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Film Friday- The Quintessential Quintuplets

Film Friday- The Quintessential Quintuplets

The Quintessential Quintuplets is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Negi Haruba. It was serialized in Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine from August 2017 to February 2020. The series follows the daily life of a high school student Futaro Uesugi who is hired as a private tutor for a group of quintuplets, Ichika, Nino, Miku, Yotsuba and Itsuki Nakano, who perform poorly academically. At the very beginning of the story, it is indicated Futaro will marry with one of the Nakano quintuplets but the identity of the bride is unknown until near the end of the story.

An anime television series adaptation produced by Tezuka Productions aired from January to March 2019 on TBS and other channels. A second season by Bibury Animation Studios premiered in January 2021.

The series is published in English by Kodansha USA under the Kodansha Comics imprint. The anime series is licensed in North America under a Crunchyroll–Funimation partnership.

The series is a commercial success, being the 5th best selling manga in 2019, and the 3rd best selling manga in the first half of 2020 in Japan. In 2019, the manga won the award for the shōnen category at the 43rd annual Kodansha Manga Awards.

Main characters

Futaro Uesugi

A blunt, friendless highschool student that is very academically gifted. Futaro lives with his sister and father in a small apartment. He is serious and dedicated to his efforts in helping the Nakano sisters improve their grades. He likes dishes that Raiha cooks, but hates raw fish. His favorite drink is barley tea, his favorite animals are gorillas and his daily convention is storing one coin. In his student handbook he keeps a photo of a girl he met in Kyoto while he was in sixth grade, who was his inspiration to study. It is later revealed that she is one of the Nakano Quintuplets.

Nakano Quintuplet sisters

The sisters are all physically identical with large blue eyes, light-reddish hair, cute expressive faces and shapely figures. Despite their different hairstyles, the sisters are experts at impersonating each other and often do so for pranks or convenience. They were born on May 5 and live together in a rich high-rise apartment and by following the “go-toubun” (five portions, divided equally) philosophy given by their late mother, consider themselves five parts of one whole. Although they share terrible grades and no desire to study, they can be honorable and appreciate the work that Futaro is dedicating towards them.

