All the companies had things up their sleeve at this Expo, but one of the big problems with the increased amount of shows coming up is that they always save some announcements for next time.  As such there wasn't a great deal of licence news, but there were some very heavy hints dropped for future titles.

The most announcements on the day belonged to Manga Entertainment.  The distributor continues its phoenix-like rise from the ashes of the 1990's with a slew of exciting titles.  First up was the announcement that they would release the stunning-looking action title Noein in January, whilst the She, The Ultimate Weapon - Another Love Song will follow the same month.  Also on the cards is the ultra-violent Tokko (February), Tactics and a budget boxset of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG.  They also pretty much announced that they had the spin-off film Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Solid State Society.  However, it wasn't all great news.  Poor sales of Tetsujin 28 have left the release of volume 3 in doubt, and it may just be released in boxset form.  Also, despite strong sales of the first Naruto boxset, Manga are unable to release the next one until it is out in the US.  It's coming on Boxing Day, but subsequent Naruto releases may also suffer in the same way.  Other interesting snippits from their set included a sneak preview of Iron Kid, a CGI series they are part funding, and a few hints about the forthcoming live-action Blood, The Last Vampire film and Bleach.  They also confirmed they no longer had the UK rights to 3x3 Eyes and the original Guyver TV series, and would be releasing the bizarre live action horror comedy Tokyo Zombie.

MVM were also pretty active, their announcements included they highly anticipated Ah! My Goddess TV series, a bit of a no-brainer considering they already have both the film and OVA series of the romantic comedy franchise.  Alongside this was the interesting-looking actioner Gun X Sword and the 'lost' second Tenchi movie, Daughter of Darkness.  They also revealed that they have been waiting for ADV Films to release Saiyuki Requiem before they released Saiyuki Reload - the anime sequel to a series that is only available in manga form in the UK.  Saiyuki Reload is coming next year, and MVM plan to continue with boxset releases of its old titles

too.  Interestingly they also announced the release of their first non-anime title in the form of the British cartoon Aargh! It's the Mr Hell Show, a bizarre series that features the voice of the late Bob Monkhouse.  What left us completely dumbfounded though was that they admitted that they passed up the opportunity to release the incredibly popular anime series FLCL - why?!

Better news was to come from ADV Films, who announced that they would be releasing at least one boxset a month in the new year.  They have also picked up the intriguing mecha series Jinki: Extend, the Harry-Potter-meets-Love-Hina comedy Maburaho and the highly rated This Ugly Yet Beautiful World, a series from Neon Genesis Evangelion creators GainaxADV were keeping their cards close to their chest on other releases, although the new Guyver anime series did seem to be a possibility.  Their biggest news though was that they had managed to get some anime on TV!  New satellite channel Redemption TV is going to feature the excellent Gilgamesh and Cromartie High in a selection of programming aimed

at goths, here's hoping that it does as well as it has done on Rapture TV.  As with all the major companies, ADV only announced their releases for quarter 1 of 2007, quarter 2 news was being held back for the MCM Midlands Expo in February.

Beez were stuck in an awkward position of having very little to announce.  Their main news was on boxsets, with confirmations for sets for Witch Hunter Robin, the Gundam movies and Planetes.  Their current series are being released at an incredible rate so there will be some gaps in their schedule next year, expect to see some announcements at the

MCM Midlands Expo.  Mainly for Beez it was rumours and hearsay, many fans expect them to release Gunbuster in the new year following the special edition release Bandai have made in the US, and there was talk about .hack://ROOTS too.

Other news included Rapture TV's announcement that it would be showing two new anime series soon, and had drawn up a shortlist of four.  Rumour has it that both Witch Hunter Robin and Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu! are possibilities.  They also answered a lot of questions on their forthcoming Animenation, a weekly magazine programme that has been delayed for a while.  It seems that most of the problems have been due to their choice to have an animated interviewer on the show, but this is being ironed out and the show should hit the air in the next couple of months.  Meanwhile, Tokyopop also had some interesting news, a question asking whether a monthly manga anthology would ever be released in the UK was met with a 'watch this space' response.  We'll have more news as soon as we hear it!

The increase of events in 2007 has had a noticeable effect on the amount of announcements made at this Expo, but what was announced was interesting to say the least.  In the past boxsets were rarely released in the UK because of the costs involved, seeing several new sets coming our way suggests that the UK anime market is healthier than ever!  There's more anime on TV than ever before (still little on terrestrial though) and the possibility of a manga anthology was music to our ears.  The next Expo, in Telford in February, promises even more announcements and news, and we'll have it all for you as soon as it's out.  Despite some problems with the organisation of the event, the MCM London Expo Oct '06 was another resounding success and the addition of more of the same can only be a good thing.