars canon. This series launches in May.

Star Wars: Lost Stars, by Claudia Gray and Yuusaku Komiyama (May 1)
This manga, first published in Japan, is an adaptation of Claudia Gray’s same-titled novel. Aristocrat Thane Kyrell and commoner Ciena Ree are friends who grew up together on the planet Jelucan, which has since been annexed by the Empire. They both train as pilots at the Imperial Academy, but end up on opposite sides of the galactic war when Thane, disturbed by the authoritarian rule of the Emperor, joins the Rebellion. The characters may be new to many readers, but the story is true to the spirit of the Star Wars canon. This series launches in May.

Eclair: A Girls' Love Anthology That Resonates in Your Heart

Eclair: A Girls' Love Anthology That Resonates in Your Heart

Paperback $13.00

Eclair: A Girls' Love Anthology That Resonates in Your Heart

ASCII Media Works

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Éclair: Anata ni Hibiku Yuri Anthology, by ASCII Media Works (May8)
Yuri was big in 2017, and it doesn’t look like the pace will be slowing down this year. If you’re a fan already, Éclair will be a sweet treat, and if you aren’t, it will be a nice sampler to get you acquainted with the charming world of lesbian romance. This anthology features 16 short stories, including stories by Canno, creator of Kiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl, and Nio Nakatami, creator of Bloom Into You, two yuri series that debuted last year.

Éclair: Anata ni Hibiku Yuri Anthology, by ASCII Media Works (May8)
Yuri was big in 2017, and it doesn’t look like the pace will be slowing down this year. If you’re a fan already, Éclair will be a sweet treat, and if you aren’t, it will be a nice sampler to get you acquainted with the charming world of lesbian romance. This anthology features 16 short stories, including stories by Canno, creator of Kiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl, and Nio Nakatami, creator of Bloom Into You, two yuri series that debuted last year.

Golosseum 1

Golosseum 1

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Golosseum 1

Yasushi Baba

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Golosseum, by Yasushi Baba (May 22)
Imagine scientists have finally discovered a substance that makes people immune to weapons of war. Would this usher in a lasting peace? Nope! At least not in manga, because that would be boring. Instead, we have a world where nations battle it out in the martial arts arena, with Rasputin and President Valery Putinov going head to head with Americans Axe Bogan and President Billary Quintone. This manga is sure to give hope to those who feel the current political scene is indistinguishable from satire. Watch for it in May.

Golosseum, by Yasushi Baba (May 22)
Imagine scientists have finally discovered a substance that makes people immune to weapons of war. Would this usher in a lasting peace? Nope! At least not in manga, because that would be boring. Instead, we have a world where nations battle it out in the martial arts arena, with Rasputin and President Valery Putinov going head to head with Americans Axe Bogan and President Billary Quintone. This manga is sure to give hope to those who feel the current political scene is indistinguishable from satire. Watch for it in May.

Claudine

Claudine

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Claudine

Riyoko Ikeda

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Claudine, by Riyoko Ikeda (June 26)
We’re hoping this will be the year we finally get to read the classic Rose of Versailles (which publisher Udon assures us will be released in 2018, only two years later than originally promised) but while we wait, here’s another gender-swap story from Riyoko Ikeda. Set in 20th century France, Claudine is a one-volume story about a man born in a woman’s body who leads a tortured life, with romance, death, and dark family secrets all part of the mix. Somehow Ikeda manages to fit all this story into a slim, 100-page volume. Ikeda is a renowned manga creator who has not only gained fame in her own country but received the French Legion d’Honneur, and it looks like Claudine, which is due out in June, will be the first of her works to be published in English in its entirety (an excerpt from Rose of Versailles was published many years ago in Frederick Schodt’s Manga! Manga! The World of Japanese Comics).

Claudine, by Riyoko Ikeda (June 26)
We’re hoping this will be the year we finally get to read the classic Rose of Versailles (which publisher Udon assures us will be released in 2018, only two years later than originally promised) but while we wait, here’s another gender-swap story from Riyoko Ikeda. Set in 20th century France, Claudine is a one-volume story about a man born in a woman’s body who leads a tortured life, with romance, death, and dark family secrets all part of the mix. Somehow Ikeda manages to fit all this story into a slim, 100-page volume. Ikeda is a renowned manga creator who has not only gained fame in her own country but received the French Legion d’Honneur, and it looks like Claudine, which is due out in June, will be the first of her works to be published in English in its entirety (an excerpt from Rose of Versailles was published many years ago in Frederick Schodt’s Manga! Manga! The World of Japanese Comics).

Fruits Basket Another, Vol. 1

Fruits Basket Another, Vol. 1

Paperback $15.00

Fruits Basket Another, Vol. 1

Natsuki Takaya

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Fruits Basket Another, by Natsuki Takaya (July 24)
Natsuki Takaya’s sequel to Fruits Basket (one of the most popular manga of all time) doesn’t feature any of the main characters from the original series, and it’s only three volumes long, but it’s still going to be a must-read for Furuba fans. Like the original, it’s set in a high school and involves a love triangle between a girl and two Sohmas, but the chemistry is different. The Sohmas are Hajime (son of Kyo from Fruits Basket), the student body president; and Mutsuki (son of Yuki), the student body vice president. The girl is Sawa Mitoma, who is awkward and insecure and spends a lot of time apologizing for insignificant things. Will this new generation deliver the angst and thrills of their forbears? We’ll find out in July, when the first volume comes out.