Ichika Nakano
The eldest sister, she has short hair without any accessories. Ichika acts like a responsible older sister – she’s caring, thoughtful and wise. She enjoys sleeping and her room is incredibly messy. She aspires to become a movie actress and dedicates most of her time and resources to do so, to the point of having to quit schooling in order to focus on her acting career. She likes salted fish but hates mushrooms. Her favorite drink is frappuccino, her favorite animals are hippos, her favorite TV program type is drama, her best subject is mathematics, and her daily hobby is jogging. She falls in love with Futaro and wanted to confess to him, but hearing Nino confessing to Futaro prevented her from doing so. As she grew to accept she wanted Futaro for herself, she became misguided and started using underhanded methods to get closer to him and sabotage her sisters in the process. She used Miku’s disguised as a way to “cheat” her way into his heart, almost sabotaging Miku’s chances to confess in the process. It’s revealed that she met Futaro 5 years before the start of the story: after Futaro and the girl from the photo (Yotsuba) had spent the entire day together and both went to the inn the quintuplets were staying at, she was interested in him and played cards with him while Yotsuba was gone, with Futaro himself unaware that he was interacting with another quintuplet. She had forgotten about this exchange until they reunited years later, when he put a blond wig as a disguise, resembling the way he looked years ago. After getting called out by Futaro on her schemes and realizing the error of her ways, she helps Miku properly confess to Futaro and decides to stop pursuing her love towards him, lying to him that their moments together were all “lies”. She becomes his guide on his path to accept he was in love and becomes the first quintuplet in knowing his choice. After Futaro’s choice at the end of the school festival, she congratulates him and pushes him to be more open with his feelings. 5 years later, she becomes a famous actress around the world.
Nino Nakano
The second sister, she has very long hair with two butterfly-style accessories on the sides. Due to her poor eyesight, she has been wearing contact lenses for the past three years but still takes five minutes to put them in. Although she is caring and playful with her sisters, she shows a grumpy and somewhat aggressive personality to outsiders. She likes pancakes, but hates tsukemono. Her favorite drink is warm water, her favorite animals are rabbits, her favorite TV program type is variety shows, her best subject is English, and her daily convention is putting on a facial mask and doing yoga. She is also fashionable and skilled at cooking, hinted to have dreams of becoming a chef. She views Futaro as an interloper to the sisters’ unique relationship and has gone to extreme, sometimes illegal lengths to ban him from their apartment. She’s afraid to be left behind and desires to find her own path, but she’s afraid to let go of the past and the dynamic she had with her sisters since they were kids; her problems with Fuutaro comes from the very fact that she sees him as the one changing the status quo she had grown accustomed to, which sometimes generates conflict between her and her sisters.
However, she starts seeing Fuutaro as someone who respects her feelings and one who desires to see the Nakano quintuplets together as a family, melting her heart. After fully realizing her feelings, she becomes the first quintuplet to successfully confess to Futaro, taking a straight-forward approach on her love towards him ever since in order to gain his affection, often clashing with the third sister, Miku, acting like rivals. After Futaro’s choice at the end of the school festival, she becomes upset with Yotsuba’s consideration of her feelings as she sees it as pity. After a heartfelt exchange, she accepts Yotsuba’s resolve, acknowledging her as a rival and warns that she will take any chance on taking Futaro away if their relationship ever falls apart. 5 years later she opens the Nakano Bakery shop with Miku, borrowing the place of the former Uesugi restaurant.
Miku Nakano
The third sister, she has medium-length hair, “emotionless” eyes and normally a specific pair of headphones around her neck. She has a quiet and passive personality, few friends, and interest in warlords of specific eras of Japanese history. She likes matcha, but hates chocolates. Her favorite drink is green tea, her favorite animals are hedgehogs, her favorite TV program type is documentary, her best subject is social science, and her daily convention is divination. She seems to be the first one to fall in love with Futaro. Her cooking skills are abysmal, but after Futaro said that he preferred girls who can cook, she began focusing to improve that talent. While taking confidence in her pursuit of Futaro, after seeing her sisters one by one starting to pursue his affection as well, made her shyness bloom, even more, seeing her sisters as better candidates for his love and grew scared of “playing fair” against them who had a more aggressive approach. She manages to successfully confess to Futaro the second time, though she leaves it vague to make him embarrassed. After this, she regains her confidence and goes for a more assertive/aggressive approach similar to Nino’s. She decides to pursue culinary arts after realizing she likes to “make stuff”, regardless if it is for Futaro’s sake or not. After Futaro’s choice at the end of the school festival, she counsels Yotsuba into accepting the other sisters’ frustration and anger and that she should pursue her own happiness. She ultimately realizes that despite not being Futaro’s choice, she is happy that she has become a unique individual and takes pride in it. 5 years later she opens the Nakano Bakery shop with Nino, borrowing the place of the former Uesugi restaurant.
Yotsuba Nakano
The fourth sister, she has medium-length hair and a ribbon styled into two vertical “ears”. Always cheerful, friendly and good at sports, her constantly active personality can annoy others. She likes citrus unshiu, but hates bell peppers. She likes watching anime and loves drinking carbonated fruit juice. Her favorite animals are camels, her best subject is Japanese, and her daily convention is watering plants. She has received 0% scores on school tests. Her actions usually suggest either a complete absence of thought or unconscious intricate plans far beyond anything the other characters could imagine. She is the only one to immediately accept Futaro as their tutor. She’s supportive and always looking out for other people, especially her sisters and Futaro. She has a bad habit of putting others’ needs above her own.
Later it’s revealed that she’s the girl from the photo, the one Futaro met 5 years before the start of the story during a school trip at Kyoto. She met him by coincidence, getting him out of a complicated situation and spent the rest of the day together. Connecting after enjoying their adventure during the day, both promised to improve their grades in order to apply to highly profitable jobs and make their respective families have a better lifestyle, specifically Raiha for Futaro and Rena for Yotsuba. However, due to her own low self-confidence and identity issues while growing up, as well as Rena’s death soon after the Kyoto trip, she slowly started growing distant from her sisters, seeing them getting slightly better grades than her with little effort while she studied hard with unsuccessful results, frustration building on her. She then decides to focus on clubs and develop her athletic abilities, dropping studying completely as she lost her resolve, changing her mindset from self-improvement to competition for recognition above her sisters and be recognized as the superior of the sisters. That ultimately costs her getting expelled from her previous school, but her sisters refuse to leave her alone and follow her.
Therefore, her selfish mind view was shattered and developed a selfless devotion towards them and started to prioritize their own happiness and desires over her own. She refuses to tell Futaro who she is after meeting with him at the start of the story because she views herself as a failure due to not being able to fulfill the promise they made and decides to support him on his school and love life, ignoring her own feelings for him when she sees her sisters slowly falling for him and actively pursuing his love. However, her subtle yet meaningful support throughout the series ends up getting noticed by Futaro, ultimately leading to him falling in love with her and choosing her at the end of the school festival. Initially she refuses and runs away, but after hearing Futaro’s confession, she becomes unable to hold her feelings down and confesses her love. After the school festival, she decides that before dating Futaro she needed to talk with her sisters about their feelings and her own, especially Nino and Miku. After coming to terms that she can pursue her own happiness, she accepts both Futaro’s re-confession and proposal and they become a couple. Five years later, she lives together with Futaro at Tokyo and celebrates her wedding ceremony. In the final chapter, it’s revealed she is the one who kissed Futaro under the bell while disguised as Itsuki, event which Futaro in the future narrates as the moment he started seeing his bride as “special”.
Itsuki Nakano
The fifth and the youngest sister, she has an expressive ahoge, long hair with two twirling “streams” and two stars beside her eyes. Her blood type is A. She has a two-faced personality; she’s always friendly with acquaintances and classmates but Futaro’s presence immediately puts her in attack mode due to his past insults. She loves to eat food and studies seriously, even though her methods need improvement. She likes meat and curry but hates umeboshi. Her favorite animal is the kangaroo. Her favorite TV program type is wasei-eigo. Her best subject is science and her daily convention is exercising abdominal muscles and doing yoga. Ever since she was little, she was close to her mother, Rena. After her death, she decided to cope with her loss by trying to replace Rena as the mother-figure of the quintuplets, with unsuccessful results. This makes her act properly towards others and is strict with her sisters at times, taking her mother’s advice seriously, whether it’s about how they should act with each other or how they should be careful when picking their romantic partner. After thinking about what to do with her career path, she decides to follow her mother’s footsteps and become a teacher, despite her low grades. During one point of the series, she dresses as the girl from the photo, nicknaming herself “Rena” (after her mother) and meeting with Futaro in the present in order to sever ties with him and forcing him to move on from their promise. Later (after the reveal that “Rena”/Itsuki was not the girl from the photo) it’s revealed that she was asked by Yotsuba (the girl from the photo) to perform this task, as she herself isn’t good with disguises and doesn’t want her identity revealed to Futaro and felt their promise was holding him back from enjoying his school life like a normal student. However, later in the series, Itsuki felt she couldn’t keep the secret hidden much longer as she thought of it as unfair to both Yotsuba and Futaro and decided to dress as “Rena” on her own once again to make Futaro remember who he met, only for her advances to be rejected by him, who had since figured out the girl of the photo was one of the quintuplets, though not exactly which one, and he was sick of playing along with their tricks. After Futaro makes his choice, Itsuki goes under a brief period of self-doubt, unable to congratulate him on his decision and realizes her hidden feelings for him. However, after overhearing Yotsuba and Nino’s discussion, she decides to let go of those feelings by realizing that “a fruitless love can also be beautiful”, deciding to treasure her memories with Futaro instead. 5 years later, she becomes a teacher.

Production

The idea of “a group of quintuplets falling in love with the same person” existed even before the serialization of Haruba’s previous work, Karma of Purgatory (2014-2015), but was very simple at that time. The idea was denied by his editor-in-charge. A year after, after the end of Karma of Purgatory, he discussed with his editor-in-charge what to serialize next. Among the few ideas being come up with, the “quintuplets” idea was included again, which was accepted by the editor this time. After failures in two to three serialization committees, finally it was decided to have a one-shot manga published first. The one-shot received positive reviews and therefore went on to serialization.

Haruba finished drawing the last chapter on February 10, 2020.

