Jujutsu Kaisen (呪術廻戦, rgh. "Sorcery Battle")[b] is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Gege Akutami. It has been serialized in Shueisha's shōnen manga magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump since March 2018, with its chapters collected and published in 25 tankōbon volumes as of January 2024. The story follows high school student Yuji Itadori as he joins a secret organization of Jujutsu Sorcerers to eliminate a powerful Curse named Ryomen Sukuna, of whom Yuji becomes the host. Jujutsu Kaisen is a sequel to Akutami's Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School, serialized in Shueisha's Jump Giga from April to July 2017, later collected in a tankōbon volume, retroactively titled as Jujutsu Kaisen 0, in December 2018.

Jujutsu Kaisen
First tankōbon volume cover, featuring Yuji Itadori
呪術廻戦
Genre
Manga
Written byGege Akutami
Published byShueisha
English publisher
ImprintJump Comics
MagazineWeekly Shōnen Jump
English magazine
DemographicShōnen
Original runMarch 5, 2018 – present
Volumes25 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed by
Produced by
  • Hiroaki Matsutani
  • Yuuriha Murai
  • Makoto Kimura
  • Toshihiro Maeda (S1)
  • Yoshiaki Takagaki (S1)
  • Hiroaki Yamazaki (S2)
  • Masaya Saitou (S2)
  • Tatsuya Oomori (S2)
Written byHiroshi Seko
Music by
StudioMAPPA
Licensed by
Original networkJNN (MBS, TBS)
Original run October 3, 2020 December 28, 2023
Episodes47 (List of episodes)
Preceded by
Video games
icon Anime and manga portal

Jujutsu Kaisen is licensed for English-language release in North America by Viz Media, which has published the manga in print since December 2019. Shueisha publishes the series in English on the Manga Plus online platform. Two novels, written by Ballad Kitaguni, were published in May 2019 and January 2020, respectively. A 24-episode anime television series adaptation produced by MAPPA, aired on MBS from October 2020 to March 2021; a second season aired from July to December 2023. A sequel covering the "Culling Game" arc has been announced. The anime is licensed by Crunchyroll for streaming outside of Asia, which premiered an English dub in November 2020. The anime's original soundtrack was released in April 2021.

By January 2024, the Jujutsu Kaisen manga had over 90 million copies in circulation, including related novels, digital versions and Jujutsu Kaisen 0, making it one of the best-selling manga series of all time.

Synopsis

Setting

In Jujutsu Kaisen, all living beings emanate energy called Cursed Energy (呪力, Juryoku), which arises from negative emotions that naturally flow throughout the body. Ordinary people cannot control this flow in their bodies. As a result, they continually lose Cursed Energy, resulting in the birth of Curses (呪い, Noroi), a race of spiritual beings whose primary desire is to bring harm to humanity. These Curses are shown as gruesome monsters, onryō (vengeful spirit), yūrei (ghosts), and yōkai.

Jujutsu Sorcerers (呪術師, Jujutsushi, lit. "Cursed Technique Masters" or "Shamans") are people who control the flow of Cursed Energy in their bodies, allowing them to use it as they please and also to reduce its release. High-ranking Sorcerers and Curses can refine this energy and use it to perform Cursed Techniques (呪術式, Jujutsushiki), which tend to be unique to the user or their family. An advanced form of Cursed Technique is Domain Expansion (領域展開, Ryōiki Tenkai), which the users build a pocket dimension of variable size. Inside the Domain, all of their attacks are guaranteed to hit and will grow in strength.

