The 67th Installment
International exchange of manga (comic) anime

by Hiroaki Tobita,
Associate Professor, Master Program of Information Systems Architecture

Comic Market (Comike) is well-known as an event of manga anime in Japan. In the Comike held in summer and winter, many artists both amateur and professional produce and sell their works. Participants are more than 500,000 people in three days. I risk my life to merely go and watch the event because of high temperature especially in summer and of sold-out of the drinks of vending machines. I can get a feel for being lost in a desert in Tokyo.

The events of Japanese manga anime are held around the world. Particularly “Japan Expo” of Japanese comic anime held in Paris, France marking the 15th in this year has been booming and has more than 200,000 participants. In France, because Japanese anime (Saint seiya, Captain Tsubasa and Hokuto no ken, etc.) were broadcast on television, many Japanese manga are read today. In the Japan Expo, there are many booths of manga anime and a number of cosplayers attend just like Comike.

French cosplayers are highly characteristic. In addition to high quality of their costumes, almost attendees wearing costumes come to the event. It follows that the event site are full of the cosplayers dressed up as characters of Naruto or One Piece. Usually most of cosplayers change their clothes to the character’s costumes after they arrive at the event site, but almost attendees previously wearing the costumes come to the event site in Japan Expo. Therefore, as they approach the event site, the station and the trains are occupied with the cosplayers. It is fun watching them and a sense of a mystical unity and solidarity will be arisen.

The Comike is mainly intended for works of amateurs, but displays of companies mainly occupy in Japan Expo. In particular, Japanese game companies are commonly seen. The artist’s booths are small than the company’s booths in size. In the decorated company’s booths, promotions of new released games spectacularly go on and general participants are induced. Japan Expo is absolutely Tokyo Game Show rather than Comike.

Behind the trend, there are the rules on display. I actually displayed my work and thought :
In addition to long time of display, the expenses of the display are heavy. Although the display, screen and projector are available for charged rent and French docent can be arranged, each charge is high. The display booth’s charge is also high. It is limited to company’s display for promotion so that products can be displayed in a decorated broad booth. To become events such as amateur artists can easily attend, there is a room for improvement of the expenses.

There are original comics,” bande dessinee” in France. As compared with Japanese comics in which tempo counts, it has the characteristics that their view of the world is important. The bookbinding also has the characteristics: Colored comics are basic. They are bound by large size and by hard covers just like picture books. There are a lot of bande dessinee authors. The master, Moebius’s view of the world is constantly new and he was involved in many SF movies making. It is famous that Japanese well-known cartoonist was influenced by him

For the continued more growth of Japan Expo as an exchange place of sub culture through manga anime, it is needed to take some measures for cost and contents. Bande dessinee should be attracted attention and known through events, of course in France also Japan.