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14-Year-Old Osamu Tezuka's Early Manga Sketches Printed for 1st Time

posted on by Jennifer Sherman
Shogakukan's collection offers first look at the Astro Boy creator's earliest manga

The publisher Shogakukan released a compilation book of manga artist Osamu Tezuka's production notes and early works last Monday. For the first time, the Tezuka Osamu Sōsaku Note to Shoki Sakuhin Shū 2 (Osamu Tezuka Production Notes and Early Works Collection 2) includes the first creations from the "God of Manga" when he was a 14-year-old middle school student in 1943.

"Oyaji Tantei" (Old Man Detective; pictured right) and "Baritone Kōjō Jiken" (The Baritone Factory Case), Tezuka's earliest manga booklets, are reproduced in the collection. "Oyaji Tantei" was Tezuka's first pen and ink project, and an illustration of its star character serves as the new book's frontispiece.

The title moustached detective provided the basis for Higeoyaji, a prominent member of Tezuka's "star system" cast of characters and a recurring figure in many of his numerous stories. Tezuka modeled the old man after the grandfather of one of his classmates.

Production notes for Gessekai no Keisatsu (Life on the Moon) and Uchūtei Jiken (The Spaceship Affair), works that remain unpublished, appear in the book with notes for Tezuka's popular works such as Jungle Taitei (Kimba the White Lion) and Faust. The materials reveal that Tezuka first imagined Jungle Taitei's title character as a set of twins rather than a single lion.

After obtaining a medical degree, Tezuka abandoned his job as a doctor and went on to become a prominent and prolific manga and anime creator. Diary of Ma-chan, his first published manga, debuted in 1946. Astro Boy, Black Jack, and Phoenix account for some of the more than 150,000 manga pages produced by Tezuka before his death in 1989.

Shogakukan published the first Osamu Tezuka production notes and early works compilation book in December 2010.

Source: Sankei News

Right image via Sankei News

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