One-shot (comics)

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Manga shop in Tokyo. TT061127A Manga shop in Tokyo.jpg
Manga shop in Tokyo.

In comics, a one-shot is a work composed of a single standalone issue or chapter, contrasting a limited series or ongoing series, which are composed of multiple issues or chapters. [1] One-shots date back to the early 19th century, published in newspapers, and today may be in the form of single published comic books, parts of comic magazines/anthologies or published online in websites. [2] In the marketing industry, some one-shots are used as promotion tools that tie in with existing productions, movies, video games or television shows. [1]



In the Japanese manga industry, one-shots are called yomikiri (読み切り), a term which implies that the comic is presented in its entirety without any continuation. [3] [ better source needed ] One-shot manga are often written for contests, and sometimes later developed into a full-length series, much like a television pilot. Many popular manga series began as one-shots, such as Dragon Ball , Fist of the North Star , Naruto , Bleach , One Piece , Berserk , Kinnikuman and Death Note . Rising Stars of Manga was an annual competition for original English-language one-shot manga, many of which have gone on to become full-length manga series. Some noted manga authors, such as Akira Toriyama and Rumiko Takahashi, have worked on numerous one-shot stories in addition to their serialized works.

In the United States, one-shots are usually labeled with a "#1" despite there being no following issues, and are sometimes subtitled as "specials". On occasion, a character or concept will appear in a series of one-shots, in cases where the subject matter is not financially lucrative enough to merit an ongoing or limited series, but still popular enough to be published on a regular basis, often annually or quarterly. [1] A current example of a series of one-shots would be Marvel Comics' Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius publications. This type of one-shot is not to be confused with a comic book annual, which is typically a companion publication to an established ongoing series.

The term has also been borrowed into the Franco-Belgian comics industry, with basically the same meaning, although there it mostly refers to comic albums. [4]

One-shot manga

An ukiyo-e of the Battle of Mikatagahara. Battle of Mikatagahara.jpg
An ukiyo-e of the Battle of Mikatagahara.

The comic art histories of different countries and regions are following divergent paths. Japanese early comic art or manga took its rise from the 12th century and developed from Chōjū-jinbutsu-giga ("Animal-person Caricatures"), went so far as to ukiyo-e ("floating world") in the 17th century. [2] [5] Western-style humour comics and caricatures had been introduced into Japan in the late 19th century and impacted on the styles of comic art. On the other hand, the significant development of modern era Japanese comic art was arising in the aftermath of World War II and further developed into diversified genres. [2] Nowadays, Japan has the largest and most matured manga market around the world. Almost a quarter of all printed materials in Japan are in forms of manga, while the audiences are from all ages. [6]

Most of modern era one-shot manga (yomikiri 読み切り) have an independent world set (worldview), character design and story line, rather than sharing a same comic universe. In Japan and other Asian countries, some one-shot manga are more like takeoff boards to determine the popularity from the audience. The format of a one-shot manga could be changed if it has a broad market prospect, [1] so that:

  1. a one-shot manga could become a serialized continuing manga after adapting;
  2. a one-shot manga could develop into a series of one-shot manga or serial manga, which are sharing the same world set and character design, but in different story lines; and
  3. side stories could derive from the original one-shot manga, such as a prequel, a sequel, and an antagonist or supporting role's side story.

One-shot western comics

The prototype comic works in Western countries were pamphlets, giveaways, or Sunday newspaper comic sections in the 19th century. These were then developed and published as comic magazines which were distributed with the newspapers sales on newsstands. [2] On the other hand, graphic books in America was also viewed as developing from pamphlets that sold on newsstands. [2] Comic was not highly regarded in the early market, for example, during depression comic was used to increase the sales of newspapers and some other products in America. Most of the comics were one-shot comics before the rise of long continuities in newspaper strips. [2] After some early developments, weekly comic magazines became the major way of dissemination in European comic markets. [2] Influenced by the chaos of social revolutions and changings in 20th century, Western alternative comic art was quickly developed as well as 1970s and 1980s' America. [7] Also, America has stirred up a spree of superhero comics since 1930s, and this comic form is still dominating the comic market.

The 19th and early 20th century

1919 Dutch caricature Anno 1919. 1919 Dutch caricature - Anno 1919.jpg
1919 Dutch caricature Anno 1919.

In this period, comic strips and magazines were the major reading formats that had been leading the markets. Divergent genres such as humour, caricature, and horror were dominant forms of comics in that time. In the very beginning, magazines were divided from the comic supplements of newspapers within a decade of their first appearance in America. [8] On the other side of the coin, in Europe, magazine format was developed as a comic supplement of newspapers along European features and never lost the identification. [2] It is worth mentioning that comic art is developing more rapidly during social revolutions, while comic strips were very topical and aimed at all ages.

Modern era one-shot comics

Exposicio Stan Lee & the american comic book. Zona lliure de dibuis. 37 comic Barcelona. Stan Lee & the american comic book. 37 comic Barcelona.jpg
Exposició Stan Lee & the american comic book. Zona lliure de dibuis. 37 comic Barcelona.