Characters

It was decided the protagonist should be quintuplets at the very beginning. When later the idea of quadruplets and sextuplets was raised, it was rejected very quickly, around 30 seconds. Haruba said it might be a reference to Super Sentai when he came up with this idea. Similar to Super Sentai, Ichika (yellow), Nino (black), Miku (blue), Yotsuba (green) and Itsuki (red) are all represented by a colour. The design of the quintuplets started from his favourite existing female characters from “some slice-of-life works only with girls”, around 15 to 20 of them. The idea of adding numbers in their names was after the design was almost confirmed.

The hair colour of the Nakano quintuplets are different when being coloured, which was suggested by Haruba himself, such that they are more distinguishable from each other. The hair colour of the bride in the flashforward is therefore a colour-in-between.

Story

The flashforward that Futaro will eventually marry with only one of the Nakano quintuplets was for eliminating the possibility of marrying all five of them, which would be a lazy ending. It was also decided all quintuplets would anyway have negative feelings towards Futaro from the beginning because Haruba wanted to write how their relationship improved from hate to love in the story, except Yotsuba, who has to act as Futaro’s guide for the development of the story.

While it is normal for harem romantic comedy manga to have sexy depiction, Haruba tried to avoid it to some extent after Vol. 1. In his opinion, showing panties which are being worn, i.e. panchira, makes characters less mysterious and then less interesting to the readers. To keep the characters interesting, the sexy scenes were intended to be ambiguous but not straightforward, leading to readers’ imagination. The swimsuit appearance of the Nakanos was finally revealed in Ep. 92 as Haruba thought an episode of swimming suits should exist before finishing the story.

Manga Monday- The Quintessential Quintuplets

Manga Monday- The Quintessential Quintuplets

The Quintessential Quintuplets is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Negi Haruba. It was serialized in Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine from August 2017 to February 2020. The series follows the daily life of a high school student Futaro Uesugi who is hired as a private tutor for a group of quintuplets, Ichika, Nino, Miku, Yotsuba and Itsuki Nakano, who perform poorly academically. At the very beginning of the story, it is indicated Futaro will marry with one of the Nakano quintuplets but the identity of the bride is unknown until near the end of the story.

An anime television series adaptation produced by Tezuka Productions aired from January to March 2019 on TBS and other channels. A second season by Bibury Animation Studios premiered in January 2021.

The series is published in English by Kodansha USA under the Kodansha Comics imprint. The anime series is licensed in North America under a Crunchyroll–Funimation partnership.

The series is a commercial success, being the 5th best selling manga in 2019, and the 3rd best selling manga in the first half of 2020 in Japan. In 2019, the manga won the award for the shōnen category at the 43rd annual Kodansha Manga Awards.

Plot

High school student Futaro Uesugi is an academically gifted student that leads a difficult life — his mother has died, he has no friends, and on top of all that, his father has incurred a large amount of debt.

An opportunity presents itself when the rich Nakano family transfers to his school. Futaro is promptly hired as a highly-paid tutor. However, much to Futaro’s dismay, he discovers that his five charges — identical quintuplet sisters of varied personalities — have no interest in studying at all and have abysmal grades. Some of the quintuplets are against having Futaro, whom they view as a stranger, in their apartment, but Futaro’s diligent tenacity gradually convinces those girls to accept him and to improve their grades.

Throughout the series, Futaro develops special relationships with each of the quintuplets. Through a flashforward, it is revealed that he eventually marries one of them, but her true identity is only revealed near the end of the series.

Media

Manga

The Quintessential Quintuplets is a manga series written and illustrated by Negi Haruba. Before the serialization, a one-shot manga of the same name had been published in 2017 issue 8 of Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine on August 9, 2017, and received positive comments. On December 4, 2019, Haruba announced that the series would end on its 14th tankōbon volume. The series finished on February 19, 2020.

The series has been published in English by Kodansha USA under their Kodansha Comics imprint digitally since June 28, 2018, with a line of physical releases beginning publication on January 1, 2019. As of August 2020, all fourteen digital volumes have been published.

The “all-colour” version of the manga series began serialization in Kodansha’s online manga platform MagaPoke (Magazine Pocket) on February 26, 2020. Currently 9 tankōbon volumes have been published.

Commercial

In October 2017, a television commercial for the manga was released where Ayane Sakura voiced all five girls.

Anime

An anime television series adaptation was announced in the combined 36th and 37th issue of Weekly Shōnen Magazine on August 8, 2018. The series is directed by Satoshi Kuwabara and written by Keiichirō Ōchi, featuring animation by Tezuka Productions, character designs by Michinosuke Nakamura and Gagakuga, and music by Natsumi Tabuchi, Hanae Nakamura, and Miki Sakurai. The series aired from January 10 to March 28, 2019 on the TBS, SUN, and BS-TBS channels. The series ran for 12 episodes. Crunchyroll streamed the series with Funimation providing the English dub as it airs.

A second season was announced in a special event for the first season on May 5, 2019. Kaori is replacing Satoshi Kuwabara as the director of the season, and Keiichirō Ōchi is returning to write the scripts. Bibury Animation Studios is replacing Tezuka Productions as the animation studio. The season was originally scheduled to premiere in October 2020, but due to issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic the anime premiered on January 8, 2021.

For the first season, Kana Hanazawa, Ayana Taketatsu, Miku Itō, Ayane Sakura, and Inori Minase performed the opening theme song “Quintuplet Feelings” as the group The Nakano Family’s Quintuplets, while Aya Uchida performed the ending theme song “Sign”.

For the second season, The Nakano Family’s Quintuplets will perform the opening theme song “Gotōbun no Katachi” and the ending theme song “Hatsukoi”. Bilibili is streaming the second season in Southeast Asia.

Games

Characters from the series appeared in a collaboration event in the mobile game Venus 11 Vivid!! from May 25 to May 31, 2019.

The first mobile game based on the series The Quintessential Quintuplets: The Quintuplets Can’t Divide the Puzzle Into Five Equal Parts has been released in 2020.

A visual novel titled Gotoubun no Hanayome ∬: Natsu no Omoide mo Gotoubun is currently in development by Mages for the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch consoles. It features an original story in the deserted island setting, and is currently planned for release on March 25, 2021 in Japan.

Exhibitions

Multiple exhibitions were held across Japan starting from 2019, including Tokyo, Osaka, Niigata and Nagoya. Besides, an overseas exhibition was held in Taipei, Taiwan in July 2020.

