Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast: An Introduction

© Usamaru Furuya

Welcome, everyone, to the Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast!

The first Manga Moveable Feast of the year begins today, January 22, and will end next Sunday, January 29. The Feast gives the manga blogging community an opportunity to explore and examine together a particular manga or creator. This month we will be focusing on mangaka Usamaru Furuya and his works and Experiments in Manga will be hosting.

Who is Usamaru Furuya?
Usamaru Furuya was born on January 25, 1968 in Tokyo. (That’s right! His birthday is Wednesday, so let’s throw a great Feast in his honor.) He made his manga debut in 1994 with Palepoli which was serialized in the monthly alternative manga magazine Garo.

Furuya was interested in creating manga since his childhood, even enrolling in Osamu Tezuka Manga Correspondence School and submitting to the portrait section of Shōnen Gaho. But in high school, his focus shifted to oil painting. He went on to study art at Tama Art University where he also developed an interest in drama, sculpture (particularly abstract three-dimensional figures), and butoh dance. For a time, Furuya was a member of the butoh performance groups Karas and Sankai Juku. After graduating from Tama Art University, Furuya worked as a high school art teacher before returning to manga, bringing his fine arts background with him.

Furuya has also worked a bit in the film industry. After creating the manga adaptation of Sion Sono’s 2002 cult classic Suicide Club, Furuya would play a role (“the man in the cafe”) in the film’s 2006 sequel Noriko’s Dinner Table. He also acted in another of Sono’s films, 2008’s Love Exposure, playing the part of Miyanishi. Furuya was also involved with the 2005 film adaptation of Otsuichi’s horror short story collection Zoo (which I have reviewed here). He was responsible for the screenplay, storyboard, and character design for the story “Hidamari no Shi” (translated as “Song of the Sunny Spot” in the English short story collection), the only animated short in the collection. There very well may be other examples, but these are the instances I am familiar with.

Blog: 古屋兎丸ブログ「ウサギ☆ひとりクラブ
Twitter: @usamarus2001

Furuya’s Manga in English
Usamaru Furuya’s official introduction to English-reading audiences was all thanks to Viz Media. First came excerpts from Palepoli in Japan Edge in 1999 and then in Secret Comics Japan in 2000. (Regrettably, the entirety of Palepoli has never been released in English, although the selections in the previously mentioned volumes are different from each other.) Furuya’s series Short Cuts was serialized in Viz’s now defunct manga magazine PULP before the two individual volumes were collected in 2000 and 2003, respectively.

CMX Manga announced in 2009 the licensing of Furuya’s 51 Ways to Save Her. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately) the company folded before any of the series made it into in English. The recent resurgence of Furuya’s manga in English began in 2010 with Viz Media’s publication of the first volume of Genkaku Picasso. The final two volumes of the series were released in 2011.

2011 also saw Vertical stepping up with some Furuya manga, beginning with the one-volume Lychee Light Club, based on the Tokyo Grand Guignol’s theater piece. (Vertical has also expressed interest in licensing the prequel Our Light Club.) Most recently, Vertical began the publication of Furuya’s No Longer Human, a manga adaptation of Osamu Dazai’s novel by the same name (which I have reviewed here). The third and final volume is currently scheduled to be released next month.

Who knows what the future may hold, but I sincerely hope it includes more of Furuya’s works being licensed and released in English.

Feasting at Experiments in Manga
This is the first time that Experiments in Manga has hosted the Feast, so what should you expect? There will be new content related to the Feast posted every day. Mostly, the posts will consist of my own in-depth reviews of Furuya’s manga, so nothing too terribly exciting. I’ve previously reviewed Lychee Light Club, so for the Feast I’ll mostly be focusing on the first volumes of Furuya’s series. There should also be at least one guest post to look forward to! (Another first for Experiments in Manga.) Also, my monthly manga giveaway will begin on Wednesday and you’ll be able to enter for a chance to win Furuya’s Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1.

There will be three roundup posts during the Feast—one each on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday—as well as a final send-off on Sunday. These posts will highlight other participants’ contributions to the Feast. I will also be updating the archive page throughout the Feast. (I’ve already populated it with a ton of pre-Feast reviews and articles, so check it out.)

It will be very boring if I’m the only person posting content, so I encourage you all to take part in the Feast. Simply notify me of your contributions by e-mail at phoenixterran(at)gmail(dot)com or through my Twitter account @PhoenixTerran and I’ll make sure that you’re included in the roundups and archive.

Please enjoy the Feast!

Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast: Call for Participation

© Usamaru Furuya

A happy new year to you all!

I am very pleased (and very nervous) to officially announce that Experiments in Manga will be hosting the first Manga Moveable Feast of the year. What exactly is the Manga Moveable Feast? Each month, the manga blogging community gathers to celebrate, discuss, and examine a particular manga, creator, genre, or theme. Anyone and everyone is invited and encouraged to participate.

January 2012’s Manga Moveable Feast (which will be held January 22-January 29) will feature mangaka Usamaru Furuya and his work. If you would like to join in the Feast and need somewhere to post your contribution, as the host I would be happy to coordinate with you. You can reach me by e-mail at phoenixterran(at)gmail(dot)com.