Since the 1930s, a specific form of comic, the superhero comic, has been causing a feeding frenzy in America and further impacted on other countries' comic markets. It dominated the publishing industry on comic art, and most of the published comic books were contained one-shot stories rather than serialized stories. [2] It is also worth mentioning that a single popular protagonist always centered all the highlights in a Superhero comic story. This best-selling model is still the majority of American comic market until today. [2] In the 1970s, due to the dislocations of social developments, alternative comic art traditions were developing under the era. This alternative underground comic movement used comic strips and comic books as mediums for radical changes. [2]

In more recent years, European albums are still the dominant comic format in their own markets, while superhero comic books dominate the American market rather than continued stories. Several large comic book publishers, Entertainments and animation production companies were established such as DC Comics and Marvel Comics. On another note, Japanese comics are increasing in popularity as Japanese-style anthologies are published in America in recent decades. [2]

See also

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Comic book Publication of comics art

A comic book, also called comicbook, comic magazine or simply comic, is a publication that consists of comics art in the form of sequential juxtaposed panels that represent individual scenes. Panels are often accompanied by descriptive prose and written narrative, usually, dialogue contained in word balloons emblematic of the comics art form. Although comics have some origins in 18th century in Eastern Asia, comic books were first popularized in the United States and the United Kingdom during the 1930s. The first modern comic book, Famous Funnies, was released in the US in 1933 and was a reprinting of earlier newspaper humor comic strips, which had established many of the story-telling devices used in comics. The term comic book derives from American comic books once being a compilation of comic strips of a humorous tone; however, this practice was replaced by featuring stories of all genres, usually not humorous in tone.

Manga Comics or graphic novels created in Japan

Manga are comics or graphic novels originating from Japan. Most manga conform to a style developed in Japan in the late 19th century, and the form has a long prehistory in earlier Japanese art. The term manga is used in Japan to refer to both comics and cartooning. Outside of Japan, the word is typically used to refer to comics originally published in the country.

Graphic novel Book with primarily comics contents

A graphic novel is a book made up of comics content. Although the word "novel" normally refers to long fictional works, the term "graphic novel" is applied broadly and includes fiction, non-fiction, and anthologized work. It is, at least in the United States, typically distinct from the term "comic book", which is generally used for comics periodicals and trade paperbacks.

Comics Creative work in which pictures and text convey information such as narratives

Comics is a narrative medium used to express ideas with images, often combined with text or other visual information. It typically takes the form of a sequence of panels of images. Textual devices such as speech balloons, captions, and onomatopoeia can indicate dialogue, narration, sound effects, or other information. There is no consensus amongst theorists and historians on a definition of comics; some emphasize the combination of images and text, some sequentiality or other image relations, and others historical aspects such as mass reproduction or the use of recurring characters. Cartooning and other forms of illustration are the most common image-making means in comics; fumetti is a form that uses photographic images. Common forms include comic strips, editorial and gag cartoons, and comic books. Since the late 20th century, bound volumes such as graphic novels, comic albums, and tankōbon have become increasingly common, while online webcomics have proliferated in the 21st century.

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A British comic is a periodical published in the United Kingdom that contains comic strips. It is generally referred to as a comic or a comic magazine, and historically as a comic paper.

American comic book Comic book originating in the United States

An American comic book is a thin book, averaging 32 pages and containing comics. While the form originated in 1933, American comic books first gained popularity after the 1938 publication of Action Comics, which included the debut of the superhero Superman. This was followed by a superhero boom that lasted until the end of World War II. After the war, until superheroes were marginalized, the comic book industry rapidly expanded and genres such as horror, crime, science fiction and romance became popular. The 1950s saw a gradual decline, due to a shift away from print media in the wake of television and the impact of the Comics Code Authority. The late 1950s and the 1960s saw a superhero revival and superheroes remained the dominant character archetype throughout the late 20th century into the 21st century.

<i>Tankōbon</i> Japanese term for a complete book or single manga volume

Tankōbon is the Japanese term for a book that is not part of an anthology or corpus. In modern Japanese, the term is most often used in reference to individual volumes of a manga series: most series first appear as individual chapters in a weekly or monthly manga magazine anthology with other works before being published as tankōbon volumes containing several chapters each.

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<i>Ultra Jump</i> Japanese manga magazine

Ultra Jump is a Japanese monthly seinen manga magazine published by Shueisha under the Jump line of magazines. Originally, the magazine was a special issue of Weekly Young Jump which was first issued in 1995. On October 19, 1999, the special issue became the new monthly publication Ultra Jump. The manga titles serialized in the magazine are published in tankōbon volumes under the Young Jump Comics Ultra label.

Adult comics Comics intended primarily or strictly for adult readers

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LGBT themes in comics

LGBT themes in comics are a relatively new concept, as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) themes and characters were historically omitted from the content of comic books and their comic strip predecessors due to anti-gay censorship. LGBT existence was included only via innuendo, subtext and inference. However the practice of hiding LGBT characters in the early part of the twentieth century evolved into open inclusion in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, and comics explored the challenges of coming-out, societal discrimination, and personal and romantic relationships between gay characters.

Erotic comics Adult comics which focus substantially on nudity and sexual activity

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<i>Jump Square</i> Japanese manga magazine

Jump Square, also written as Jump SQ. (ジャンプSQ.), is a Japanese monthly shōnen manga magazine. Published by Shueisha, the magazine premiered on November 2, 2007 as a replacement for Monthly Shōnen Jump, another manga anthology that Shueisha discontinued in June of that year. The magazine is a part of the Jump line of magazines. The manga titles serialized in the magazine are also published in tankōbon volumes under the Jump Comics SQ. label. The current (2015) editor-in-chief is Kôsuke Yahagi.

Hungarian comics

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<i>Marvel × Shōnen Jump+ Super Collaboration</i>

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  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Couch, C. (December 2000). "The Publication and Formats of Comics, Graphic Novels, and Tankobon". Image & Narrative. No. 1. ISSN   1780-678X . Retrieved 2 November 2020.
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