Crunchyroll’s new manga service just went live today. Anyone with a Crunchyroll All-Access membership will be able to access their entire library of titles, while Anime and Drama members can access only the most recent chapter releases. Anyone can sign up for a Manga membership for $4.95 a month. New manga chapters will be added the same day they premiere in Japan, meaning this is the most expedient legal way to keep up with the latest manga as of right now.
Publishers have been branching out into digital manga distribution for a while now, but this is the first service that I know of that works through a sort of “streaming model” like this. Those who sign up for the service will have access to several different manga series, but they won’t be able to download and keep any for themselves at home. It seems like a great method for testing out different manga and keeping up with the newest releases, but not so great for avid collectors.
Either way, I’m excited about this service! I don’t have the All-Access membership, so I won’t be able to see the full extent of Crunchyroll’s manga selection for myself. So far though, it looks like they are offering a varied selection of titles and have more planned for the future, so this is definitely something to keep an eye on.
You can check out the service yourself on their website or through an iOS/Android app.
Diabolik Lovers is a reverse-harem series that began its life as a PSP otome game (if you’re unfamiliar with the term, think of it like a dating sim for girls). At first glance, it looked like a winner to me: nice character designs. Vampires. Romance. Call me a cliche, but I’m a girl who loves me a good romantic vampire tale. What can I say? It’s a weakness.
I’d also heard a lot of good things about the game this series is based on, so my expectations going into episode one of the anime series were high. Can I say Diabolik Lovers lived up to the hype though?
A few days ago, it was reported that there would be no new episode of Free! Iwatobi Swim Club this week. In an announcement for their new Free! iOS app, Crunchyroll revealed the reason for the delay.
Free!‘s fifth episode seems to have been delayed this week to make way for a broadcast of the 15th FINA (International Swimming Federation) World Championship. Basically, Free! was postponed for a swimming competition. If you don’t think that’s hilarious, then something is wrong. This year’s FINA World Championship has been going on in Barcelona since July 19th and will wrap up August 4th. If you enjoy Free!, I’d say it’s worth checking out some of these real-life talented swimmers.
In the meantime, Crunchyroll’s Free! app collects all the previously released episodes together for easy viewing and boasts pictures of the main cast. There’s also a mysterious “hidden feature.” If you find it, please let us Android-users in on the secret!
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I have some bad news for the swimming fans that have been waiting religiously for this week’s episode of Free! Iwatobi Swim Club: there won’t be a new episode airing this Wednesday. It’s unclear at the moment what’s causing the delay, but Crunchyroll has posted the following under their availability notes for the series:
“Due to broadcast delays in Japan, Episode 5 of Free! will be airing on August 7.”
So, there you have it. It’s only a week, but it’s always disappointing to have to wait longer than expected for new episodes. In the meantime, why not check out my episode reviews for the series so far and rewatch the current releases? Don’t go through it all in one day though. You still have a week and a day to wait!