Last week, I did a bit of research for one of Smith’s School of English Kyobashi’s high level students. He had requested some information about comic book stores in Japan after a conversation that we had about comic books and superheroes. After hearing about how I had learned a good deal of kanji characters through reading Japanese manga, he had felt inspired to learn English by reading American comic books. He expressed a particular interest in X-Men and had wanted to know if I knew of any book stores that sold X-Men comics in the Kansai area.
I told him about Guild Comics, an English comic book store located in Sannomiya, Kobe. I’d been there a couple of times and knew that they carried quite a few X-Men related comics. But he wasn’t too familiar with Sannomiya so I looked up the address for him on the internet.
This week, he entered the classroom looking all cheerful and excited. When I asked him why he was so chipper, he told me that he was really looking forward to the day trip that he’d planned for himself tomorrow. Where was he going? To the comic store in Sannomiya of course! He asked me to recommend some good comics so I told him that the last comic that I’d read before coming to Japan was Street Fighter by the Udon Crew – a pretty famous artistic group of individuals. I’d met them in Toronto a few years ago and gotten a few awesome sketches off them so I figured that he would probably appreciate their art, as well as the story. So tomorrow he’s off on a comic shopping spree. I can’t wait to see what he comes back with next week!