Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Tuesday, March 10th, 2020 10:29pm CDT

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Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

For many years, the Transformers G1 Manga from Japan eluded Transformers fans. It was once the stuff of much desire and wild speculation. Around October 2002, Million Publishing (currently known as Hero-X), publishers of the popular Transformers Generations series of books, released the first ever compilation of the Generation One manga alongside a Lucky Draw Black Tracks. The manga compilation was titled "Fight! Super Robot Lifeform Transformers: The Comics".

This amazing book came into my personal collection courtesy of a purchase I made at OTFCC 2003. Within its many pages were some of the most incredible artwork of the Autobots and Decepticons drawn in such a unique style for someone used to the styles of the Marvel Transformers comic books and the original Sunbow Transformers cartoons. I have enjoyed looking at the beautiful renditions of the Transformers characters who were drawn in a familiar manga or anime style by the very talented Ban Magami, yet very distinct from other popular artistic renderings to which most Hasbro-market Transformers fans are accustomed. 

However, as sensational as the images of our favorite "robots in disguise" were to my eyes and my imagination, I had no damn idea what the heck was happening in the book. Well, other than what was actually shown, and even then it was sometimes challenging to understand what I was looking at due to the small black and white artwork. Needless to say, as much as I enjoyed looking at the back initially, it has spent the better part of the last 16 or so years in storage alongside my original Marvel Transformers comics and my prized (embarrassingly) KISS Players Manga collection. 

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Fast forward to March 11th, 2020. This is the day that Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media will be released at book and comic book stores nationwide. Special thanks to Viz Media for providing a sample copy of this book to Seibertron.com for review purposes. What makes this version unique, is that Masumi Kaneda's stories would finally be translated to English at very long last. After so much time, the stories of the Transformers G1 manga would at last be known to Transformers fans outside of Japan. 

The book's presentation is top notch. It is a great addition to the collections of those who appreciate Transformers Generation 1 fiction in all of its forms, as well as the collections of those who collect Manga. As exhilarating as Magami's artwork can be to those of us who can't get enough of this style, the stories were slightly more juvenile than for which I was hoping (though highly suspected) after years of looking over these manga pages from the previous compilation. 

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

However, I understand that this manga was intended for kids, as were the Marvel Transformers comics that have such a special place in my heart despite their many flaws. Despite the story's simplicity, I enjoyed the desired nostalgic rush as I plowed effortlessly through this book. Page after page, I sucked in as much eye candy as possible, which seemed to hit so many of the right spots, while finally being able to understand what was happening in the artwork which had been the stuff of wonder for so long.

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Surprisingly, Abby Lark's translations were pretty spot on. To be honest, I was expecting various flaws, misspellings, incorrect character names or factions or other problems that are unfortunately common with Transformers translations. However, that wasn't to be the case with this book. Lark seemed to know her Transformers very well. The subgroups and characters were all appropriately named and the translations were all sensical. There were few, if any, errors. I was pleasantly surprised by this and truly appreciated the amount of time and effort it took to get all of these things right. The translations used in this book for Convoy, Bumble, Metroflex, Cybertrons, Destrons, etc, are the more well-known American names such as Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Metroplex, Autobots and Decepticons respectively. This might bother some fans but is perfectly acceptable to most. It will be interesting to see how the translations are handled in Volume 2's Masterforce manga for various characters like Super Ginrai versus Powermaster Optimus Prime. 

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

The last 74 pages of the page are dedicated to bringing some additional artwork into an "Illustration Works" gallery for your viewing pleasure. Many images within this gallery include promotional images for various episodes of the Fight Super Robot Lifeform Transformers cartoon through 2010 and the Headmasters series. In addition to this promotional artwork, there are some very detailed drawings of the alt modes for some characters like Jazz, Starscream, Wheelie, Springer, Arcee, Blurr, Scourge, and others. It is a very nice addition that I don't think was available in the original Japanese compilation (at least, not at this printed size) if I recall correctly.

