Vinland Saga Editor Warns Against the West's Influence on Manga

The editor of Vinland Saga, Planetes, and Ajin: Demi-Human discussed the international success of manga and elements he tries to avoid.

When it comes to making a manga series, it often takes a village to weave some of the best stories in the medium. Such is the case with Vinland Saga, the viking story that has focused on the young protagonist Thorfinn and his attempts to leave his world of violence in the past as he searches for a world of peace. In a new interview, the editor who lends a major hand to creator Makoto Yukimura, Akira Kanai, talks about the elements he looks to avoid in performing his job while also touching upon the growing popularity of manga around the world.

In discussing editing his manga stories, Kanai states that he doesn't let elements from the West influence his position, "I don't allow myself to be influenced by so-called political correctness abroad and design the works accordingly. Stories will usually be understood, regardless of whether you come from Africa, Chile, or Greenland. I think that there are no fundamental differences in the population in terms of what they perceive as important – be it in Japan, Germany, China, or South Korea. Stopping a work because it deals with a problem that is too Japanese, or specifying to do something – that hardly ever happens."

(Photo: MAPPA)

Skip And Loafer To The Rescue

Further in the interview, Akira uses the anime series, Skip And Loafer, as an example for his perspective, "I don't think it's possible to create works that are exactly in the middle, nor would such works really appeal anywhere. Take Skip and Loafer, for example, which is about a girl who comes from the Japanese countryside and moves to the Japanese city of Tokyo alone to study at a good high school. I think people all over the world will certainly understand her feeling of insecurity in the same way. That's why such works tend to appeal to an international audience."

If you want to catch up on the story of Thorfinn, Vinland Saga's first two seasons are available to stream on both Crunchyroll and Netflix. The streaming services describes the viking story as such, "Around the end of the millennium, Viking, the mightiest but atrocious tribe, had been out breaking everywhere. Thorfinn, the son of the greatest warrior, lived his childhood in the battlefield. He was seeking the land of reverie called Vinland. This is the story of a true warrior in an age of turmoil."

Via Manga Passion