Plot

Yuji Itadori is an unnaturally physically strong high school student living in Sendai. On his deathbed in June 2018, his grandfather instils two powerful messages within Yuji: "always help others" and "die surrounded by people". Yuji's friends at the Occult Club attract Curses to their school when they unseal a rotten finger talisman. Yuji swallows the finger to protect Jujutsu Sorcerer Megumi Fushiguro, becoming host to a powerful Curse named Ryomen Sukuna. Due to Sukuna's evil nature, all sorcerers are required to exorcise him (and, by extension, Yuji) immediately. However upon seeing Yuji retaining control over his body, Megumi's teacher Satoru Gojo brings him to the Tokyo Prefectural Jujutsu High School with a proposal to his superiors: postpone Yuji's death sentence and train under Gojo until he consumes all 20 of Sukuna's fingers so the Curse can be eliminated. At the same time, a group of Cursed Spirits plot a multi-layered attack on the world of Jujutsu sorcery, including the Cursed Spirit Mahito and a corrupted sorcerer named Suguru Geto, who was executed by Gojo a year prior.

Gojo partners Yuji and Megumi with fellow first-year Tokyo student Nobara Kugisaki, training them to become sorcerers, but during a mission gone wrong, Sukuna gains full control of Yuji's body, so Yuji allows the both of them to die. Despite this, Sukuna brings Yuji back to life, having grown an interest in Megumi. Aware the Jujutsu high-ups intend to kill Yuji, Gojo keeps his resurrection a secret to continue training him. On a mission with experienced Jujutsu Sorcerer Kento Nanami, Yuji meets fellow student Junpei Yoshino, who falls victim to Mahito's manipulations, leading Yuji to swear vengeance.

Gojo reveals Yuji being alive during the exchange event between the Tokyo and Kyoto Jujutsu schools. The Kyoto school's principal wants Yuji dead immediately so schemes to get it done, while the Tokyo students help Yuji. During the event, Cursed Spirits attack the schools, but are fought off by Yuji, Gojo, and third-year Kyoto student Aoi Todo, though Mahito steals three "Death Paintings" (half-human half-Curses), and summons them.

After Yuji is able to consume several of Sukuna's fingers and kill two of the Death Paintings with Nobara's help, disfigured second-year Kyoto student Kokichi Muta, who controls the Cursed Corpse Mechamaru, is revealed to be a mole working with Geto and Mahito. Muta betrays them to protect his friends, only to be killed by Mahito. On Halloween, the Cursed Spirits unleash their ultimate plan by releasing several barriers over Shibuya. Gojo exorcises various Cursed Spirits, but is sealed away by Geto in a special artifact, the Prison Realm. The events also reveal that the current Geto is not the original but rather Geto's corpse possessed by an ancient sorcerer named Kenjaku.

Yuji and his allies face Kenjaku's forces in order to rescue Gojo. Yuji faces Choso, the third Death Painting sibling, and is defeated, only to be spared due to Choso receiving a vision revealing they are brothers. The Cursed Spirit Jogo force-feeds Yuji ten fingers, re-awakening Sukuna, who kills Jogo and destroys a massive portion of the city. Mahito kills Nanami and mortally wounds Nobara, but with the help of Todo, Yuji is able to defeat him. Kenjaku absorbs Mahito, and using his Cursed Technique, re-awakens thousands of new sorcerers throughout Japan that Kenjaku had been planting for thousands of years, as well as unleashing a slew of Curses to usher in chaos and a world of Cursed Spirits reminiscent of the Heian period, the prime period of Jujutsu Sorcerers.

In the aftermath, the Jujutsu higher-ups sentence Yuji to death, with second-year student Yuta Okkotsu appointed as his executioner, but Yuta helps Yuji fake his death. Yuji and Megumi team up with Yuta and experienced sorcerer Yuki Tsukumo, both being special grade Jujutsu Sorcerers, along with Choso and second-year student Maki Zen'in to meet Master Tengen, an immortal, part-Curse part-human Jujutsu Sorcerer. Tengen reveals Kenjaku's plan to merge the former's consciousness with Japan's human population using "the Culling Games", a battle royale between all the awakened sorcerers to accumulate a massive amount of cursed energy allowing him to achieve this goal.

