Vertically Challenged

In the past few days, the only thing that’s been squishing about in the manga rumor and gossip mills besides Chip Kidd and his poorly worded arguement about why he’s the author of Bat-Manga is the future of manga translator and publisher Vertical Inc.

Vertical Inc. is the publisher of many influential and ground breaking manga, with works like Black Jack, and Dororo written by the famous “god of manga” Osamu Tezuka and Andromeda Stories and To Terra… by Keiko Takemiya. Having just gotten a copy of the first volume of Dororo, I can do nothing but shower praise upon Vertical. The production values, translation, and overall goodness of this manga reminds me of why I started reading the stuff in the first place.

Let’s not lie to ourselves. The economy is pretty tight right now. Vertical had to let someone go, although managment says that they’re doing just fine. That being said, according to Brigid, I’m sure they wouldn’t mind if they got a few more sales off of Black Jack. And, if Black Jack is anything like the preview (which you can view here), it’s worth buying.

Rewarding good publishers is something that must continue in order to keep getting high-quality, well produced manga such as Dororo and Black Jack. Brigid has been kind enough to offer deluxe editions of Black Jack to a few lucky winners, and if I’m not one of them, I’ll be buying the book, not only because I want to make sure Vertical continues to publish, but also because Black Jack is an amazing book.

As readers, we have the choice to support creators and localizers by buying the manga we love, or to get our manga through more illicit means. If the fate of this little obsession of mine is on the line, the choice, for me at least, is clear.

(To purchase Black Jack, check out Amazon.com)

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