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Bakuman Vol 1 Cover.jpg
The cover of the first tankōbon, released in Japan by Shueisha on January 5, 2009, featuring Moritaka Mashiro.
Genre Slice-of-life, Comedy-drama, Romance
Written by Tsugumi Ohba
Illustrated by Takeshi Obata
Published by Shueisha
English publisher
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump
English magazine
Original run August 11, 2008April 23, 2012
Volumes 20 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed by Kenichi Kasai, Noriaki Akitaya
Written by Reiko Yoshida
Studio J.C.Staff
Licensed by
Network NHK-E
Original run October 2, 2010April 2, 2011
Episodes 25 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Bakuman. 2
Directed by Kenichi Kasai, Noriaki Akitaya
Written by Reiko Yoshida
Studio J.C.Staff
Licensed by
Network NHK-E
Original run October 1, 2011March 24, 2012
Episodes 25 (List of episodes)
Bakuman: Mangaka e no Dou
Developer Namco Bandai Games
Publisher Namco Bandai Games
Genre Visual novel, Puzzle game
Platform Nintendo DS
  • JP December 15, 2011
Anime television series
Bakuman. 3
Directed by Kenichi Kasai, Noriaki Akitaya
Written by Reiko Yoshida
Studio J.C.Staff
Network NHK-E
Original run October 6, 2012March 30, 2013
Episodes 25 (List of episodes)
Anime and Manga portal

Bakuman. (バクマン。?) is a Japanese manga series written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata, the same creative team responsible for Death Note. It was serialized in the magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump from August 11, 2008 to April 23, 2012, with the 176 chapters collected into 20 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha. The story follows talented artist Moritaka Mashiro and aspiring writer Akito Takagi, two ninth grade boys who wish to become manga artists, with Mashiro as the artist and Takagi as the writer. Some characters resemble real authors and editors of Weekly Shōnen Jump, and many manga titles mentioned in Bakuman have actually been published in the magazine.

An anime television adaptation of the series created by J.C.Staff began airing on NHK-E on October 2, 2010. The third and final season of which ended broadcast on March 30, 2013. A live-action film adaptation is set for a 2015 release. Bakuman was the seventh best-selling manga series of 2011 and the tenth best of 2012, with nearly 4.4 million and over 3.2 million copies sold those years respectively. As of May 2014, it has over 15 million volumes in circulation. Additionally, it is the first manga released online by Shueisha in multiple languages before becoming available in print outside of Japan. In 2009, Viz Media announced it had licensed the series for a North American release. Besides releasing the series in collected volumes, they also released it in their online manga anthology Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha.


The plot begins when Moritaka Mashiro, a junior high student, forgets his notebook in class. His classmate, Akito Takagi, notes Mashiro's drawings in it and asks him to become a manga artist to his stories. Mashiro declines, citing his late manga artist uncle, who died from overworking. Takagi incites Mashiro to meet with Miho Azuki, Mashiro's crush, and tells her the two plan to become manga artists. In response, Azuki reveals her plans to be a voice actress. Mashiro proposes to her that they should both marry when Azuki becomes a voice actress for the anime adaptation of their manga. The two then start creating their manga, under the pen name Muto Ashirogi, in hopes of getting serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump.

After submitting many one-shots to Shueisha, Ashirogi begin with their first published series in Weekly Shōnen Jump, Detective Trap, which is eventually canceled due to its declining popularity, after Mashiro is hospitalized for overworking on the manga. Their next series is the gag manga Run, Daihatsu Tanto!, which they give up on, realizing it will never be popular. After being challenged by the editor-in-chief of Jump to create a superior manga to their rival's, Ashirogi develops their current series Perfect Crime Party. It is met with considerable popularity but due to its theme, is unfit for an anime series. When their rival, Eiji Nizuma, submits a one-shot for serialization, Ashirogi competes by submitting Reversi which replaces Perfect Crime Party while the latter is moved to Shueisha's fictional monthly magazine, Hisshou Jump. After many conflicts involving the graphic novel sales and the voice actress choice, Reversi is chosen for an anime adaptation with Miho as the primary actress, after she passes a public audition. After fulfilling their dreams, the series ends with Mashiro officially proposing to Miho at the place they made their promise, followed by their first kiss.



Written by Tsugumi Ohba and drawn by Takeshi Obata, Bakuman was serialized in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine from its premiere on August 11, 2008 to its end on April 23, 2012.[1][2] The 176 chapters were then collected into 20 tankōbon volumes from January 5, 2009 to July 4, 2012.[3][4] Several chapters of the series were released on Jumpland's official website in Japanese, English, French, and German; the first chapter released on August 19, 2008. It is Shueisha's first manga to be released online in multiple languages before becoming available in print outside of Japan.[5] A 15-page one-shot of the series Otter #11, the gag manga created by the character Kazuya Hiramaru in Bakuman, was published in the August 8, 2010 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump.[6] It was then published the following week in Shōnen Jump Next on August 16.[7] Viz Media included an English translation of it in the free SJ Alpha Yearbook 2013, which was mailed out to annual subscribers of Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha in December 2012.

