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October 10, 2015

The Cartoon Network Effect on manga

by Adam Finley, posted Oct 18th 2006 3:05PM

bleachIt's funny how popular manga has become in the last several years. And to think all I did was read Garfield and Heathcliff books. These days many people in the biz point to the Cartoon Network Effect on manga sales due to the increasing popularity of anime on the network. Thomas J. McLean, writing for Publishers Weekly, uses Bleach as an example. That particular manga was never a huge seller, but when the anime debuted on Adult Swim, sales of the manga began to soar. This is not true, though, for all comic books and graphic novels. In the case of manga and anime, the two often have a direct connection that makes it easier to move from one to another. American animated series based on comic books don't always have that connection, and the result is that a series like Fantastic Four, while popular, doesn't help the sale of Fantastic Four comic books that have no direct correlation with the television series. This difference, however, can work, as in the case of Teen Titans, a cartoon that looks nothing like the original comic books. The anime-style of that show probably doesn't hurt much, either.

[via Toon Zone]

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Yes, the boom in manga is mostly due to internet word of mouth and the increase in shoujo (girls') titles being published. But Adult Swim (like Toonami before it) has had a big impact on sales of shounen (boys') manga, as the massive sales numbers for manga like Fullmetal Alchemist show.

Also, C.A.,

Thundercats was an American show produced by a Japanese studio, but Toonami has shown many non-Japanese shows, including serveral Warner/DC shows like Batman Beyond. But I agree: I can't really understand why Gundam Seed Destiny isn't being shown on Toonami like its predecessors. (It might not be a great show, but it's the first Gundam with a U.S. license not to air.)

October 30 2006 at 4:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

When I was growing up, Toonami (When it was in the afternoon 3:00 - 5:30) showed

Dragon Ball
Dragon Ball Z
Dragon Ball GT
Tenchi Muyo!
Tenchi Muyo Universe
Tehcni Muyo in Tokyo
Outlaw Star
Sailor Moon
Samurai Jack
Gundam Wing plus their movie
Mobile Suit Gundam
G Gundam
SD Gundam
Rorouni Kenshin
Card Captors
Gundam 0080
Yu Yu Hakusho
Thunder Cats (Is this even Japanese?)

If you want to watch good anime, I suggest you watch Bleach or Naruto. I think Toonami needs to rethink their anime shows like Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo and One Piece.

October 18 2006 at 8:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

There never has been that much anime on Cartoon Network (2 hours a day tops) When I was growing up there was at least that much on broadcast TV (Robotech, Voltron, Speed Racer reruns, Star Blazers, etc)

Since most of the sales growth has been in segments not covered by the Anime that has aired on American TV, which tends to be aimed at young boys (pokemon, yugioh, etc) or Teenage boys (anything with bouncy boobs or a giant robot), I would not bet that the airing of anime was the main motivator in this current Manga sales boom.

The reason Manga boomed was twofold

1> They gave up the 32-64 pages a month for $3.50 (later collected into volumes that cost at least $15) american comic book sales practice and changed to the $10 (or less) for 200-300 page graphic novels.

2> The realized they could market to "regular" teenagers and not just the sci-fi/comic book geeks. Over half of Manga sold is to teenage and young-adult girls and women now.

October 18 2006 at 4:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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