First things first - this rant is in no way intended to criticize Oda's genius. I'm sure he had his reasons for Luffy to announce that he wants to find 10 nakama in the very first chapter of the series. Most probably it was intended to make us speculate about who's likely to join throughout the series - that is until all 10 are gathered, though even then, 10 was somewhat ambiguous - does it include himself? do previous 'nakama' count? can it be more than 10? We don't quite know how exact and precise the statement was, and that's not what this post is about anyway.
One thing, however, is seemingly clear to all of us - there will be at least one more new nakama to join the Straw Hats, and the speculation regarding who it will be is driving me nuts sometimes and is often quite frustrating, to say the least.
Every time a new, interesting (or even minor) character is introduced, there will be at least one person pointing out that this character will DEFINITELY be the next Straw Hat member. Every time an old character is reintroduced or shown after the time skip, it's the same story. Even characters that obviously won't join the crew, like Princess Shirahoshi, seem to gather a whole following of fanboys (and girls) who argue that they will definitely join the crew until the very end - that is, until the Straw Hats say bye to them an leave the island. (Why it was obvious? She's a giant fucking mermaid (who can't even board their ship), plus a princess, plus lacks (at least) one important criterion that all Straw Hats have in common).
I want to take a moment to briefly look at each of the Straw Hat members and point out what makes them special.
Luffy - He's the undisputed protagonist, the captain, and he'll definitely become the Pirate King - 'nuff said.
Zoro - He wants to become the best swordsman in the world - the reason is the promise with Kuina and his own ambitions. Luffy helped him get out of a troublesome situation and they've been nakama since.
Nami - Her dream is to draw a map of the world. She has a sad past (Arlong Pirates, Belle-Mère, village held hostage). Luffy fights to liberate Nami.
Usopp - His dream is to become a brave warrior of the sea, like his dad. He has a sad past (Mom dead, Dad left him). Luffy helps him defend his treasure (the village) against the Black Cat Pirates.
Sanji - His dream is to find the All Blue. He has a tragic incident in his past (almost starved to death) and Luffy helps him defend the Baratie against Don Krieg.
Chopper - He sets out to sea to become a pirate because Dr. Hiluluk (his adoptive father) explained to him how great pirates are, and to be with and experience adventures with his nakama - having found nakama for the first time in his life. Luffy helps him beat up the man who made fun of and killed Dr. Hiluluk.
Robin - Her dream is to find the Rio Poneglyph and unveil the forgotten history. She has a sad past (Ohara, Buster Call, always on the run) and Luffy and the others fight to get her back from the government, returning her will to live.
Franky - His dream is to sail throughout the Grand Line on his dream ship as its shipwright. He has a sad past (Tom's death, feeling guilty). Luffy helps him escape from Enies Lobby along with Robin.
Brook - His dream is to meet with Laboon one more time. He has a sad past (Crew dead, alone for decades). Luffy fights to return his shadow, allowing him to join the SH's and overcome his loneliness.
Now, what do they ALL have in common? A goal, a sad past and they join after the SH's helped them win their battles. Those are also the three criteria that all possible future members have to meet for them to be real Straw Hat nakama material.
This also explains why Vivi was never going to stay with them long-term. She had the sad past, in the sense that Alabasta was in trouble and she also had a fight they could help her with; but she has no dream beyond being with her newly-made nakama. She's not like Robin or Chopper either, for whom having real nakama is something new and part of their dream - she had friends before, still has them, and she had a fine childhood, too. Her 'dream' was always fixing up Alabasta and after that was done, it became maintaining the peace there and taking care of it. She had no reason to go with Luffy, other than enjoying being with the SH's.
Now, while these are criteria that make characters likely, there are also those that make characters unlikely. One of them is - does it make sense? No, seriously. People keep bringing Law up, but the guy has his own pirate crew, with his own unique nakama there, and never in a million years will he join the Straw Hats. Why should he? What would happen to his crew? There's simply no need to. Is he cool and awesome? Of course. But he can be that without being part of this crew - he's still part of the manga, but for some people that doesn't seem to be enough. As for me - I much prefer him in the role of an ally who is a Shichibukai and has a powerful crew of his own, than him becoming a permanent member.
