The winter ’04 issue of Bust has a fun little article on the popularity of shojo manga with young women (and not just teenagers, who get the typical coverage on this subject). While I enjoyed the assertion that Sailor Moon was responsible for creating a generation of female anime/manga fans (because I agree — that’s what Sailor Moon did for me), I do get tired of the “Manga understands what women want to read more than Western comics” argument.
I don’t read a lot of manga, like I’ve mentioned. Some of that is the cost — and while I’m sure it works out to be about the same in the end, it’s easier for me to spend $3 on a single comic than it is to spend $10 on a collection of 4 manga issues — it’s also that I just never manged to get into it. While I’m happy that women are reading comics of any sort, I think those that say there’s no good Western comics for women just aren’t looking hard enough.