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Saturday, October 25, 2014

Good Manga:

Most good manga is pretty obvious.  Whatever good anime adaptions of manga we have, those are about as good as the manga are as well.  However, there are a few exceptions in how good manga is compared to their anime adaptions -- that's when a manga isn't adapted right by the anime.  In that case, the manga can actually be much better than the anime adaption rankings would have you believe.  In that case, it might be useful to draw up a list of top ranking manga independently from the top ranking anime list.  What would a top ranking manga list look like?

How to read these rankings:  rank -- franchise name -- author's name -- release timeline -- + indicates it is still in production, no + means there are no announced sequels to the franchise -- length in translated chapters -- unique standout feature -- * means the manga is finished, no * means the manga isn't finished yet.  $ means fully translated into English, no $ means not fully translated into English.  & means the manga has been fully adapted into an anime, no & means it has not been fully adapted.

1.  Fairy Tail (Hiro Mashima) (2006-2017+) (648) (Mages)  
2.  Saki (Ritz Kobayashi) (2006-2017+) (340) (Yuri + Mahjong) $
3.  Akame ga Kill! (Takahiro) (2010-2017+) (115) (Assassins) 
4.  Hayate no Gotoku (Kenjiro Hata) (2004-2017) (588) (Butler Comedy) * $
5.  Negima/UQ Holder (Ken Akamatsu) (2003-2017+) (490) (Classroom Harem/Immortals) $
6.  Naruto (Masashi Kishimoto) (1999-2017+) (724) (Ninjas) $
7.  One Piece (Eiichiro Oda) (1997-2017+) (863) (Pirates) $ & 
8.  Cross Game (Mitsuru Adachi) (2005-2010) (170) (Handling Death) * $ &
9.  Akatsuki no Yona (Mizuho Kusanagi) (2009-2017+) (145) (Oriental Historical Fantasy)  $
10.  Dragon Ball (Akira Toriyama) (1984-2017+) (547) (Most Powerful)  $ &
11.  Bleach (Tite Kubo) (2001-2016) (706) (Shinigami) * $
12.  Ranma 1/2 (Rumiko Takahashi) (1987-1996) (407) (Martial Arts Mayhem) * $
13.  Bakuman (Tsugumi Ohba) (2008-2015) (178) (Making Manga) * $ &
14.  To Aru Kagaku no Chodenjibou (Kazuma Kamachi) (2007-2017+) (106) (Sci-fi setting) $
15.  Fate/Kaleid Liner (Hiroshi Hiroyama) (2007-2017+) (98) (Yuri + Loli + Comedy + Battle) $
16.  Inuyasha (Rumiko Takahashi) (1996-2008) (558) (Feudal Japan) * $ &
17.  Nanoha (Masaki Tsuzuki) (2005-2017+) (133) (Magical Girls + Battle)
18.  Major (Takuya Mitsuda) (1994-2017+) (207) (Baseball)
19.  Rurouni Kenshin (Nobuhiro Watsuki) (1994-2017+) (259) (1800's Japan) * $
20.  Claymore (Norihiro Yagi) (2001-2014) (155) (Teamwork) * $
21.  Berserk (Miura Kentarou) (1989-2017+) (365) (Medieval Historical Fantasy) $
22.  Freezing (Im Dal Young) (2007-2017+) (267) (Pandoras)
23.  K-On! (Kakifly) (2007-2012) (110) (Friendship) * $
24.  The World God Only Knows (Tamiki Wakaki) (2008-2014) (299) (Gaming girls via Knowledge of Girl Games) * $
25.  Working! (Karino Takatsu) (2005-2015) (241) (Working) * &
26.  H2 (Mitsuru Adachi) (1992-1999) (338) (Unexpected Good Fortune awaits those who Keep Plugging) * $
27.  Non Non Biyori (Atto) (2009-2017+) (43) (Country Living)
28.  Sailor Moon (Naoko Takeuchi) (1991-1997) (51) (Magical Girls - Shoujo Version) * $