Fruits Basket Another, by Natsuki Takaya (July 24)
Natsuki Takaya’s sequel to Fruits Basket (one of the most popular manga of all time) doesn’t feature any of the main characters from the original series, and it’s only three volumes long, but it’s still going to be a must-read for Furuba fans. Like the original, it’s set in a high school and involves a love triangle between a girl and two Sohmas, but the chemistry is different. The Sohmas are Hajime (son of Kyo from Fruits Basket), the student body president; and Mutsuki (son of Yuki), the student body vice president. The girl is Sawa Mitoma, who is awkward and insecure and spends a lot of time apologizing for insignificant things. Will this new generation deliver the angst and thrills of their forbears? We’ll find out in July, when the first volume comes out.

Gantz G Volume 1

Gantz G Volume 1

Paperback $13.99

Gantz G Volume 1

Hiroya Oku , Keita Lizuka , Matthew Johnson

Paperback $13.99

Gantz G, by Hiroya Oku and Keita Lizuka (June26)
Can’t get enough of Gantz? Gantz G is a new spinoff, set in the Gantz universe and created by the original manga-ka, Hiroya Oku, with art by Keita Lizuka. This time it’s a group of teenagers who are killed in a bus accident and wake up to learn, from the ominous black sphere, that they have been drafted into the Gantz team, and from now on they will be hunting aliens. The original series was known for its action-packed stories and over-the-top violence, and this one looks to be in the same spirit. The first volume will be out in June.

Gantz G, by Hiroya Oku and Keita Lizuka (June26)
Can’t get enough of Gantz? Gantz G is a new spinoff, set in the Gantz universe and created by the original manga-ka, Hiroya Oku, with art by Keita Lizuka. This time it’s a group of teenagers who are killed in a bus accident and wake up to learn, from the ominous black sphere, that they have been drafted into the Gantz team, and from now on they will be hunting aliens. The original series was known for its action-packed stories and over-the-top violence, and this one looks to be in the same spirit. The first volume will be out in June.

Shibuya Goldfish, Vol. 1

Shibuya Goldfish, Vol. 1

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Shibuya Goldfish, Vol. 1

Aoi Hiroumi

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Shibuya Goldfish, by Aoi Hiroumi (June 26)
Hajime Tsukiyoda is kind of a slob, but when he pays a visit to Tokyo’s fashionable Shibuya shopping district, his clothes are the least of his worries: the neighborhood is being overrun by man-eating goldfish. At first glance this looked like it might be a spoof, but it’s not—it’s more of a seinen horror story along the lines of Junji Ito’s Gyo. The first volume is scheduled for a June release.

Shibuya Goldfish, by Aoi Hiroumi (June 26)
Hajime Tsukiyoda is kind of a slob, but when he pays a visit to Tokyo’s fashionable Shibuya shopping district, his clothes are the least of his worries: the neighborhood is being overrun by man-eating goldfish. At first glance this looked like it might be a spoof, but it’s not—it’s more of a seinen horror story along the lines of Junji Ito’s Gyo. The first volume is scheduled for a June release.

My Hero Academia: Vigilantes, Vol. 1

My Hero Academia: Vigilantes, Vol. 1

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My Hero Academia: Vigilantes, Vol. 1

Hideyuki Furuhashi , Kohei Horikoshi , Betten Court

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My Hero Academia: Vigilantes, by Hideyuki Furuhashi (July 3)
Vigilantes takes the premise of My Hero Academia and goes barreling off in another, equally action-packed direction. Koichi Haimawari’s superpower (called a quirk in this series) is not that super, so he mostly just uses it to help people in modest ways. After running up against a couple of thugs, though, he teams up with two other under-powered heroes to form a team that has more bravery than brawn. The first volume will be out in July.

My Hero Academia: Vigilantes, by Hideyuki Furuhashi (July 3)
Vigilantes takes the premise of My Hero Academia and goes barreling off in another, equally action-packed direction. Koichi Haimawari’s superpower (called a quirk in this series) is not that super, so he mostly just uses it to help people in modest ways. After running up against a couple of thugs, though, he teams up with two other under-powered heroes to form a team that has more bravery than brawn. The first volume will be out in July.

Slum Wolf

Slum Wolf

Paperback $22.95

Slum Wolf

Tadao Tsuge , Ryan Holmberg

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Slum Wolf, by Tadao Tsuge (August 21)
Tadao Tsuge started drawing manga in 1959, and his work was featured in the avant-garde manga magazine Garo alongside that of Yoshihiro Tatsumi (The Push Man), in that he shows the grittier side of Japanese life. His short stories feature workers, war veterans, and struggling families set against the ugly urban backdrop of the postwar years. Drawn and Quarterly published a collection of his stories, Trash Market, in 2015, and now, New York Review Books is bringing out a new one, Slum Wolf, edited by manga scholar Ryan Holmberg. At 320 pages, it is a generous sampling of Tsuge’s work.
What new manga are on your must-read list in 2018?

Slum Wolf, by Tadao Tsuge (August 21)
Tadao Tsuge started drawing manga in 1959, and his work was featured in the avant-garde manga magazine Garo alongside that of Yoshihiro Tatsumi (The Push Man), in that he shows the grittier side of Japanese life. His short stories feature workers, war veterans, and struggling families set against the ugly urban backdrop of the postwar years. Drawn and Quarterly published a collection of his stories, Trash Market, in 2015, and now, New York Review Books is bringing out a new one, Slum Wolf, edited by manga scholar Ryan Holmberg. At 320 pages, it is a generous sampling of Tsuge’s work.
What new manga are on your must-read list in 2018?