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Interview: Hiro Mashima [2011-11-08]


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malvarez1



Joined: 17 Nov 2008
Posts: 713

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 12:13 pm Reply with quote
Does every single Shonen manga author like Dragon Ball?

In the past, I've heard that authors including Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto), Yoshihiro Togashi (YuYu Hakusho, Hunter x Hunter), Eichiro Oda (One Piece), Nobuhiro Watsuki (Rurouni Kenshin), Kentaro Yabuki (Black Cat), and Tite Kubo (Bleach), all liked Dragon Ball when they were younger. I guess this author can join the list.
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CareyGrant



Joined: 18 Nov 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 12:15 pm Reply with quote
I've never seen, read or heard anything about Fairy Tale--yes, I live under a rock. But why did my first reaction to the animated banner for this link make me say "What's Luffy and Nami doing there?"

Seriously. Why does it look like Fairy Tale aped One Piece on its character designs, going so far as to make near copies of certain characters?
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 1536
Location: Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 12:17 pm Reply with quote
malvarez1 wrote:
Does every single Shonen manga author like Dragon Ball?

In the past, I've heard that authors including Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto), Yoshihiro Togashi (YuYu Hakusho, Hunter x Hunter), Eichiro Oda (One Piece), Nobuhiro Watsuki (Rurouni Kenshin), Kentaro Yabuki (Black Cat), and Tite Kubo (Bleach), all liked Dragon Ball when they were younger. I guess this author can join the list.


Well, every kid read dragonball back in the day.

And would anyone who _didn't like it_ decide "I wanna grow up to be a Shounen Jump manga artist!"? I don't think so. So yeah, I'd probably venture a guess that nearly every Shounen manga author likes Dragonball.
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One-Eye



Joined: 08 Mar 2011
Posts: 1239

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 2:07 pm Reply with quote
malvarez1 wrote:
Does every single Shonen manga author like Dragon Ball?

In the past, I've heard that authors including Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto), Yoshihiro Togashi (YuYu Hakusho, Hunter x Hunter), Eichiro Oda (One Piece), Nobuhiro Watsuki (Rurouni Kenshin), Kentaro Yabuki (Black Cat), and Tite Kubo (Bleach), all liked Dragon Ball when they were younger. I guess this author can join the list.
Wait another 10-15 years and the next crop of mangakas will be saying it was Naruto or Bleach (or something like that) they read as kids and it inspired them. Then someone on a forum will ask "does every manga author like Naruto or Bleach (or something like that)?"
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belvadeer



Joined: 11 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:14 pm Reply with quote
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Last edited by belvadeer on Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Anton Chigurh



Joined: 03 Dec 2007
Posts: 201
Location: San Diego, California

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:20 pm Reply with quote
One-Eye wrote:
malvarez1 wrote:
Does every single Shonen manga author like Dragon Ball?

In the past, I've heard that authors including Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto), Yoshihiro Togashi (YuYu Hakusho, Hunter x Hunter), Eichiro Oda (One Piece), Nobuhiro Watsuki (Rurouni Kenshin), Kentaro Yabuki (Black Cat), and Tite Kubo (Bleach), all liked Dragon Ball when they were younger. I guess this author can join the list.
Wait another 10-15 years and the next crop of mangakas will be saying it was Naruto or Bleach (or something like that) they read as kids and it inspired them. Then someone on a forum will ask "does every manga author like Naruto or Bleach (or something like that)?"


Nah, it'll be mostly One Piece. Not only judging from Fairy Tail's character models, obviously based on that series, but out of how monumentally popular it is and has been for years.

I find that both a blessing and a curse. It does inspire several artists to start their own series, but their common source will make reading several different Shonen series a bit monotonous, what with being able to tell what storytelling devices they're using and abusing, which can prevent people from immersing deeply into their worlds.
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Sailor S



Joined: 20 May 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 4:31 pm Reply with quote
Anton Chigurh wrote:

Nah, it'll be mostly One Piece. Not only judging from Fairy Tail's character models, obviously based on that series, but out of how monumentally popular it is and has been for years.