During the Feast, you can notify me of contributions by e-mail or via Twitter. Simply include @PhoenixTerran (that’s me!) and the #MMF or #MangaMoveableFeast hashtag. If you have previous articles or reviews that you would like to be included on the Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast archive page, please just let me know and I will add the links.

I am both terrified and excited to be hosting the Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast. Please be kind to me; I will do my best!

Usamaru Furuya Manga Moveable Feast: Archive

© Usamaru Furuya

The January 2012 Manga Moveable Feast (January 22-January 29), hosted right here at Experiments in Manga, features Usamaru Furuya and his works. This page serves as the Feast’s archive and will link to posts contributed to the Feast.

Call for Participation
An Introduction
Roundup One
Roundup Two
Roundup Three
An Epilogue
A Final Farewell

Reviews:
The Children’s Crusade, Volumes 1-2 (Completely Futile)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Experiments in Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Manga Xanadu)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 2-3 (BookDragon)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Otaku Ohana)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Experiments in Manga)
No Longer Human, Volume 2 (Comic Attack)
No Longer Human, Volume 2 (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
No Longer Human, Voluem 2 (Slightly Biased Manga)
No Longer Human, Volumes 1-2 (Manga Bookshelf)
No Longer Human, Volumes 1-2 (Manga Connection)
No Longer Human, Volumes 1-2 (Manga Xanadu)
Secret Comics Japan (Experiments in Manga)
Short Cuts, Volume 1 (Experiments in Manga)
Short Cuts, Volumes 1-2 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)

Other contributions:
English, Please!: Palepoli (Slightly Biased Manga)
An Examination and Appreciation of the Works of Usamaru Furuya (Experiments in Manga)
Manga Giveaway: Genkaku Picasso Giveaway (Experiments in Manga)
My Limited Exposure with Usamaru Furuya (Animemiz’s Scribblings)
My Week in Manga (Experiments in Manga)
Usamaru Furuya’s Genkaku Picasso & Why It’s Currently the Only Shounen Manga on My Shelves (All About Manga)

From the archives (pre-Feast content):
Interview with Usamaru Furuya (Shonen Jump Magazine)
Met Usamaru Furuya in Toronto! (Same Hat!)
A Short Appreciation of Manga-ka Usamaru Furuya (Comics 212)
TCAF 2011: Spotlight on Usamaru Furuya (Kuriousity)
This Genius’s Horror Edition of MMF: Usamaru Fuyura (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Usamaru Furuya TCAF 2011 Autograph Signing Session (Flash Frame Omake)

Flowers
Flowers (Completely Futile)

Garden
Garden (Completely Futile)

Genkaku Picasso
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (About.com: Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Anime News Network)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (BookDragon)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Burning Lizard Studios)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Comic Attack)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Hooded Utilitarian)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (The Manga Critic)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (The Manga Curmudgeon)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Mania.com)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Read About Comics)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 1 (Slightly Biased Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 2 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 2 (Comic Attack)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 2 (The Manga Critic)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 2 (Slightly Biased Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 3 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 3 (Comic Attack)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 3 (The Fandom Post)
Genkaku Picasso, Volume 3 (Slightly Biased Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Good Comics for Kids)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Graphic Novel Reporter)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Mama Reads Manga)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Manga Report)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Manga Worth Reading)
Genkaku Picasso, Volumes 1-3 (Reading Is Delicious)

Lychee Light Club
Lychee Light Club (Ani-Gamers)
Lychee Light Club (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Lychee Light Club (Comics-and-More)
Lychee Light Club (Experiments in Manga)
Lychee Light Club (The Fandom Post)
Lychee Light Club (Genji Press)
Lychee Light Club (Graphic Novel Reporter)
Lychee Light Club (Kimi-chan Experience)
Lychee Light Club (The Manga Curmudgeon)
Lychee Light Club (Manga Worth Reading)
Lychee Light Club (Manga Village)
Lychee Light Club (Manga Widget)
Lychee Light Club (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Lychee Light Club (Otaku USA)
Lychee Light Club (Slightly Biased Manga)

The Music of Marie
The Music of Marie, Volumes 1-2 (Completely Futile)
The Music of Marie, Volumes 1-2 (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
The Music of Marie, Volumes 1-2 (Ryu’s Dreams)

No Longer Human
Dehumanizer Dept. (Genji Press)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Comic Attack)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Comics-and-More)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (The Fandom Post)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Genji Press)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Kuriousity)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (The Manga Critic)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Manga Maniac Cafe)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Otaku Champloo)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Otaku USA)
No Longer Human, Volume 1 (Slightly Biased Manga)
No Longer Human, Volume 2 (Genji Press)
No Longer Human, Volume 2 (Otaku USA)
No Longer Human, Volumes 1-2 (BookDragon)

Love Exposure
Love Exposure (Animemiz’s Scribblings)

Plastic Girl
Plastic Girl (Completely Futile)

Secret Comics Japan
Looking Back at Secret Comics Japan (Same Hat!)
Secret Comics Japan (Comics-and-More)
Secret Comics Japan (Slightly Biased Manga)

Short Cuts
Short Cuts, Volume 1 (Slightly Biased Manga)
Short Cuts, Volume 2 (Slightly Biased Manga)
Short Cuts, Volumes 1-2 (The Manga Critic)

Suicide Club
Suicide Club (Completely Futile)
Suicide Club (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)

Other Feast Archives