Anime Vice News

Comic Accused of Bleach Plagiarism; Publishers & Tite Kubo Speak

A western comic artist is accused of plagiarising Tite Kubo's manga.

Those of you who listened to the podcast yesterday already know about this, but for the rest of you: yesterday word started hitting Twitter that a Bleach Livejournal community was accusing comic creator Nick Simmons of plagiarism, claiming that his work Incarnate borrows character designs, fight choreography, and some panels directly from Tite Kubo's manga.  (The original source is a poster on GameFAQs, apparently; I first heard about it via Tanbishugi.)
 

I got in touch with Gianluca Glazer over at Radical Publishing, who sent me the following statement this morning, in which they say that they are halting production and distribution of the comic "until the matter is resolved to the satisfaction of all parties."

We at Radical Publishing, Inc. and Radical Comics, Inc. are quite concerned to hear the news surrounding Nick Simmons’s Incarnate Comic Book. We are taking this matter seriously and making efforts now to contact the publishers of the works in question in an effort to resolve this matter.  We have halted further production and distribution of the “Incarnate” comic book and trade paperback until the matter is resolved to the satisfaction of all parties.  Rest assured that Radical is taking swift action regarding this matter and will continue in its efforts to maintain the integrity and protect the intellectual property of artists throughout the world whose creative works are the bedrock of our Company and the comic book industry.     


Bleach's North American publisher VIZ tweeted that they "have [their] team on it," but no further comment has been offered at this time. 
 
Meanwhile, fans spent some time trying to get Bleach creator Tite Kubo's attention via Twitter as well. His thoughts, spread over two tweets:

"Last night until this morning, I got a ton of "an American comic is copying Bleach!" messages from overseas fans! Looking at the site I don't speak English, but I saw something like "Gene Simmons' son Nick Simmons who draws manga-style comics." 

Honestly, more than whether they remble each other or not, I wonder that Gene Simmons' son is a mangaka..."

I've only posted a couple of the images here, but the LiveJournal post has several more, and there are even more in the comments. I'm no professional, but it doesn't look very good for Nick Simmons.  
  
That said, I'm not quite sure what might happen from here, though I imagine it's much more likely to get dealt with privately from here on out rather than a lawsuit or something of that nature. But this is rather poor timing for Radical: Incarnate, which is currently a 3-issue series, was due to be released in a collected hardcover format on March 12th. Depending on how well the comic has done, they may want to find a way to publish that book, especially since they've put in the effort of putting it together in the format. (At least the TPB isn't due out until October.) 
 
All in all, an unfortunate situation for everyone. That's what plagiarism gets you, kids! Now quit trying to plagiarize on the wiki.

Morpheuson Feb. 25, 2010 at 7:45 a.m.
Lol  
 
Personally I would be happy if someone was taking insparation from my work
cfatalison Feb. 25, 2010 at 7:49 a.m.
@Morpheus said:
" Lol   Personally I would be happy if someone was taking insparation from my work "
err i don't think this is inspiration this look like tracing
Morpheuson Feb. 25, 2010 at 7:52 a.m.
@cfatalis said:
" @Morpheus said:
" Lol   Personally I would be happy if someone was taking insparation from my work "
err i don't think this is inspiration this look like tracing "

It's still inspiration. He had the inspiration to trace someone elses work xP
GodLen staff on Feb. 25, 2010 at 8:24 a.m.
shit son, that is insane. He just made enemies with Kenpachi, that is not a good idea.
cfatalison Feb. 25, 2010 at 8:30 a.m.
@Morpheus said:
" @cfatalis said:
" @Morpheus said:
" Lol   Personally I would be happy if someone was taking insparation from my work "
err i don't think this is inspiration this look like tracing "
It's still inspiration. He had the inspiration to trace someone elses work xP "
you sound like those comment on ED
AtomoPandaon Feb. 25, 2010 at 8:33 a.m.
@GodLen said:
"shit son, that is insane. He just made enemies with Kenpachi, that is not a good idea. "

Someones gonna get choped up! LOL
Daniel_Newton moderator on Feb. 25, 2010 at 8:45 a.m.
@AtomoPanda said:
" @GodLen said:
"shit son, that is insane. He just made enemies with Kenpachi, that is not a good idea. "
Someones gonna get choped up! LOL "
Man that would be awesome. They should find the best Kenpachi cosplayer, give him a real sword and get him to kick down Nick Simmons door and tear him to shreds.
Oneeyedjackson Feb. 25, 2010 at 9 a.m.
Last night when 4chan got wind of this they raided Nick Simmons deviantart page and spammed his comments section giving him all kinds of shit.  His DA page has gotten 28k hits since this story broke out yesterday.  See for yourself: 
http://letsleepinggodslie.deviantart.com/
Rokujoon Feb. 25, 2010 at 9:05 a.m.
@Oneeyedjacks said:

" Last night when 4chan got wind of this they raided Nick Simmons deviantart page and spammed his comments section giving him all kinds of shit.  His DA page has gotten 28k hits since this story broke out yesterday.  See for yourself:  http://letsleepinggodslie.deviantart.com/ "

I love the comment, 
"I suppose listing Kubo Tite and Hirano Kouta as your favorite artists would have made it too obvious." 
Konandaon Feb. 25, 2010 at 9:17 a.m.

Wow it's the comic version of the palette swap except with a different IP. Anyway looks like he's in quite a bit of trouble now. 

Halberdierv2on Feb. 25, 2010 at 9:51 a.m.
man, he's gonna get it.
Void_Wizardon Feb. 25, 2010 at 10:35 a.m.
He traced *cough*.
crusader8463on Feb. 25, 2010 at 10:58 a.m.
How does someone even think doing something like this is ok in this day and age?
giaon Feb. 25, 2010 at 11:27 a.m.
@crusader8463: I think I liked Simon's comment best at Icarus Publishing (NSFW): "If you’re going to trace, do so from an obscure source, not something that has sold over 50 million copies."
taichokageon Feb. 25, 2010 at 12:12 p.m.
what a rip off. inspiration is one thing but stealing is another.
XChileon Feb. 25, 2010 at 1:46 p.m.
.......when will people learn.
InfiniteGeasson Feb. 25, 2010 at 2:04 p.m.
This is pretty freaking messed up.  I wonder how on Earth he thought that he'd never get caught.
CharkeeFarleeon Feb. 25, 2010 at 2:39 p.m.
@GodLen said:
" shit son, that is insane. He just made enemies with Kenpachi, that is not a good idea. "
This.
reinon Feb. 25, 2010 at 2:42 p.m.
i don't see the similarity.
FoxxFireArt moderator on Feb. 25, 2010 at 3:24 p.m.
I could give a flying rats rear how this effects VIZ. I'm more interested in how it effects Tite Kubo.
 
What makes it even worse is that not only does he copy the scenes. He even copies the dialog to go with the same shots. The shading styles are the same. It's one thing to be inspired by a scene from a comic/manga. It's a whole other matter to copy it so exactly.
 
Rather then call this title Incarnate they should rename it REincarnate.
 
Well, Nick Simmons. You are now the Greg Land of American style manga.

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