Maki goes to the Zen'in compound to collect Cursed Tools to assist in the fight, but is forced to kill her entire clan when they lay a trap for her. Meanwhile, Yuji, Yuta, Megumi, second-year student Panda, and third-year student Kinji Hakari, seek out a mysterious woman named "Angel" who can free Gojo from the Prison Realm, as well as find a way to rescue Megumi's step-sister, Tsumiki, from participating in the Games.

The group discovers Angel and the Culling Games serve its purpose in acquiring a surplus of cursed energy for Kenjaku's plans; he succeeds in killing Yuki and capturing Tengen. They then learn that Tsumiki has become a host for a reincarnated sorcerer, and Sukuna uses this opportunity to execute his ultimate plan: taking control of Megumi's body. He succeeds, kills Tsumiki, and regroups with Kenjaku. The main group are able to use Angel's power to free Gojo from the Prison Realm. Gojo, now unsealed, agrees with Sukuna and Kenjaku to fight on December 24th.

Gojo faces off against Sukuna and Megumi's Ten Shadows, managing to beat them, however, Sukuna survives and slices Gojo in half, killing him. The rest of the sorcerers, including Yuji (who, with Choso's approval, consumed the remaining Death Paintings), soon join in the battle, with Sukuna reviving himself to his true form in the process. Meanwhile, as Kenjaku is tracking down the remaining Culling Game players, he is confronted by Fumihiko Takaba, an unexpectedly powerful sorcerer that proves as an effective distraction, allowing Yuta to catch him off guard and decapitate him. However, Kenjaku manages to escape via summoning an army of curses, and although Yuta kills him, he adds a rule that allows Sukuna to become the Culling Games' master. Yuta goes to assist Yuji, who is struggling against Sukuna.

Production

In 2017, Gege Akutami published Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical School, a four-chapter series that ran in Jump Giga from April 28 to July 28.[4][5] This series would serve later as a prequel to Jujutsu Kaisen, being retroactively titled as Jujutsu Kaisen 0.[6] According to Hiroyuki Nakano, the chief editor of Weekly Shōnen Jump, Jujutsu Kaisen received unanimous approval in the serialization committee.[7] It debuted in Weekly Shōnen Jump on March 5, 2018.[8]

Akutami stated that Neon Genesis Evangelion influenced the mythological aspects of the series,[9] being also influenced by horror and found footage films.[10] Akutami is particularly a fan of Yoshihiro Togashi, author of YuYu Hakusho and Hunter × Hunter,[10][11] expressing intentions to have an art style as close as possible to his.[9] The author is also a fan of Tite Kubo, author of Bleach, and discussed in an interview with him the similarities between their works.[12][13] Other manga artists who influenced Akutami include Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto) and Yusuke Murata (Eyeshield 21 and One-Punch Man illustrator).[9] The magic system of Jujutsu Kaisen is largely inspired by Hunter × Hunter, whose fights, in Akutami's words, "rejects emotional arguments", stating however, that like Daisuke Ashihara [ja], World Trigger's author, whose magic system is also similar to Togashi's series, Akutami is trying to find and develop their own style.[10] In particular, Akutami commented that the first chapter was a mix of Bleach and Naruto. Akutami regretted some decisions made for the first chapter, such as the short appearance of Yuji's grandfather.[14]

In October 2020, Akutami stated that the story's ending and main stages are planned, but that the path between the two remains "fairly free."[9] In February 2021, Akutami stated that the series would probably be finished within two years, declaring, however, no confidence in that statement. Akutami knows how the story for Megumi Fushiguro will end, but not for Sukuna.[15] On June 9, 2021, it was announced that the manga would enter on hiatus due to the author's health issues;[16][17] it resumed publication on August 2 of the same year.[18][19] In December 2022, Akutami hinted that the manga would end within a year, stating during the Jump Festa '23 event: "If you accompany me for up to one more year (probably), I will be very happy."[20] In December 2023, at the Jump Festa '24 event, Akutami stated in a handwritten comment that it would be "probably definitely be the last Jump Festa where Jujutsu Kaisen is still in serialization," hinting that the manga is set to end within 2024.[21]

