Germany has a special day dedicated to celebrating manga. As DW reported, it is August 27 which is celebrated as Manga Day in that country. To make things all the more exciting, more than 720 bookstores across Germany came together and doled out manga comics to enthusiasts for free on the day. This can be seen as an excellent move to increase awareness of manga comics among the masses so that such benevolence has the potential to reap rich dividends in the future.
In any case, manga is much sought after in Germany, with gross sales touching 70 million in 2005. Fast forward to 2021 and the segment witnessed an impressive growth of 75 percent. The German publishers Carlsen and Egmont almost had the entire market to themselves initially but had to make way for publishers Kaze and Tokyopop subsequently. Then there are several other new entrants making their presence felt in the segment as well. All of this makes for a significant development considering that Germany happens to be the third largest comics market in Europe, after France and Italy.
Interestingly, it hasn’t been manga all the way in Germany as the region earlier fancied Franco-Belgian comics such as Achille Talon, Adler, Amoras, to name a few. However, manga slowly made its way into the comics segment in Europe. It also came to be favored by a new group comprising mostly of girls and young women hitherto not exposed to manga in specific, or comics in general.
Manga’s popularity in Germany, or for that matter, in Europe as a whole can be attributed to what can be described as the Japanese and European hybrid drawing tradition. Take for instance the works of the late Jiro Taniguchi who did a great job with his sketches that draw upon both the European and Japanese styles. Works such as Distant Neighborhoods are a perfect example of his exemplary drawing acumen, something that ensured the subsequent popularity of manga in Europe as well. Distant Neighborhoods, meanwhile, went on to be adapted into a French-Belgian action film in 2010.
Among other reasons for the popularity of manga in Germany include the sheer variety it offers. There is something for almost every class of readers, be its children (Kodomo), male teenagers (Shonen), female teenagers (Shojo), young men (Seinen), young women (Josei), and so on. From sci-fi to sexual fantasies, there is manga for almost every genre.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles, the latter being my latest fad. Besides writing, I like watching videos, reading, listening to music, or experimenting with different recipes. The motion picture is another aspect that interests me a lot, and I'll likely make a film sometime in the future.