March comes in like a lion Creator Draws COVID-19 PSA

posted on by Kim Morrissy
Image shows the Kawamoto sisters washing their hands to keep the virus at bay

March comes in like a lion creator Chica Umino drew an image of the three Kawamoto sisters washing their hands and exchanging tips for combating the spread of COVID-19. The image was posted on the manga's official website and is available to download in both A3 and A4 sizes.

The text on the top of the poster reads: "Let's wash our hands thoroughly!" Hinata says, "Do it after you've sneezed or blown your nose, before you have a snack or meal, and after you've been outside." At the bottom of the poster, the virus says, "I really like the fingertips, the gaps between fingers, the thumbs, and the palm of your hands! From there I want to jump into your eyes and mouth! But I'll disappear if you wash your hands!"

According to the website, the idea for the poster first began through an interaction Umino had on Twitter with Satoshi Kutsuna, a medical professional working at the National Center for Global Health and Medicine. It turns out that he's also a blogger by the name of "Kutsu Ō," whom Umino had been a fan of for many years. When Umino discovered Kutsuna's identity, she was delighted and asked if she should draw a public health poster that children can easily understand in order to commemorate the occasion. Kutsuna, who also professes to be a big fan of Umino's manga, suggested that she draw the March comes in like a lion characters taking measures to combat the spread of COVID-19. And thus, the illustration was born.

The website encourages printing and sharing the image freely (exempting commercial contexts). Fans are encouraged to post the illustration on bulletin boards, distribute it to people around them, and use it to teach children about washing their hands.

Hinata's voice actress Kana Hanazawa was so pleased with the poster that she posted an audio recording of herself reading out the character's lines. She also encouraged her fans to use the recording however they like. "I hope that it can help people stay healthy...!" she wrote.

Umino, a creator previously known for her josei manga such as Honey and Clover, launched the original manga in Young Animal in 2007. The story centers on Rei, a solitary player of shogi (a Japanese board game related to chess), and his relationships with a neighboring family. He becomes acquainted with Akari, and two young girls, Hinata and Momo, who also have have a large number of cats. The manga has won the Manga Taisho, Kodansha Manga Awards' Best Shōjo Manga award, and the Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prizes' Grand Prize. The manga inspired two 22-episode anime seasons in 2016 and 2017.

Source: Comic Natalie

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