Media

Manga

Written and illustrated by Gege Akutami, Jujutsu Kaisen started in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine on March 5, 2018.[2][8] Its chapters are collected and published by Shueisha into individual tankōbon volumes. The first volume was published on July 4, 2018.[22] As of January 4, 2024, 25 volumes have been released.[23]

Shueisha began to simulpublish the series in English on the app and website Manga Plus in January 2019.[24] Viz Media published the first three chapters for its "Jump Start" initiative.[25] In March 2019, Viz Media announced the print release of the series in North America.[26] The first volume was published on December 3, 2019.[27] As of March 21, 2023, 19 volumes have been released.[28]

Novels

Two novels written by Ballad Kitaguni have been released under the Jump J-Books imprint. The first, Jujutsu Kaisen: Summer of Ashes, Autumn of Dust (呪術廻戦 逝く夏と還る秋, Jujutsu Kaisen Iku Natsu to Kaeru Aki), was released on May 1, 2019.[29] The second novel, Jujutsu Kaisen: Thorny Road at Dawn (呪術廻戦 夜明けのいばら道, Jujutsu Kaisen: Yoake no Ibara Michi), was released on January 4, 2020.[30][31] In February 2022, Viz Media announced they licensed the novels for English publication.[32] Jujutsu Kaisen: Summer of Ashes, Autumn of Dust was released on December 27, 2022.[33] Jujutsu Kaisen: Thorny Road at Dawn was released on April 25, 2023.[34]

Anime

An anime television series adaptation was announced by Weekly Shōnen Jump in November 2019.[35] The manga author, Gege Akutami, and the main cast members appeared at Jump Festa '20 on December 22, 2019.[36] The series was produced by MAPPA and directed by Sunghoo Park. Hiroshi Seko was in charge of the scripts, Tadashi Hiramatsu designed the characters.[37] While the anime had an advanced streaming debut on YouTube and Twitter on September 19, 2020,[38] it officially aired on MBS's Super Animeism block and TBS from October 3, 2020, to March 27, 2021.[39][40][37][c] The series ran for 24 episodes.[41] From episode 3 onwards, the series includes post-credits anime shorts titled "Juju Sanpo" (呪術さんぽ, lit. "Jujutsu Stroll"), which focus on the daily lives of the characters.[42]

On February 12, 2022, a second season was announced.[43] Shōta Goshozono replaced Sunghoo Park as the director, with Sayaka Koiso and Hiramatsu designing the characters.[44] It aired from July 6 to December 28, 2023.[45] It ran for two continuous cours and adapt the manga's "Hidden Inventory / Premature Death" and "Shibuya Incident" story arcs.[46]

After the second season's finale, a sequel covering the "Culling Game" arc was announced.[47][48]

The anime is licensed by Crunchyroll for streaming outside of Asia.[49] Crunchyroll has released streaming dubs for the series in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French and German that premiered on November 20, 2020,[50][51] with the English dub also premiering on HBO Max on December 4, 2020.[52] Crunchyroll is also streaming for the second season.[53] Viz Media released the first part of the first season on home video on February 28, 2023.[54][55][56] In Asia-Pacific, Medialink licensed the series and streamed it on iQIYI and Ani-One Asia's YouTube channel;[57][58] Ani-One Asia later streamed the series for their Ultra subscribers.[59] The company also released the series on Netflix in Southeast Asia, India, Hong Kong, and Taiwan on June 3, 2021.[60][61]

