Last time in Part 3 of “Comic Pages Drawn Per Year Series” (Part 1 & Part 2) we looked at Jeff Smith and Eduardo Risso.  Guys who had done a big project that spanned many years — 1,342 page/55 issue and 2,200/100 issue stories respectively.

I started wondering about guys who had worked on even BIGGER projects than Bone or 100 Bullets.  That led me to weekly serialized manga, and specifically Katushiro Otomo’s Akira and Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece (the highest selling manga series of all time).  Manga series come in all shapes and sizes, but most manga are around 16-20 pages and are serialized in collections (like Shonen Jump) each week (with a few weeks off during the year).  Most manga artists (known as mangaka) employ assistants (generally 3-5) to help them get their work done under such tight deadlines.  Since there are ton of unknown variables when looking at these numbers for Otomo and Oda, I’m positive the stats are nowhere near accurate, but they’re still interesting nevertheless.

Akira
– by Katsuhiro Otomo (& his assistants)
– 120 Chapters serialized in Young Magazine
– December 20th, 1982 – June 25th, 1990
– That’s 2,744 days or 392 weeks– Akira 1 = 352 pages
– Akira 2 = 296 pages
– Akira 3 = 280 pages
– Akira 4 = 392 pages
– Akira 5 = 408 pages
– Akira 6 = 440 pages
– TPBs    = 2,168 pages
– (actual number of pages is probably slightly less, as each trade included titles, credits design matter etc.) 

= 2,168 pages
= 289 pages a year (for 7.5 years)
= 24 pages a month
= 6 pages a week

– Otomo began working on the Akira anime in the middle of the manga series (so he was pulling some serious double duty).
– Akira anime was released July 16, 1988, two years before the manga ended.

 

 

One Piece
– by Eiichiro Oda (& his assistants)
– 629 chapters (as of this writing)
–  August 1997 – now (14 years and counting)
– That’s 5,073 days or 724 weeks
– 20 pages a chapter (roughly)

=  12,850 pages
= 918 pages a year
= 76 pages a month
= 18 pages a week


For comparison’s sake:
Bone was 1,342 pages
Akira & 100 Bullets are both roughly 2200 pages
Akira finished in 7.5 years (with assistants and doing a movie)
– 100 Bullets finished in 9.5 years (unknown if any assistants and doing other comic book mini-series)
One Piece is 12,850+ pages
– That’s like 10 of the Bone: One Volume Editions!
– Or 5 Akiras (and counting)!

 

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