Viz Media Partners with Japan's Ikki Magazine to Launch Sigikki.com, an Online Manga Website to Present a Diverse Collection of Titles Acclaimed for Creative Quality

Jul 15th 2009
Innovative Online Destination Pushes Boundaries Of Manga With New Content Available Each Month For Free

San Francisco, CA, JULY 15, 2009 – Viz Media, LLC (Viz Media), one of the entertainment industry's most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, has announced the full launch of its new SIGIKKI website, which represents a bold new partnership between the company's VIZ SIGNATURE imprint and IKKI, a monthly magazine published in Japan since 2003 that has established itself as the home of some of the most innovative, bold, and compelling titles in the world of contemporary manga.

Located at www.sigikki.com, this groundbreaking online manga destination will present a broad range of seinen manga to audiences in North America. From action to comedy to drama, slice-of-life stories to surrealist fantasies, the uniting themes these works share are an uncommon emphasis on creative quality and on pushing the boundaries of the manga norm.

Earlier in May, the SIGIKKI site posted the first chapter of CHILDREN OF THE SEA by Daisuke Igarashi, with Volume 2 currently being serialized on the site. Starting this month, new chapters from half a dozen manga series will be offered for viewing online in their entirety – FOR FREE. After a particular volume completes its online serialization, that edition will be published as a VIZ Signature graphic novel (subject to reader demand). Additional content such as creator interviews, feature articles, news, and free downloads will also be posted on the website each month.

“We are very excited to formally launch our new SIGIKKI website in partnership with IKKI magazine,” says Shie Lundberg, Sr. Director, Strategy & Business Development, Viz Media. “The convenience of web accessibility combined with some of the most compelling and diverse content manga will allow fans to sample a range of acclaimed new titles each month, for free. As these series begin to develop their own domestic following, audiences can then look forward to the eventual publication of these titles with the high quality VIZ SIGNATURE presentation befitting manga of this caliber.”

On July 23rd the SIGIKKI site will debut BOKURANO: OURS, by Mohiro Kitoh; DOROHEDORO, by Q Hayashida; SATURN APARTMENTS, by Hisae Iwaoka; and I'LL GIVE IT MY ALL...TOMORROW, by Shunju Aono. These titles will be quickly followed on July 30th with the opening chapters of KINGYO USED BOOKS, by Seimu Yoshizaki; HOUSE OF FIVE LEAVES, by Natsume Ono; AFTERSCHOOL CHARISMA, by Kumiko Suekane; and TOKYO FLOW CHART, by Eiji Miruno.

Manga Summaries Follow Below:

CHILDREN OF THE SEA By Daisuke Igarashi
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
The sea has a story to tell, one you've never heard before…
When Ruka was younger, she saw a ghost in the water at the aquarium where her dad works. Now she feels drawn toward the aquarium and the two mysterious boys she meets there, Umi and Sora. They were raised by dugongs and hear the same strange calls from the sea as she does. Ruka's dad and the other adults who work at the aquarium are only distantly aware of what the children are experiencing as they get caught up in the mystery of the worldwide disappearance of the oceans' fish. Volume 1 now also available in print!

BOKURANO: OURS By Mohiro Kitoh
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
Saving the world is hard. Saving yourself is even harder.
One summer, fifteen kids innocently wander into a nearby seaside cave. There they meet a strange man who invites them to play an exciting new video game. This game, he explains, pits one lone giant robot against a horde of alien invaders. To play the game, all they have to do is sign a simple contract. The game stops being fun when the kids find out the true purpose of their pact.

DOROHEDORO By Q Hayashida
(Rated ‘M’ mature)
A blood-spattered battle between diabolical sorcerers and the monsters they created.
In a city so dismal it's known only as “the Hole,” a clan of sorcerers have been plucking people off the streets to use as guinea pigs for atrocious “experiments” in the black arts. In a dark alley, Nikaido found Caiman, a man with a reptile head and a bad case of amnesia. To undo the spell, they're hunting and killing the sorcerers of the Hole, hoping that eventually they'll kill the right one. But when En, the head sorcerer, gets word of a lizard-man slaughtering his people, he sends a crew of “cleaners” into the Hole, igniting a war between two worlds.