Music

The original soundtrack of the Jujutsu Kaisen anime series is composed by Hiroaki Tsutsumi, Yoshimasa Terui and Alisa Okehazama.[37] The series' first opening theme is "Kaikai Kitan" (廻廻奇譚), performed by Eve, while the first ending theme is "Lost in Paradise" performed by ALI featuring Aklo.[62] The second opening theme is "Vivid Vice", performed by Who-ya Extended, while the second ending theme is "Give it back [ja]", performed by Cö Shu Nie.[63] The original soundtrack was released on a 2-CD set on April 21, 2021.[64] Anime Limited released the soundtrack digitally in North America, Europe and Oceania on April 21, 2021,[65][66] and was released on CD and vinyl on January 31, 2022.[67]

Terui returned as the sole composer of the second season.[44] For the second season's first five episodes (covering the "Hidden Inventory / Premature Death" arc), Tatsuya Kitani performed the opening theme "Where Our Blue Is" (青のすみか, Ao no Sumika), while Soushi Sakiyama [ja] performed the ending theme "Light" (, Akari).[68] For the sixth episode onwards (covering the "Shibuya Incident" arc), King Gnu performed the opening theme "Specialz",[69] while Hitsujibungaku performed the ending theme "More Than Words".[70]

Video games

In June 2021, a free-to-play role-playing mobile game, titled Jujutsu Kaisen: Phantom Parade, developed by Sumzap, was announced.[71] The game was set to be released in 2022;[72] however, it has been delayed to November 21, 2023.[73]

A collaboration with PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG Mobile) was announced in August 2021. The collaboration was made available globally, except in Japan and Mainland China, from February 15 to March 15, 2022.[74][75]

A fighting video game, titled Jujutsu Kaisen: Cursed Clash, developed by Byking and Gemdrops, and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment, was announced in July 2023.[76] It was released on February 2, 2024, on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows (via Steam), Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.[77][78][79]

The outfits from Yuji Itadori, Satoru Gojo, Megumi Fushiguro, and Nobara Kugisaki were released as cosmetic items in Fortnite starting on August 8, 2023.[80][81]

Stage plays

A stage play adaptation of the manga was announced at the Jump Festa '22 event in December 2021.[82] It ran at The Galaxy Theatre in Tokyo's Tennōzu from July 15–31, and at the Mielparque Hall Osaka from August 4–14, 2022.[83] However, due to an actor's injury, the stage play in Osaka was delayed to August 7.[84][85] The play is directed by Kensaku Kobayashi and written by Kōhei Kiyasu. The cast includes Ryūji Satō as Yuji Itadori, Kazuaki Yasue as Megumi Fushiguro, Erika Toyohara as Nobara Kugisaki, Sara Takatsuki as Maki Zen'in, Fūma Sadamoto as Toge Inumaki, and Takeshi Terayama as Panda.[83]

A second stage play based on the manga's "Kyoto Goodwill Event" and "The Origin of Blind Obedience" story arcs, ran at The Galaxy Theater in Tokyo from December 15–31, 2023, and at AiiA 2.5 Theater Kobe in Hyogo from January 6–14, 2024. The cast and staff are returning to reprise their roles, with Nonoka Yamaguchi replacing Erika Toyohara as Nobara Kugisaki.[86][87]

Other media

A fanbook, titled Jujutsu Kaisen Official Fanbook (呪術廻戦 公式ファンブック, Jujutsu Kaisen Kōshiki Fanbukku), was published by Shueisha on March 4, 2021. It features exclusive information about the series, character profiles, author commentaries, an interview and a special dialogue between Akutami and Bleach author Tite Kubo.[88] In June 2023, Viz Media announced that they will release the fanbook in Q2 2024.[89]

From September 16, 2022, to July 2, 2023, Universal Studios Japan hosted attractions based on Jujutsu Kaisen. "Jujutsu Kaisen the Real 4-D" attraction uses 4D cinema effects (such as sprays of water and moving seats) for an entirely original animation in about 20 minutes long. Other attraction is a roller coaster called "Jujutsu Kaisen × Hollywood Dream - The Ride ~Kaikai Kitan~" which ran until January 18, 2023. It features an inbuilt sound system that allows each individual rider to pick from a selection of songs to ride to.[90]

