My long-awaited review of Astra Lost in Space volume one was really well-received! I want to thank everyone who commented on it, and especially Viz Media for retweeting it and following both the podcast and myself on Twitter! It’s a huge honor and it made me really happy as a longtime fan of theirs. I really put in a lot of time and love writing the Astra review to make sure I highlighted everything that makes it one of my all-time favorite series. You can bet that I’m not done talking about it yet. In fact, you’ll be able to hear me talking about it for a good two hours very soon!


Speaking of Astra and Viz, we have a very special guest this week! Marlene First, editor of Astra Lost in Space alongside numerous other series, joins us for an incredibly informative interview about her career, what being a manga editor entails, her amazing life experiences, and of course, why she loves the works of Kenta Shinohara. We also recorded a lengthy retrospective about Astra Lost in Space itself, which was originally intended to be the focus of this episode, but since this interview already runs for nearly two hours and the Astra discussion is just as long we decided it would be best to split it up into two different episodes. Don’t fret, our Astra discussion is in the process of being edited, and we’ll release it within the next two weeks. Sorry for the lateness! We got lost in space ourselves. Or more accurately, in a vacuum of life problems that made editing difficult. But hey, all that means is that our Kenta Shinohara month is now a Kenta Shinohara month-and-a-half! You can never have enough discussion of his series, can you? So in the meantime, let’s get to know Marlene First!

Also available on Stitcher and Tunein!


 0:22 – Podcast Updates & Future Plans

Interview with Marlene First!

05:33 – Jump Start Discussion! Bozebeats

26:23 – How did Marlene get into Manga?
33:33 – What was Marlene’s First Exposure to Weekly Shonen Jump?
40:00 – Why did Marlene decide to become a Manga Editor?
46:30 – How Marlene inspired a character in Gatchman Crowds!
58:11 – What are the Responsibilities of a Manga Editor?
1:01:35 – What are the Differences and Challenges editing Simulpublished Manga compared to Graphic Novels?
1:05:33 – What is the Toughest Part of a Manga Editor’s job?
1:08:07 – What is the Most Rewarding Experience being a Manga Editor?
1:08:53 – What do Editors look for when Choosing Series to Pitch as Possible Acquisitions?
1:10:58 – Reading Manga For Fun as an Industry Professional
1:13:17 – Interacting with Fans as an Industry Professional
1:20:40 – What makes Kenta Shinohara’s Manga so Appealing?

1:39:40 – Wrap-Up

Enjoy the show, and follow us on twitter at @manga_mavericks, on tumblr at, and now on Youtube! You can also follow the hosts at @sniperking323 and @lumranmayasha, and special guest Marlene First at @miichi1st. You can also watch her gaming streams on Twitch and tip her for her work on Ko-fi! If you’d like to help support the show financially you can donate to Colton’s Ko-fi here and LumRanmaYasha’s Ko-fi here. Don’t forget to also like and subscribe to us on Youtube and iTunes and leave us reviews to help us curate the show and create better content! By taking our annual year-end survey, you can give us feedback that’ll help us curate the content of our show to reflect what our audience most responds too. We take your suggestions and feedback very seriously and want to figure out more ways to reach out and interact with you guys, so please leave some responses!

And we’re not done discussing Kenta Shinohara’s mangagraphy! We’ll be following up our interview with Marlene up next week with Astra Lost in Space retrospective! If you have any questions or topics concerning Astra Lost in Space that you’d like us to discuss, you can drop us a line in the comments below, comment in the Manga Mavericks thread on Animation Revelation, tweet at us, or send an e-mail to! And as always, thanks for listening!


About The Author Siddharth Gupta

Siddharth Gupta is an illustrator, animator, and writer based in Minnesota. They graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Animation from the School of Visual Arts, and have worked on projects for the University of Minnesota and the Shreya R. Dixit Foundation. An avid animation and comics fan since childhood, they've turned their passion towards being both a creator and a critic. They credit their love for both mediums to Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball, which has also defined their artistic and comedic sensibilities. A frequent visitor to their local comic book shop, they are an avid reader and collector, particularly fond of manga. Their favorite comics include The Adventures of Tintin by Herge, Bloom County by Berkeley Breathed, and pretty much anything and everything by Rumiko Takahashi.

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