New York Comic-Con 2014
Viz Media Panel

by Katriel Paige,

Viz Media held their panel bright and early (relatively early for the convention) Thursday of New York Comic-Con, handing out free volumes of the Toriko manga as people filed in.

Princess Mononoke – The First Story, a storybook using the original concept for the film from 1980, started off the panel, followed by talk of Kiss of the Rose Princess, the 5-volume series of the Resident Evil: the Marhawa Desire manga, and a helpful reminder about All You Need Is Kill – helpful because thanks to Viz, Takeshi Obata - the artist behind All You Need Is Kill as well as titles such as Death Note and Hikaru no Go - was at New York Comic-Con as well.

In terms of print, new manga being released included the genderswitching shoujo manga So Cute It Hurts as well as the horror series Tokyo Ghoul. Digital manga being released included World Trigger as a simultaneous release with Japan, as well as Deadman Wonderland continuing with volume 5. Food Wars and Nisekoi debuted first digitally, so in those cases, they are actually ahead of print volumess; for fans of Food Wars or Nisekoi, it is easier to grab the digital versions instead of waiting. One-Punch Man is a digital exclusive, so there are plenty of options for fans in both print and digital realms.

The panelists also talked about the Jump Start and Jump Back initiatives, which are to help bring the feeling of variety of the Japanese manga publications to the States; Jump Start includes debuts of new series, such as the first several chapters of a new series, or a one-shot manga. Jump Back is an initiative where older catalog series are brought back due to popularity, and Death Note will be the first in that line.

Animation brought a larger round of cheers from the audience, even though there were no new announcements. The panelists reminded us of Neon Alley in cooperation with Hulu, and that Naruto, Naruto Shippuden, Bleach, Rock Lee and His Ninja Pals, Sailor Moon, and Sailor Moon Crystal were all available streaming. In terms of continuing disc releases, there were new Shippuden box sets, Bleach box sets, a Vampire Knight complete collection including Vampire Knight Guilty, and the Death Note complete set with eye-catching extras.

Premium releases included Ranma ½, Blood Lad, Gargantia, and of course Sailor Moon. Because Viz had a special panel just for Sailor Moon, there was not much discussion about Sailor Moon here, except that the re-dub of the original series would be released in premium sets, with each season divided into two sets with plenty of extra features such as booklets, shimmery chipboard slipcases, pre-order bonus coins, cards, extra footage of what Sailor Moon has meant to people, and more.

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