Besides - abilities are also important, and with Chopper, we already have a doctor. Sure, he has more skills than that, and is also smart and all that, but that doesn't make him fit in any more. It's like when people asked for Ace to join way back in the day. That was also completely unlikely, given his admiration for Whitebeard, being his own independent character, and there being no way in the world that he would accept Luffy as his 'captain'.
And now this week I read lots of comments calling for Sabo to join. And Koala, too. Seriously? Those guys are with the Revolutionary army, they have their own agendas, they have their own nakama; why would they? Do they even fulfill the criteria? Sure, Koala used to, for example - but now she obviously doesn't anymore. Other people helped her overcome her trauma, others helped her fight her battles and her dreams we know nothing of, but it's clear they are going to have to do with the Revolutionary Army, since she's in that club already - why would she join the SH's? I won't even begin with Sabo...
Anyway, this became a pretty long rant and all, but the main point was - please use your brains before shouting 's/he is gonna be the next nakama for sure' every time a character is introduced, it's giving me a headache reading that stuff every time. Of coure it's fun to speculate and with Oda, anything can happen. He could even deviate from his patterns - though it's unlikely to say the least; but for most characters that are called 'next nakama' by many, it just makes so much more sense to not join. They are great characters without joining the Straw Hats, and that is something I wish more people would realize.
Now, feel free to rip holes into my 'analysis' (aka rant), and I'd be really happy to see more popular 'next nakama' theories torn apart (Kinemon anyone?) in the comments below!
That's right. We don't discriminate against zombies. But anyway...
Folks, we really need one or two good redrawers to join us and help with the weekly chapters. We need you to be free on Wednesday and Friday early mornings (GMT) in order to help speed things up. Also, we've prepared a test page that we'd like you to take a stab at. Essentially, you need to remove all the text on it and replace those areas with art that looks as close to what the original would be like as possible. You can get the page here: http://i.imgur.com/XBnhqEO.png
If you feel up to the task, submit your result to [email protected] and tell us a little about your availability, timezone, and anything else you think might be important to mention. And for the love of science, don't submit anything if your program of choice is MS Paint...
Anyway, thanks to everyone checking this out and giving it a try, we appreciate it.
Can't believe it's been almost a year since we released the last chapter...
Ah well. In brief - the translator we had for the series went MIA and it's pretty difficult to find a new translator for such a margin series. However, we actually managed to finally find one, so a big shout out to Voxanimus - thanks to him we're able to continue working on the series again.
With the chapter we just released, 11, the first volume of the series is complete. We'll be starting on the 2nd volume shortly and hopefully be able to deliver chapters without any major breaks again. Enjoy!
I had this hilarious, well-thought-out (did I use too many hyphens here? I have a feeling I did, but I digress...), witty rant prepared to commemorate the first AoT: Before the Fall chapter. But I'm a bit under the weather and my lazy gene is kicking in high gear. So I'll leave you simply with these wise words of wisdom: OMFG NU AoT SERIEZ!!!111!!!
So today just happened to be one of those days. Our raw provider, while inches from home, dropped the issue in a gnarly puddle. Most of the issue was ruined beyond repair. We managed to somewhat salvage naruto but it was super smudgy so it's below our usual quality. The rp is going to pick up another copy first thing in the morning and we'll re-release a proper version along with Bleach and One Piece (it's just too much work and manpower to edit a page that's been smudged with water). We'll get them out ASAP. In the meantime, Ikore and kage will dance for your amusement. Feel free to throw money, paper or coins, and sharp objects at them. In fact, I encourage the latter.
Wow, I can't believe it's been almost half a year already since we last released a chapter of Green Blood. Time sure flies, huh.
Well, I have no excuses, really. It's been the usual. You know, personal life getting in the way, having to find a new translator - all that usual jazz.