29.  Zettai Karen Children (Takashi Shiina) (2005-2017+) (511) (Psychics) $
30.  Btooom! (Junya Inoue) (2009-2017+) (88) (Survival Game/Battle Royale)
31.  Basilisk (Masaki Segawa) (2003-2004) (34) (Ninja Romeo and Juliet) * $ &
32.  High School of the Dead (Satou Daisuke) (2006-2013) (34) (Zombie Apocalypse) * $
33.  Guyver (Yoshiki Takaya) (1985-2017+) (186) (Genetic Engineering)
34.  History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi (Syun Matsuena) (2002-2014) (589) (Martial Arts) * $
35.  Sora no Otoshimono (Suu Minazuki) (2007-2014) (87) (Girls who fall from the Sky) * $
36.  Flame of Recca (Nobuyuki Anzai) (1995-2002) (329) (Magic items + Battle) * $
37.  Prince of Tennis (Takeshi Konomi) (1999-2017+) (643) (Tennis)
38.  Kobato (Clamp) (2005-2011) (59) (A Pure Heart's Power) * $ &
39.  Angelic Layer (Clamp) (1999-2001) (27) (Street Fighter-type gaming) * $ &
40.  Aishteruze Baby (Youko Maki) (2002-2005) (34) (Child Abuse) * $
41.  Hikaru no Go (Yumi Hotta) (1998-2003) (191) (Go) * $
42.  I"s (Masakazu Katsura) (1997-1999) (144) (Girls whose names start with 'I') * $
43.  Break Blade (Yunosuke Yoshinaga) (2007-2017+) (91) (Quartz Mecha Combat) $
44.  Chihayafuru (Yuki Suetsugu) (2007-2017+) (145) (Karuta) $
45.  Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku (Kuroha) (2011-2014) (9) (Sweet Humor)
46.  Miyuki (Mitsuru Adachi) (1980-1984) (95) (Idyllic '80's) * $
47.  To Love-ru (Saki Hasemi) (2006-2017) (273) (Ecchi Perfected) * $
48.  Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun (Izumi Tsubaki) (2011-2017+) (116) (Funny Matchmaking) $
49.  New Game (Shoutarou Tokunou) (2014-2017+) (55) (Cute Game Developers)
50.  Sakura Trick (Tachi) (2011-2017+) (38) (Lesbianism) 
51.  Kin-iro Mosaic (Yui Hara) (2010-2017+) (9) (Cute Girls)
52.  Lucky Star (Kagami Yoshimizu) (2004-2017+) (60) (Well Balanced Group of Friends)
53.  Mikakunin de Shinkoukei (Cherry Arai) (2009-2017+) (79) (Arranged Marriage)
54.  Locodol (Kataro Kosugi) (2011-2017+) (0) (Under the Radar Idols)
55.  Binbou Shimai Monogatari (Izumi Kazuto) (2004-2006) (46) (Two is All You Need) * $
56.  Soul Eater (Atsushi Ookubo) (2004-2014) (137) (Madness) * $
57.  Kokoro Toshokan (Nobuyuki Takagi) (2000-2002) (0) (Soothing Sadness) *
58.  Yama no Susume (Shiro) (2011-2017+) (22) (Hiking)
59.  Hanayamata (Sou) (2011-2017+) (8) (Yosakoi)
60.  Angel Beats: Heaven's Door (Jun Maeda) (2010-2016) (40) (The Afterlife) *
61.  Kyoukai no Rinne (Rumiko Takahashi) (2009-2017+) (214) (Shinigami Poverty Comedy)
62.  Shingeki no Kyojin (Hajime Isayama) (2009-2017+) (121) (Titans) $
63.  Yuru Yuri (Namori) (2008-2017+) (104) (Ultimate Yuri)
64.  Mujaki no Rakuen (Uran) (2013-2017+) (80) (Loli porn) $
65.  Joukamachi no Dandelion (Ayumu Kasuga) (2012-2017+) (42) (Big families)
66.  Nichijou (Keiichi Arawi) (2006-2015) (208) (Zaniness Ensues) *  
67.  Azumanga Daioh (Kiyohiko Azuma) (1999-2002) (26) (Melancholy Humor) * $ &
68.  Card Captor Sakura (Clamp) (1996-2017+) (58) (Dressup) $ &
69.  Ao Haru Ride (Io Sakisaka) (2011-2015) (55) (Exes Who Get Back Together) * $
70.  Full Moon O Sagashite (Arina Tanemura) (2002-2004) (31) (Widowhood) * $
71.  Touch (Mitsuru Adachi) (1981-1986) (257) (Effort Leads to Success) * $
