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Do you avoid non-Japanese manga?

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12:12 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 21


Personally, if a manga isn't written in Japanese I'm pretty skeptical that I'll enjoy it. I've given a change to quite a few stories that were written in Korean, Chinese, etc, and usually I get burned and wish I was reading a Japanese manga instead.

It might be different for someone who likes other settings, but I tend to prefer the Japanese setting, aesthetics and storytelling more. I like knowing with Japanese stories that they're less likely to run away from depicting ecchi or talking about sex in a more sex-positive and mature way. They don't like to pretend that people don't have sex like in stories from more conservative countries in Asia. I also like how the villains are more morally grey and tend to have relatable motivations, (with stories tending to imply that both sides are kind of wrong.) It frustrates me when monochromatic Chinese stories have villains that are simply evil.

Oh and I don't like how in Korean manga the guy acts toxically masculine and often just smacks his girlfriend around, even if they pass it off as slapstick. I'm curious about what differences other people have noticed and what attracts people with the opposite taste to reading manga from other origins instead.

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1:10 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 21


Don't you think it's a bit unfair to prematurely judge manga based on the country of origin? There will always be bad works as much as there are good ones, you just have to search for them.

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1:32 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 137


the art styles are often gorgeous

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2:15 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 49


I don't avoid them because they are not manga, but I think I do have different expectations. Generally, I expect poorer translations.
I have at least 1 manhua and manhwa in my list of top favorites. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood for a different art style but sometimes the all color art is a nice change.

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2:45 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 19


Hmm, what genres are you reading when you read non Japanese comics? I'm not sure about Chinese stuff because I don't read those, but you definitely cannot make those generalizations about Korean comics. At all. They don't have Chinese censorship and aren't conservative in their portrayals of relationships. If you're looking for sex positive depictions, manhwa can't be beat. Sex is ubiquitous. I mainly read BL, but I have read a few josei romance manhwas and I can say that the female leads are way stronger, assertive, and more self-assured than in the Japanese josei manga I've read. They aren't as weak or passive. But in general, I've found that description to be true with a lot more characters in Korean comics, regardless of sex.

I also like the fact that the art is more diverse in manhwa in terms of body type and faces. I think they tend to draw more beautiful faces on female characters, and even though there is still the (frankly bizarre and sad) tendency to draw non Asian facial features for obviously Asian characters (which is true for all Asian comics), I do like how the faces are more realistic looking. This is specific for BL, but I appreciate the fact that Korean comics don't always make the uke (bottom) characters slender and effeminate. They actually draw men with muscles and manliness as ukes. I have a strong preference for manly bottom characters, and I can find more options to read in manhwa. Girly/small uke characters exist of course, but there's so much more diversity in body types! Japanese BL is still very heteronormative in my opinion, so I like manhwa better in that regard.

Last edited by Jessica_desu29 at 3:06 pm, Aug 16 2022

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Post #798793 - Reply to (#798782) by ElKaichou
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9:04 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 21


Quote from ElKaichou
Don't you think it's a bit unfair to prematurely judge manga based on the country of origin? There will always be bad works as much as there are good ones, you just have to search for them.


Nope, my time is limited and I can't judge everything equally. If the premise is good I'll look into a series more.

Quote from Jessica_desu29
Hmm, what genres are you reading when you read non Japanese comics?

I'm not sure about Chinese stuff because I don't read those, but you definitely cannot make those generalizations about Korean comics. At all. They don't have Chinese censorship and aren't conservative in their porn ...


I generally read seinen, "gender change" eromanga and yuri the most. But I'm pretty sure you're mistaken about how comfortable Korea is with porn. One of the few countries in the world that blocks e-hentai with an actual national firewall is South Korea. I seldom see flirty loli characters either (which I do see more in Chinese comics.) Korean porn artists seem to play it safe and draw more thicc girls. (Imo Korean gender change comics are more homophobic too than the newer Japanese ones.)

Another reason I avoid manhwa is they tend to be formated for a cellphone so you have to keep dragging to scroll and don't have varied paneling that changes the pacing. With Japanese comics when I get to a big panel I slow down and take in the view. The Korean cellphone comics read like if a movie had the same pacing the entire film rather than a mixture of slow scenes and faster action. (I avoid 4-koma for the same reason.) I also don't care for the settings as much and Korea has been extremely late to develop any decent sci-fi that didn't seem bland and very derivative, or that were set in the distant future and not simply the near future.

With Chinese comics I tend to think the jokes are stale too, at least as translated. But I do like how Taiwan tends to draw cute characters in doujinshi and they seem looser than China and are more like Japan with wackier setups. Of the 3 countries I've named I'd be the most likely to give a Taiwanese work a chance based on personal experiences, tastes and biases.

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9:50 pm, Aug 16 2022
Posts: 551


Lately webtoons are booming, and I’ve found myself reading a lot more Korean and Chinese webtoons than even manga, but even back in my early days in the fandom, I didn’t avoid manwha or manhua (even though I think I might have only really read like one manhua).
Usually I’m reading BLs anyway, but I do remember that a lot of the manwha I read back in the early aughts all had some kind of gangster character.
So in short, no, I don’t avoid comics from any background as long as the art (first) and the story are interesting to me, I’ll read them. (I also read Marvel/DC comics).
My current obsessions are all Korean webcomics.
I don’t own any physical copies of manhua, but I do own a few manwhas along with my manga collection.

