Tokyopop Loses Kodansha Titles

As reported by Brigid at MangaBlog, Tokyopop has announced that its license to print titles from Kodansha has expired and will not be renewed. That means that they will not continue with new volumes or reprint previous volumes (after they have sold out) in the affected series. A full list of Kodansha Tokyopop books can be found at David Welsh’s blog.

Some CLAMP series — Cardcaptor Sakura, Chobits, Clover — have already been announced as coming in new omnibus editions from Dark Horse. Del Rey has taken over Parasyte and Samurai Deeper Kyo.

The books I’ll miss most are these:

Several of those were featured on my list of good manga starting points, since they were approachable titles with wide appeal. If you’re interested in any of these titles, order them now.

Deb Aoki has further analysis, breaking out the list into titles that won’t complete in the US, complete with last publish dates. As she says,

You’ll also notice that many of the series left in limbo are quite long — several are 20 or more volumes in their entirety. If you’ve ever wondered why manga publishers aren’t picking up many epic series of this length anymore, this might give you a clue.

No reason was given for this decision. Earlier, rumors circulated that Kodansha wanted to start their own US publishing arm, but no definite news has been heard on that front.


  1. Not sure what I think of this… except for Kindaichi, it’s been a while since they were publishing something from Kodansha that I was really excited to see. Most of my current favorites are coming from Del Ray or Viz.

  2. Yes, it seems to be more recognition of current state than really “new” news. But I applaud Tokyopop for being so forward about this to answer reader questions, even if it’s not the preferred answer. (Which would be more like “we’re publishing a lot more Kindaichi immediately!” :) )

  3. Kodansha has been soliciting stuff under their own listing in Diamond in the last one or two catalogs. I don’t think that part is a rumor anymore.

  4. That’s right, they listed Akira and Ghost in the Shell collections in the August form (nothing from them was listed in June, July, or September). But without more information, it’s hard to understand how much of an effort this is or will be for them. I mean, there have been comic stores that have been listed as publishers in the past in order to offer an anniversary special edition comic — that doesn’t mean they’re continuing publishers. It’s an intriguing open question.

  5. Aw, shucks. I had the privilege to work on the Kindaichi series for a bit. I became quite the fan.

  6. I better start picking up Kindachi quick then!

  7. […] a shame they’ve lost Kodansha because they had a few series close to completion. But it’s not really a surprise; it affects […]

  8. This might turn out to be a good news. TOKYOPOP hasn’t released anything Kindaichi related for quite sometime so it’s really good that now someone else is able to pickup the licensing rights.

  9. […] as 2008, and they went through a difficult patch in early 2009, cancelling many planned books and losing Kodansha titles they’d licensed to Del Rey and Dark Horse, 2010 appeared to be something of a recovery for […]

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