Reception

Sales

The manga series has 2 million volumes in print as of January 2019. By February 2019, the manga series had over 3 million volumes in print.

In Japan, The Quintessential Quintuplets was the 5th best selling manga in 2019 and the 3rd best selling manga in the first half of 2020, coming after Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba and One Piece.

Critical response

The Quintessential Quintuplets received positive reviews, most notably for its romantic comedy and harem elements. Paul Jensen of Anime News Network found the series enjoyable and rated a 4 out of 5 to the series, as he commented “The jokes are funny, the characters range from tolerable to likable, the fanservice doesn’t go overboard, and there’s no creepy or obnoxious plot point to spoil the party. There’s nothing revolutionary about it, but it does a lot of basic things well without showing any major flaws, and that’s enough to make this premiere good clean (well, clean-ish) fun.” Patrick Frye of Monsters And Critics noted that there was “little to no ecchi shenanigans or degrading fan service and the girls move beyond the initial stereotypes and become fleshed-out characters that create a fun dynamic with the main character, Futaro Uesugi. Audiences are tired of watching a lucky everyman stumble his way through unlikely scenarios. Instead, Futaro’s no-nonsense attitude wins the day.” Kyle Rogacion of Goomba Stomp praised the plot of the anime but criticized its art style and fanservice gags. The series has a current score of 4.6 out of 5 stars on Crunchyroll as of November 2020.

Awards and nominations

The series was nominated for “Next Manga Award 2018” organized by Niconico. Receiving 16,106 votes, the series eventually ranked eighth overall. In May 2019, it won the award for Best Shōnen Manga at the 43rd annual Kodansha Manga Awards, alongside To Your Eternity. On the award ceremony of the 43rd annual Kodansha Manga Awards, as one of the judges, Ken Akamatsu praised The Quintessential Quintuplets as “the ultimate complete version of harem bishōjo romantic comedy” with “very high quality of illustration”.

Film Friday- Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun

Film Friday- Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun

Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun is a Japanese manga series by Iro Aida. It has been serialized in Square Enix’s shōnen manga magazine Monthly GFantasy since 2014. It has been collected in fifteen (and ongoing) tankōbon volumes. The manga is licensed in North America by Yen Press. An anime television series adaptation by Lerche aired from January to March 2020.

 

 

 

 

Characters

Protagonists

Nene Yashiro 
is a first year high school student at Kamome Academy. She summons Hanako and wishes for her crush, Teru Minamoto, to return her feelings. A turn of events again, Hanako swallows a scale from the same mermaid to inflict himself with her curse and spread its effects, permitting Yashiro to remain human unless she is immersed in water. Having bound their souls together through the curse, he has Yashiro become his human assistant as payment. Yashiro works with Hanako to change and spread new rumors of supernaturals in the school to keep them under control. She is capable of destroying a School Wonder’s yorishiro, their source of power; upon doing so, she falls asleep and views the memory associated with the yorishiro.
Yashiro’s best friend is Aoi Akane, who loves to tell her new rumors. She wears two hair clips resembling magatama and a skull brooch on her school uniform. Yashiro is a very positive, sensitive, and caring girl. She is deeply insecure and genuinely fears that no one will ever love her back; after receiving the curse, she confesses to Hanako that she had realized what her true wish had been: she wanted someone, anyone, to return her feelings, not Teru specifically. Yashiro is insecure about her large ankles, often being compared to daikons as a running gag in the series.
Despite repeatedly claiming Hanako is not her type and Hanako’s relentless teasing, she cares immensely for Hanako and after learning about his past, wants to be able to protect him. She is intuitive and sensitive to changes in his personality, and is deeply affected whenever she learns new information about his past life.
Hanako-kun
The most famous rumor in the school, Hanako-kun is the Seventh Wonder of Kamome Academy. According to his rumor, Hanako can be summoned if one knocks on the third stall of the third floor of the girl’s bathroom in the old school building; he is able to grant wishes to those who summon him in exchange for a suitable price. The strongest and the leader of the Seven Wonders, Hanako fights with a kitchen knife and his two haku-joudai, spirit orbs that assist him in monitoring others and granting him immunity to exorcism lightning. His duty is to monitor all apparitions in the school and maintain the balance between humans and apparitions.
Though childish and mischievous, Hanako puts up a front to mask his true emotions and is rather serious beneath the surface. He takes his duties seriously, having been promised by God that he would be absolved of his past sins if he fulfilled his duties. He is secretive about his past life. Previously, his name was Amane Yugi and he also attended Kamome Academy. A second-year middle school student in 1969, he often came to school with bruises and cuts, having been repeatedly abused by someone he refused to reveal the identity of. He harbored a deep passion for astronomy and had dreams of becoming an astronaut and going to the moon. According to Tsuchigomori, the Fifth Wonder and his homeroom teacher at the time, Hanako was destined to become a science teacher, until his fate changed for unknown reasons. He killed his younger twin brother, Tsukasa Yugi, and died young. Hanako is the only known person to ever have altered his fate.
By inflicting himself with the Mermaid’s Curse, he bound his and Yashiro’s souls together. Though he often teases her, Hanako comes to deeply cherish Yashiro and will go to extreme lengths to help her when she is in need.
Kou Minamoto
is a third-year at Kamome Academy’s middle school division and the second eldest son of the Minamoto Clan, a family of strong exorcists that believe all supernaturals are inherently evil. He uses a spear called the Raiteijou, a weapon passed down in the Minamoto family that transforms the wielder’s spiritual power into lightning that exorcises supernaturals. Tasked by his older brother, Teru, to exorcise all Seven Wonders, Kou attempts to exorcise Hanako but does not possess enough spiritual power to do so. Not giving up, he tags Hanako and Yashiro around the school for a while and comes to the realization that Hanako did not seem to be an ‘evil’ supernatural. As a result, Kou vows to learn more about him and other supernaturals (like Mitsuba) before blindly exorcising them, much to the dissatisfaction of his brother.
When Kou finds Mitsuba haunting the lockers, he offers to spend the day with him in attempt to fulfill his final regrets so he can pass on peacefully. The two were in the same homeroom class in first year and Kou feels guilty for not remembering. After Tsukasa turns Mitsuba into a violent supernatural against his will, Kou watches Hanako destroy Mistuba and is devastated by the loss of his friend. Enraged and upset, he vows to get stronger to destroy evil supernaturals like Tsukasa.
Kou is a seeker of justice with a brave and kind personality, though he often finds himself in trouble due to his inexperience and low spiritual power. He is protective of Yashiro when he interprets Hanako as being mean or perverted. A running gag in the series is his earring on his right ear, an omamori that says traffic.
Sōsuke Mitsuba
was Kou’s middle school classmate in their first year who was killed in a freak accident. He became a ghost and haunted the middle school lockers, calling out to students and hoping someone would remember him. Kou sees him after hearing about his rumor and though he doesn’t remember him from school, decides to help him fulfill whatever regret was keeping him at the school in order to help him pass on.
Mitsuba regrets having no friends while he was alive, and in his wish to Tsukasa, said he wanted everyone to remember him. Because Tsukasa believed his initial wish was too vague, he decides that Mitsuba’s real wish was that he wanted to stay with his friends forever. He grants him this wish instead and changes Mitsuba’s rumor, turning him into a violent supernatural against his will. Tsukasa forces Mitsuba to kill Kou and fulfill his wish of being with his friend forever (through death), but Hanako arrives and destroys Mitsuba before he can do so. Tsukasa saves a part of his soul and recreates a new Mitsuba by attaching it to a body formed of low level spirits he had killed. After killing No. 3, Tsukasa forces the new Mitsuba to eat No. 3’s heart to become the new Third Mystery. Despite not being the original and having no memories, the new Mitsuba has the same personality and dreams of the old one, now wishing to become a real human.
Previously, Mitsuba didn’t have friends because he was narcissistic and rude. Hoping to change in middle school, he repressed his personality, but then became bland and easily forgotten. He was a talented and awarded photographer in the school’s photography club. Mitsuba makes up insulting nicknames for people; he calls Kou ‘hella lame traffic safety earring’, Yashiro ‘daikon-senpai’, and Hanako ‘crazy knife’. However, underneath his rudeness and narcissism, Mitsuba is desperate to be happy and becomes dejected when he thinks about his failures in his original life.