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

While not as large as the original Japanese version from Million Publishing, it is only volume 1 out of 3 volumes. Volume 2 will be released later in May 2020 and should contain the remaining Headmasters stories along with the Masterforce. Volume 3 will be released later this year which will contain Victory, Zone, and Battle Star stories (Sidenote: who wants a Super Megatron toy after all of these years???). With a $24.99 cover price per book, it still costs less for all 3 volumes from Viz Media than the $80 I spent for the original Japanese compilation at OTFCC 2003 (not to mention inflation), which makes these books from Viz an absolute steal in my opinion, especially with the nice hard covers. 

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

In addition to traditional brick-and-mortar stores, you'll be able to find Viz Media's Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 at various online outlets such as Amazon.com and the Seibertron Store. Transformers: The Manga Volume 2 through is currently available for pre-order through Amazon.com.

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media

Transformers: The Manga's long sought after story is written by Masumi Kaneda, brought to life with artwork by the very talented Ban Magami, and made readable for those of us who can't read Japanese courtesy of Abby Lark, whose translations were seamlessly lettered and retouched into the original artwork by Brandon Bovia.

I would recommend this book for those of you who enjoy a nostalgic tug from the past and for those of you who enjoy Transformers Generation 1 fiction. If you're a die-hard Michael Bay Transformers Movie buff or only like comics with "deeper" meaning like some of the Transformers comics from IDW, than this might not be for you. If you can enjoy some of the lighter Transformers content intended for kids or just like awesome pics of cool lookin' Japanese styled robots, than this book is absolutely for you.

As for my rating? Well, by Primus, I am extremely biased and enjoy every page. It was a lot of fun to read through this book. I give it a loud and proud 4.5 Rodimus stars out of 5!

:bigrodimusstar: :bigrodimusstar: :bigrodimusstar: :bigrodimusstar: :bigrodimusstarhalf:


So what are you waiting for? Go get your copy today! In the meantime, join our discussion on our forums to further discuss Transformers: The Manga Volume 1!

Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media
Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media


Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media
Transformers News: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media


This article was last modified on Wednesday, March 11th, 2020 11:51am CDT

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Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056343)
Posted by Seibertron on March 10th, 2020 @ 10:33pm CDT
Sabrblade wrote:Gotta admit, from the looks of those pages, the official translation sure does look more refined than the old fan translation on TFArchive.

Looking forward to picking this up as well as Volume 2 and Volume 3.


Do we know if there will be a volume 3? I had presumed that the remaining G1 content would be in book 2 but it's been a while since I looked at my original compilation so I can't be certain how much content remains.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056345)
Posted by Sabrblade on March 10th, 2020 @ 10:37pm CDT
Seibertron wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:Gotta admit, from the looks of those pages, the official translation sure does look more refined than the old fan translation on TFArchive.

Looking forward to picking this up as well as Volume 2 and Volume 3.


Do we know if there will be a volume 3? I had presumed that the remaining G1 content would be in book 2 but it's been a while since I looked at my original compilation so I can't be certain how much content remains.
Yes. I posted an Amazon link to it previously. Volume 2 contains The Headmasters, the Headmasters one-shot, and Masterforce, while Volume 3 has Victory, the Zone one-shot, and the Battlestars one-shot.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056353)
Posted by Seibertron on March 10th, 2020 @ 11:24pm CDT
Sabrblade wrote:Yes. I posted an Amazon link to it previously. Volume 2 contains The Headmasters, the Headmasters one-shot, and Masterforce, while Volume 3 has Victory, the Zone one-shot, and the Battlestars one-shot.


Thanks for the info, Sabrblade. I updated the news story to have the correct info about Volume 2 and 3. :)
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056360)
Posted by BW Megatron on March 11th, 2020 @ 7:32am CDT
Now will this book work in traditional manga form, where you read back to front?
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056362)
Posted by It Is Him on March 11th, 2020 @ 7:59am CDT
Great review. These stories definitely spark joy, and remind me why I’m such a big Transformers fan in the first place. I read a few chapters last night, and I’m looking forward to reading more tonight. Highly recommended.

BW Megatron wrote:Now will this book work in traditional manga form, where you read back to front?