Well, if you look at his previous series, Rave Master, the character models are pretty much identical to Fairy Tail's. I'm not saying that he isn't influenced by One Piece, mind you, but at least he's been consistent in his works.
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blackseer



Joined: 09 Sep 2011
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 4:46 pm Reply with quote
I tried to read this series years ago and gave a chance to the first episode of the anime, but never got interested.

Now that it has become a somewhat trend, can anyone recommend it? How does this series deserve to be watched/read, when there are so many other shonen series out there and One Piece is the greatest of them all (IMO)?

I just want to know if I should give another try, no malicious intent here. And don't say that everyone should just try everything and decide afterwards; I don't have the time and this is the worst argument ever.
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Hospodar



Joined: 09 Feb 2011
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 5:31 pm Reply with quote
CareyGrant wrote:

Seriously. Why does it look like Fairy Tale aped One Piece on its character designs, going so far as to make near copies of certain characters?


Hiro Mahima answered this question already himself:
“It all started with me copying and tracing their works, and then, before I realized it, I knew I was going to be a professional.”
He was a big fan of Dragon Ball and copied its art style, the same as Oda. Therefore Oda’s and Mashima’s art style are similar because both imitated the art style of toriyama.

Mashima wasn’t an assistant of Oda nor does he copy his style. Rave Master and One Piece started at the same time which I believe was 1997.
blackseer wrote:

I just want to know if I should give another try, no malicious intent here. And don't say that everyone should just try everything and decide afterwards; I don't have the time and this is the worst argument ever.

It strongly depends how much you like Shonen and what you like about OP. Fairy Tail is a typical Shonen. It shares many things and themes with OP which are typical Shonen like friendship etc. without ever having the “essence” which with your words makes OP the greatest Anime ever.
Mashima has a talent to really start out an arc good and interesting and then butchering it along the way. Another really annoying thing is that Natsu who isn’t the strongest Guild Member always fights the strongest enemy’s and wins with some kind of one time power up. This becomes the more ridiculous the longer the series goes on. If I would rate the series and would give OP a ten then I would give FT a 6. If you like shonen, can tolerate the things I just said and have time to waste then yes, you should check it out. It’s nothing special but quite entertaining if you like shonen.
P.S.: The annoying Circles disappear also entirely as the series goes on. You could always read the Manga if you don’t have time to watch the Anime.
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Sewingrose



Joined: 11 Jan 2011
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 5:42 pm Reply with quote
blackseer wrote:
I tried to read this series years ago and gave a chance to the first episode of the anime, but never got interested.

Now that it has become a somewhat trend, can anyone recommend it? How does this series deserve to be watched/read, when there are so many other shonen series out there and One Piece is the greatest of them all (IMO)?

I just want to know if I should give another try, no malicious intent here. And don't say that everyone should just try everything and decide afterwards; I don't have the time and this is the worst argument ever.


Okay this is coming from someone who has read the first 20 or so-ish volumes of Fairy Tail, and considers One Piece one of her favorite Shonen Series ever. My general consensus on the story: Meh. (Note specifics about the story will be talked about, but hopefully in a way vague enough to not be spoil-ery.)

I actually was digging the series in a schlocky way until it started going into a certain character's back-story, around Volume 14 I believe, don't quote me on that. Then it became something of a chore to get through, you knew the cues it was going to hit, and in the end it felt accomplished in a "I just saw the big bad get punched to Kingdom Come, Yay" but not really satisfying. One of Fairy Tail's greater strengths, how short it sort of kept the arcs to a few volumes at most, got undone here, and the extra time really did it no favors. And it's kept that pacing ever since.

One of the reasons I got into the series, and was actually enjoying it for a while was the Guild aspect, something I hadn't seen done quite like that and I thought that would lead to some interesting story devices, and it does to an extent, but that gets put by the side in order for another random bad guy our main group has to go slap down. In one of the weirder ways I find I have a problem with this series is that the more developed the characters become after a while, the less interesting I found them. The back stories aren't just typical, but when you think about them in nature to the character, they loose some of their personalities.

The creativity I saw in early volumes revealed it's hand to not be very creative, or interesting, at all. And it was around volume 19, when there is a story set in a sort of mirror world of their own, that I became tired of the series as a whole. Because that should be an incredible story, but it feels like a slog.