 

Manga Monday- Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun

Manga Monday- Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun

Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun is a Japanese manga series by Iro Aida. It has been serialized in Square Enix’s shōnen manga magazine Monthly GFantasy since 2014. It has been collected in fifteen (and ongoing) tankōbon volumes. The manga is licensed in North America by Yen Press. An anime television series adaptation by Lerche aired from January to March 2020.

Manga

Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun is written and illustrated by Iro Aida. The series started in the July 2014 issue of Square Enix’s Monthly GFantasy, published on June 18, 2014. Square Enix has compiled its chapters into individual tankōbon volumes. The first volume was published on May 22, 2015. As of January 8, 2021, fifteen volumes have been published.

In North America, Yen Press announced in July 2017 that they would publish the manga digitally. In July 2019, Yen Press announced the print release of the series.

Anime

An anime television series adaptation was announced in the April issue of Monthly GFantasy magazine on March 18, 2019. The series is animated by Lerche and directed by Masaomi Andō, with Yasuhiro Nakanishi handling series composition, and Mayuka Itou designing the characters. Hiroshi Takaki is composing the music. It premiered from January 9, 2020 to March 26, 2020 on TBS, SUN, CBC, and BS-TBS. Chibaku Shōnen Band performed the series’ opening theme song “No.7”, while Akari Kitō performed the series’ ending theme song “Tiny Light.” The series has run for 12 episodes. Funimation has licensed the series for a simuldub.

Plot

Kamome Academy is famous for its rumors regarding its Seven Wonders and supernatural occurrences. Nene Yashiro, a first-year high-school student who loves the occult and wishes for a boyfriend, summons the Seventh and most famous Wonder, “Hanako-san of the Toilet”, a girl who allegedly haunts the bathroom and can grant wishes for the right price. Upon summoning her, Yashiro discovers that “Hanako-san” is nothing like the rumors say; Hanako is a boy. With a turn of events, she is spiritually bound to Hanako and becomes his assistant, helping him destroy evil supernaturals and change rumors in order to maintain the balance between the spirit world and the human world. Along the way, Yashiro learns about her connection to the spirit world and the dark secrets regarding Hanako and his past.

 

Film Friday- Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle

Film Friday- Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kagiji Kumanomata. It has been serialized in Shogakukan’s Weekly Shōnen Sunday magazine since May 2016, with its chapters collected in seventeen tankōbon volumes as of December 2020. An anime television series adaptation by Doga Kobo aired from October to December 2020.

Media

Anime

An anime television series adaptation was announced in the 42nd issue of Weekly Shōnen Sunday on September 18, 2019. The series was animated by Doga Kobo and directed by Mitsue Yamazaki, with Yoshiko Nakamura handling series composition and Ai Kikuchi designing the characters. Yukari Hashimoto composed the series’ music. The series ran for 12 episodes from October 6 to December 22, 2020 on TV Tokyo, AT-X, and BS TV Tokyo. In Southeast Asia, the anime is licensed by Muse Communication. Inori Minase performed the opening theme “Kaimin! Anmin! Syalist Seikatsu”, while ORESAMA performed the ending theme “Gimmme!”. Funimation acquired the series and streamed it on its website in North America and the British Isles.

Characters

Princess Syalis
is a princess who was kidnapped by the demon king and causes chaos in the demon castle while trying to get a good night’s sleep.

 

 

Twilight the Demon King
kidnapped Syalis in her sleep, so he has hardly ever seen her awake and has never had a proper conversation with her. He is always thinking of ways to make the hero get to him and gets worried if he is going to lose, he even puts weapons and tools to make the hero’s quest easier. Apart from that he is a good leader for the demons of the castle, but even he can’t go against Princess Syalis, and is shown to care for her to a certain point.

 

 

Demon Cleric
might seem like a gentle young man, but he is actually the demon in charge of the Demon Temple inside the Demon Castle. The Demon Cleric is usually the one called upon to use magic to resurrect anyone who happens to die in the Demon Castle.

 

 

 

Trailer:

 

Manga Monday- Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle

Manga Monday- Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kagiji Kumanomata. It has been serialized in Shogakukan’s Weekly Shōnen Sunday magazine since May 2016, with its chapters collected in seventeen tankōbon volumes as of December 2020. An anime television series adaptation by Doga Kobo aired from October to December 2020.