We do have something to make up for it though. That's right, we've been working on these like madmen this past week and are now proud to deliver a whooping 5 new chapters to you! Chapters 24 to 27 cover the rest of volume 3, while chapter 28 marks the beginning of volume 4.
Also some more news for you - the series officially ended a couple months ago in Japan with chapter 49. In other words, we have 21 chapters to go for the awesome finale of the series! And don't be upset 'cause you'll miss all the amazing art. The mangaka actually started working on a new series last month, one about Roman warriors, which looks equally as boss as Green Blood. We'll probably get all over it once we're done with Green Blood, but no promises made!
Here's your chance to help out! We're looking for some new faces to join our team and assist us with the series that have a tendency to lag behind for a variety of reasons (time, resources, fapping, etc).
We're looking for a permanent translator for UQ Holder. We are looking for someone willing and eager to translate UQ Holder to lessen the burden on our translators. If you're skilled and would like to help out with this, please send an email to [email protected] with a brief bio including any and all experience in translating manga.
Edit: Thanks for the applications everyone, we've found our translator: Southrop! He'll be translating UQ Holder starting chapter 4.
cleaners and/or typesetters to help out with monthly releases.
We can't train you from scratch, but we can help you refine your
cleaning/typesetting if your performance meets our rigid standards. To apply, send an e-mail with a few samples of what you feel best represents your work. Any previous experience is a huge plus, any need-to-know information about you (nothing too personal if you don't feel like it, but hey, if you want to confide in us about how you still sleep with Mr. Snuggles we won't judge you...too much).
Edit: Thanks for applying! The cleaner position has been closed due to overwhelming number of applicants.
Redrawers for both weekly releases (Naruto, Bleach, One Piece, Fairy Tail, etc...) and monthlies.
Mainly we need artists for this, specific training/tips regarding techniques on how to redraw manga can be given if we see the seed of dedication and motivation sprouting from you (wow, that sounded poetic...please give me a second as I pat myself on my back).
For these positions please visit our recruitment page.
Since so many of you have been asking for updates on Jump and even more complained about the lack of it while it's out on other websites, we figured some things should be clarified.
Jump was on break last week due to Japanese holidays and so the new chapters of Naruto and One Piece are scheduled for today. In fact, we're currently slowly working on them. Slowly because many of our staff are away for various reasons, most of them simply being on holidays. In other words, it'll still take us a while, as unfortunate as that may be. Don't expect it before tomorrow morning GMT.
As for the leak of the super early Jump over the weekend on other websites? See, what happened was that the Chinese official publisher, who gets the official chapters way in advance much like Viz in America, leaked those super early chapters. Whether it was the actual publisher or some individual within the company or w/e, we have no idea. Several groups went ahead and slapped a shitty Japanese -> Chinese -> English translation on those leaked chapters and released them. We'd rather not tread into such murky waters so we'll just continue doing things our usual way.
Thanks for your patience guys and we'll get the newest releases out as quick as humanly possible.
The End Of Yet Another Great Series
I know, I know. We haven't worked on this series in a long time. Still, it's one of those series that goes way back for some of our staff, as far as the good ol' Binktopia days even. As a team, we never forget the series we once worked on together and when they come to an end we try and release those final chapters in a combination of 'honoring' the series and its mangaka(s) and honoring the staff members that used to work on them. Sounds a bit corny, but whatever, that's how it is.
With that said, look forward to the last and final chapter of Soul Eater - now available for your reading pleasure here on MangaStream.
So the title is self explanatory. Those of you familiar with how it works, however, should be aware of the small possibility that the next issue may in fact arrive extraordinarily early. There's no way to predict this other than for you to go out in public, drop your pants (or shorts), bend over and recite the alphabet backwards. If you do this (which I highly recommend) you'll without a doubt acquire the knowledge you seek. Not just for JUMP, but for life.
Stay tuned throughout the week as I'll be sure to post any relevent updates if and when they arrive.
Edit: For those of you unaware, FT and HSDK is on hiatus this week. Again, small possibility of it landing but don't hold your breath.