Post #798797
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4:50 am, Aug 17 2022
Posts: 12


If they actually were the same BW page format it would be a different question but what you're talking about is the webtoon format.
Which I don't see as directly comparable and much too loaded with white space and infinite scroll.
These webtoons become increasingly formulaic with limited colour palettes and reuse of the same character models or reference shapes.

I've read a couple and there are a scant few good ones but there's just something more appealing about black and white pages with tight art.

Last edited by liminal at 4:51 am, Aug 17 2022

Post #798800
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10:45 am, Aug 17 2022
Posts: 171


Absolutely not, I think foreign works are refreshing and Koreans are especially good when it comes to either making manhwas, be it in the traditional manga form or a long strip web comic.

But yeah I'd say I discriminate some countries. A lot of the Chinese ones feel cheap for example and "low budget" (I don't know if this applies, I definitively would say that for their animes but can a one or two men's work be low budget?).

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4:44 pm, Aug 17 2022
Posts: 1


Not really. In fact, when I first started reading manga in 2019, my first was a chinese manhua. It was only around this year where I started to read japanese manga.

I like how mangas of different origins have their own beautiful art style so this only leaves up to the plot to judge if I’m going to avoid this manga or not. So if the plot is overly cliched and frustrating to read, I’d drop it, Japanese manga or not. Personally, I think the Japanese manga translation is better than the Korean Manhwa translations though. And I don’t really like Chinese ceo straight romance manhuas that much it feels kinda cheap , I prefer bl manhuas more

Post #798807
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8:30 pm, Aug 17 2022
Posts: 454


They all have their own flavor though and I want to know what I'm getting into. What is a refreshing twist in a Japanese comic can be the expected progression in a Korean one for example.

Honestly I read a lot of manhwa back when Tokyo Pop was licensing everything under the sun though. That early 2000s Korean scene was my jam and it's kind of a bummer to see a lot of the artists that stuck around doing novel adaptation webtoons now.

Post #798812
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2:31 am, Aug 18 2022
Posts: 148


I'm really picky with what I watch/read and tend to drop tons of series so I understand your feelings about the quality of non Japanese manga. But currently most of the series I follow are non Jap.

Lately there are lots of adaptations from complete novels and OELs, this usually means the novel has survived competition with others and has a decent enough ending to have an adaptation (It always helps being able to see reviews about the ending of the novel to judge better). Japanese WN tend to be adapted to LN and then manga/anime son most end up being adapted before they end and it's difficult to distinguish the hype and marketing from the actual quality of the story.

I mean just the money invested in Japan on this industry makes it understandable that there will be a standard reasonable quality, but almost every Jap series is mainstream with editors having too much influence; they heavily relying on preconceived concepts, logic and tropes (to steal readers from other series at any point of the story). Most endings are usually either, put on haitus or indefinitely postponed milking new arks untill the author/editor reads one they like and then copies it from another series (and don't get me started with all the axed mangas there are).

Same goes with Korean and Chinese ones, but at least mainstream tropes are different. ATM I'm way too conscious of most tropes in different media, but trying it all makes easier to identify what you want and drop series that overuse the tropes you dislike.

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1:20 pm, Aug 18 2022
Posts: 2


I certainly don't avoid content based on country of origin. Doesn't matter to me if the creator is from Japan, China, Korea, America, Europe, the middle east or the north pole - an interesting story is an interesting story. The differences you note in the different kinds of comics you consume are often cultural. China, for example, has a lot of brilliant authors and highly talented artists who can't overly rely on sex and cheap fanservice due to Chinese obscenity laws so they put a great deal of effort into having quality art and good worldbuilding. (They do have to contend with copycats though, since a popular work often inspires less-talented people to ride the hype train and flood the internet with cheap rip-offs.)

Overall though, my experience with comics from around the world has been positive and I feel like I would be cheating myself and really missing out if I excluded them. Each is its own thing, and I don't waste time expecting stories from country A to be just like stories from country B. I just take it all in and enjoy the ride.

Post #798904 - Reply to (#798812) by Joese
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5:24 am, Aug 24 2022
Posts: 6


Quote from Joese
I'm really picky with what I watch/read and tend to drop tons of series so I understand your feelings about the quality of non Japanese manga. But currently most of the series I follow are non Jap.

Lately there are lots of adaptations from complete novels and OELs, this usually means the novel ...

I totally agree with you: a good story is a good story regardless the nationality of its author, though there are inevitably specific cultural nuances that could be lost to a foreign audience who doesn’t know well that specific culture.
I try to know what are the most used and stereotypical tropes in mangas, manhwas and manhuas in order to avoid trash; and I do the same for books and comics.
The only two things I dislike are the fact that some manhua authors use too much computer effects even when their artstyle doesn’t fit them, resulting in ugly-looking pages, and that they censor nudity even in manhuas whose audience is formed by older teens and adults and when a character is shown naked from the back (only in manhuas I have seen censored naked buttocks).

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