Media

Manga

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is written and illustrated by Kagiji Kumanomata. The series started in the 2016 issue #24 of Shogakukan’s Weekly Shōnen Sunday published on May 11, 2016. Shogakukan has compiled its chapters into individual tankōbon volumes. The first volume was released on September 16, 2016. As of December 18, 2020, seventeen volumes have been released.

Viz Media announced in September 2017 that they had licensed the series in North America. The first volume was released on June 12, 2018.

An official fanbook of the series was released on October 16, 2020.

Plot

Sshhh! Princess Syalis is trying to get a good night’s sleep. Some shut-eye. Forty winks. Catch some Z’s. Long ago in olden times when people and demons lived together in—well, disharmony, really—a demon king kidnaps a human princess and imprisons her in his castle. Bereft, the princess’s subjects beat their chests in anguish…until a hero arises to spearhead Project Rescue Our Princess! While waiting for her knight in shining armor, what’s an imprisoned princess to do…? Teddy-bear guards with bat wings are all very well, but her dungeon cell is bo-o-o-ring! So, she decides to wile away the long hours by sleeping. Now if only she could get comfortable…and didn’t suffer from insomnia…

 

Film Friday- Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?!

Film Friday- Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?!

Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?! is a Japanese light novel series written by FUNA and illustrated by Itsuki Akata. A manga adaptation by Neko Mint began serialization in 2016. Both the light novel and manga have been licensed in North America by Seven Seas Entertainment. An anime television series adaptation by Project No.9 aired from October 7 to December 23, 2019.

Plot

Misato Kurihara, a genius girl who couldn’t make any friends due to her exceptional abilities, is killed after being run over while protecting a young girl. Offered the chance to be reborn into a fantasy world, Misato asks that she simply be reincarnated with average abilities. Reborn as the noble Adele von Ascham, she soon discovers that “average” in this new world takes into account the power of the absolute strongest and the absolute weakest magical creatures, resulting in her physical and magical abilities being 6,800 times stronger than that of a typical human, which is half of that of the strongest ancient dragon (the strongest of all the magical creatures). Attending Hunter’s Prep School alongside her classmates Mavis, Reina, and Pauline, Adele tries her best to live her life as normally as possible, which does not prove to be an easy feat.

Characters

Adele von Ascham
The central character, Adele is a twelve-year-old girl with long silver hair. She was originally an intelligent Japanese girl named Misato Kurihara, who was unable to make friends due to the expectations placed upon her. After losing her life while saving a girl from an oncoming truck, she was offered the chance to be reincarnated into a fantasy world, asking only that she would be given “average” abilities so she can live a normal life. After regaining her memories at the age of ten, Adele discovered that her abilities, which are the average of all magical creatures in the world, are 6,800 times more powerful than an average human, giving her excessive physical strength and powerful magic. After failing to hide her abilities at Eckland Academy, she left her home country and took on the alias of “Mile” to attend Hunter’s Prep School, where she forms a party named The Crimson Vow. She loves anime, manga, and video games, the knowledge of which she uses in her new life in very interesting ways. She has a boob complex, which provokes her anger when someone points it out.

Reina
Also known as Crimson Reina, she is a mage specializing in fire magic. She was born to a traveling merchant, and became a Hunter at an early age, giving her the most practical knowledge and experience amongst the Crimson Vow party members. She has a signature fire spell called Crimson Hellfire, and has a particular hatred for bandits after both her father and a Hunter group who had taken her in were killed by such brigands. Despite being fifteen years old at the start of the series, she is assumed to be a similar age to Mile, the youngest member of their group, due to her height and appearance which is a source of annoyance for her.

Mavis von Austien
The official leader of the Crimson Vow (although it is always Reina that does the actual “leading”), Mavis is a 17-year-old swordswoman of noble birth. After running away from home in the hopes of becoming a knight, she met the other members of the Crimson Vow at the Hunters’ Prep School and helped to form the party. She is tall and has an androgynous appearance, making her popular with other girls. She is a softie for sappy and sad stories, especially the backstories behind each of her friends.

 

Pauline
A 14-year-old mage specializing in healing and water magic, she is the daughter of a merchant and the resident bookkeeper of the Crimson Vow. Despite her miserly manner, she typically has a gentle appearance and demeanor but is known to show fits of ruthlessness when called for. Her family’s company is called the Beckett Company, although whether Pauline’s surname is the same has not been confirmed.

 

 

Manga Monday- Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?!

Manga Monday- Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?!

Didn’t I Say to Make My Abilities Average in the Next Life?! is a Japanese light novel series written by FUNA and illustrated by Itsuki Akata. A manga adaptation by Neko Mint began serialization in 2016. Both the light novel and manga have been licensed in North America by Seven Seas Entertainment. An anime television series adaptation by Project No.9 aired from October 7 to December 23, 2019.

Media

Web novel

FUNA began serializing the story as a web novel on the user-generated novel publishing website Shōsetsuka ni Narō on January 14, 2016. As of November 3, 2020, 492 chapters of the web novel have been published.

Light novels

The series was acquired for print publication by Taibundo and Earth Star Entertainment, who published the first light novel, with illustrations by Itsuki Akata, in May 2016 under their Earth Star Novel imprint. Seven Seas Entertainment announced on September 11, 2017 that they had licensed the series.

Manga

A manga adaptation with art by Neko Mint began serialization online on Earth Star Entertainment’s Comic Earth Star website on August 5, 2016. Seven Seas announced on September 11, 2017 that they had licensed the manga.

Anime

An anime adaptation was announced via Twitter on February 26, 2018. The anime, later confirmed to be a television series, is directed by Masahiko Ohta, written by Takashi Aoshima, and animated by Project No.9, with Sō Watanabe as character designer and Yasuhiro Misawa as music composer. The series aired from October 7 to December 23, 2019 on AT-X, Tokyo MX, BS11, TVA, and ABC. Azumi Waki, Sora Tokui, and Masumi Tazawa performed the series’ opening theme song “Smile Skill=Sukisukiskill”, while Waki performed the series’ ending theme song “Genzai ↑ Banzai ↑”. The series is streamed by Crunchyroll worldwide outside of Asia.

