Manga Monday- Barakamon

Manga Monday- Barakamon

Barakamon is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Satsuki Yoshino. It started serialization in Square Enix’s Gangan Online February 2009 issue. The story follows Seishu Handa, a calligrapher who moves to the remote Goto Islands off the western coast of Kyushu, and his various interactions with the people of the island. An anime adaptation by Kinema Citrus aired in Japan between July and September 2014. Funimation has licensed the series for streaming and home video release. In February 2014, Yen Press announced they have licensed Barakamon for English release in North America.

A spin-off manga series Handa-kun started serialization in the November 2013 issue of Square Enix’s Monthly Shonen Gangan magazine. An anime television adaptation by Diomedéa aired in Japan between July and September 2016.

Manga

Barakamon began serialization in Square Enix’s Gangan Online February 2009 issue. The first tankōbon volume was released on July 22, 2009; twelve volumes have been released as of September 22, 2014. It was announced in the seventeenth volume that the manga would be ending with the release of the eighteenth volume in December 2018. The series was licensed by Yen Press in February 2014, who released the first volume on October 28, 2014.

A spin-off/prequel manga, titled Handa-Kun, written and illustrated also by Satsuki Yoshino, started serialization in Square Enix’s Monthly Shonen Gangan in the November 2013 issue. It focuses on Seishu’s life as a high school student, six years prior to Barakamon. The first tankōbon volume was released June 21, 2014; four volumes have been released as of August 12, 2015. The spin-off ended in the Monthly Shōnen Gangan magazine’s July 2016 issue, which was scheduled for release on June 11, 2016.

Plot

Seishu Handa is a professional calligrapher, despite his young age. When the elderly curator of an exhibition criticizes his calligraphy for being too unoriginal (“like a textbook”), Seishu gets angry and punches him. Because of this, his father sends him off for a retreat on Goto Island, near Kyushu. There, he meets the colorful villagers, interacts with them, and begins to find his own style.

The title of the series means “energetic/cheerful one” in the local provincial Goto Islands’ dialect. The first episode is also called “Barakakodon/ばらかこどん” which means “energetic/cheerful kid”, which refers to Naru Kotoishi, a very hyperactive kid that comes into Handa’s life.

The story of prequel spin-off Handa-kun is about the hilarious high school days of the calligraphy genius, Seishu Handa, who was also protagonist of Barakamon.

 

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