Yes
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056369)
Posted by triKlops on March 11th, 2020 @ 10:04am CDT
Got mine in late last night after work and gave it a quick thumb through. Looks absolutely amazing for a comprehensive compilation. Really looking forward to a chance to sit down and go through it cover to cover. For the low MSRP versus what it would have cost to hunt these all down, its a great value as well.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056371)
Posted by ScottyP on March 11th, 2020 @ 10:35am CDT
My copy arrived yesterday, went straight to the top of my manga to-read pile and it has me refocused on finishing Gundam: Ecole du Ciel so I can get to it. Excellent review here, helps set expectations though it's in line with what I'd assumed. Very happy to see this released!
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056378)
Posted by Seibertron on March 11th, 2020 @ 11:39am CDT
Courtesy of the fine folks at Viz Media, we have even more images to share with you from the just-released Transformers: The Manga Volume 1. This is a combination of images that are publicly available in the free preview at Viz.com along with additional images that their PR company sent us to share with all of you. The free preview includes almost the first 20 pages, and then we added in some of the extras (in appropriate order) that we received separately. You can click on the thumbnails below to view the full images.

This book can be purchased at Amazon.com, comic book stores, or other specialty retailers such as the Seibertron Store. Don't forget to check out Seibertron.com's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 and share your thoughts about this excellent book on our forums!

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Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056381)
Posted by Rodimus Knight on March 11th, 2020 @ 12:03pm CDT
"Marvel Transformers comics and my prized (embarrassingly) KISS Players Manga collection. "
Truth Be told, I'd like to see the Kiss Players Manga done here too. It sounded so bizarre I'd like to see it.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056385)
Posted by Sabrblade on March 11th, 2020 @ 12:46pm CDT
Rodimus Knight wrote:"Marvel Transformers comics and my prized (embarrassingly) KISS Players Manga collection. "
Truth Be told, I'd like to see the Kiss Players Manga done here too. It sounded so bizarre I'd like to see it.
Eh, it's content is kinda pornographic, though. Not exactly the same audience that this manga was aimed at (as in, young kids).
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056390)
Posted by Seibertron on March 11th, 2020 @ 2:02pm CDT
Sabrblade wrote:
Rodimus Knight wrote:"Marvel Transformers comics and my prized (embarrassingly) KISS Players Manga collection. "
Truth Be told, I'd like to see the Kiss Players Manga done here too. It sounded so bizarre I'd like to see it.
Eh, it's content is kinda pornographic, though. Not exactly the same audience that this manga was aimed at (as in, young kids).


Transformers KISS Players is not pornographic. It does have a level of adult sexual content that some many find inappropriate (especially when associated with Transformers), but it's not pornographic. Hustler and Penthouse magazines are pornographic.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056391)
Posted by ZarenPRIME on March 11th, 2020 @ 2:36pm CDT
Where can I purchase the Kiss Player Manga. I dig anything Japanese and Transformers and they look fun as heck.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056392)
Posted by Rodimus Knight on March 11th, 2020 @ 2:38pm CDT
Seibertron wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:
Rodimus Knight wrote:"Marvel Transformers comics and my prized (embarrassingly) KISS Players Manga collection. "
Truth Be told, I'd like to see the Kiss Players Manga done here too. It sounded so bizarre I'd like to see it.
Eh, it's content is kinda pornographic, though. Not exactly the same audience that this manga was aimed at (as in, young kids).


Transformers KISS Players is not pornographic. It does have a level of adult sexual content that some many find inappropriate (especially when associated with Transformers), but it's not pornographic. Hustler and Penthouse magazines are pornographic.


What I found weird about it, is you couldn't find a copy of it online. Like so many manga and comic books can be found to read, and yet this one, nadda.
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056394)
Posted by ZarenPRIME on March 11th, 2020 @ 2:42pm CDT
I've been trying to find copies of it to buy and can't find anything :(
Re: Check out Seibertron's review of Transformers: The Manga Volume 1 from Viz Media (2056439)
Posted by Sabrblade on March 11th, 2020 @ 7:31pm CDT
I, uh, have scans. :-|

Never looked at them, knowing what they contain, but I got them since they were included with the fansubbed release of Car Robots.

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