Previously, I your friendly neighborhood Lakeview store manager have written up a list of some of my favorite manga series, and I’m back to focus on one of those series Jujutsu Kaisen. Having dived back into the genre of manga in the last year Jujutsu Kaisen is the one that fits with what I enjoy most from a comic series. It’s got consistent writing, a great cast of characters that you’ll fall in love with, good or bad, art that matches the feel of the story, and dynamic action scenes that are fun to follow. The story also does not care about a status quo which means there are stakes that really matter; as far as pace and structure of the story it feels like the manga version of Invincible. As the story goes on you see the scars of the events worn on the sleeves of the characters, both physical and emotional. With 20 volumes out so far (Volume 0 and Volume 1 are currently on our Top 50 List) and the 2nd season of the anime series returning after hiatus it’s a great time to jump into the series.
Jujutsu Kaisen had a pretty interesting start of the series. Author/Artist Gege Akutami first wrote Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School now known as Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 0 (Let’s just say our Data Guru JC is happy about the shorter name) following a protagonist that isn’t the focus of the rest of series thus far. Gege’s ability to shift freely within the story is one of the things I believe works best with the series, and makes the stakes set up feel real. Jujutsu Kaisen is about a world where people called Jujutsu sorcerers protect humanity from curses (basically horror ghost monsters). These curses are created by negative emotions of humans called cursed energy, and Jujutsu sorcerers use that same energy to have super powered battles with these curses. It might sound like a complicated mess, but just think Junji Ito inspired body horror monsters vs characters with Naruto-like powers in the modern world but with much better character writing and world building. Let’s just say this former sad punk teen loves the idea of ghost monsters being created around high schools because of bullying and teenage angst.
When I was first introduced to manga, I was told it was a way to enjoy the story of an anime without any filler. Nowadays, studios are willing to take more time and release seasons of a series (instead of being on such a tight weekly schedule) for the sake of better animation quality, which is great unless you’re like me and you’re impatient and don’t feel like waiting… but there’s always the manga, which is what this whole article is about! The main reason I’m bringing this series up right now, Season 2 of the anime adaptation recently kicked off and the next arc starts back up next week and I remember a few years ago when Demon Slayer was its height of popularity everyone came in asking what volume of the series the movie led into and then again after the second season.
It seems once an anime gets popular enough more people like me come out of the woodwork itching to get the rest of the story or at least what’s been released so far in the manga. Now that the anime is about to cover arguably the best story arc of the series so far, I just know there will be people asking where to jump on once this next season wraps up. There’s a ton of big moments that happen in season 2 that were set up in the first season and many moments that foreshadow things to come, along with majority of my favorite moments from the series. For any of my fellow GCC managers reading this, get ready to be asked “What volume comes after the Shibuya Incident arc?” in your stores (it’s Volume 16).
I’m here to say you shouldn’t wait, instead of being that guy that comes in months from now once the episodes are all released for this next season asking where to continue with the manga, just grab the manga now! And this doesn’t just apply to Jujutsu Kaisen, it applies to all anime currently being released, the manga will always be here for you making you wait less and be ahead of the rest of the pack. Another plus I find is any time a series is about to be adapted or a new season is about to start the internet gets flooded with spoilers, can’t be spoiled if you already read the series right?! And don’t worry, there’s still plenty of joy in watching an anime of a series you already read as a manga, seeing the pages come to life on the screen and seeing how the battles are played out is still a great time, especially since it’s usually a good chunk of time in between the release dates for the manga and anime adaptations these days.
If you’ve already been watching the series and were waiting for the episodes to be released and this article did what I was aiming for, then you’ll want to start the manga with Volume 11 if you don’t feel like starting from the beginning. As mentioned before: it looks like based trailers and released info that the next part of season two will end the same place Volume 15 of the manga ends. If you’re still not sold by any of this rambling then let’s just talk about two characters in this series.
Panda – One of the students alongside the main character is a reanimated Panda corpse that’s sentient and also defends humanity from curses. C’mon he’s a panda that punches ghosts and he’s real good at it!
Jogo – Jogo is one of the main antagonists of the series and one of the strongest curses that poses a threat to humankind. He has one goal, to replace humans with curses as the dominant race and his head/face is a volcano!
And if none of this applies to you because you’ve already read the entire series, well stop by the shop and chat with me about it because I never get tired talking about how great I think this manga series!