Okawa Bkub is the author of Pop Team Epic (Poputepipic), the famous manga which is serialized on Manga Life WIN. Its LINE stamps and original goods are quite popular among otaku. Bkub has started a new manga series!
The new series titled Neo Naon Universe was released on February 7 in the March issue of FEEL YOUNG (Shodensha), the manga magazine for women.
One of Pop Team Epic’s distinctive factors is that it includes many parodies and jokes from the internet, and it is loved for the characters’ cynical and bitter lines.
Neo Naon Universe might give us another chance to enjoy Bkub’s cynical jokes! I couldn’t wait to read it, so I myself went to the book store and bought FEEL YOUNG.
On the cover of the magazine, it was written ‘Pop Team Epic’s Bkub starts a Short New Series!’ with big letters, and this headline was standing out more than the headline for Erika Sakurazawa’s popular series Ballet Russes.
The slogan for ‘Neo Naon Universe’ goes, ‘Ikitoshi Ikeru Kuso Onna Tachi ni Sasagu ♥ (Dedicated to Every Living Stupid Girl).’
I turned the pages feeling so anxious to read, but… I couldn’t find Bkub’s manga anywhere.
I went through the magazine several times, and when I finally found Neo Naon Universe, I was very surprised. The series was a 4-koma manga on just one page .
One page…? No wonder I couldn’t find it.
The punch lines and the ending of the story seemed softer than Pop Team Epic, but Bkub’s sense of humor was still there, and it made me giggle. In fact, KAI-YOU’s editing staff were all smiling after reading it.
Of course, Bkub might be just warming up, checking the reactions of the readers first. Thinking of the tone of the magazine, it might be challenging for Bkub to include jokes of absurdity and parodies. Let’s hope that this new series will be long-lasting, without making the characters go through any more pain, and without Shodensha’s reputation to get ruined like Takeshobo.
On Twitter, there have been comments praising the way the title sounds. I agree. It’s very catchy when you say it out loud.
There is just one problem. Considering the fact that Pop Team Epic’s comic book was made up of 118 pages and the fact that FEEL YOUNG is a monthly magazine, it would take about a decade for Neo Naon Universe to be published in book form if it keeps this pace. Let’s hope the series will gain more popularity and the pages will increase per issue!
On Magazine Data 2017 (2016 Version, Japan Magazine Publishers Association) which gives reports on data such as magazine circulations, FEEL YOUNG’s chief editor Mayumi Tanabe commented, ‘FEEL YOUNG is a magazine with writers who are loved by fashionable Ara-Saa (Around 30) Girls,’ and the magazine has an average circulation of 18,050.
Will Okawa Bkub’s cynical jokes be able to grab the hearts of the 18,050 fashionable Ara-Saa Girls?
Shuuzou Oshimi’s non-serial manga ‘Waltz’ is also awesome!
For those Bkub fans who are hesitating to buy the magazine thinking, ‘Hmm, just one page isn’t enough’, Shuuzou Oshimi, the author of Aku no Hana (The Flowers of Evil) and Happiness, has released a one-shot manga titled Waltz in the March issue of FEEL YOUNG, and it is a masterpiece!
The characters all have a twist in their hearts, and the story puts the spotlight on each of their feelings. Also, the scene of the trap boy saying ‘sorry’ with his nose bleeding leaves a strong impact on the readers.
It will definitely become a story you would want to read over and over again! I strongly recommend it!