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Ashita no Joe
The Last Word in Japanese Boxing Manga
Date:13, Feb, 2013
Investigated and Written by Misaka Youhei
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Round about 1970 in Japan, people united tight and tried to make Japanese brands valid internationally. In other words, they built foundation for recent Japan. Their quantities of heat are greatly expressed in Ashita no Joe; the last word in Japanese boxing manga.

The main role is Yabuki Joe who had lived in a home and ran away. He lives his unsettled life. One day in Tokyo, Joe meets Tange Danpei: an ex-boxer. Danpei was once a talented boxer but lives from hand to mouth. They come to blow and Danpei finds Joe has a gift for boxing. Not long after, Joe gets to be imprisoned into a reformatory. However, that is just the beginning of his boxing life.


The manga started in December 1967. Probably since it exactly expressed heat of the time, Ashita no Joe got enthusiastic upholding like they held a real funeral when Rikiishi, a rival of Joe, was dead in the manga or like hijackers announced they are Ashita no Joe on Japan Airlines Flight 351, the first hijacking in Japan, in March 1970. As mentioned here, it was very influential in real society of those days.

Moreover, Mishima Yukio a Japanese late author had a taste for watching boxing and directly visited Kohdan-sha which has published Weekly Shounen Magazine Ashita no Joe was serialized on, for only feeling like reading Ashita no Joe.

While on the one hand it describes heat of those days, the manga has gotten criticized as not realistic. Setting a documentary apart, however, how must comics devote themselves to be realistic? It is often said you are foolish if you got hurt from acting like a character in manga. That tells everything. Manga is required to be fascinating rather than realistic.

States of the roles in the manga are fascinating. Being careless about burning out, they do all they can. Ashita no Joe shows its beauty. Maybe most Japanese have lately been losing the spirit. However, for that, Ashita no Joe is exceedingly good for perceiving air and spirit of those days.


about Ashita no Joe

・Written by Kajiwara Ikki as Takamori Asao
・Illustrated by Chiba Tetsuya
・Published by Kohdan-sha
・Serialized from December 1967 to May 1973








 

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