It’s kinda crazy that Pokemon is more popular than ever internationally twenty years later. Pokemon Go was a phenomenon, the hype for Sun & Moon grows more and more like an Exeggutor every day, and there was a huge uproar over Ash losing his match with Alain in the finals of the Kalos League in the anime. With the games, anime, and manga all better than ever, this has been a great year to be a Pokemon fan! Heck, with this much vitality, Pokemon is sure to be going strong another 20 years! On that note, screw the Olympic Committee’s reasoning for not including Pokemon among the anime and gaming franchises representing Japan in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. So apparently Pokemon is not as popular internationally as Yo-Kai Watch? Suuuurrreee….

While some franchises like Pokemon will never die, most series are finite. That’s especially true of manga. It’s unbelievable just how many long-running and popular titles have ended this year. Just this month alone, there’s been Nisekoi, Billy Bat, Genshiken, and as of this week, Bleach.

It feels surreal to live in a world where Bleach is over. It ran for fifteen years, and was among the formative series for an entire generation of anime and manga fans. Once a part of the so-called “Big 3,” it had a dramatic fall from grace about half-way into it’s run, and never recovered afterwards. Opinions on the series vary, but there’s no denying it left an impact in the community and the industry. It’s unlikely to continue on as a franchise like Naruto has, but it’s unlikely to be forgotten all the same, and sure to be a subject of heated debates between shonen fans for many years to come.

But we’ve got more to talk about this week than the ending of Bleach! This week’s Manga Mavericks features plenty of new licenses, movie announcements, and neat little tidbits to keep you up to date on the latest happenings in the manga industry! Plus, we discuss the new Shonen Jump simulpub series, Astra Lost in Space by Kenta Shinohara of Sket Dance fame! We all know that Colton is a big fan of Sket Dance, but what did he think of Shinohara’s latest creation? No need to be lost searching through the episode for it – this week I’ve got a breakdown to help you jump right to it!

Enjoy the show, and follow us on twitter at @sniperking323 and @lumranmayasha. If there’s something you want to ask that’s too big to tweet, drop us a line in the comments below, or e-mail us at mangamavericks@gmail.com! Thanks for listening!

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About The Author Siddharth Gupta

Siddharth Gupta is an animation student at the School of Visual Arts. Currently residing in NYC, the icy cold, snow-covered neighborhoods of Minnesota will always be his home. An avid animation and comics fan since childhood, he has turned his passion towards being both a creator and a critic. He credits his love for both mediums to Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball, which has also defined his artistic and comedic sensibilities. A frequent visitor to his local comic book shop, he is an avid reader and collector, and is particularly fond of manga. His favorite comics include Urusei Yatsura by Rumiko Takahashi, Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, The Adventures of Tintin by Herge, Bloom County by Berkeley Breathed, and pretty much anything and everything Deadpool.