VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), the largest distributor and licensor of manga and anime in North America, is proud to deliver the launch of celebrated manga creator Naoki Urasawa’s tense post-Cold War detective suspense – MASTER KEATON – on December 16th.
The 12-volume manga (graphic novel) series has never been released in English before, and each volume will receive a deluxe treatment featuring approximately 18 pages of full-color artwork. MASTER KEATON was created and drawn by the award-winning manga artist Naoki Urasawa with story co-produced by Hokusei Katsushika and Takashi Nagasaki. It will be published quarterly under the company’s VIZ Signature imprint and will be rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens and carry an MSRP of $19.99 U.S. / $22.99 CAN.
MASTER KEATON joins VIZ Media’s library of other critically acclaimed manga titles by Naoki Urasawa that includes PLUTO: URASAWA × TEZUKA, MONSTER: THE PERFECT EDITION, 20th CENTURY BOYS and 21st CENTURY BOYS.
MASTER KEATON introduces Taichi Hiraga Keaton, an archeology professor and part-time insurance investigator known for his successful and unorthodox methods of investigation. The son of a Japanese zoologist and an English noblewoman, educated in archaeology at Oxford and a former member of the SAS, Master Keaton uses his knowledge and combat training to uncover buried secrets, thwart would-be villains, and pursue the truth. The manga series was originally published in Japan between 1988 and 1994 in Big Comic Original magazine and also inspired a popular 39-episode anime adaptation.
“MASTER KEATON is an engrossing manga series that follows an unlikely hero who solves mysteries and helps people with quick-thinking and suspenseful action. Keaton himself is a fascinating, unassuming character, which makes for an interesting contrast against the tense environment of late 1980’s Europe,” says Amy Yu, Editor. “Originally published prior to the success of later series like MONSTER and 20th CENTURY BOYS, MASTER KEATON displays the detailed art and strong multi-layered plot development that have become cornerstones of Naoki Urawsawa’s repertoire. We’re honored to add this series to our collection of titles from this visionary creator, and we invite readers to dive into the drama of this exciting new release!”
Naoki Urasawa’s career as a manga artist spans more than twenty years and has firmly established him as one of the true manga masters of Japan. The acclaimed creator won the 2011 Eisner Award for Best U.S. Edition of International Material – Asia for his series, 20th CENTURY BOYS (also published by VIZ Media). Born in Tokyo in 1960, Urasawa debuted with Beta! in 1983 and hasn’t stopped his impressive output since. Well-versed in a variety of genres, Urasawa’s oeuvre encompasses a multitude of different subjects, such as a romantic comedy (Yawara! A Fashionable Judo Girl), a suspenseful human drama about a former mercenary (Pineapple Farm; story by Kazuya Kudo), a captivating psychological suspense story (NAOKI URASAWA’S MONSTER), a sci-fi adventure manga (NAOKI URASAWA’S 20th CENTURY BOYS), and a modern reinterpretation of the work of the God of Manga, Osamu Tezuka in PLUTO: URASAWA × TEZUKA. Many of his books have also spawned popular animated and live-action TV movies, and 2008 saw the theatrical release of the first of three live-action Japanese films based on NAOKI URASAWA’S 20th CENTURY BOYS.
No stranger to accolades and awards, Urasawa is a three-time recipient of the prestigious Shogakukan Manga Award, a two-time recipient of the Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize, and has received the Kodansha Manga Award. Urasawa has also become involved in the world of academia, and in 2008 accepted a guest teaching post at Nagoya Zokei University, where he teaches courses in, of course, manga.
For more information on MASTER KEATON or other manga titles published by VIZ Media, please visit www.VIZ.com.
About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, California, VIZ Media distributes, markets and licenses the best anime and manga titles direct from Japan. Owned by three of Japan’s largest manga and animation companies, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media has the most extensive library of anime and manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland and South Africa. With its popular digital manga anthology WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP and blockbuster properties like NARUTO, BLEACH and ONE PIECE, VIZ Media offers cutting-edge action, romance and family friendly properties for anime, manga, science fiction and fantasy fans of all ages. VIZ Media properties are available as graphic novels, DVDs, animated television series, feature films, downloadable and streaming video and a variety of consumer products. Learn more about VIZ Media, anime and manga at www.VIZ.com.