Slam Dunk (manga)

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Slam Dunk
Slam Dunk (Jump Comics).jpg
First volume of the Jump Comics edition
スラムダンク
(Suramu Danku)
Genre Sports, Comedy, Drama
Manga
Written by Takehiko Inoue
Published by Shueisha
English publisher
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump
English magazine
Original run 19901996
Volumes 31 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed by Nobutaka Nishizawa
Studio Toei Animation
Licensed by
Network TV Asahi, Animax Japan
English network
Razer (unaired)
AXN Asia (original)
Animax Asia (reruns)
Original run October 16, 1993March 23, 1996
Episodes 101 (List of episodes)
Anime film
Directed by Nobutaka Nishizawa
Studio Toei Animation
Released March 12, 1994
Runtime 30 minutes
Anime film
Conquer the Nation, Hanamichi Sakuragi!
Directed by Toshihiko Arisako
Studio Toei Animation
Released July 20, 1994
Runtime 45 minutes
Anime film
Shohoku's Greatest Challenge!
Directed by Hiroyuki Kakudō
Studio Toei Animation
Released March 12, 1995
Runtime 40 minutes
Anime film
Howling Basketman Spirit!!
Directed by Masayuki Akihi
Studio Toei Animation
Released July 15, 1995
Runtime 40 minutes
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Slam Dunk (Japanese: スラムダンク Hepburn: Suramu Danku?) is a sports-themed manga series written and illustrated by Takehiko Inoue about a basketball team from Shōhoku High School. It was serialized in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump in Japan from 1990 to 1996 and was also been adapted into an anime series by Toei Animation which had been broadcast worldwide, enjoying much popularity particularly in Japan, several other Asian countries and Europe.[1][2] As of 2012, Slam Dunk had sold 120 million copies in Japan alone, making it one of the best-selling manga series in history. Inoue later used basketball as a central theme in two subsequent manga titles: Buzzer Beater and Real. In 2010, Inoue received special commendations from the Japan Basketball Association for helping popularize basketball in Japan.[2]

Plot[edit]

Hanamichi Sakuragi is a delinquent outcast and member of a gang. Sakuragi, being very unpopular with girls, has been rejected by them 50 times. In his first year at Shohoku High School, he finds out that Haruko Akagi is the girl of his dreams, and is happy when she is not scared of him like all the other girls he has asked out.

Haruko Akagi, who recognizes Sakuragi's athleticism, introduces him to the Shohoku basketball team. Sakuragi was reluctant to join the team at first because he had no previous background in any sports and thought that basketball was a game for losers (also because the 50th girl rejected him for a basketball player). Sakuragi, despite his immaturity and hot temper, proves to be a natural athlete with potential and joins the team in order to impress Haruko and prove that he is worthy of her. Later on, Sakuragi realizes that his love for the sport equals that of his crush on Haruko. Kaede Rukawa — Sakuragi's bitter rival (both on the basketball court and love, even when Rukawa doesn't acknowledge Haruko's crush on him), the star rookie and a "girl magnet" — joins the team at the same time. Hisashi Mitsui, an ex-junior high school MVP, and Ryota Miyagi, a short but fast player, both also rejoin the team and together these four struggle to complete team captain Takenori Akagi's dream of making Shohoku the national champion. Together, these misfits gain publicity and the once little known Shohoku basketball team becomes an all-star contender in Japan.

Production[edit]

Inoue became inspired to make Slam Dunk as he liked basketball since his high school years. After Inoue started Slam Dunk, he became surprised while receiving letters from readers that they started playing the sport due to the manga. His editor even told him "basketball was a taboo in this world." Due to these letters, Inoue decided he wanted to draw better basketball games in the series.[3] With the series, Inoue wanted to demonstrate the feelings from an athlete such as their thoughts when they win, lose or improve at their sport. When he started making Vagabond, he noted that when he was doing Slam Dunk he had a simpler perspective on life as he focused more in victories and success.[4]

