Bakuman: The Best Manga for Manga Artists?
Manga / Comic Review
- Apr 19, 2012 6:56 AM
Some sad news in the manga industry today. (apologies for any typos... i have broken my hand :3)
Bakuman, written and drawn by Ohba and Obata (creators of Death Note), finished today after 176 chapters.
(btw you don't have to read all of this. if you want to just type to your hearts content about Bakuman and want a discussion, then feel free to type away in the comments section of this blog xDD)
Now, the main reason i am writing this, is firstly to get any self respecting manga artist to get there ass on the interenet or onto amazon so they can read this damn series.
It is one of my all time favourite manga series of all time. now this isn't to say it has some issues, but damn it's good, and today is not a day to criticise Bakuman :) Not that i need to sell it to you but from now on i'm gonna just gush. so if you're up for reading how sweaty a manga can make an 18 year old english student then this is the blog for you xD
lol i'm kidding. This blog is going to be long but i am going to explain why it is such a powerful teaching tool for those trying to create their own comic/series/manga whatever.
The first thing Bakuman did for me was teach me the differences in manga. It's ridiculous how many different types of manga there are. The comic books we are more familiar with in the west are almost all of the same genre. either horror or super hero. lol. Before Bakuman i didn't know that Naruto and Vampire Knight were actually from dfferent magazines, and each magazine have their own publishing department, and each magazine aims at a certain demographic, and each magazine is released at different times. all this stuff that happens in japan i was completely ignorant of.
So this is the first main lesson taught by Bakuman; The Industry. You can't do any work without knowing how shit works on the business end of things.
By the way this isn't in order of importance this is just how many useful thijngs you can learn from one manga series.
The second thing i learnt was that when teachers and parents tell you to work hard, there is a reason for that. now it's kinda obvious that when you put x amount of work in you get x back and sometimes more. even as a kid you know that, but it's stressful and boring. i didn't realise that that kind of philosophy was isolated to just the school environment. i realised that if i wanted to get good at drawing, i had to practise and spend hours trying to get better. I never saw it as the same thing in school because i enjoyed doing it. i never realised that actually, even if you are not naturally talented at art, if you put enough time and effort into it, you can get there.
One of Bakuman's most common theme was this idea of struggling. We saw that at 14 mashiro and takagi had what it took to make it pro in the future and even after doing well with 'money and intelligence' they had to come up with something new and fresh that was better than before. they were always asked to make something better and they always expected better from themselves. The most memorable scene the opitimises struggle is the hospital scene. Mashiro has been working so hard that he actually falls ill and needs an opertaion. yet still through the recovery stage they are able to finish Trap for weeky submission in order to prevent them from going on Hiatus.
The third life lesson type thing i learnt from bakuman was about rivalry and competitiveness. i do a lot of sport and already knew how great competition is for not only the satisfaction of winning but also getting better at that sport. after reading Bakuman and Ashirogi Muto's fierce battles with Nizuma Eiji, i realised competition could be applied to my ability to learn manga. In fact my username, Rivalhopeso, derives from that. my philosophy is to treat everyone around me as a friend but also as a rival where we can help motivate each other to get better. my other major philosphy is to improve with every piece i do which also stems from what i said previously about Bakuman. i'd like to think i'm similar to Fukuda from Bakuman xD i mean i don't have a big mouth, bandana or a bike but by forming team fukuda he wanted to make changes to the industry through the friendship, cooperation and rivalry of his colleagues. i feel like i have a similar relationship with some of the people i know on the internet *screwfaces RebPierre* xD
and if at this point you are wondering where the 'Hopeso' part of my username comes from... well that is the name of my dog :/ lol
so those are the three main things i learnt from Bakuman; The Industry, The Work Ethic and The Benefits of Rivalry.
Now i won't go into everything, but Bakuman taught me a lot in terms of how to create a manga. they go over issues of creating names (plans) effectively, how to set the pace of a manga, how to use tones and contrast, how to make a page interesting if it has loads of text, how to create arcs, the different formula for gag or battle mangas, how to write very dark humour, how to create a manga for a certain demographic, when to change your art style, how to end a manga series, how to boss your editor into keepijng your artistic integrity. to name just a few xD
The biggest thing for me was that Bakuman was like a guide book written by the creators of death note on how to create a manga series, but it also had a deep and compelling story line to it with romance and comedy being major factors.
Everytime Ashirogi Muto created a manga piece it was like O&O were telling us this is what they did with Death Note or Bakuman even. With regards to Reversi, Ashirogi Muto made it clear they didn't want to draw the manga out further than the final battle between schwarz and weiss. this was like O&O saying they regret continuing Death Note after the L arc.
Also you can tell that the authors and editors in Bakuman are cameos of real people. my thoery is that Yoshida the ditor and Hirumaru are based on the creator of Gin Tama; Hideaki Sorachi. i mean if you have any Gin Tama volumes and read the author notes you'll know what i mean. he complains about his editor being harsh on him all the time and he says the funniest and wierdest things. Gin Tama is full of dark humour like Otters 11 xD
sheesh i just love this manga series. it has done so much for me and i literally could type all day about how much i love it. if you read this all you are a brave soldier xD
please leave comments below anc please, if you haven't all ready, watch or better yet, read Bakuman AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.
Happy Reading :)