Sad news for all you Deadman Wonderland fans out there; we're about to release the final chapter. It's been a great run since 2007 and all of us at MangaStream are saddened to see it end but at the same time we're happy to have worked on this outstanding series. Personally, I haven't been involved in working on that many chapters, so I asked two of the main people involved to give their comments.
ikore, the driving force behind the editing and generally in charge of the project:
I scanlated Deadman Wonderland from the moment I started scanlation, working on it until Mangastream picked it up. Fast forward a year and a few months, I find myself working on it again. I'm glad I could work on this all the way to the final chapter. Thanks for reading!
waychanger, our most awesome translator:
It was my suggestion for Mangastream to pick up Deadman Wonderland when I joined MS more than 2 years ago (at the time, it was essentially the only manga I read that Mangastream didn't already carry), and now, finally, I am happy to see it through to completion, many chapters and an incredibly long (mangaka) hiatus later. I hope everyone has enjoyed following this manga along with myself and the rest of the Mangastream team. Thanks!
Did the series get the ending it deserves? Let us know what you think!
That's right, the long wait will be finally over soon. And before anyone else points it out - yes, I'm a week late with this, but I just found out and I'm super psyched about it, so cut me some slack.
From the looks of it, the new season will cover all the way up to Takamura vs Eagle and, of course, include Ippo vs Sawamura. There's no word on how long exactly it will run though, but those two fights are worth it alone and it's gonna be awesome, I just know it.
There is only one thing that kind of worries me; and that is whether the new voice actor will do coach Kamogawa justice. If you haven't heard, the old voice actor, Kenji Utsumi, died of cancer this past June, aged 75.
To answer the inevitable nagging: No, we have not stopped working on the manga. And since I'm tired of people asking us for Ippo I'll even let you in on a secret. Or well, I'll tell you something about the internal process of getting the series out for everyone's reading pleasure.
We've been working with Ignitione-One (another scanlation team) since we picked up the series about 100 chapters ago. They have actually worked on it for science knows how many chapters; 500? Lots. Someone go on their reader, find out and be easily the smartest person in the comments list please? But anyway, the point is that two parties are involved in delivering a new chapter. They have since been responsible for the translation and the proofreading of said translation, while we've been acquiring the magazine, cleaning the chapters, redrawing and typesetting - and of course hosting it.
All of us at mangastream have tremendous respect for the work they do, how natural and realistic they make the dialogs sound, and we'd not want to work with any other translators on this series. Unfortunately, they've been rather busy in the last couple weeks and months, with all sorts of private troubles and problems. Essentially, we're waiting for translations to arrive in order to release more chapters. There's no way to speed up the process at our end and thus there's nothing we can do. All we can do, just like you readers, is wait - and occasionally send out naggy emails.
Since I know you don't have their email addresses and wouldn't dream of sharing those, I'll share something else with you. This is their forum. I'm posting it for two reasons. One, it's a pretty fine forum to discuss anything related to Ippo and a bunch of other things and two, you can nag at them instead of at us - letting them know how much you want new chapters. However, please understand that it's not like they consciously choose to be "slow". So keep that in mind, be respectful and encouraging, instead of brainless, raging and annoying.
And since this blog post is getting way too long now anyway, I'll close it by saying: YATTA YATTA, NEW IPPO COMING SOON!
PS: Who else is gonna rewatch the first two seasons in the meantime? *Raises both hands* "Me me me!"
After this weeks issue, Bleach will be on hiatus from Jump 35-40. Starting from jump 41 (09/09), the last arc "1000 years Blood Ward Arc - The Separation Story" will start.
Before the last battle, i will be going on a long hiatus so that I can approach the final battle fully charged and give it my absolute all. When the manga resumes, please prepare yourselves for the "1000 years Blood Ward Arc - The Separation Story".
Edit: This week's issue is 34 fyi
Edit 2: Looks like I'm just the bearer of great news today. One Piece will also be on hiatus next week.
