Comparing Manga and Classics

I just noticed that Akismet spam likes to eat cebukitty‘s comments. I’m sorry for the other people who posted and yet don’t have their comments posted; I don’t approve or disapprove the comments, but sometimes the spam blocker eats up spam wrongly. I don’t even moderate comments, honestly.

For anyone else who meant well (add to the discussion) but had their comments removed, I’m terribly sorry. I restored your comments, cebukitty; I’m sorry for the inconvenience. (I’ll upload it one of these days, ck. Don’t worry. 😉 )

It’s been some time and I still failed to write about the ninth episode of Honey and Clover, but it would seem so redundant: it would probably be another long post of me waxing lyrical about that majestic episode. It’s a good thing I haven’t watched it yet. :)

I’m currently downloading from #lurk @ irc.irchigway.net the manga Lament of the Lamb, or Hitsuji no Uta, which is its more popular name (for me, anyway) because it was the title of the four-episode OVA that was relatively decent and slightly moving, although it still had dark undertones and a very melancholic, effluvial, miasmic atmosphere. I like manga like those – that’s why I love GOTH. I also read traditional manga fare, like Bleach, but for some reason clashing swords over the course of 200+ chapters without any end in sight is boring for me. Anything that is immortal is boring for me; the beauty of life (as Japanese artists have portrayed in their tanka, haiku, and novels) is found in its effervescence – its evanescent nature. (Among my favorite authors is Yasunari Kawabata and Ryonusuke Akutagawa [I still can’t forget Rashomon.] because their minimalism and their brushstroke suggestiveness are more evocative of emotions, of catharsis rather than the tomes of people like Joyce [Ulysses, meh], for example, although I really did like Dubliners, especially The Dead.)

Since I don’t like reading leisurely anymore (more really like I don’t have the time anymore), I just pass time off with manga. It has lesser words and lesser ideas and concepts to process, and in addition, it also has pictures which stimulate the senses. Come vacation time, however, I will read Under the Volcano. I promise myself to.

I’m not saying that books are inferior to manga; for the most part, it’s the other way around. Manga, however, is an easier read, and passes time easier than reading novels. I mean I can read manga all day long and not get tired afterwards, but I tried doing so with A Farewell to Arms, and although I did manage to finish the novel within that single day, I slept for about twelve hours after falling immediately to bed. There’s something more in books (particularly great ones) that’s more energy sapping, but there’s also something in them that’s more rewarding than reading manga, especially if, for example, one has finished reading books like The Sound and the Fury. (When I was able to do that, I treated myself a scoop of ice cream and stopped reading books for about a month. Mind you, it’s very enervating and merciless in its untold slurs and movement from dialogue to thought, but it’s a very masterful portrayal on what human thought can be.)

The manga, as media, does not have that. It isn’t as rewarding as when one reads great classics. But it’s a bunch of great fun, and that fun that one procures from reading manga most often is more in magnitude than when one reads classical novels. One, however, obtains (somewhat) more insight from reading classics than manga (in general).

11 Responses to “Comparing Manga and Classics”

  1. hayase Says:

    A Farewell to Arms had a very sad ending.

    On the other hand, novels really have an edge over manga because of the fact that you could write lots of paragraphs to expand your point. And most manga are there for purely entertainment purposes only so it’s only natural that less insight would be gleaned from it. Classic novels are called as such because they can still be relevant or significant over time, whereas manga as it is now is a modern-day phenomenon which has yet to prove it’s worth as intellectual material.

    Waah what did I just write I sound like a geek it’s so sad to be doing overtime…

    But I usually prefer short stories to novels–for the stupid reason they’re easier to finish.

  2. Michael Says:

    I remember how Frederic walked out in the rain, getting drenched, without anybody anymore. That was heart-breaking, after having done everything to go against the odds. However, I’ve noted that Hemingway never writes happy stories. It’s either somber or downright devastating: For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Sun Also Rises, The Old Man and the Sea.

    Oh, I prefer reading novels if I had the time. It’s too bad that I lost interest after reading Noli me Tangere in English (lol), but that’s also because there’s school and there’s a lot less time for me to read. Drat, and I still haven’t finished Under the Volcano. What a bastard I am.

    Oh, do read Tanizaki, Mishima, Akutagawa, or Kawabata. They are made up of WIN and AWESOME. ‘Some Prefer Nettles,’ anyone?

  3. cebukitty Says:

    Gomen nasai for spamming! I was just confused when my comments didn’t show up right away so i hit refresh. Gomen nasai, gomen nasai.

    Re: manga vs classics, I actually grew up reading my grandma’s old illustrated classic comics. I read the comics version of a classic novel first before I was even old enough to comprehend the novels. And my love of comics continues to this day, so developing a taste for manga was inevitable. I do love reading voluminous novels, but I usually go for sci fi and fantasy epics.

    Comics/manga or novel or movie or anime is all the same thing to me — they’re all just different mediums of telling a story.

  4. tritoch Says:

    I don’t know if this was mentioned before but.. You seem to fancy GOTH or rather its death-themed story. Might I suggest Du Garde’s “Les Thibault” for your reading pleasure?

  5. tritoch Says:

    zomg.. its Gard not Garde.. haha I’m accustomed to the phrase “En Garde”

  6. cebukitty Says:

    and have you tried reading Death Note? It revolves around the premise of what if you had the power to cause the death of anyone, anywhere in the world, what would you do with that power?

  7. tritoch Says:

    Or watched the anime Shinigami’s Ballad. That’s nice too.

  8. tritoch Says:

    Oh by the way. Cebukitty, are you from UP cebu? Tell me if you are and what course. =)

  9. cebukitty Says:

    tritoch, i am from cebu but not from u.p. as for my course, nakow I’ve had several. you could say i’m medico-legal :)

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