Chibi Maruko-chan Manga's Last Volume Includes Unpublished Work, Remake of 1st Chapter

posted on by Jennifer Sherman
17th/final volume ships on December 25

The 17th and final compiled book volume of Momoko Sakura's Chibi Maruko-chan manga will ship on December 25. The volume's seven chapters will include work previously unpublished in Shueisha's Ribon magazine, which serialized the manga.

The chapter titles in the volume will include "Maruko, Tsūchō o Nakusu" (Maruko Loses Her Bankbook), "Pyramid Power no Nazo o Saguru" (Searching for the Mystery of Pyramid Power), and "Maruko, Matsutake o Hoshigaru" (Maruko Wants Matsutake Mushrooms). The volume will also include a remake of the manga's first chapter previously drawn by Sakura to mark the 25th anniversary of the series.

The second and final compiled volume of Sakura's Chibi Shikaku-chan parody manga, first newly revised edition of the first volume of Sakura's Coji-Coji manga, and the first digital volume of the 4-Koma Chibi Maruko-chan manga will also launch on December 25.

Sakura passed away due to breast cancer at the age of 53 on August 15. Ribon magazine published a tribute booklet to Sakura in September that included the manga's first and 132nd chapters.

Sakura serialized the Chibi Maruko-chan manga in Ribon from 1986 to 1996. The comedy manga, which follows the everyday life of a third-grade schoolgirl, has about 32 million copies in print. Sakura launched a four-panel version in a Japanese newspaper in 2007, and she ended that version in 2011.

Sakura launched the Chibi Maruko-chan Kimi wo Wasurenai yo manga as a tie-in to the Eiga Chibi Maruko-chan: Italia kara Kita Shōnen anime film in September 2015, and ended it in December of that year. She also launched the spinoff manga series Chibi Shikaku-chan in Shueisha's Grand Jump magazine in 2016.

The original Chibi Maruko-chan manga inspired a television anime that is consistently the #2 rated anime series after Sazae-san. The first anime series ran from 1990 to 1992, and the ongoing second series premiered in 1995. Sakura herself composed the theme song "Odoru Ponpokorin." Two episodes of the series that aired on September 2, shortly after Sakura's passing was announced, received an average television rating of 14.3%.

A Christmas special for the anime will air on Fuji TV on December 23 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The special will consist of three episodes collectively titled "Chibi Maruko-chan - Mou Sugu Christmas! Chōnai no Do-jiman Special" (Chibi Maruko-chan - It's Almost Christmas! The Neighborhood Boasting Special). The pop duo Puffy (PuffyAmiYumi) will appear and perform in the anime.

The 1,000th television anime episode aired in 2012, and the show now has more than 1,100 episodes. The series celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2015, and Fuji TV plans to continue airing the TV anime for the foreseeable future.

The Chibi Maruko-chan manga inspired two three-part live-action television specials in 2006, followed by a live-action television series from 2007 to 2008.

Sakura's Coji-Coji manga also inspired a television anime from 1997 to 1999. Her "GJ8 Man" character received its own net anime series with English subtitles in 2016.

Source: Anime! Anime! (MoA)

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