Monday, September 18, 2006

In Praise of: Genshiken by Kio Shimoku

I'll put this out there right now: I'm not a huge manga/anime fan. only little bits of it have actively engaged me. The early Yamato movies, for one, Captain Harlock for another. Ghost in the Shell disappointed, although I still need to get a copy of Black Magic M66.

Let me put this out there also: I love Genshiken. Love, love, love.

These characters, while I may not speak their original language, nor do I get all the cultural references, are my friends, are ME. We speak the same language really.

If you've not seen the book, it needs to be picked up and read from volume 1. There are only 6 now out there, with 8 as the final number, so its easy to get in on. Kanji Sasahara decides to join a club in college, and he is reluctant to embrace the Otaku lifestyle: that of comics, anime, games and a life of fanzines and going to comicfests. Its the story of what happens when he joins the Genshiken, the Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture. There are 3 DVDs of anime, but they pale in comparison to the books. Get them. Love them. Be them.

Al I know is that when it ends, i'll miss not getting to spend any more time with Ono, Sasha, Madrame and the rest of the gang. If the hallmark of good fiction is that you don't want it to end then Genshiken by Kio Shimoku is essential good comics. Great stuff.

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