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Answerman - Why Isn't Manga Made In Color Editions?


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ultimatehaki



Joined: 27 Oct 2012
Posts: 1090
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:19 pm Reply with quote
Not surprised. The only time manga come out in color is looooong after the initial serialization like high school of dead colored edition came out 5 years after the manga started and it was after the manga had been on hiatus for 3 years.

Plus the manga has to be worth the extra effort in the first place, profit wise that is.
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DeeeFoo



Joined: 18 Oct 2015
Posts: 8
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:25 pm Reply with quote
I wonder, how are western comics (Marvel and DC) able to afford being in color?
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Sam Murai



Joined: 01 Dec 2006
Posts: 1047
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:30 pm Reply with quote
It very much reminds me of old black-and-white films. It's not so easy as simply slapping paint onto the film, as most productions were designed to work in and take advantage of medium. Even the colors that are used on set for an outfit have to be carefully chosen so that they will appear nicely in B&W.

Some may automatically believe, due to technological progression, that something is "antiquated" or "inferior" if it is not in color, but working within B&W is, in its own way, an art form unto itself.
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Shiratori-san



Joined: 25 Mar 2014
Posts: 59
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:36 pm Reply with quote
Great answer by Answerman. Better uncolored than badly colored.

Also, sometimes I imagine the characters hair / eyes / clothes / etc... to be of a certain color only to be disappointing later when I see a cover, colored page or the anime, eheheh xD
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 4675
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:39 pm Reply with quote
Some Mangaka, including popular artists like Eiichiro Oda, still do the traditional pencil and ink drawing. So I would assume it would be harder for them to start mixing paints and applying it to all the many things on the page. And unlike cels that you can least scrap off, if they mess up, then they will have to start other again.
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FenixFiesta



Joined: 22 Apr 2013
Posts: 2581
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:51 pm Reply with quote
DeeeFoo wrote:
I wonder, how are western comics (Marvel and DC) able to afford being in color?

In this modern era, it seems to be an intentional losing game.
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klv



Joined: 08 Feb 2017
Posts: 84
Location: Ba Sing Se
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:53 pm Reply with quote
I think the world has plenty of colorful options out there. The black-and-white look is something that just screams Manga, and gives it a defining characteristic that one can see right away.

Part of the fun of seeing the anime is seeing everything in color for the first time, or at least that is my opinion.

Also, Korea seems to have figured out the color/web-view situation with webtoons. I am sure that if a mangaka really wanted to, they could use computers and make a color manga online like that, but the industry is geared to promote a specific type of work in Japan, and that is black and white. The Japanese artist would have to work with Line Webtoon or another specific company if they wanted to make it in that scene. I know of at least one successful Korean webtoon artist who lives outside Korea, so it is most likely perfectly possible if the artist wants to pursue such a thing regardless of location, but it is probably harder to build reputation that way.
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NicoKurosawa



Joined: 03 May 2016
Posts: 8
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:55 pm Reply with quote
There is another example that I can think of, though it's existence is probably thanks to something the answer didn't go into. That being the fact that ēlDLIVE, seemingly full color from the start, and definitely better than the few pages of other examples I've seen, is serialized digitally.

EDIT: Ah, well looks like it was mentioned briefly, just no specifics, like the colorized Akira. As much as I do think it's a step up, I still agree to it not looking quite right.
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CatSword



Joined: 01 Jul 2014
Posts: 1455
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:22 pm Reply with quote
I'm surprised Viz hasn't brought over the full-color versions of Death Note or One Piece.
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Shiroi Hane
Encyclopedia Editor


Joined: 25 Oct 2003
Posts: 7538
Location: Wales
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:35 pm Reply with quote
There are some colourised manga still being made, although seemingly mostly in the "almost but not quite softcore porn" market as the two examples that come to mind are To Love-Ru Darkness and I think the other one was Wosnim no Rakuen (I think they've both had volumes available free for a limited time on Bookwalker but I can't remember how good they actually looked).

--edit--

Oh, and New Sister Devil Testament thingy as well I believe.
Don't know if these are available in print or just digital (I've only seen them digitally)
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Spastic Minnow
Bargain Hunter
Exempt from Grammar Rules


Joined: 02 May 2006
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Location: Gainesville, FL
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:59 pm Reply with quote
I think it might have been answered previously but I can't remember.

So... as mentioned, Manga do have, on special occasions, color sections. Why then are these color inserts so rarely reproduced in the collected editions? Very often the effect of turning these color pages into B&W hurts the art... and in comedy works (I'm thinking of Mitsuru Adachi in particular) the dialogue will even break the 4th wall to comment on the fact that the pages are in color. But I'm stuck looking at crappy grey tones.



Western comics typically produce a smaller amount of art per month and employ teams of largely autonomous artisans. The writer/art team may have preferences and give instruction but colorists, even the people whose only job it is to letter the words in the captions, make their own decisions.
Writer>Penciller>inker>colorist>letterer... often all are different people. As opposed to that ONE GUY and nameless assistants.

I'd be interested to see what would happen if manga tried to do this... could possibly lessen the karōshi in the business and spotlight and recognize different talents. Maybe a failed artist could be a splendid inker, maybe there is a guy that could be the "Todd Klein" of manga lettering if only given the chance.
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JR-1



Joined: 02 Oct 2012
Posts: 64
Location: Southeast Asia
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:11 pm Reply with quote
I seem to remember historically there are a few attempts of colored manga magazines?

That they never catched on is probably not just because b&w is just plain cheaper to produce, but also because manga artists most of the time are trained and consequently just plain better in b&w format. FWIW most manga artists color pages doesn't feel adding much from their b&w art. Western comic artists is much better in this regard (but they do have artists who exclusively color so)


Last edited by JR-1 on Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Parsifal24





PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:13 pm Reply with quote
Please Tell Me! Galko-chan could be looked at as one of an few series that is in full color from the beginning but that s a comic that started on Twitter and than got moved to Comic Walker. Chishiryou Dolis being a more "traditional" example of a Manga that used color since it was serialized in Feel Young.
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DerekL1963
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Joined: 14 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:20 pm Reply with quote
DeeeFoo wrote:
I wonder, how are western comics (Marvel and DC) able to afford being in color?


The answer can probably be found by comparing the per-page cost of a weekly or monthly manga magazine with the per-page cost of a typical Western comic. I don't have those numbers, so I can't make a comparison.

It's worth noting that for most of their history, the coloring in Western comics was pretty simplistic... Straightforward halftone screens with dark shadows and little in the way of shading. Or, to put another way, about the cheapest possible way to create and print color images. I suspect most of the actual cost (in money and time) of coloring is in the production of the artwork itself. The huge web presses used to print such publications are designed by default to print four colors (CYMK) and the additional setup cost is negligible when spread across large numbers of copies.

Something to consider though, the production process is very different for manga than for Western comics. Manga are typically the product of a single mangaka, who either produces or directly supervises every phase of the production with a small number of assistants. Western comics however are typically produced on the staff system, with an editor or editor/writer supervising a team. Each step (writing,pencilling, inking, lettering) is performed by a specialist on a production line basis.
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Sahmbahdeh



Joined: 05 May 2015
Posts: 712
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:20 pm Reply with quote
DeeeFoo wrote:
I wonder, how are western comics (Marvel and DC) able to afford being in color?


Better work-life balance for the artists, more diversified labor, and perhaps most importantly, comics in the West (North America, at least) are released monthly, or biweekly for really popular series, and the releases average about the same number of pages for manga that are released weekly. So, artists in the West have a lot more time to work on each page/frame.
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