Not a top ten lists, as I'm trying to stay with titles that are still in print. But this is a good guide to the 10 series I'm enjoying or enjoyed the most over the last little bit. Not going to number them, as that would make this list even harder for me.
- Black Lagoon - The best action manga and human drama comic being printed today. It can range from a blitz of action to straight out commentary on the modern world and man to being both at the same time. It's like Tarantino manga, but better.
-Gakuen Alice - At first it seems like a typical shoujo manga about kids with abilities called Alice, but the dark backstory and the sinister feel of the place make this an excellent read.
Yotsuba - Probably my favorite manga being published right now, the slice of life comedy is always charming and funny. And the pacing is probably the best I've seen for a slow paced gag comic ever, be it manga, comic strip or comic book.
Aria - Yeah it's slow paced, but every chapter makes you feel good after reading it. And the full page spreads are some of the most beautiful out there.
Pluto - Naoki Urasawa's updating and retelling of a classic Astro boy story is the best update of a classic character I've ever seen. Tense and well paced, it remains faithful to Tezuka's original yet takes into bold new directions.
20th Century boys - Another Urasawa title, this time dealing with a cult's plan to take over the world based on a plan that was made when the main characters were young. Suspenseful and dramatic, it is a great example of how to use serial story telling to create a story that would be hard to tell elsewhere.
Ouran High School Host Club - Gender bending reverse harem comedy that is saved by the fact that Haruhi and the main characters are all enjoyable and awesome. Drama gets heavier later on, but the comedy is still present and still really good.
Excel Saga - So I'm breaking my rules a bit as the earlier stuff is hard to get. But well worth it as the slowly laid out plot drives the manga into new, crazy comedy bits that set it apart from the manga. The third across girl alone makes reading the manga worth it.
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind - Miyazaki's manga version of the film took about 13 years to complete, and goes in a vastly different direction in the final half. Not only is it good cause it's Miyazaki (Great storytelling, great characters) but it also shows how Miyazaki's thinking changed from the time of the Nausicaa of film to the time of Princess Mononoke.
Maison Ikkoku - Takahashi's best manga and my favorite romance manga. It starts out silly, but becomes the most serious of Takahashi's comedies and has a wonderfully solid ending.