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Jujutsu Kaisen: The Next Big Thing in Anime

Jujutsu Kaisen coming to Netflix
Jujutsu Kaisen coming to Netflix

Jujutsu Kaisen fans are in for a treat with an upcoming prequel film and a likely second season.

It is difficult for an anime series to stand out to the extent that viewers are overwhelmingly enthusiastic about it.

Jujutsu Kaisen is by far the most popular manga series today. It is illustrated and written by Gege Akutami, a Japanese manga artist. To appreciate Jujutsu Kaisen, it’s essential first to understand the terms manga and Shōnen manga.

Mangas are graphic novels or comics that originated in Japan and conformed to a particular style developed in the late 19th century.

Shōnen manga (Shōnen meaning ‘youth’ or ‘boy’ and manga meaning ‘comic’) means a boys’ comic or young person’s comic. They are Japanese comics created for young male teens between the ages of 12 and 18. The equivalent comics for young girls is shjo manga. Shōnen manga plots typically have a male protagonist and are characterized by humorous plots, high action, martial arts, science fiction, horror, mythological creations, sports, and robots.

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Jujutsu Kaisen – a record-breaking global success

Jujutsu Kaisen was originally published in March 2018 in the Weekly Shōnen Jump and sold over 600,000 copies. Weekly Shōnen Jump is the most popular and longest-running best-selling manga magazine. The first issue was released in August 1968. The magazine is a weekly Shōnen manga collection published in Japan via the Jump series of magazines.

Jujutsu Kaisen sales continued to increase and skyrocketed by a whopping 400% within a year. In October 2020, over 10 million copies of volume 13 (the most recent volume) and reprints of older volumes were sold globally.

More than 45 million Jujutsu Kaisen copies are in circulation (April 2021 figures). That makes it among the hottest-selling manga to be ever made.

Jujutsu Kaisen Explaining the Next Big Thing in Anime

Jujutsu Kaisen – the setting

In the story, all living (breathing) beings create energy known as Cursed Energy that results from negativity flowing through the body. Because people could not control this natural flow of negativity and energy emanating from within their bodies, they continuously lost Cursed Energy. This resulted in the birth or formation of Curses – a race of mysterious spiritual beings who aimed to cause harm to humanity.

Jujutsu Kaisen – the plot

The story revolves around Yuji Itadori, a simple high schooler who is excellent at track and field, although he has no interest in sports. All he wants to do is finish high school. He joins the school’s Occult Research Club and spends his time in the clubroom and going to the hospital to visit his bedridden grandfather.

Yuji’s life changes when a sorcerer, Megumi Fushiguro, asks Yuji to help him find a cursed talisman – a rotting finger that belonged to the demon Ryomen Sukuna. The Talisman was believed to attract Curses – dreadful spiritual beings formed from human negativity and malice. They discover that Yuji’s occult club members had the finger and intended to remove its protective seal. Removing the seal would attract Curses that would attack them. During an intense battle between Megumi, Yuji, and the Curses, Yuji ends up swallowing the cursed finger to save his friends and Megumi. Unfortunately, that act also caused Yuji to be become possessed by the very powerful and evil Curse, Ryomen Sukuna. Yuji can strangely control the essence of this ancient and evil Curse. Yuji uses Sukuna’s powers within him to help and protect those around him.

Because of the evil nature of Sukuna, it was the duty of all sorcerers to exorcise the Curse. They would have to kill Yuji to exorcise the Curse.

However, on seeing Yuji manage the Curse remarkably well, Megumi’s teacher, Satoru Gojo, decides that the best thing would be to take Yuji to the mystical academy, Tokyo Prefectural Jujutsu High School. There he would learn to master his new powers and help save people. By postponing his death, he would have time to find and swallow Sukuna’s remaining 19 fingers and kill him to end it all.

The series of Jujutsu Kaisen is a continuation of a four-episode monthly series titled Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School. It was initially published in Shueisha’s Jump GIGA, starting April 2017 onward, for four months. It was later released as Jujutsu Kaisen 0 in December 2018.