With the series, Inoue wants the readers to feel achievements as well as love for the sport.[5] Thinking that his success as a manga artist being largely due to basketball, Inoue organized a Slam Dunk Scholarship for Japanese students as he wanted to give back to the sport by increasing its popularity in Japan.[6] However, when asked about the response from readers to basketball, Inoue commented that although Slam Dunk is technically a basketball manga, its story could have been done with other sports such as soccer.[7] He also added that the artwork for the manga was very typical and mangalike in comparison to his newer works such as Real. His experiences with basketball also influenced the story from Slam Dunk: as a youth Inoue started playing basketball to be popular with the girls, but later became interested with the sport in and of itself. This was mirrored in the character of Hanamichi Sakuragi, who starts playing basketball to be popular with the girl he likes, to later become truly fond of the game.[8]

Media[edit]

Manga[edit]

The series was originally published in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump since the issue 40 from 1990 until the issue 27 from 1996.[9][10] The 276 individual chapters were originally collected in 31 tankōbon editions under Shueisha's Jump Comics imprint, with the first volume being published on February 8, 1991 and volume 31 on October 3, 1996.[11][12] It was later reassembled in 24 kanzenban volumes under Shueisha's JUMP Comics Deluxe imprint from March 19, 2001 to February 2, 2002.[13][14]

In North America, an English version of Slam Dunk was published by the now-defunct Gutsoon! Entertainment, which serialized the title in their manga anthology Raijin Comics from 2002 to 2004.[15] Five collected volumes were published under Gutsoon's Raijin Graphic Novels imprint. They were released from July 2, 2003 until May 5, 2004.[16][17] After Gutsoon! went out of business, the license for the Slam Dunk was purchased by Viz Media, which published a preview of the series in the December 2007 issue of the North American edition of Shonen Jump.[18][19][20] Slam Dunk began serialization in the magazine, starting with the May 2008 issue, as well as in tankōbon format with the first being published on September 2, 2008.[21][22][23] As of June 8, 2013, Viz has published 29 volumes of their translated edition.[24]

In 2004, Inoue produced an epilogue titled Slam Dunk: 10 Days After, which was drawn on 23 chalkboards in the former campus of the now-defunct Misaki High School located in the Kanagawa Prefecture, which was held for public exhibition from December 3 to December 5. The epilogue, along with coverage of the event, was reprinted in the February 2005 issue of Switch magazine.[9]

Anime[edit]

Cover of the first DVD from Slam Dunk published by Geneon and Toei Animation.

The anime series, consisting of 101 episodes, was produced by the TV Asahi terrestrial television network and Toei Animation and directed by Nobutaka Nishizawa.[25] It was first aired on TV Asahi from October 16, 1993 to March 23, 1996. It was later aired on the anime satellite television network, Animax, in addition to four animated movies produced. The anime series follows the manga storyline, but leaves out the National Tournament games. Toei compiled the episodes into a series of seventeen DVDs which were released in Japan from December 10, 2004 to May 21, 2005.[26][27] Toei once again collected the series in three DVD boxes during 2008. All the three boxes have a total of seventeen discs.[28][29][30]

Toei and Geneon briefly chose to release the anime on DVD after the manga was discontinued, though the anime was also discontinued after only a few volumes.[31][32] The first DVD was released on March 15, 2005 and the volume 4 was the last one released on June 14, 2005 before they were cancelled.[33][34] Various episodes from the series were also downloadable in IGN's Direct2Drive service.[35] Toei is currently streaming episodes of the series on-line for a fee and for free through Crunchyroll. Joost also started airing all the 101 as of May 2009 on their website.[36] Each episode is in Japanese, with English subtitles.[37]

The music was composed by Takanobu Masuda (from episode 1 to episode 69) and BMF (from episode 70 to episode 101). Three CD soundtracks were published during the airing of the series in Japan.[38][39] The openings, ending and other two themes were collected into the CD soundtrack The Best of TV Animation Slam Dunk, released on July 21, 2003.[40]

Films[edit]

