Takehiko Inoue, as most of you are probably well aware, has a few incredibly popular manga titles under his belt, and Viz is continuing to bring them to the American masses in both old and new ways. The old would be the traditional manga route, which has already begun with Inoue’s Real (at $12.99/volume), and will continue with his other legendary basketball tale, champion of over 100 million copies in Japan throughout its 31-volume run, Slam Dunk (at the Jump title standard of $7.99/volume). I may never forgive Raijin Comics for depriving me of Dunk so many years ago, but this should do nicely.
The new way starts with Vagabond‘s release in the colossal VizBig format, each mega-volume containing three mortal-man-sized volumes and filled with some select bonus features. To further titillate fans of the series, Viz will be releasing two oversized illustration collections on September 16, Sumi and Water. Once again, I leave you to ponder that with words from Alvin Lu:
“Takehiko Inoue’s skill as both an artist and dramatic storyteller have catapulted him to the uppermost echelon of Japan’s manga artists,•bCrLf says Alvin Lu, Vice President Publishing, VIZ Media. “His samurai action series, VAGABOND, first introduced his flair for historically-based sagas to domestic readers and his dynamic and realistic style shines in a completely different arena with the debuts of REAL and SLAM DUNK. Readers will delight in Inoue’s comprehensive knowledge of the sport of basketball and tributes to many great NBA players. The further release of THE ART OF VAGABOND: SUMI and WATER showcase Inoue’s pure skill as an artist and will be a must-have for serious fans of this celebrated series.•bCrLf