Yoshihiro Togashi’s Level E to be Animated!

Yoshihiro Togashi is best known to date for being two things: one, is being Naoko Takeuchi’s husband, and two for being a legendary mangaka best known for Yu Yu Hakusho and Hunter X Hunter. Both have been animated into series and OAVs, and the Hunter X Hunter manga is still ongoing on a pretty unpredictable schedule. Between the end of the publication of Yu Yu Hakusho and Hunter X Hunter was a manga called Level E. Comprised of 3 volumes (16 chapters), the story centers on Yukitaka Tsutsui. He is a freshman in high school who aspires to be the best baseball player that he can be. Upon moving into his apartment, there was a man there who claimed to be an alien who had lost his memory. Later, we learn that he is an alien prince and that while he may have all the brains and the smarts, he has the worst nature. Poor Yukitaka is the object of his torture! On Saturday October 23rd, at the Jump Super Anime Tour 2010, it was announced that an animated adaptation of Level E has been green lit for 2011. More details will be announced later, but all that the media has been reporting so far is that it will be animated by Studio Pierrot and David Production. Studio Pierrot has worked with Yoshihiro Togashi before, animating his epic Yu Yu Hakusho manga. David Production is a relatively new Japanese production studio founded by two producers formerly of Gonzo, Koji Kajita and Taito Okiura. They are best known for Soul Eater and Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2. As of this writing, there have been no more details reported in the press, however one site is reporting that there has been a rumor of an announcement at MIPCOM of 12 or 13 episodes. MIPCOM ended earlier in October, and we found no such press release from Studio Pierrot or David Production announcing this (Studio Pierrot did exhibit at MIPCOM). The Level E manga has also just been released in paperbacks in Japan as well, featuring new afterwords from Togashi himself. We are going to treat this as a rumor for now pending further confirmation. Some of us have read parts of Level E and found the story to be great – we look forward to seeing what will come out of this next year!

Really, There Isn’t Any Trouble in the Moon Kingdom…

At Least This Nasty Rumor Put a Different Mystery to Rest!

Leave it to 2chan and wacky fanartists to start ridiculous rumors. Towards the end of August, the Asian tabloids had another field day after the popular message boards and other blog were abuzz with rumors of a divorce between Naoko Takeuchi and her husband, Yoshihiro Togashi. This time the banter began as a result of fans being angry with Hunter X Hunter going on hiatus again. The tabloid Shukan Gendai (the image posted on the right) had reported that the reason for the split were because Yoshihiro was experiencing a creative slump and he continually had to ask his publisher to push back his deadlines. Because he was still very popular, his editors gave in knowing that his fans would always come back when he did (and sales of his work would never decline). However, he may have been taking his editors for granted as he had become a video game addict and also traveled frequently overseas (the latter, is news to us!). This irresponsible behaviour frustrated Naoko and led to this rumored divorce. The fans were also coming up with all sorts of strange reasons for why this happened. Some thought he had joined the Unification Church to escape his creative slump, or that his assistant had left him because of some turbulence. What really got the discussion flared up was a post from someone claiming to be another mangaka, with some exclusive and confidential information. This mangaka posted (translated):

This is strictly confidential, he got divorced last year. They likely clashed because his wife was a considerably selfish person. Because of this his life has become fairly rough, in the future expect not to see him in print as often.

This mangaka was never identified. The photo you see on the left was also thrown around the thread. We bet it was the same person who drew those other silly drawings from before of Sailor Moon beating up on a dog. In an effort to dispel this rumor, a different article brought up this blog entry from a different mangaka, Ami Shibata. Ami is famous for her work on Blue Dragon ST, Bucky the Incredible Kid, and Papuwa. She is also a close friend of Naoko Takeuchi’s, and she even drew Sailor Moon for Naoko in Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon Original Picture Collection Volume Infinity. In her entry, she spoke of having lunch with Naoko after 8 or 9 years, and that she had moved to a new place that had made Naoko a neighbor in her town.

Let’s put that nasty rumor to rest, for just a moment. If anything, the one article to cite Ami Shibata’s post helped us to solve another mystery. Last December, Yoshihiro Togashi had revealed that a new addition arrived to their family the year before. While there were no details given on whether they had another son or a daughter, he drew a bunny. Naoko Takeuchi had always drawn bunnies in her comics, and many times they even represented girls. Was this a hint? Ami wrote in her entry that Naoko was the wife of Yoshihiro Togashi, the mangaka behind Hunter X Hunter that was currently being published in Shonen Jump. And, she also remarked that she was the energetic mother of a son and a daughter! We were happy to read this, and now we are wondering if there are as many bunny rabbits in her daughter’s room as there were in Usagi’s in PGSM :p. Ami Shibata also wrote about going shopping afterwards with Naoko, and purchasing 3-D paper art. The two had such a good time together, and nothing had changed at all in these many years!

