'One Punch Man' Creator Comments On Series' Overseas Popularity

When it comes to shonen series, there are few series as popular as One Punch Man. The franchise has become a bonafide hit both in Japan and around the world. But, when you ask its creator about its appeal, ONE will tell you he’s still shocked by its quick rise.

Recently, Yamada Reiji’s Young Sunday spoke with ONE about One Punch Man, and it was there the web-comic creator said he shares his success with a familiar name.

When the program’s hosts noted One Punch Man has outsold One Piece at times in the US, ONE did say he had heard such reports. “I did hear that depending on the week or the day of the publication, One Punch Man’s sales are ranked number one. I’m not sure about the details though.”

When the hosts go so far as to make joking comparisons between One Punch Man and the Bible, ONE says he can’t take total credit for the franchise’s popularity. The artist did create the story with its original web-comic, but Yusuke Murata is the man who oversees its artwork at Shonen Jump.

“Well, it’s Murata-sensei’s contribution that has a lot to do with this series’ success,” ONE admits.

In the past, One Punch Man has made big steps with its overall manga sales. Back in December 2016, the series was ranked as the third top-selling manga by Nielsen BookScan. The first volume outsold several major titles like Tokyo Ghoul, and it had two more volumes come in at number 12 and 15.

For those unfamiliar with the One Punch Man series, here is a summary of the plot from Viz Media:

"Nothing about Saitama passes the eyeball test when it comes to superheroes, from his lifeless expression to his bald head to his unimpressive physique. However, this average-looking guy has a not-so-average problem—he just can’t seem to find an opponent strong enough to take on!"

The series first started as an ongoing web-comic by the author that goes by One, in early 2009. The comic went viral and so a full remake and publication of the series began in 2012 on Shueisha's Young Jump Web Comics website. Viz Media brought the manga to America in 2016 in the Weekly Shonen Jump digital magazine. One Punch's anime series was created by Madhouse and first aired in Japan in late 2015, and was dubbed for English in the summer of 2016. The anime and manga both have had huge international success and recognition since release, winning New York Times Manga's Best Sellers List, was nominated for an Eisner Award, and the anime was also featured on the popular Toonami block.

Are you surprised by how popular One Punch Man has become? Hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to let me know and talk all things anime!