I think that's going to be this series greatest failing, being compared to much to One Piece. On it's own Fairy Tail feels like a sort of fun shonen romp but it quickly shows it's paint-by-numbers nature, but you can probably still enjoy it a bit. But if you've read One Piece, especially the later arcs, Fairy Tail just becomes that much more disappointing. Because Fairy Tail desperately wants to be One Piece, and I'm not talking about the art here at all, but the story itself and way it's told. Fairy Tail wants to be this big self-built globe-spanning epic, and it wants to have the fun and creativity, but it falls short.

One Piece has an imagination about the whole of it, which grows with the story, the world-building keeps expanding in ways you never thought and it keeps becoming more and more epic. When you meet characters like the 7 Warlords you can feel what power they posses before they even use it because of all the people the Straw Hats had met up to that point. And this series makes you believe in the very cliché powers of friendship and other shonen tropes done a thousand times, but it feels real here.

Fairy Tail does have creative aspects to it, but when it starts trying to play on a bigger stage then the immediate vicinity of the Guild, the seems start showing by the dozen. The main problem is the way you can tell the story was not really that plotted out, beyond throwing in a few characters in early chapters to eventually start expanding upon 20 volumes later. The themes, even the friendship one, just feel artificial. In the end it just doesn't have the thought behind it to pull off what it wants to or be the story it wants to be.
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Brack



Joined: 15 Oct 2005
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Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:07 pm Reply with quote
Hospodar wrote:
Rave Master and One Piece started at the same time which I believe was 1997.


Rave Master started in the 1999 issue 32 of Shonen Champion, making it about 2 years after One Piece, so there's every chance that Oda was an influence back then. And now, well if you are in that genre, he's going to be an influence by default due to the impact he has on the market.
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dtm42



Joined: 05 Feb 2008
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Location: NZL

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:29 pm Reply with quote
But isn't there a big difference between being influenced by someone and aping their character designs?

The Fairy Tail character designs are more than a homage or a sign of being influenced by the successful, it's sheer plagiarism is what it is.
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Lord Geo



Joined: 18 Sep 2005
Posts: 1067

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:54 pm Reply with quote
belvadeer wrote:
Fighting power levels and insane levels of abilities seen in modern popular manga are all derived from Dragon Ball, which is considered the base from which shonen manga draw their concepts from. I didn't want to admit it before, but it is the truth and I've long since accepted it.


Well prepare to be thrown for a loop, as calling Dragon Ball "the base of shonen manga" is incorrect, as titles like Fist of the North Star, Kinnikuman, and Ring ni Kakero were doing the same things years before Dragon Ball broke away from its gag roots and started doing crazy action. In fact, Toriyama was doing gag manga Dr. Slump during each of those titles runs at some point (one of Ring ni Kakero's last chapters even has Arale's hat shown as a cameo), so Dragon Ball probably took from those titles when Toriyama had to make it more action-oriented.

You could argue that Dragon Ball maybe refined those elements into the way shonen action manga works now, but to say that Dragon Ball started it all is just plain wrong.
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TheHTRO



Joined: 20 Oct 2005
Posts: 237

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 7:50 pm Reply with quote
Brack wrote:
Hospodar wrote:
Rave Master and One Piece started at the same time which I believe was 1997.


Rave Master started in the 1999 issue 32 of Shonen Champion, making it about 2 years after One Piece, so there's every chance that Oda was an influence back then. And now, well if you are in that genre, he's going to be an influence by default due to the impact he has on the market.


Actually, Rave: The Groove Adventure (as it's known in Japan; also called Groove Adventure Rave) appeared in Shonen Magazine, the same magazine Fairy Tail appears in now, although I can confirm that it did first appear in issue 32 in 1999.
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blackseer



Joined: 09 Sep 2011
Posts: 94

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 8:25 pm Reply with quote
Hospodar and Sewingrose: thanks for the answers.

So, basically, Fairy Tale is an usual shonen series, with a few good points, but lacking the strenght that makes One Piece stands out. Not enough to spike my interest.

Also interesting is the lack of die hard fans reading this. I'm sure there are a few out there, but why is no one defending how awesome this series is or how it's much better than OP? According to the encyclopedia, 143 people think this series is a masterpiece. Where are they?
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