In addition to the success of Bakuman in Japan, the series has also been licensed worldwide: in Korea by Daiwon C.I. and serialized in their Comic Champ manhwa magazine,[8] by Tong Li Publishing in Taiwan, Kana in France, Norma in Spain, Tokyopop in Germany, Comics House in Malaysia, Kim Dong Publishing House in Vietnam, in Brazil by Editora JBC and NED in Thailand. At San Diego Comic-Con International 2009, Viz Media announced it had licensed the series for English release in the US and Canada.[9] The first volume was released on August 3, 2010, and all 20 volumes have been published as of August 6, 2013.[10][11] In addition to the collected volumes, Viz also published the series online in their manga anthology Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha.[12] Bakuman started with chapter 162 in the anthology's debut issue on January 30, 2012, and ended with the series' final chapter released on May 7, 2012.


A 25-episode anime television series based on Bakuman was announced in Weekly Shōnen Jump's second issue of 2010.[13] Created by J.C.Staff, it began broadcasting on NHK on October 2, 2010 and ran until April 2, 2011. In December 2010, Weekly Shōnen Jump announced that a second season would air in Fall 2011; it ran from October 1, 2011 to March 24, 2012.[14][15] A third and final season was announced in the 3/4th (2012) combined issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump and began airing on October 6, 2012.[16] It ran for 25 episodes between October 6, 2012 and March 30, 2013.

In August 2011, Media Blasters licensed the first two seasons of the Bakuman anime for North America, including an English-language dub.[17] The first seven episodes were included on a 2-disc DVD set released on November 22, 2011, however, the second was halted in February 2012.[18][19] The first Blu-ray release was cancelled indefinitely in June 2012.[20] Viz Media Europe acquired the rights for release in Europe and the United Kingdom in March 2012, in collaboration with Manga Entertainment and Kazé.[21] After Media Blasters' cancellation, Kazé revealed the UK release would be subtitled only.[22] In November 2012, Media Blasters officially announced they are discontinuing the series, but added that Viz Media might pick up the license for NA.[23]


A video game adaptation of Bakuman was made for the Nintendo DS by Namco Bandai Games.[24] The game was released in Japan on December 15, 2011.[25]

Live-action film[edit]

In May 2014, a live-action film adaptation of Bakuman was announced. Currently set for an October 3, 2015 release, Hitoshi Ōne is directing with Takeru Satoh starring as Moritaka Mashiro and Ryunosuke Kamiki as Akito Takagi.[26]


Bakuman. was nominated for the third annual Manga Taishō award in 2010.[27] The first volume of the series placed fourth on the Oricon manga chart during its debut week, selling 154,675 copies.[28] The second volume followed suit, placing second during its first week with 228,056 copies.[29] The third volume continued the trend and placed fourth during its debut week, selling 200,369 copies.[30] During the first half of 2009, the first volume placed twenty-eighth and the second volume placed twenty-seventh on Oricon's list of fifty top-selling manga in Japan, selling 381,633 and 394,567 copies respectively.[31] Bakuman was the seventh best-selling manga series of 2011, with almost 4.4 million copies sold, and the tenth best of 2012, with over 3.2 million sold that year.[32][33] As of April 2012, over 13 million copies had been sold,[34] with this number growing to over 15 million copies in publication by May 2014.[26] In the United States, volume one debuted at number 6 on the New York Times Manga Graphic Books list for the week of August 12[35] and remained on the list for eight weeks straight.[36]

Jason Thompson referred to Bakuman. as "a love letter to the manga industry done in old-school shonen manga style." He felt that while it can be "text-heavy" on the process of making manga, it is ultimately a "heroic story of self-improvement, friendship and striving to succeed." Thompson cited the villain characters as the most interesting, but called the series sexist for only portraying females as "bitter, man-hating viragos motivated by grudges against men" or "patient helpmates" striving to support them instead.[37]

Carlo Santos of Anime News Network praised the conflicting viewpoints of the protagonists and was surprised that the series succeeds, not only as a manga about manga, but as a slice-of-life story about the dreams of youth. However, Santos remarked that the series could learn from Ohba and Obata's previous serial Death Note; commenting that the beginning is not as gripping and the plot twists are "pretty weak" and "seem like petty contrivances." Despite this, he believes that the series is "another hit."[38]