72.  Vinland Saga (Makoto Yukimura) (2005-2017+) (141) (Vikings) $
73.  Kimi ni Todoke (Karuho Shiina) (2005-2017+) (111) (Classical Romance)
74.  Strobe Edge (Io Sakisaka) (2007-2015) (46) (Duty versus Passion) $
75.  Rosario Vampire (Akihisa Ikeda) (2004-2014) (120) (Monsters) * $
76.  Bastard! (Kazushi Hagiwara) (1988-2011) (150) (Sardonic Fantasy) $
77.  Junai Sensation (Miyuki Obayashi) (2008-2009) (13) (Love, Life, Self) *
78.  Kodomo no Jikan (Kaworu Watashiya) (2005-2013) (95) (Pedophilia) * $
79.  Futari Ecchi (Aki Katsu) (1997-2017+) (226) (Sex)
80.  MIX (Mitsuru Adachi) (2012-2017+) (43) (Stepfamily)
81.  Sakura Zensen (Miyuki Obayashi) (2006-2007) (20) (Relationships past and present) *
82.  Slow Step (Mitsuru Adachi) (1986-1991) (55) (Leading Two Lives) * $
83.  Yu Yu Hakusho (Togashi Yoshihiro) (1990-1994) (175) (Spirit Detectives) * $ &
84.  Usagi Drop (Yumi Unita) (2005-2011) (62) (Adoption) * $
85.  Hunter x Hunter (Togashi Yoshihiro) (1998-2016) (362) (Hunters) $
86.  Sore ga Seiyuu (Hata Kenjirou) (2011-2017+) (6) (Voice Acting)
87.  Shinryaku! Ika Musume (Masahiro Anbe) (2007-2016) (399) (Squid Invasion) *
88.  Omoi, Omoware, Furi, Furare (Io Sakisaka) (2015-2017+) (21) (Love Square) $
89.  Assassination Classroom (Yuusei Matsui) (2012-2016) (184) (Teacher Killing) * $ &
90.  Death Note (Tsugumi Ohba) (2003-2006) (113) (Perfect Crime) * $ &
91.  Kiwaguro no Brynhildr (Lynn Okamoto) (2012-2016) (182) (Miracle of Everyday Living) * $
92.  Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (Kei Sanbe) (2012-2016) (48) (Childhood + Murder Mystery) * $ &
93.  RG Veda (Clamp) (1989-1996) (11) (Gods doing Battle) * $
94.  Nausicaa (Hayao Miyazaki) (1982-1994) (7) (Pollution) * $
95.  Ad Astra Per Aspera (Hata Kenjirou) (2015-2016) (8) (Sci Fi + Comedy) $
96.  Mahoromatic (Bunjuro Nakayama) (1998-2004) (44) (Death Countdown) * $ &
97.  Dimension W (Yuji Iwahara) (2011-2017+) (38) (Odd Couple)
98.  Alien Nine (Hitoshi Tomizawa) (1998-2003) (37) (Crybabies) * $
99.  BanG Dream! (assorted authors) (2015-2017+) (0) (Let's form a band!) 
Total Must-Read (or watch the anime version thereof) English-Translated Manga Chapters the world is blessed with:  17,239


Well, that's a rough idea of the situation.  Obviously, there are manga I haven't read or watched the anime adaption of, so I have no idea of their worth, but then how good can they be if they still haven't reached the level of my attention?  The important thing to note here is that Negima (which of course includes the sequel UQ Holder) is insanely good, way better than its anime ranking would have you believe.  The same is true of H2, Freezing, Zettai Karen Children, I"s, and Full Moon O Sagashite.  Some good manga series don't even have an anime, like Vinland Saga.  Those are especially important to check out.  But when you have an excellent manga turned into a trashy anime, like Freezing, it really does pain the soul.  The wasted potential in terms of artistic excellence goes off the charts.  It's worse than murder.  All we can hope for is remakes some time in the distant future that do all these shows justice.  Maybe a charitable billionaire will eventually donate to the cause.

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