In October 2022, Crunchyroll and BoxLunch announced their merchandise collaboration for the series' photo experience spots alongside My Hero Academia, in select stores in the United States. Fans could take pictures through select locations, featuring an additional installation with characters of the series. The BoxLunch stores were also hosted a lottery with an exclusive meet-and-greet event with the Jujutsu Kaisen voice actors as the prize.[91]

Reception

Popularity

Jujutsu Kaisen ranked first on the "Nationwide Bookstore Employees' Recommended Comics" by the Honya Club website in 2019.[92][93] The series ranked 31st on the 2020 "Book of the Year" list by Da Vinci magazine;[94] it ranked fourth on the 2021 list;[95] sixth on the 2022 list;[96] and fourteenth on the 2023 list.[97] On TV Asahi's Manga Sōsenkyo 2021 poll, in which 150,000 people voted for their top 100 manga series, Jujutsu Kaisen ranked nineteenth.[98][99] On a 2021 survey conducted by LINE Research asking Japanese high school students what manga series they are currently into, Jujutsu Kaisen topped the rankings for both girls and boys.[100]

In January 2021, it was revealed that the anime series was the second most-watched anime series on Crunchyroll in 2020, only second to Black Clover, being watched in 71 countries and territories, including North America, South and Central America, Europe, Middle East and North Africa, Africa, Asia and Oceania.[101] The official music video of the series' first opening theme song, "Kaikai Kitan" by Eve, reached 100 million views on YouTube in April 2021, being one of the fastest anime openings to hit such number of views.[102] During the same year, the series became the second most discussed TV show worldwide on Twitter, surpassing Squid Game.[103] The series placed nineteenth on the annual Twitter Japan's Trend Awards in 2021, based on the social network's top trending topics of the year.[104]

Manga

Sales

The Jujutsu Kaisen manga had 600,000 copies in circulation by December 2018;[105] 770,000 copies in circulation by February 1, 2019;[106] 1.1 million copies in circulation by February 2019;[107] 2 million copies in circulation by June 2019;[108] 2.5 million copies in circulation by November 2019;[109] 4.5 million copies in circulation by May 2020;[110] 6.8 million copies in circulation by September 2020;[111] and over 10 million copies in circulation by October 2020,[d] having grown 400% in one year, and about 230% in a half year.[112][113] By December 2020, the series had 15 million copies in circulation.[d][114] By January 13, 2021, the series had over 20 million copies in circulation,[d][115][116] and increased to 25 million copies in circulation by January 26.[117][118] By February 2021, the manga had over 30 million copies in circulation.[d][119][120] By the start of March 2021, the series had over 36 million copies in circulation,[d][121] and by the end of the month, the manga recorded over 40 million copies in circulation.[122] By April 2021, the manga had over 45 million copies in circulation.[d][123][124] By May 2021, the manga had over 50 million copies in circulation.[d][125][126] By October 2021, the manga had over 55 million copies in circulation.[d][127][128] By December 2021, the manga had over 60 million copies in circulation.[d][129] By April 2022, the manga had over 65 million copies in circulation.[d][130] By August 2022, the manga had over 70 million copies in circulation.[d][131] By July 2023, the manga had over 80 million copies in circulation.[d][132] By January 2024, the manga had over 90 million copies in circulation.[d][133]