Four films were produced by Toei Animation from 1994 to 1995 while the manga and TV series were still running. They contain largely new material that is either only hinted at or is not presented in the manga. From August 1 to 4, 2006, NHK broadcast all four movies as part of its satellite networks NHK BS-2's Summer Anime Choice line-up, and TV Osaka aired the last three movies from January 3 to 8, 2007.[41] All the films were collected into a DVD box named Slam Dunk The Movie which was released on December 10, 2004.[42]

The first film, simply titled Slam Dunk, premiered on March 12, 1994.[43] Set after Shohoku's practice game against Ryonan, the film focuses on a practice game against Takezono High. Before the game, Sakuragi runs into Yoko Shimura, the girl who rejects him in the very first scene of the series, and Oda, the basketball player she rejected him for. Zenkoku Seiha da! Sakuragi Hanamichi,[a] released on July 9, 1994,[44] is the second film from the series. It happens during Shohoku's 4th Round Qualifying game against Tsukubu High. The film features original characters including Godai, an old friend of Akagi and Kogure's, Rango, a wild show-off who is in love with Haruko and quarrels with Sakuragi, and Coach Kawasaki, a former pupil of Anzai-sensei. Shohoku Saidai no Kiki! Moero Sakuragi Hanamichi[b] was released on March 4, 1995.[45] Set after Shohoku's loss to Kainan, and during a practice match against Ryokufu High. Hoero Basukettoman Tamashii!! Hanamichi to Rukawa no Atsuki Natsu,[c] which was released one June 15, 1995,[46] tells that Rukawa's middle school kouhai Ichiro Mizusawa will be paralyzed soon and wishes to have one last game against Rukawa.[41]

Video games[edit]

Numerous video games based on the series, mostly developed by Banpresto and produced by Bandai, have been published for the Japanese market. Two basketball sims titled Slam Dunk Gakeppuchi no Kesshō League[d] and Slam Dunk 2 were released for the Game Boy.[47][48] The Super Famicom had three games, Slam Dunk: Shi Tsuyo Gekitotsu,[e] Slam Dunk 2: IH Yosen Kanzenban!!,[f] and SD Heat Up!!.[49][50][51] Slam Dunk games have also been released for the Game Gear, Mega Drive, and Sega Saturn.[52][53][54] A Slam Dunk coin-operated arcade game by Banpresto was released in 1995.[citation needed] Characters of the series also appear in the Nintendo DS games Jump Super Stars and Jump Ultimate Stars.[55][56]

Unofficial game modifications have been made by fans for NBA 2K13 (PC Version).[57]

Reception[edit]

Slam Dunk has more than 120 million copies in Japan as of 2013, making it Weekly Shōnen Jump's fifth best-selling manga series.[58] In 1995, it received the 40th Shogakukan Manga Award for shōnen.[59] The success of Slam Dunk is cited as an influence in the increased popularity of basketball among the Japanese youth during the 1990s.[60] In a poll of over 79,000 Japanese fans for the 10th Japan Media Arts Festival, Slam Dunk was voted the #1 manga of all time.[61] The English translation of Slam Dunk was listed one of the best comics of 2008 by Publishers Weekly.[62] In a survey from Oricon in 2009, Slam Dunk ranked first as the manga that fans wanted to be turned into a live-action film.[63] In the Japanese government's Media Arts 100 Poll of the public's favorite works of art of all time, Slam Dunk took first place in the manga division.[64] The imprint version of Slam Dunk: 10 Days After has been highly popular in Japan, having initially ranked 6th and then 15th in a ranking of Japanese comics.[65][66]

The anime adaptation has also been very popular in Japan. In TV Asahi's Top 100 Anime show, Slam Dunk ranked as the 10th most popular anime.[67] In another poll from TV Asashi but developed by a website, the series ranked 8th.[68] The DVD boxes from the anime also had a good sale in Japan, having appeared in rankings from Japanese Animation DVD Ranking.[69][70]

See also[edit]

  • J. R. Sakuragi — Japanese-American basketball player who coincidentally shares Sakuragi's name[71]


Notes[edit]