Jujutsu Kaisen Explaining the Next Big Thing in Anime

Jujutsu Kaisen anime

In November 2019, Weekly Shōnen Jump announced the anime series adaptation of Jujutsu Kaisen.

Like manga, anime is a very distinctive medium. While mangas are graphic comics or novels that are typically drawn in black and white, anime is the animated version (movies or TV shows) of manga.

Season 1 of Jujutsu Kaisen ran for twenty-four (24) episodes and ended last month in an action-packed finale.

The first season of Jujitsu Kaisen will be aired on 3rd June 2021 on Netflix.

Crunchyroll licenses the anime version for all streaming outside Asia. The company has released the series in English, Portuguese, Spanish, French, German, and Russian.

The first Japanese Blu-ray and DVD volumes were released in January 2021.

Jujutsu Kaisen – light novels

Jujutsu Kaisen: Soaring Summer and Returning Autumn was a light novel written by Ballad Kitaguni and released in May 2019. The second novel, Jujutsu Kaisen: The Path of Roses at Dawn, was released in January 2020.

Jujutsu Kaisen – Fan Book

Jujutsu Kaisen’s first-ever Fan Book was released in March 2021 to commemorate the series’ third anniversary. The book features over 70 new Jujutsu characters. It is packed with loads of information on each character, author commentaries, interviews, memorable dialogues between manga artists Gege Akutami, author of Jujutsu Kaisen, and Tite Kubo, author of the manga series Bleach.

Does Jujutsu Kaisen have a second season?

MAPPA – the production studio behind the Jujutsu Kasen anime, has indeed teased some future episodes. Several production staffers have hinted that a second season is almost guaranteed, based on the first season’s fantastic responses from audiences worldwide. However, we will have to be patient and wait a bit longer for another season.

6 Reasons why Jujutsu Kaisen is easily the best Shōnen anime 

  • When the series starts, there is nothing unique about it. It’s no different from several other manga series – a young boy, magic powers, evil, and a fight against corruption. Nevertheless, as the story progresses, it becomes increasingly evident that unlike many other manga, this one is very modern and has a very realistic perspective on the 21st century.
  • The series does not give you all the answers at once. There is a lot of suspense, and viewers are given loads of opportunities to figure out things for themselves.
  • Most anime series begin strong but lose their mojo somewhere in the middle. That is not the case with Jujutsu Kaisen. Solid and fluid animations by MAPPA are very evident from the beginning to the end of the series.
  • There is the perfect blend of action, adventure, and horror.
  • The series moves at a lightning-fast pace keeping viewers glued to the screen from the beginning to the end of every episode.
  • Unlike other series where the protagonist always has a persevering and a never-say-die attitude, Jujutsu Kaisen is more realistic. Here, the protagonist has a more realistic view. He realizes that he cannot save everyone – all he can do is help people die good deaths.

Jujutsu Kaisen Explaining the Next Big Thing in Anime

Where to Watch Jujutsu Kaisen

Netflix does not yet offer ‘Jujutsu Kaisen’ for streaming. However, we recommend watching the fantasy anime “Dorohedoro,” which is about an amnesiac character, Caiman, who is trying to find the sorcerer responsible for his lizard head curse.

On Crunchyroll, you can watch ‘Jujutsu Kaisen’. This series can be viewed here. It is also possible to watch the supernatural fantasy anime on HBO Max, but you may be disappointed to find out that the streaming giant has a tendency to upload videos late. The HBO Max archive contains ‘Jujutsu Kaisen’ if you are okay with the late uploads. VRV also offers the show.

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A prequel film for the Jujutsu Kaisen series

Jujutsu Kaisen fans have something to celebrate. Before the Season 1 finale, the anime’s official Twitter account announced a prequel film for the anime series. Not only that, but they even dropped a teaser trailer after broadcasting the season finale.

While there is no confirmed date for the movie’s release, the trailer suggested it would be in Winter 2022 or early next year.

MAPPA will again handle the film’s production – something fans will be happy about, given the incredibly choreographed action sequences delivered by the company for the anime series.

Although nobody knows how the film will be distributed outside of Japan, it is safe to assume that there will be an English, North American release given its massive popularity in the USA.