Christopher Butcher reviewing volume one for had strong praise for the art, calling it "quite possibly the best-drawn manga out today." He also enjoyed the behind-the-scenes information on the manga industry. Like Thompson, Butcher did state that while he enjoyed it, he has reservations about recommending Bakuman. because it is "horribly sexist."[39]


  1. ^ "Death Note Creators Confirmed to Launch Bakuman Manga". Anime News Network. August 3, 2008. Retrieved August 22, 2008. 
  2. ^ "Bakuman Manga to End on Monday, April 23". Anime News Network. April 18, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  3. ^ "バクマン./1| 小畑 健/大場 つぐみ" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved January 17, 2009. 
  4. ^ "バクマン./20 | 小畑 健/大場 つぐみ" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved May 16, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Death Note Team's Bakuman Manga Posted in 4 Languages". Anime News Network. August 19, 2008. Retrieved January 31, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Bakuman's Manga-in-Manga Otter #11 to Be Published". Anime News Network. August 2, 2010. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Bakuman's Otter #11 Also Runs in Shonen Jump Next Mag". Anime News Network. August 12, 2010. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  8. ^ "BAKUMAN" (in Korean). Daiwon C.I. Retrieved February 2, 2009. 
  9. ^ "Viz's Shonen Jump Adds Bakuman, Tokiko Manga". Anime News Network. July 24, 2009. Retrieved July 24, 2009. 
  10. ^ "Bakuman., Vol. 1". Viz Media. Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Bakuman., Vol. 20". Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Viz to Launch Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha Digital Anthology". Anime News Network. October 14, 2011. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Bakuman. Manga's TV Anime Confirmed for Fall 2010". Anime News Network. December 10, 2009. Retrieved December 11, 2009. 
  14. ^ "Bakuman Manga Gets 2nd TV Anime Next Fall". Anime News Network. December 14, 2010. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Bakuman 2 TV Anime Slated for October 1". Anime News Network. August 29, 2011. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  16. ^ "Bakuman Manga Gets 3rd TV Anime Next Fall". Anime News Network. Retrieved May 5, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Media Blasters Confirms It Licensed Bakuman Season 2". Anime News Network. August 29, 2011. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Bakuman: First Issue". Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Media Blasters Halts Releases of Bakuman., Ikki Tousen Great Guardians". Anime News Network. February 3, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Retailer: Media Blasters Cancels 1st BD Volume of Bakuman". Anime News Network. June 15, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Viz Media Europe Acquires Bakuman Rights for U.K.". Anime News Network. March 27, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Bakuman To Be Released Sub-Only". Anime News Network. September 25, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  23. ^ "Media Blasters: No More Bakuman Plans, Anime May Go to Viz". Anime News Network. November 1, 2012. Retrieved November 4, 2012. 
  24. ^ "Bakuman DS Game Has Players Create A Manga". Siliconera. August 5, 2011. Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  25. ^ "How To Create A Manga Plot, Bakuman Video Game Style". Siliconera. November 10, 2011. Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  26. ^ a b "Kenshin's Takeru Satoh & Ryunosuke Kamiki Star in Live-Action Bakuman Film". Anime News Network. May 7, 2014. Retrieved May 7, 2014. 
  27. ^ "10 Titles Nominated for 3rd Manga Taisho Awards". Anime News Network. 2010-01-18. Retrieved January 21, 2015. 
  28. ^ "Japanese Comic Ranking, January 6–12". Anime News Network. January 14, 2009. Retrieved January 31, 2009. 
  29. ^ "Japanese Comic Ranking, March 3–9". Anime News Network. March 18, 2009. Retrieved March 28, 2009. 
  30. ^ "Japanese Comic Ranking, June 1–7". Anime News Network. June 10, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009. 
  31. ^ "Top-Selling Manga in Japan by Volume: 1st Half of 2009". Anime News Network. June 15, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009. 
  32. ^ "Top-Selling Manga in Japan by Series: 2011". Anime News Network. November 30, 2011. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  33. ^ "30 Top-Selling Manga in Japan by Series: 2012". Anime News Network. December 2, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  34. ^ バクマン。 : 累計1300万部の人気マンガが連載4年で幕 10年越しの主人公の恋の行方描く (in Japanese). Mantan Web. Retrieved February 10, 2014. 
  35. ^ "Graphic Books List". New York Times. August 12, 2010. Retrieved August 25, 2010. 
  36. ^ "Graphic Books List". New York Times. September 30, 2010. Retrieved October 9, 2010. 
  37. ^ Thompson, Jason (March 26, 2015). "Bakuman. - House of 1000 Manga". Anime News Network. Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  38. ^ Santos, Carlo (March 31, 2009). "30 Seconds to Pluto - RIGHT TURN ONLY!!". Anime News Network. Retrieved May 23, 2009. 
  39. ^ Butcher, Christopher. "Bakuman Volume 1". Retrieved 2014-08-04. 

External links[edit]