Shueisha 'Buried' in Prince of Tennis Valentine Chocolate From Fans
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge, Jennifer Sherman
The annual Prince of Tennis Valentine's Day character popularity contest is a huge undertaking leaving the Jump Square magazine offices in an avalanche of confectionery boxes and some poor sap having to count them all. The response is huge with fans sending chocolates to their favorite character in hopes of earning him the crown. The contest took a break in 2015 but has since been reinstated. Last year saw Keigo Atobe win with 8,948 chocolates.
Series creator Takeshi Konomi announced on Twitter on January 13 that the tradition will march on. However, he cautioned fans to "not overdo it."
『テニプリバレンタイン』やるのかな?と、もぬもぬした日々をお過ごしの皆さん‼— 許斐剛 (@konomi_takeshi) January 13, 2017
Prince of Tennis fans, being who they are, responded to Konomi's announcement with enthusiasm and began preparing to send chocolate confections to their favorite characters. The manga creator followed up his announcement with another series of tweets on January 30. Konomi provided the mailing address to send the chocolate to and requested that fans send their gifts during the week leading up to Valentine's Day. He teased that the characters might return the favor in some way for White Day, March 14. Again, Konomi advised fans "not to spend too much money" in their excitement.
【テニプリバレンタイン①】— 許斐剛 (@konomi_takeshi) January 31, 2017
But as one might have expected, Prince of Tennis fans did not hold back in demonstrating their love for the manga.
Konomi posted an image on Tuesday of some of the chocolates Shueisha received for the project this year. The publisher is apparently "buried" in chocolate. The creator said that Shueisha received more than ten times the amount of chocolate gifts that the editors in charge expected. People had to carry some of the chocolates to another building.
集英社が…チョコで埋まってるようですヾ(๑°⌓°๑)ﾉ゜。ｿﾅﾉｶ‼— 許斐剛 (@konomi_takeshi) February 14, 2017
担当編集も想像の10倍以上来てます~‼と大慌て( ‘ ٥ㅿ٥;)
入りきらず別のビルまで運んでくださった方々本当に有り難うございます‼テニプリバレンタイン今年もキャラの皆に愛情を一杯感謝です (✼´人’) pic.twitter.com/jJbrc1rPKS
The results of the contest are not yet in, and it will probably take some time for the unfortunate Shueisha staff members to sort through all the presents. Konomi, Prince of Tennis characters, and Shueisha are certainly feeling the love this year.
Although the campaign was a huge success, Konomi seems to hope fans realize that their love for characters is more important than the amount of money spent. In his tweets, Konomi thanked fans for their effort and promised that the characters would receive the chocolates. This year's overload of fan love will not soon be forgotten.