Boxing Manga Hajime no Ippo will go on a short hiatus

According to a statement in Twitter account for Kodansha‘s Weekly Shōnen Magazine popular award-winning legendary action-comedy sports manga Hajime no Ippo by George Morikawa will go on a short hiatus after this week’s chapter. While the reason behind it hasn’t been revealed yet but we are hoping it’s not related to the author’s health. The series will most likely return and resume in Weekly Shounen Magazine issue 51/2021 out Nov 17, 2021.

Morikawa debuted the manga in Japanese in Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine on October 11, 1989. The manga’s 132nd compiled book volume shipped on September 17, 2021. As of November 2019, the cumulative circulation of the series has exceeded 96 million. Aside from traditional print publications, the series has also been released for an e-book version by Kodansha in 2015 but was discontinued later in August same year as Morikawa didn’t like the idea of digital versions. But due to the new COVID-19 pandemic, the magazine again started distributing the series in e-book format and all 131 volumes of the series are now available digitally.

On TV Asahi‘s Manga Sosenkyo 2021 poll, where 150000 people participated in and voted their top 100 favorite manga series, Hajime no Ippo ranked 47. In 1991 the manga also received the 15th Kodansha Manga Award in the Best Shounen Manga category.

A 76-episode anime adaptation was broadcast on Nippon TV between October 4, 2000, and March 27, 2002. Satoshi Nishimura directed the animated project within MADHOUSE. The script was written by Tatsuhiko Urahata, the character designs were the work of Koji Sugiura. A second series titled Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger and a third series titled Hajime no Ippo: Rising also aired from January 6 to June 30, 2009, and October 5, 2013 – March 29, 2014. They are currently available on Crunchyroll.

MU describes the story as:

Makunouchi Ippo is an ordinary high school student in Japan. Since he spends most of his time away from school helping his mother run the family business, he doesn’t get to enjoy his younger years like most teenagers. Always a target for bullying at school, Ippo’s life is one of hardship. One of these after-school bullying sessions turns Ippo’s life around for the better, as he is saved by a boxer named Takamura. He decides to follow in Takamura’s footsteps and train to become a boxer, giving his life direction and purpose. Ippo’s path to perfecting his pugilistic prowess is just beginning.

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