  1. ^ 全国制覇だ! 桜木花道?, lit. "Conquer the Nation, Hanamichi Sakuragi!"
  2. ^ 湘北最大の危機! 燃えろ桜木花道?, lit. "Shohoku's Greatest Challenge! Burning Hanamichi Sakuragi"
  3. ^ 吠えろバスケットマン魂!! 花道と流川の熱き夏?, lit. "Howling Basketman Spirit!! Hanamichi and Rukawa's Hot Summer"
  4. ^ スラムダンクがけっぷちの決勝リーグ Gakeppuchi no Kesshō Rīgu?
  5. ^ スラムダンク 四強激突!! Suramu Danku ?
  6. ^ スラムダンク2 IH予選完全版!! Suramu Danku: : IH Yosen Kanzenban!! Shi Tsuyo Gekitotsu?

References[edit]

  1. ^ Charles Solomon (2010-06-12). "Author profile: Manga artist Takehiko Inoue has hoop dreams". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  2. ^ a b "Japan Basketball Association Awards Slam Dunk's Inoue". Anime News Network. June 9, 2010. Retrieved June 17, 2013. 
  3. ^ Inoue, Takehiko (1996). "Afterword". Slam Dunk, Volume 31. Shueisha. ISBN 4-08-871839-9. 
  4. ^ Deb, Aoki. "Interview: Takehiko Inoue". About.com. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  5. ^ "Takehiko Inoue Talks about Visit to Kinokuniya". Comipress.com. 2008-02-02. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  6. ^ Deb, Aoki. "Interview: Takehiko Inoue - Page 2". About.com. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  7. ^ Justin, Sevakis (2007-11-21). "Takehiko Inoue at Kinokuniya NYC". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  8. ^ Cha, Kai-Ming; MacDonald, Heidi (November 26, 2007). "Takehiko Inoue Unveils Mural at New Kinokuniya". Publisher Weekly. Archived from the original on December 26, 2007. Retrieved November 5, 2009. 
  9. ^ a b "Slam Dunk 10 Days After Epilogue's Reprint Confirmed". Anime News Network. 2009-01-24. Retrieved 2009-01-24. 
  10. ^ "Works from Takehiko Inoue". Takehiko Inoue official website. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
  11. ^ "Slam Dunk/1" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-10-17. 
  12. ^ "Slam Dunk/31" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
  13. ^ "Slam Dunk 完全版/1" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
  14. ^ "Slam Dunk 完全版/24" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
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  21. ^ "Slam Dunk, Vol. 1". Viz Media. Retrieved 2008-10-17. 
  22. ^ "USA's Shonen Jump Replaces Hikaru no Go with Slam Dunk". Anime News Network. 2008-02-11. Retrieved 2009-04-28. 
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  26. ^ "SLAM DUNK VOL.1 DVD" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  27. ^ "SLAM DUNK VOL.17 DVD" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  28. ^ "SLAM DUNK DVDコレクション VOL.1" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  29. ^ "SLAM DUNK DVD-Collection Vol.3" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  30. ^ "SLAM DUNK DVD-Collection Vol.2" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-15. 
  31. ^ "Toei Announces First Releases". Anime News Network. 2004-11-23. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  32. ^ "Toei DVDs Cancelled". Anime News Network. 2006-09-18. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  33. ^ "Slam Dunk, Vol. 1". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  34. ^ "Slam Dunk, Vol. 4". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  35. ^ "First Slam Dunk Episode Streamed with English Subs". Anime News Network. 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  36. ^ "Toei Animation Adds Anime to Crunchyroll Website Today". Anime News Network. 2008-10-27. Retrieved 2009-05-12. 
  37. ^ "Joost Streams All 101 Episodes of Slam Dunk". Anime News Network. 2009-05-01. Retrieved 2009-05-12. 
