Viz Announces More Omnibus Editions as 3-in-1, Not Vizbig
Viz first began collecting multiple volumes of previously published manga series in 2008, with the release of “VIZBIG Editions” for Rurouni Kenshin, Dragon Ball, and later, Vagabond. All were boys’ manga, focusing on fighters, all were lengthy (ranging from 28 to 42 books in their series), and all were at least five years old (per their original American release dates).
The next year brought shojo to the program, with Fushigi Yugi, Hot Gimmick, and Inuyasha. Again, two of these were lengthy series (although the demented Hot Gimmick was only 12), and they were already successful in the U.S. The binding up of three books under one cover at a discount price ($18, except for Vagabond, which is $20) gave readers an appreciated jumping-on or catching-up point. Also beginning in 2009, Viz collected 12 volumes of the immensely long (over 50 books) series One Piece in four “Omnibus Editions” for the “East Blue Saga”, although those are now mostly out of print.
Now, Viz has announced another four titles meriting this reprint treatment, only the name has changed to “3-in-1 Editions” (which bears the virtue of being simple and direct). Coming next month are Naruto and Kekkaishi, with Bleach and Fullmetal Alchemist launching the first week of June. The press release pitch is “summer reading fun”, and refigured reprint editions are a good way to get back in the attention of customers and bookstores. Already, three volumes of each of the new series are planned, to cover through the end of the year.
The VizBig editions are oversized; the 3-in-one collections are the sane trim size as the previously released volumes [~5×7.5]
Compare the previously released Dragon Ball or Fushigi Yugi ‘VizBig’ editions to the One Piece collections: the One Piece collections are smaller — a precursor to these new releases.
Thanks for clearing that up for me, Matt!
The Vizbig’s are beautiful. I’ve got a couple of the DBZ volumes and all of the Vagabonds. I can’t believe how much more pleasing it is to read in that format. Volume 9 of Vagabond is made of maybe three distinct fight scenes, the combined intensity of which is really stressful and exciting. The trim size and addition of the color pages (and notes, I think?) makes it feel like a deluxe package, but without the unwieldy size and weight of pretty much every comics omnibuses/Absolute.
I’m a huge fan of Vizbigs. I think there are a handful of volumes of Vagabond not collected into Vizbigs, and I’m waiting to read them (and praying Viz does one more Vizbig, assuming there’s enough previously published material) because the reading experience is so nice.
The One Piece omnibuses are interesting. They use thinner and cheaper paper stock, so they’re about as thick as two and a half normal volumes for the first couple omnibuses, and maybe just two regular tankobon for the last one. Death Note got a reprint series recently, too. I haven’t seen it in person yet, but it’s a two-in-one reprint of the first couple volumes.
It’s nice to see Viz revisiting past material like this. There’s a lot of stuff that’s incredibly out of print and shouldn’t be. This is a cool way to bridge the gap.
Oh I didn’t realize they ever released Omnibus One Piece volumes! Interesting! Doesn’t make much difference to me now because I bought all the single volumes. I already own most of these series in individual volumes but I only recently learned about Kekkaishi and I’m excited to try it!
Omnibus volumes are a pain because they’re difficult to fit in my purse and are heavy on my wrist. BUT at the end of the day they’re a lot cheaper (especially if I order on Amazon). So I approve of them :)
Don’t they discontinue the omnibuses after the third one?
I’ve heard that that does happen, that they don’t plan to reprint the entire series in omnibus form.