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Dear American Comics Industry,
As you know, this isn't the first time I've stepped in to save you from yourself. But never before has salvation been so easy. Perusing Diamond catalogs and sales charts while observing global media from my Ozymandias-style control center, I have pinpointed precisely what American comics lacks.
You scoff. You doubt. But that's why you're constantly in need of rescue, comics industry: your inability to see the big picture. Look how popular the Internet is. And the Internet currently runs entirely on cat pictures. You need to seize that zeitgeist and put more kitties in your comics.
Jeffrey Brown got the memo back in 2007. He drew Cat Getting Out of a Bag
and went from that extra-sad minicomic guy to that bestselling graphic novelist and filmmaker who hangs out with Death Cab for Cutie. Is it any coincidence that the most revered minicomic of all time is John Porcellino's King-Cat Comics
? Or that no comics fan can ever, ever say no to more Catman? I don't think so.
You can do it, rest of the comics industry. All it takes is more cats.
I propose that the rollout begin with the licensing of all the cat manga you, the American comics industry, can get your ink-stained hands on. You've already laid the groundwork with adorable cat manga like Chi's Sweet Home
, published in English by Vertical, and What's Michael?
, published by Dark Horse. But let's go full panzer attack here. Thinking only of your best interests, I've compiled a retail catalog—and no, I refuse to say "cat-alog"—for a new all-cat manga line. One word of warning: all my research was conducted through often-untranslated fan websites which may or may not have actually been about manga. But I hope the spirit of the project carries it through.
I call it VIZ KITTIES.
Once this thing takes off, we can expand to other manga publishers, then start talking turkey about why the current lineup of the Avengers includes no (0) cats. Upon these humble foundations, comics industry, we will build an empire to rival that of ancient Egypt, which was also big on the cats.
THE WORLD'S MOST KITTY MANGA
Summer 2012 Catalog
by Hiroshi Masumura
Welcome to Atagoul Forest, a world apart. Hideyoshi, a big yellow cat with a weakness for sake and squid, is happy to guide you through its quaint villages, towering mountains and enchanted woods, all with the help of his human friends Tenpura and Takuma. But step carefully, for the Cats' Forest is as unpredictable as it is beautiful...
Serialized in Japan since 1976
Adapted into an animated feature in 2006
The most famous work by Tezuka Award-winning artist Hiroshi Masumura
But Gou-Gou Is a Cat
(Gou-Gou Datte Neko de Aru)
by Yumiko Ōshima
Devastated by the death of her irrepressible cat Sava, Yumiko reluctantly adopts a wide-eyed kitten named Gou-Gou. But when Yumiko is diagnosed with breast cancer, Gou-Gou turns out to be a source of support she never expected. Hilarious and heartbreaking, this autobiographical manga by one of the members of Japan's legendary Year 24 Group captures the mysterious connections between humans and animals.
Winner of the 2008 Tezuka Cultural Prize (for the chapter "Cher Gou-Gou...Mon Petit Chat, Mon Petit Ami")
Adapted into a feature film in 2008
Created by Yumiko Ōshima, winner of the Kodansha Manga Award and Japan Cartoonists Association Award
by Moto Hagio
Leo just wants to be a normal little boy, but there's one big problem: he's a cat. With the help of his human mother, he tries to fit in with the other kids. But between disrupting class with his feline energy and shocking restaurant staff by ordering rat pizzas, it seems like Leo will never learn to be human!
Appropriate for all ages
One-volume length appeals to children and casual manga readers
The newest manga from legendary, award-winning artist Moto Hagio (A Drunken Dream)
The Adventures of Cat Mix Toraji
(Neko Mix Genkitan Toraji)
by Yumi Tamura
In a world where human-animal hybrids mix with true humans, vicious mice in human form terrorize the populace. The warrior Pai'yan, with the cat-boy Toraji at his side, travels the country searching for his stolen son. But to save the boy, they must take a stand against the king of the mice...
By Yumi Tamura, two-time winner of the Shogakukan Manga Award
Previous Tamura works published in English include Basara, Chicago and Wild Com.
The Children of the City of Cats
(Neko no Machi no Ko)
by Satoshi Morie
In a village in Japan, an old abandoned teahouse has become a haven for the local stray cats. Shiloh, who once lived with a human family, rules the roost as a surrogate father to the other cats. But the teahouse's makeshift feline society is turned upside down when a little boy becomes determined to befriend them.
By the fan-favorite creator of Gakkou Hotel, Ikebukuro 13 and Love Sick
by Mineo Maya
Rocketed to Earth from a distant planet, Super Cat fights for truth, justice and the occasional nap! In this outlandish one-shot set in the universe of the legendary shonen-ai comedy Pantalliro
, the world's most courageous feline superhero takes on devious spies, scheming assassins and mad inventors. Nya ha ha!
Pantalliro serialized in Japan since 1979
One-volume manga provides a jumping-on point to the ongoing Pantalliro series
In a world where terrorists attack with gene-bending bioweapons, the counterterrorism squad Green fights back with its all-purpose humanoid weapons, the OBs. Into their struggle comes a teenage girl named Kaka, who's been searching for answers about herself ever since the day she survived a bioweapon attack that left behind 30,000 cats!
The only non-adult manga by popular artist and character designer Okama
Shaenon K. Garrity is a manga editor at Viz Media and is best known for her webcomics Narbonic and Skin Horse.
All the Comics in the World is © Shaenon K. Garrity, 2010