 

Film Friday- Jujutsu Kaisen

Film Friday- Jujutsu Kaisen

Jujutsu Kaisen is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Gege Akutami, serialized in Shueisha’s Weekly Shōnen Jump since March 2018. The individual chapters are collected and published by Shueisha, with thirteen tankōbon volumes released as of October 2020. In North America, the manga is licensed by Viz Media which publishes the series in print since December 2019. Shueisha publishes the series in English on the Manga Plus app and website.

A 24-episode anime television series adaptation produced by MAPPA premiered on MBS in October 2020. The anime is licensed by Crunchyroll for streaming outside of Asia, who premiered an English dub in November 2020.

As of October 2020, the Jujutsu Kaisen manga had 10 million copies in circulation, including digital versions.

Production

In 2014, Gege Akutami started working as assistant to Yasuhiro Kanō in Kiss x Death. He published his first work the same year, titled “Kamishiro Sōsa”, a one-shot chapter published in Shueisha’s Jump NEXT! vol. 2 on May 7, 2014. His next work was No.9, with a one-shot chapter published in Jump NEXT! vol. 2 on May 1, 2015, and another one-shot in the 46th issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump on October 10, 2015. Akutami would publish the one-shot “Nikai Bongai Barabarjura” in the 2016 44th issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, released on October 3, 2016. This one-shot was nominated for the 11th “Gold Future Cup” contest of the magazine. In 2017, Akutami published Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School, a 4-chapter series that ran in Jump GIGA from April 28 to July 28, 2017. This series would serve later as a prequel to Jujutsu Kaisen, being retroactively titled as Jujutsu Kaisen 0. Akutami began the publication of Jujutsu Kaisen in the 2018 14th issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, released on March 5, 2018.

Akutami said that the message of Jujutsu Kaisen is that nobody has the absolute truth, not the “good guys” nor the “bad guys”, and if nobody is right, then nobody is wrong neither, and that each character acts according to their own ethics. Akutami is particularly a fan of Yoshihiro Togashi, author of Yu Yu Hakusho and Hunter × Hunter. He stated that the Sensui arc of Yu Yu Hakusho inspired him to create evil characters with the goal of eradicating humanity, for whom the readers, nevertheless, would feel certain empathy for. Akutami stated that with Sukuna and Mahito he wanted to avoid the typical “deep down they are good” idea, and stated that they are intrinsically evil beings who like make humans suffer, but he said that it cannot be proved that they are wrong, adding that Mahito was like Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, as Akutami never felt hatred for him.

Akutami stated that Neon Genesis Evangelion influenced him to develop the mythological aspects of the series. He is also a fan of horror films, whose influence is noted in the series, expressing as well that he used to be obsessed with found footage films. His art style is influenced by Yoshihiro Togashi, Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto), Yusuke Murata (Eyeshield 21 and One-Punch Man illustrator) and Tite Kubo (Bleach). Akutami said that he wanted his art style to get as close as possible to Togashi’s style. Regarding the process of character creation, Akutami stated that they must fall within the canons of shōnen manga in order to capture the attention of readers. Yūji is largely inspired by Akutami’s older brother, who is, in Akutami’s own words, his opposite, as he had succeeded in sports and study. For some characters, like Panda and Toge Inumaki, Akutami first created their visual aspects, while the character of Satoru Gojō came from an idea, which represents the paroxysm of force. Akutami said that Sukuna was his first favorite character, due to his design that was influenced by everything he had read, but Kento Nanami was the first character that he created and developed on his own, making him his current favorite character. He also stated that he plans to introduce Yūji’s mother in the story, and he knows when she will make her first appearance. Akutami also stated that the magic system presented in the series is largely based on Yoshihiro Togashi’s Hunter × Hunter, which fights, in Akutami’s words, “rejects emotional arguments”, but Akutami said that like Daisuke Ashihara, World Triggers author, whose magic system is also similar to Togashi’s, he is trying to find and develop his own style. He stated that he had the ending and the main stages of the story planned, but the path between the two remains “fairly free”.

Characters

Yūji Itadori
A teenager athlete who joins his school’s Occult Club to avoid the track team. After finding and opening a box containing a cursed charm resembling a rotting finger, his school is attacked by phantom-like creatures known as Curses. In order to protect his friends, he consumes the rotting finger and becomes possessed by a Curse known as Ryoumen Sukuna. He later joins the Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College under the tutelage of Satoru Gojō, where he is placed under a sort of death sentence, which has been suspended until he consumes all of Sukuna’s fingers in order to kill himself and Sukuna at the same time.

 

Megumi Fushiguro
A sorcerer studying in first year at the Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College under the tutelage of Satoru Gojō. He meets Yūji when trying to locate a high-grade cursed charm talisman at his high school. He is the one that convinces Satoru to try to save Yūji from his execution after his possession by Sukuna. He uses his curse power to create spirits  out of his own shadows to exorcise Curses. He has been noted to have high potential as a sorcerer by several other powerful people, including Sukuna himself.

 

Nobara Kugisaki
A sorcerer studying in first year at the Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College under the tutelage of Satoru Gojō. She transferred to the college so that she could live in Tokyo without any expenses. She meets Yūji Itadori and Megumi Fushiguro during her first official mission as a sorcerer. She uses a charm weapon hammer and nails infused with her curse power to exorcise Curses.

 

Satoru Gojō
A sorcerer working as a teacher in the Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College. He teaches Yūji Itadori, Megumi Fushiguro and Nobara Kugisaki. He convinces his superiors at the college to keep Yūji alive until he consumes all of Sukuna’s fingers. Even though his title of ‘The Strongest’ is self-proclaimed, most allies and enemies alike never actually dispute the title and generally consider him to be one of the most dangerous people alive. As a result, he is widely respected and venerated by sorcerers, even by those in the college’s sister school in Kyoto, and holds high influence in the sorcery world. He uses his curse power to control the space around him in innumerable ways.

 

Manga Monday- Jujutsu Kaisen

Manga Monday- Jujutsu Kaisen

Jujutsu Kaisen is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Gege Akutami, serialized in Shueisha’s Weekly Shōnen Jump since March 2018. The individual chapters are collected and published by Shueisha, with thirteen tankōbon volumes released as of October 2020. In North America, the manga is licensed by Viz Media which publishes the series in print since December 2019. Shueisha publishes the series in English on the Manga Plus app and website.

A 24-episode anime television series adaptation produced by MAPPA premiered on MBS in October 2020. The anime is licensed by Crunchyroll for streaming outside of Asia, who premiered an English dub in November 2020.

