Like many events around the world, this year's New York Comic Con (NYCC) will happen remotely. The event, which boasted over a quarter of a million attendees in 2018, will continue online via Reedpop's Metaverse site and promises a full line-up of pop-culture events from the sci-fi, comic book, prime time TV, and anime spheres. As the finest purveyors of anime and manga, you might ask yourself what does NYCC have for you? More than you might expect, but we're to break the schedule down for you in the most easily digestible, otaku-centric way.
MF'ing Kunihiko Ikuhara
I cannot overstate how immensely cool it is to have Ikuhara at a convention again. The auteur anime director hasn't appeared as a guest in the U.S. in almost 20 years. Longtime anime fans will know him best from his work on the incomparable Revolutionary Girl Utena television anime and film and he's continued to experiment with the anime medium in his subsequent Penguindrum, Yuri Kuma Arashi, and Sarazanmai series. Ikuhara has sowed a reputation for emotionally and symbolically dense works. The director is attending NYCC as a guest of Anime Limited and will appear alongside Revolutionary Girl Utena manga creator Chiho Saitō for the "A Celebration of Revolutionary Girl Utena panel on October 10 at 9:30 am ET/6:30 am PT.
Wait, Did You Say Chiho Saitō?
Oh yeah, Ikuhara isn't appearing in the panel alone. Chiho Saitō is a notable name in our own right. The manga artist serialized the original Revolutionary Girl Utena and the later Revolutionary Girl Utena: After the Revolution manga series in collaboration with Ikuhara and the rest of the Utena BE-PAPAS team. She recently expanded her dreamlike into new genres and published her first boys-love work in 2018. Saitō will reflect on her work on the Utena manga during the NYCC panel, and perhaps reveal some new behind-the-scenes secrets of working with Ikuhara.
Manga, Manga, Manga, and More Manga
The world being what it is, it's pretty easy to devour a manga volume or three in a day. If your bookshelf needs a refresh but you can't decide what to pick up, tune into one (or all) of NYCC's manga publisher panels! Manga powerhouse Viz will bring Urian Brown and Karla Clark to its official industry panel on October 9 at 12:30 PM PT/ 3:30 AM ET to discuss the company's upcoming releases. There will also be some anime morsels in there if you're one of the many fans of Inuyasha. Yeah, ICYMI the hit series has an official spin-off anime airing right now called Yashahime: The Princess Half-Demon that continues the story but stars Inuyasha and Sesshomaru's kids!
You'll want to follow-up that panel with Kodansha and Tokyopop's industry panels, streaming the same day at 1:40 PM PT/4:40 PM PT and 2:15 PM PT/ 5:15 PM ET. Kodansha will focus on manga pioneer Osamu Tezuka in honor of the late creator's Harvey Award win, highlight the beautiful (and fellow Harvey winner) Witch Hat Atelier, and give an inside look at brand-new series. You'll be able to get even more recommendations for cozy autumn reading at the Kodansha Got Fall 2020 Manga Recommendations panel on October 11 at 3:30 PM PT/6:30 PM ET. Tokyopop is continuing to expand its line-up with a focus on LGBTQ+ manga, dōjin titles and original series as well as a variety of series for all ages and demographics. Tokyopop will host a second panel focusing on its new Love x Love imprint of LGBTQ+ and heterosexual romance titles on October 10 at 7:05 AM PT/10:05 AM ET. = The convention's manga panel content will close out with Yen Press' Manga and Light Novel Party on October 11 at 5:50 PM PT/8:50 PM ET. The Sword Art Online and Re:Zero publisher is promising some brand-new announcements, so keep your eyes on that one too.
The Fall Anime Season, Demon Slayer, and a Superhero Made of Bread?
If you took a look at the fall anime season's giant line-up and promptly passed out from indecision, there's a panel for that. Anime News Network's executive editor Lynzee Loveridge and Otaku Journalist founder Lauren Orsini have narrowed the season down to a less intimidating "must watch" list. The pair will make their case at the The Best Anime to Watch - Fall 2020 panel on October 10 at 1:05 PM PT/4:05 PM ET. Of course, if you already know what your favorite anime is (and it's Demon Slayer), Funimation and Aniplex will look back at the hit series and have the latest on the upcoming film Demon Slayer – Kimetsu no Yaiba – The Movie: Mugen Train. The panel starts at 2:50 PM PT/5:50 PM ET on October 9.
Now, when you think of NYCC and superheroes, your mind probably turns to Marvel's webslinger or the Gotham Knight himself. In Japan, there's a superhero that's known by everyone young and old, and his name is Anpanman. The US$60 billion character franchise stars one superhero who just happens to have a delicious pastry for a head. While not as widely known in the U.S., the character even outsells Hello Kitty in his home country. After years out of the spotlight, Anpanman is ready to claim is place in kids' hearts --in English and Spanish. Streaming service Tubi TV will introduce the character during the First Look at Japanese Phenom Anpanman Ahead of U.S. Debut on Tubi panel on October 11 at 2:55 PM PT/5:55 PM ET.
You can find even more anime and manga-related content at Metaverse's schedule, including panels focused on the anime-inspired series Seis Manos and Onyx Equinox. What panels will you be watching?