One more manga post! Over at Sporadic Sequentialcultural anthropologist and Japan-based manga expert Matt Thorn explains why manga is so exacting:

Sure, there’s a wide variety of subject matter in manga, and more variety of drawing styles than many people realize, but there are countless structural details that most readers (both Japanese and non-Japanese) are completely unconscious of, and yet which are necessary to make a manga “feel right.”

Much more of great interest in the link, including concrete examples.

UPDATE: Even more in this follow up!


  1. Thanks for the link, Heidi!

    Actually, Michael, when I said “wide variety of subject matter” I meant “wide variety of subject matter,” as in action, romance, sci-fi, fantasy, mystery, suspense, sports, humor, hobbies, history, sex, family, business, music, art…. The formal conventions I talk about are only peripherally related to the subject matter. Sorry, but I’m not sure what you’re snarking at here.