As of October 2020, the Jujutsu Kaisen manga had 10 million copies in circulation, including digital versions.

Manga

Jujutsu Kaisen is written and illustrated by Gege Akutami. Akutami first published in 2017 a 4-chapter series in Shueisha’s Jump GIGA, titled Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School, from April 28 to July 28, 2017. It was later published in a single volume, retroactively titled Jujutsu Kaisen 0, on December 4, 2018. Jujutsu Kaisen started in the 2018 14th issue of Shueisha’s Weekly Shōnen Jump, released on March 5, 2018. Its chapters are collected and published by Shueisha into individual tankōbon volumes. The first volume was published on July 4, 2018. Thirteen volumes have been released as of October 2, 2020.

Shueisha began to simulpublish the series in English on the app and website Manga Plus in January 2019. Viz Media published the first three chapters for its “Jump Start” initiative. In March 2019, Viz Media announced the print release of the series in North America. The first volume was published on December 3, 2019, and six volumes have been published in English as of October 6, 2020.

Light novels

Two light novels written by Ballad Kitaguni have been released under the Jump J-Books imprint. The first, titled Jujutsu Kaisen: Soaring Summer and Returning Autumn, was released on May 1, 2019. The second light novel, titled Jujutsu Kaisen: The Path of Roses at Dawn, was released on January 4, 2020.

Anime

An anime television series adaptation was announced in the 52nd issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump published on November 25, 2019. The manga author Gege Akutami and the main cast members appeared at Jump Festa ’20 on December 22, 2019. The series is produced by MAPPA and directed by Sunghoo Park. Hiroshi Seko is in charge of the scripts, Tadashi Hiramatsu designed the characters, and Hiroaki Tsutsumi, Yoshimasa Terui and Arisa Okehazama composed the music. While the anime had an advanced streaming debut on September 19, 2020, it officially premiered on MBS and TBS’s Super Animeism block on October 3, 2020. The series will run for 24 episodes. From episode 3 onwards the series includes post-credits anime shorts titled “Juju Sanpo”, which focus on the daily lives of the main characters. The first opening theme is “Kaikai Kitan”, performed by Eve, while the first ending theme is “Lost in Paradise feat. AKLO” performed by ALI. The second opening theme is “Vivid Vice”, performed by Who-ya Extended, while the second ending theme is “Give it Back”, performed by Cö Shu Nie.

The anime is licensed by Crunchyroll for streaming outside of Asia. Crunchyroll has released streaming dubs for the series in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French and German that premiered on November 20, 2020. The English dub will premiere on HBO Max on December 4, 2020.

In Southeast Asia, Medialink licensed the series and is streaming it on iQIYI

Plot

Yūji Itadori is an unnaturally fit high school student living in Sendai with his grandfather. He regularly avoids the track team due to his aversion to athletics, despite his innate talent for the sport. Instead, he chooses to join the Occult Research Club, where he is able to relax and hang out with his seniors, and leave school by 5:00 pm to visit his grandfather in the hospital. While he is on his deathbed, his grandfather instills two powerful messages within Yūji – “always help people” and “die surrounded by people”. After his grandfather’s death, Yūji interprets these messages as one statement – everyone deserves “a proper death”. He is then confronted by Megumi Fushiguro, a sorcerer who informs him of a high-grade cursed charm talisman at his school that Yūji recently made contact with. His friends at the Occult Club unsealed the talisman, a rotting finger, which attracted Curses to the school, creatures that are brought about through negative emotions and are strengthened by consuming magical powers present in sorcerers or such charms. Unable to defeat the Curses due to his lack of magical powers, Yūji swallows the finger to protect Megumi and his friends and becomes the host of Sukuna, a powerful Curse. Due to Sukuna’s evil nature, all sorcerers are required to exorcise him (and by extension, Yūji) immediately. However, despite being possessed, Yūji is still able to retain control over his body for the most part. Seeing this, Satoru Gojō, Megumi’s teacher, decides to take him to the Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College to propose a plan to his superiors – postpone Yūji’s death sentence until he consumes all of Sukuna’s fingers, allowing them to kill him once and for all.

Reception

The series had 600,000 copies in circulation as of December 2018, 770,000 copies in circulation as of February 1, 2019, 1.1 million copies in circulation as of February 2019, 2 million copies in circulation as of June 2019, 2.5 million copies in circulation as of November 2019, 4.5 million copies in circulation as of May 2020, 6.8 million copies in circulation as of September 2020, and over 10 million copies in circulation (including digital copies) as of October 2020, having grown 400% in one year, and about 230% in a half year. Jujutsu Kaisen was the 5th best-selling manga series in 2020, with 6,702,736 copies sold.

The series ranked 1st on the “Nationwide Bookstore Employees’ Recommended Comics of 2018” by the Honya Club website. It won the 3rd annual Tsutaya Comic Awards in 2019. In 2019, the manga was nominated for the 65th Shogakukan Manga Award in the shōnen category. The series ranked 31st on the 2021 “Book of the Year” list by Da Vinci magazine.

Leroy Douresseaux of Comic Book Bin gave the first volume a score of 8.5 /10. Douresseaux praised the series for its characters, plots, settings, and internal mythology, and described it as a “combination battle manga and horror comic book”. Shawn Hacaga of The Fandom Post, in his review of the first volume, compared the series to early Bleach and praised it for its world, lore, characters and artwork, concluding that it is a “solid first volume”. Hannah Collins of Comic Book Resources found parallels between Yūji and Sukuna and Marvel Comics characters Eddie Brock and Venom. She also noted similarities to Bleach, Blue Exorcist and Tokyo Ghoul. Collins commended the manga and regarding its then recently announced anime adaptation concluded that Jujutsu Kaisen is a “darkly enjoyable action series that’s sure to be one to watch out for in 2020”. Rebecca Silverman of Anime News Network ranked the first volume as a C. Silverman praised the series’ use of Japanese folklore and yōkai elements, comparing this and Akutami’s art style to Shigeru Mizuki’s GeGeGe no Kitarō, but criticized the story for being “very generic”. She concluded; “It has the potential to be more as Akutami gets more comfortable with the serialization process and figures out precisely where the story is going, so it may be worth a second book to be certain. But as of this one, it’s just okay, making it the kind of series that gets damned with faint praise”.