SATURN APARTMENTS By Hisae Iwaoka
(Rated ‘T’ for teens)
A touching, character-rich vision of an intriguing new world.
Far in the future, humankind has evacuated the Earth in order to preserve it. Humans now reside in a gigantic structure that forms a ring around the Earth, thirty-five kilometers up in the sky. The society of the ring is highly stratified: the higher the floor, the greater the status. Mitsu, the lowly son of a window washer, has just graduated junior high. When his father disappears and is assumed dead, Mitsu must take on his father's occupation. As he struggles with the transition to working life, Mitsu's job treats him to an outsider's view into the various living-room dioramas of the Saturn Apartments.

I'LL GIVE IT MY ALL…TOMORROW By Shunju Aono
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
Life begins at forty…even for pathetic losers.
This is the story of a forty-year-old salary man who quits his job to pursue his dream of becoming a manga artist—and the family that has to put up with him. While not terribly unhappy, Shizuo Oguro can't fight the feeling that something in his life just isn't right, so he walks away from his stable (yet boring) day job to embark on a journey of self-discovery. Unfortunately for his family, this journey also involves playing video games all day while his teenage daughter and elderly father support him. Will Shizuo succeed in creating a true manga masterpiece or will he be just another drop-out living a life of slack?

AFTERSCHOOL CHARISMA By Kumiko Suekane
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
History repeats itself... Or does it?
St. Kleio Academy is a very exclusive school: all of the students are clones of famous historical figures such as Beethoven, Queen Elizabeth I, Napoleon, Mozart, and Freud. All of them, that is, except for Shiro Kamiya. As Shiro struggles to adapt to this unusual campus, St. Kleio's first graduate, a clone of John F. Kennedy, is killed. Are the clones doomed to repeat the fate of their genetic progenitors, or can they create their own destinies? And how does a normal boy like Shiro fit in?

KINGYO USED BOOKS By Seimu Yoshizaki
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
This manga bookstore has a thousand stories to tell.
A businessman discovers how his childhood memories can brighten his day. An art student finds inspiration. An archer hits a surprising bull's eye. A housewife rediscovers romance. A teenager discovers his true self in the pages of a manga magazine. Welcome to Kingyo Used Books, a place where people find their dreams in manga…

HOUSE OF FIVE LEAVES By Natsume Ono
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
A many-sided tale of faith and betrayal, drama and intrigue, set in the world of old Edo.
Masterless samurai Akitsu Masanosuke is a skilled and loyal swordsman, but his naïve, diffident nature has time and again caused him to be let go by the lord whom he has worked for. Hungry and desperate, he becomes a bodyguard for Yaichi, the charismatic leader of a gang called “Five Leaves.” Although disturbed by the gang's sinister activities, Masa begins to suspect that Yaichi's motivations are not what they seem. And despite his misgivings, the deeper he's drawn into the world of the Five Leaves, the more he finds himself fascinated by these devious, mysterious outlaws.

TOKYO FLOW CHART By Eiji Miruno
(Rated ‘T+’ for older teens)
This manga will f(low) with your brain!
Have you ever wished that somebody else would just DO SOMETHING about the chaos in your life? Then this is the perfect manga for a slacker like you! Tokyo Flow Chart is (probably) the world's first four-frame comic strip in flow chart format. It breaks down the complexities of life and aids in the mastery of brain skills such as flow-chart-manga comprehension or mental bullet-dodging. As Confusious say: “let your brain flow with the chart!”

About Viz Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Viz Media, LLC (Viz Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan's largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha, Inc., Shogakukan, Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., Viz Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa and is a global ex-Asia licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, and DVDs, and develops, markets, licenses, and distributes animated entertainment for audiences and consumers of all ages. Contact Viz Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at www.VIZ.com.


discuss this in the forum (1 post) |
bookmark/share with:

Press Release homepage / archives

Around The Web