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  39. ^ "スラムダンク ― オリジナル·サウンドトラック 3 '95サマー" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  40. ^ "THE BEST OF TV ANIMATION SLAM DUNK - Single Collection". CDJapan.co.jp. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  41. ^ a b "Slam Dunk The Movie". Toei Animation. Archived from the original on 2009-05-13. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  42. ^ "SLAM DUNK THE MOVIE DVD" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  43. ^ "映画 アニメ SLAM DUNK (1994)" [Theatrical Anime: Slam Dunk (1994)] (in Japanese). AllCinema Movie & DVD Database. Retrieved June 17, 2013. 
  44. ^ "映画 アニメ SLAM DUNK 全国制覇だ!桜木花道" [Theatrical Anime: Slam Dunk Conquer the Nation, Hanamichi Sakuragi!] (in Japanese). AllCinema Movie & DVD Database. Retrieved June 17, 2013. 
  45. ^ "映画 アニメ SLAM DUNK 湘北最大の危機!燃えろ桜木花道" [Theatrical Anime: Slam Dunk Shohoku's Greatest Challenge! Burning Hanamichi Sakuragi] (in Japanese). AllCinema Movie & DVD Database. Retrieved June 17, 2013. 
  46. ^ "映画 アニメ SLAM DUNK 吠えろバスケットマン魂!!花道と流川の熱き夏" [Theatrical Anime: Slam Dunk Howling Basketman Spirit!! Hanamichi and Rukawa's Hot Summer] (in Japanese). AllCinema Movie & DVD Database. Retrieved June 17, 2013. 
  47. ^ "スラムダンクがけっぷちの決勝リーグ" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. 
  48. ^ "Slam Dunk 2". GameSpot. Retrieved May 13, 2009. 
  49. ^ "スラムダンク From TV animation 四強激突!!" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. 
  50. ^ "Slam Dunk 2: IH Yosen Kanzenban!!". GameSpot. Retrieved May 13, 2009. 
  51. ^ "Slam Dunk SD Heat Up!!". GameSpot. Retrieved May 13, 2009. 
  52. ^ "テレビアニメ スラムダンク 【ゲームギア】" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. 
  53. ^ "テレビアニメ スラムダンク MD 【メガドライブ】" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. 
  54. ^ "テレビアニメ スラムダンク アイラブバスケットボール" (in Japanese). Amazon.com. 
  55. ^ "スラムダンク - キャラクター紹介". Nintendo. Retrieved September 12, 2012. 
  56. ^ ジャンプアルティメットスターズファーストアルティガイド. Shueisha. 2006. pp. 183–184. ISBN 4-08-779392-3. 
  57. ^ NBA 2K13 SlamDunk + Kuroko's Basketball Mod (Anime). NBA2K (2013-01-05). Retrieved on 2014-05-12.
  58. ^ "Shueisha Media Guide 2013: Boy's & Men's Comic Magazines" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2013-11-28. 
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  60. ^ "スポーツとメディアの関係性 (Relation between sports and media)". students of Rikkyo University. 
  61. ^ "Top 10 Anime and Manga at Japan Media Arts Festival". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2006-11-24. 
  62. ^ Ermelino, Louisa (November 3, 2008). "PW's Best Books of the Year". Publishers Weekly. Archived from the original on September 12, 2009. Retrieved June 17, 2013. "This spirited manga about high school basketball depicts all the passions of life on and off the court in high style." 
  63. ^ "Survey: Slam Dunk Manga is #1 Choice for Live-Action (Updated)". Anime News Network. 2009-05-03. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  64. ^ "Slam Dunk's Inoue Wins Japanese Government Prize". Anime News Network. 2009-03-08. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  65. ^ "Japanese Comic Ranking, April 14–20". Anime News Network. 2009-04-22. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  66. ^ "Japanese Comic Ranking, April 7–13". Anime News Network. 2009-04-15. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  67. ^ "TV Asahi Top 100 Anime". Anime News Network. 2005-09-23. Retrieved 2009-04-15. 
  68. ^ "TV Asahi Top 100 Anime Part 2". Anime News Network. 2005-09-23. Retrieved 2005-09-23. 
  69. ^ "Japanese Animation DVD Ranking, September 17–23". Anime News Network. 2008-09-25. Retrieved 2005-09-23. 
  70. ^ "Japanese Animation DVD Ranking, October 21–28". Anime News Network. 2008-10-30. Retrieved 2005-09-23. 
  71. ^ Former Bruin is now Japan’s J.R. Sakuragi, Los Angeles Times, January 21, 2008.

External links[edit]