|Born||March 5, 1970|
Kishiwada, Osaka, Japan
|Awards||43rd Shogakukan Manga Award, shōjo category|
Yuu Watase[a] (渡瀬 悠宇, Watase Yū, born March 5, 1970, in Kishiwada, Osaka) is a Japanese manga artist. She debuted in 1989 at the age of 18 with the short story "Pajama de Ojama" (パジャマでおじゃま, "An Intrusion in Pajamas") and has since published more than 50 volumes of one-shots and long-running manga series. One of her most popular titles is Fushigi Yûgi. In 1998, Watase won the 43rd Shogakukan Manga Award in the shōjo (girls') category for Ceres, Celestial Legend. In 2008, she began her first shōnen (boys') serialization, Arata: The Legend.
In 2019, Watase came out as X-gender, a Japanese non-binary gender identity. Following the announcement, an editor for Viz Media's Shojo Beat imprint clarified that Watase's preferred pronouns in English are "she" and "her".
Early career and methods
Watase developed an interest in drawing manga at a young age. However, Watase did not receive any formal training until after high school when she went to a private art school. There she were taught how to draw manga, but because her first short story, "Pajama de Ojama", had already debuted, Watase quit in the middle of it.
Watase prefers to work with more traditional methods, because she believes the traditional methods have more feelings. Despite finding new media jarring, Watase has expressed a desire to work with new media as well. While Watase mostly works with colored inks and markers, she has used digital programs such as Photoshop to enhance traditional work.
Issues in career
In a 2014 blog post, Watase detailed some of the issues that she faced as a manga artist. A former editor for Arata: The Legend continuously asked Watase to redraw scenes that he did not like or understand. Watase was doing redraws all day and pulling late nights just to meet the next morning's deadlines. Because of the constant cycle, Watase began to lose interest in working on the manga for the fans or even the story. She was simply working to try and get it approved for the weekly publication.
Watase Yuu Flower Comics
- Fushigi Yûgi – 18 vols.
- Fushigi Yûgi: Genbu Kaiden – 12 vols.
- Fushigi Yûgi: Byakko Ibun – (oneshot)
- Fushigi Yûgi: Byakko Senki – ongoing, first vol. released in April 2018
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari – 3 vols.
- Zoku Shishunki Miman Okotowari – 3 vols.
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari Kanketsu Hen – 1 vol.
- Epotoransu! Mai – 2 vols.
- Ceres, Celestial Legend (Ayashi no Ceres) – 14 vols.
- Appare Jipangu! – 3 vols.
- Imadoki! – 5 vols.
- Alice 19th – 7 vols.
- Absolute Boyfriend (Zettai Kareshi) – 6 vols.
- Sakura-Gari – 3 vols.
Shōnen Sunday Comics
- Arata: The Legend (Arata Kangatari) – 24 vols.
Watase Yuu Masterpiece Collection
- Gomen Asobase!
- Otenami Haiken!
- Suna no Tiara
- Mint de Kiss Me
- Oishii Study
- Musubiya Nanako
Yuu Watase Best Selection
- Sunde ni Touch
- Perfect Lovers
Watase Yuu Flower Comics Deluxe, Kanzenban, Shogakukan Bunko
- Fushigi Yūgi Bunko – 10 vols.
- Ayashi no Ceres (Ceres, Celestial Legend) Bunko – 7 vols.
- Alice 19th Bunko – 4 vols.
- Zettai Kareshi Bunko – 3 vols.
- Imadoki! Bunko – 3 vols.
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari Bunko – 3 vols.
- Fushigi Yūgi Kanzenban – 9 vols.
Flower Comics Deluxe
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari/Zoku Shishunki Miman Okotowari
- Zoku Shishunki Miman Okotowari
- Pajama de Ojama
- Mint de Kiss Me
- Epotoransu! Mai
- Watase Yuu Illustration Collection Fushigi Yūgi
- Watase Yuu Illustration Collection – Part 2 Fushigi Yūgi Animation World
- "Ayashi no Ceres" Illustration Collection Tsumugi Uta ~Amatsu Sora Naru Hito o Kofutote~
- Yuu Watase Post Card Book I
- Yuu Watase Post Card Book II
- Shishunki Miman Okotowari – 4 vols.
- Fushigi Yūgi – 18 vols.
- Ayashi no Ceres – 6 vols.
- Fushigi Yūgi: Genbu Kaiden – 1 vol.
- Absolute Boyfriend – 6 vols.
- Masei Kishin Den (Illustration)
- Yada ze! (Illustration)
- Piratica (Illustration)
- Her name is romanized as "Yû Watase" in earlier printings of Viz Media's publications of Fushigi Yûgi, Alice 19th, and Ceres, Celestial Legend, while in Viz Media's Fushigi Yûgi: Genbu Kaiden and Absolute Boyfriend her name is romanized as "Yuu Watase". In Chuang Yi's English-language versions of Fushigi Yugi (spelled without a macron or circumflex), her name is romanized as "Yu Watase". Yuu Watase is a pen name. She chose "Yuu" because she liked the name.
- 渡瀬悠宇の一覧. BookLive! (in Japanese). Retrieved January 18, 2021.
- "Creator Info: Yuu Watase". Shojo Beat. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
- Duffield, Patricia (May 2001). "Feature: Watase's Works". Animerica Extra. Vol. 4 no. 6. Viz Media. Archived from the original on May 15, 2007.
- 小学館漫画賞：歴代受賞者. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved January 18, 2021.
- Mateo, Alex (December 2, 2020). "Yuu Watase Plans Arata: The Legend Manga's Remaining Plot". Anime News Network. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
- @wataseyuu_ (May 20, 2019). ブログでもここでも呟いたけど、再度。 漫画にも影響してると思うから。 私はXジェンダーと医師に診断されてて、中身は、男にも女にも寄れるし男でも女でもない。 見た目はちゃんと(20代後半から社会に合わせて)どうせやるならやるでメイクもオシャレもする、それだけ。 女性の身体は否定しないが→ [I've mumbled about it on my blog and here, but again. Because I think it affects the manga. I've been diagnosed as X-gender by my doctor, and inside, I can be either male or female, neither male nor female. I look fine (I've been socially conscious since my late 20s), I do my makeup and dress up any way I can, that's all. I don't deny the female body, but... →] (Tweet) (in Japanese). Retrieved January 18, 2021 – via Twitter.
- Liu, Michelle (January 1, 2020). "Best LGBTQ+ Characters of 2019". Anime News Network. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
The same year , Fushigi Yugi creator Yuu Watase came out as X-gender ...
- Adler, Liz (February 26, 2020). "Fushigi Yuugi: 10 Things That Didn't Age Well". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
Mangaka Yuu Watase came out as X-gender in 2019 ...
- "'I heard that Yuu Watase came out as X-Gender?'". Official Shojo Beat. October 4, 2019. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
I checked before our announcement. Watase's preferred pronouns are she/her.
- Dong, Bamboo (January 29, 2014). "Mangaka Yuu Watase Blogs About Editorial Harassment". Anime News Network. Retrieved March 28, 2017.