Rescue Me, Rightstuf!

hisui_icon_4040 The phoenix has risen from the ashes that was Bandai Entertainment! When the U.S. release of Turn A Gundam was canceled in January of 2012 it was SO CLOSE to coming out that you could practically reach out a hold the disks in your hands. They even had trailers for the show and I have heard stories that people had gotten review copies. But then Bandai Entertainment closed up shop in the US. It seemed like Turn A Gundam was doomed to be one of the few Gundam series that was not officially released in English. I have to say that was a sad scenario as Turn A is not only my favorite Gundam series but also one of my favorite anime in general.

But that is no longer the case. You can order Turn A Gundam from the RightStuf on DVD. Best of all it is coming out for a reasonable price to boot. (Side Note: If you are complaining that Turn A Gundam is not on Blu-ray and are going to throw a fit on the Internet because of that then you’re not allowed to be part of my law firm.)

But this is not (just) a commercial for the DVD release. This title being pulled from the fire reminded me that there are several other titles I would love to see put back into print. They might have gotten a decent run in English at one point in time but these shows either were never finished or have become rather rare since they were released. These are all titles I would love to see the Right Stuf or a similar anime distributor pick up.

All these titles are series that we enjoy so while there might be one or two series that would do smarter to pick up they are not going to be on this list. This is a list of love and not one of accounting. Also the series had to have some sort of release in the United States. We would all like to officially watch Legend of the Galactic Heroes but it cannot be on this list.

narutaki_icon_4040 I pretty much get excited when ever NIS, Discotek, or Right Stuf have an anime announcement to make. Not everything is to my taste, how could it be, but all these companies still put a smile on my face. Right Stuf is kind of like if Discotek and NIS had a baby. Right Stuf tends to release older or smaller titles but with nice packaging and extras.

With Right Stuf’s team-up with Bandai, it got us thinking of what we’d like to see rescued from the backcatalog elsewhere. There is plenty of nostalgia on this list, but we’ve tried to be fair!

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Please, put Saint Tail back on the shelf.

Saint Tail was one of the first magical girl series released by Tokyopop before they started unflipping manga, it came out along side titles such as Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura in the U.S. Even though the translations were less than desirable, one was just happy to see titles being released. The magical girl genre hasn’t really flourished in the states since then and sadly has left a number of titles out-of-print including the irresistible Saint Tail.

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Manga of the Month: February

Saint Tail by Megumi Tachikawa

Saint Tail is a short, fun, and a little bit romantic magical girl series. Meimi, alter ego Saint Tail, and her friend Seira, a nun-in-training, spend their time much like wannabe Robin Hoods. Seira finds out what happened and Saint Tail steals back that which has been stolen from the practitioners. However, any good thief must have a rival desperate to catch them. Most of the city, and especially Asuka Jr., think Saint is a menacing phantom thief on the loose. Of course Asuka Jr. has no idea that his classmate, who maybe he is getting a crush on, and the famous thief, who he is also falling for, are the very same girl. Add in some great characters like Sawatari the school’s newspaper man, Asuka’s famous father, and Meimi’s off beat parents for spice. Megumi’s artwork is very charming and the very innocent romance playing out between Meimi and Asuka couldn’t be more appealing. Saint Tail is easily one of the best magical girls!

Yankee-kun to Megane-chan by Miki Yoshikawa

I was sold on Yankee-kun to Megane-chan by the name alone. And I was not disappointed. When I later learned that Miki Yoshikawa had been Mashima Hiro’s assistant it gave me some insight into style and tone of the manga while still retaining a distinct impression that this a unique work. If you like the style of Rave Master you will also enjoy Yankee-kun to Megane-chan’s art.

Shinagawa Daichi is famous for being one of the biggest delinquents at the school. One day Daichi is trying to have smoke on the toilet when his female class representative, Hana Adachi, bursts into the restroom forcing him on the school trip. Although Hana seems like a model class president it turns out she used to be an even bigger punk than Daichi and dumber than him to boot. As part of her new reformed image she is trying to be the ideal student president and solve her classmates’ problems. Soon Hana is dragging Daichi into her bizarre plans as well. Daichi begins to have a crush on Hana but can never figure out if she likes him or not.

The characters are quite charming and well suited for comedy. Daichi and Hana play off each other quite well. Daichi is the prefect straight man to Hana’s insane worldview. Miki Yoshikawa also has a very good grasp of just how long to build up a joke before setting off the punchline. The supporting characters are just as engaging, especially the ultra cute in a punk fashion, Rinka Himeji. I find Rinka intensely amusing and she has her own unique reality that complements Hana’s. There is also a cute little love story between Daichi and Hana that is somewhat slow to develop but that is sort of the nature of romantic comedies. Still Miki shows her ability to take the best of shojo and shonen and fuse them into something great.