If anyone has been reading OP lately you'll know that Oda-sensei has been taking subtle jabs at FT. Well, I guess Mashima-sensei either finally caught wind of it or decided enough was enough. Chapter 343 of FT has some...interesting dialogue. Stay tuned.
Edit: I've written a brief explanation as to how my paranoid mind reached this conclusion below.
It's been nearly two decades since Toriyama-sensei ended Dragon Ball. Out of respect for the living legend, we've decided to release the first chapter of Jaco the Galatic Patrolman. We have several staunch supporters of Toriyama on staff so I thought it appropro to get their feedback on his new series:
Loki: My initial impressions were not good. Seeing an alien out of the 1950's talking with Dr. Jero for almost an entire chapter was underwhelming to say the least. I didn't expect anything in particular but I had hoped for something with a little more, for lack of better word, 'oomph' behind it. I mean this was the man who changed the face of shounen (Tetsuo Hara and Buronson deserve some love here as well) and inspired countless mangaka. Then it occurred to me while I was reading the chapter: Toriyama's already done enough. He doesn't need to make another hit series. He's already cemented his place in history. I should just enjoy this condensed series (it appears that it will last 20-30 chapters at most) for what it is (or isn't). Will it be the next big thing? Hardly. I reckon most people will mock and ridicule it and point out all of it's shortcomings. On the surface, Jaco appears to be something pulled out of the late 80's and maybe that's a good thing...
Prostyle: Toriyama-sensei is a cyborg! It would appear as if Toriyama-sensei up until now has been in a cryostasis chamber ever since the 90s and has been woken up just now for the sake of creating epic series. Unfortunately my theory is that the cryostasis chamber has malfunctioned and has left our beloved mangaka-bot in a state which only allows him to produce work suited for the 90s. Proof for that is the art style resembling frickin' Dragon Ball which is pretty yucky to a newagefanboiii like me but according to an accomplice of mine here at MS back when DB first came out it was like Jesus came out of the cave after the 3 days... so I'll take their word for it. Prepare for shots fired, what grinds my gears is the space ship. It's supposed to look frickin' cool, and instead what we get is a 'trivial' space craft that's popular among kindergarteners. Hey that might be the aimed demographic but call me cynical, it's very far away from my cup of tea. And even though some might negatively judge the main protagonist for being an alien, I actually accept the idea since to me it's a bit unorthodox, and me like unorthodox. With all of that the positives of this new series are now over. Everything else just seems out of date and even though people freaked the f#$% out when it was announced, it has came to disappoint at a level my English can't put into words. I sincerely hope somebody does enjoy it because I simply cannot.
Jero: As someone who knows there are mangaka that work their entire lives without ever managing to get serialized in Jump…. this better be leading up to something good, since it's anything but, for the first chapter.
Mankai: Lately when I wake up, I've been getting massive boogers. In both nostrils. I'm talking boulder size nuggets here. I don't know, maybe it's my diet. But I digress... look, anyone other than Toriyama shows up at JUMP with Jaco and they get laughed and beaten out of the building. Anyone who says otherwise is blinded by their fanboyism. Fact of the matter is, the man will get a lifetime pass to publish anything he wants to get published. If he wanted to serialize a spermatozoon traveling into an ovum and forming a zygote, the editors at JUMP would ask him to get started on it ASAP. He singlehandely turned JUMP into a juggernaut from the 80's into the 90's. Does that mean the readers should give him a pass for this sub-par series? Of course not. Feel free to judge it on its merits as you would any new series. And as such, I can only imagine the staunchest of Toriyama supporters finding joy in reading this series, whether it be for nostalgic reasons or simply out of respect. I for one plan on reading it for both.