We have to commend this article from Livedoor for doing a good job of finding this entry from Ami’s blog, and using it to show definite proof that Naoko and Yoshihiro were definitely not divorced. With that, we officially debunk this rumor, and call everything that the tabloids, the fans, and this unidentified mangaka have said absolutely ludicrous. Shukan Gendai is also published by Kodansha, which is also the publisher behind Sailor Moon. You’d think, that they would have learned something from their turmoils with the Sailor Moon manga and not frustrate the creator any more and publish negacrud like this, but they still pushed ahead. But, there was a bright side to this rumor as we have finally learned a new detail we didn’t know about the recent addition to Naoko Takeuchi’s family. So we end this article offering additional congratulations to the couple on the arrival of their daughter!

An Inspirational Story About the Power of Yoshihiro Togashi’s Manga!

Making news in some of the smaller news outlets was this tiny story of a blogger who posted a heartfelt “Thank You” to Yoshihiro Togashi on his blog. This blogger is 22 with a younger brother who is 14. A year ago, the younger brother was being pushed around and bullied in school to the point where he attempted suicide. His attempt failed, and he chose to remain at home and not go to school any more. Their mother had to quit her job so she could be at home to watch him all the time. The blogger lent his brother some manga to read, all titles by Togashi – Wicked Cupid, Yu Yu Hakusho, and Hunter X Hunter. He thought that it would not be a good idea for him to read Level E. The night before this entry, he spoke to his brother to see if he was okay and he told him that he didn’t want to die without reading the end of Hunter X Hunter. The blogger then ended the entry thanking Togashi for saving his brother, and told him to have a good rest from his manga.

What should have remained a heartfelt sentiment then became a victim of 2ch. A popular trend on the message board is “Kopipe” (“Copy Paste”), where one of the site’s users copies and pastes the entry, and then mocks it. This entry has created a lot of negative buzz on the board lately – and one blogger on Internet Watch sympathizes with the original blogger and is surprised at how this entry is being used for something other than it was intended to.

In other Togashi news, Oricon ran a poll asking readers who they thought changed the history of manga. Of course, legendary mangaka like Osamu Tezuka, Akira Toriyama, and even Hayao Miyazaki made the list, but it was the opinion of this Slashdot.jp blogger that Togashi was one that would have made his personal list.

Yoshihiro Togashi – Hunter x Hunter Manga Going Back On Hiatus

Grab your pitchforks and torches, HxH fans, it’s that time again. Yep, it’s ANOTHER hiatus/suspension/whatever for Hunter x Hunter. The 26th issue of this year’s Shounen Jump will be the last appearance for the Manga for some time. Some sites(see here, here, and here) are even speculating as long as 2 years. But don’t go throwing yourself off of a bridge just yet. We’ve got a heaping helping of Togashi quotes to help take the sting off a bit. Enjoy!

Issue 20:

I’m sorry jump readers, I forgot to think of a comment to write here. 

Well… at least he’s honest about it.

Issues 21 & 22:

Everyone thinks differently, but this week’s Inumaru Dashi was too funny for this hunter-hunter to pass. 

Inumaru Dashi is a gag comedy series (think Shin-Chan) that appears in Shonen Jump. It’s about a teacher that is having a hard time teaching her first class because of one of her students, Maru-Kun Inu. Sailordees described it to me as a “read-this-at-your-own-risk”-type of series. So, read at your own risk.

Issue 23:

I went to visit my son’s classroom.  I want to do it all over again from grade-school.  Does no elementary school accept an adult who wants to come back? 

An adult going back to elementary school? I’m pretty sure Adam Sandler made a movie about that back in 1995.

Issue 24:

I had a very happy birthday.  I tried my very best *but had some bad luck (bachi ga ataru) trying* to endure it.

* translator’s note:  in the second sentence he uses the phrase “bachi ga ataru”, which means either bad luck or bad karma, or to put it a little bit better, what comes around, goes around.  In this comment, it seems that poor Togashi probably got very tired when his party lasted a little longer than he wanted it to.   One of those things that isn’t translated very well in English, which is probably why this sentence seems  a little mangled between the *s.

Issue 25:

Because I have two children, it is hard for me to get anything accomplished in the morning and I have many long nights. 

Issue 26:

I’ll come back soon. Everyone, please take care. 

And thus ends the record for consecutive volumes before a hiatus by Togashi. Look on the bright side, though, at least it wasn’t a ‘goodbye and thanks for everything’.

Hay Togashi!

We’re up to 13 weeks in a row for Hunter x Hunter now, and Togashi’s latest anecdote leaves us wondering about his previous absences.


Without waiting for next year, the hay fever in my head has healed.
The treatment is to leave it for seven years.

Togashi mentioned his hay fever once before, but seven years seems like WAY too long a time to go without doing something about it. Your regimen of non-treatment has certainly taken a long time to work, or maybe all that video gaming is just keeping you inside and away from all the pollen. 😛

There is some good news however, Togashi is close to breaking a record.

Prior to 2006, Hunter x Hunter was published frequently since its debut in 1998. His longest continuous publication string was 79 weeks in a row! But since Togashi’s long hiatuses, he has only published 4 continuous strings of weeks and the longest was 13 in a row. Just one more week to go and you’ll be back on track Togashi-san!

So now that even the press has stopped making fun of you for your hiatuses and with your hayfever gone, maybe you can finish everything you want to?