Peter M Howard ::

L’Invasion du Manga

02Apr2005 [france]

Today in class we went through an article on the popularity of Manga in France. (I must admit, I was surprised - the comics sections and stores round here are massive!). They were talking about how its really picked up in the last couple of years (like, the number of manga comics released doubled in 2 years!). But they used the phrase "the invasion of Manga", which struck me as a little disturbing... It's the kind of phrase that gets used when you want to subtly hint at 'asian-invasion' ideas - the idea of the invasion of asian comics struck me as a very racist image - but then, the French are horribly racist without really knowing it...

They also took the typical French stance - criticising it because it's churned out faster than 'franco-belge' comics (so obviously of a lesser quality), worrying that kids were reading too much Manga instead of good old-fashioned Franco-Belge, which they (ridiculously) claimed was the child of literature and painting, while Manga is the child of cinema (by which of course, they mean contemporary action stuff)

And of course, even that point is wrong - contemporary action cinema is the child of Manga (through Anime)!