Jinn: Do you know what it's like when you feel nostalgic about an old game you used to love as a kid, or an old TV series or movie? You have this urge to go and play / watch it, but when you do you realize that your memory of it was much better than it actually is (now) and you wish you hadn't tried it? Well, it's something like this with this new Toriyama series, except I rewatched Dragon Ball only a couple months ago and it still rocked, whereas this series... I am disappoint, and wish he hadn't given it another try.
ikore: Having never read or watched Dragon Ball (I'm sure some of you would kill me for that), I read this without any expectations at all. After seeing the raws I really didn't know what to think of it, it seemed awkward. The art is not really my cup of tea, but that's probably me not being used to that kind of style. The story is unique, but not that appealing in my opinion. I don't think someone else could've gotten in JUMP with a story like this, it doesn't feel like it lives up to the other series in the magazine. I hope at least some of you guys like it, as I simply couldn't.
Tryhard: I, myself, am a huuuuge fan of Toriyama-sensei, obviously because of Dragon Ball. It took up a lot of my childhood hours, watching episode after episode and I still watch it occasionally because it was just THAT amazing to me. With this series however, I think he's been lazy or just wanted to do something to occupy his time because it is leagues away from Dragon Ball's quality. Anyway, the wholepoint of this is just to say that I agree with what Loki said... the man's already got his place in the history books and made himself a legend, so he doesn't need to work as hard as others to create a "flagship" series. I'm disappointed with this new series, but overall, I am still an enormous fan of the man behind it all, Akira Toriyama-sensei.
From the mangaka who brought you FullMetal Alchemist comes a modern day adaptation of the acclaimed novel series Arslan Senki. It has often been called Japan's Narnia (whether or not that is a fair and accurate assessment I leave up for the reader to judge). Without further ado, we proudly present The Heroic Legend of Arslan.
It's done. Just think, we get to do this all over again next week! Yay~
I'm normally critical of the way Mashima resolves certain plot lines...but I think he did a fine job in this chapter.
You hear that? That's chapter 340 nipping at my heels. It'll be out within the next few mins...
Kijo worked on the redraws for this chapter until her fingers turned into bloody stubs (I have video proof... trust me, it's not pretty).
Finished this last night only to hear we couldn't release because of the site being updated! I hope you guys enjoy this one as much as we did.
Tis ready for your perusement (I know that's not a word but dammit it needs to be).
Edit: color page updated and added the wallpaper version at the end.
We're currently working diligently on the triple release (338-340). Chapter 338 is nearing completion (a nasty color spread is holding up the release). In the meantime, enjoy the new features we've added to the site (like the addition of comment section at the end of each chapter, the theme change in the top right, and the picture of one of our editors running naked through the streets of Amsterdam).
At ease minions, the sky is not falling and you're not having a stroke, MangaStream has been re-tooled for your benefit.
Change is a scary thing, we've resisted it for years, but sometimes it has to be embraced. One thing we tried to maintain with the updated layout was a sense of familiarity as far as positioning and overall aesthetics go. It's unmistakably different, but hopefully it still feels like MangaStream as you're flipping through and you'll get comfortable with it quickly.
Yadda yadda, how does this benefit me?
Not only did the front-end get an overhaul, but the back-end was completely rewritten from scratch with some goals in mind.
In our adolescence we had a pretty nice theming feature, but were forced to get rid of it in favor of static caching since our original codebase didn't anticipate the website peaking at a bazillion quadfinity pageviews per nanosecond. We've added this feature back into the website, and you can find it in the top right of the page. We will add more themes in the future as time permits.
When Twitter took their ball and went home, too many of our readers were cut off from us since we didn't have a news platform on the site. As you read this article, you're now realizing that this is a news platform! We will share important delays (Golden Week, double issues, my bad hair days etc.) and release updates on this blog, and you can hit us back and chat with other fans in the new comment section you'll find inside every post.
I want to avoid going into an exhaustive list, so the final big change you'll notice with the website is the new responsive design. We want everyone to have a similar experience browsing MangaStream whether they're on a Phone, Potato, Tablet or PC master-race. We'll be actively working out any kinks that people find with display issues on different devices, you can report anything you find in the comments.
Enjoy it, my prized minions!
Edit: Comments now enabled at the end of each chapter and a new settings feature has been added so that each viewer can customize their experience on the site