Jujutsu Kaisen was the fifth best-selling manga series in 2020 (from the period between November 2019 to November 2020), with 6,702,736 copies sold.[134] In January 2021, Jujutsu Kaisen's first fifteen volumes at the time (including volume 0) took 15 of top 16 spots of Oricon's weekly manga ranking (week of January 11–17), being only surpassed by Attack on Titan's 33rd volume, which topped the list.[135] Jujutsu Kaisen was the second best-selling manga series in the first half of 2021 (period between November 2020 and May 2021), behind Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, with over 23 million copies sold,[136] while its 16 volumes at the time (including volume 0), were among the 25 best-selling manga volumes.[137] It was the best-selling manga series in 2021, with over 30 million copies sold;[138][139] its eighteen volumes at the time (including volume 0) were among the top 25 best-selling volumes.[140] It was the best-selling manga series for second consecutive year in 2022, with over 12.2 million copies sold;[141] volume 18 was the best-selling manga volume of the year, while volumes 17, 19 and 20 were among the 30 best-selling manga volumes of the year.[142] It was the fourth best-selling manga series in the first half of 2023 (period between November 2022 and May 2023), with over 3.7 million copies sold,[143] while volumes 21 and 22 were the second and third, respectively, best-selling manga volumes from the same period.[144] Volumes 21–24 were among the best-selling manga volumes of 2023.[145]

In North America, the volumes of Jujutsu Kaisen were ranked on NPD BookScan's monthly top 20 adult graphic novels list since January 2021.[146] They were also ranked on The New York Times' Graphic Books and Manga bestseller monthly list since February 2021.[147] According to ICv2, Jujutsu Kaisen was the seventh best-selling manga franchise for Q4 2021 (September–December) in the United States, and it was also the sixth "most efficient manga franchise" for retailer bookshelves, based on the website's calculations of which manga franchises had the highest sales per volume.[148] According to NPD BookScan, the first volume of Jujutsu Kaisen (including volume 0) was ranked among the top 20 highest-selling manga volumes in 2022;[149] four volumes (including volume 0) were among the top 20 highest-selling manga volumes in 2023.[150]

Critical reception

Leroy Douresseaux of Comic Book Bin gave the first volume a score of 8.5/10. Douresseaux praised the series for its characters, plots, settings, and internal mythology, and described it as a "combination battle manga and horror comic book".[151] Shawn Hacaga of The Fandom Post, in his review of the first volume, compared the series to early Bleach and praised it for its world, lore, characters and artwork, concluding that it is a "solid first volume".[152] Hannah Collins of CBR found parallels between Yuji and Sukuna and Marvel Comics characters Eddie Brock and Venom. She also noted similarities to Bleach, Blue Exorcist and Tokyo Ghoul. Collins commended the manga and, regarding its then recently announced anime adaptation, concluded that Jujutsu Kaisen is a "darkly enjoyable action series that's sure to be one to watch out for in 2020".[153] Rebecca Silverman of Anime News Network ranked the first volume as a C. Silverman praised the series' use of Japanese folklore and yōkai elements, comparing this and Akutami's art style to Shigeru Mizuki's GeGeGe no Kitarō, but criticized the story for being "very generic". She concluded, "It has the potential to be more as Akutami gets more comfortable with the serialization process and figures out precisely where the story is going, so it may be worth a second book to be certain. But as of this one, it's just okay, making it the kind of series that gets damned with faint praise".[154] Azusa Takahashi of Real Sound praised its storytelling, setting and "surprising" story development, also noting similarities to other works like Bleach, Ushio & Tora or Neon Genesis Evangelion, stating, however, that the series is not only a homage to popular works centered on the battle development, but that it has a "clever composition that sublimates into originality, so you have to be absorbed in it."[155]

Accolades

Jujutsu Kaisen was sixth on the fifth Next Manga Awards in the Print category in 2018.[156] It won the third annual Tsutaya Comic Award in 2019.[157] In 2019, the manga was nominated for the 65th Shogakukan Manga Award in the shōnen category.[158] Jujutsu Kaisen won the Mandō Kobayashi Manga Grand Prix 2020, created by comedian and manga enthusiast Kendo Kobayashi, in which each year's winner is decided based on his personal taste.[159] The manga was nominated for the 25th annual Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize in 2021.[160]

Anime

Critical reception

Micah Peters of The Ringer said that while the series' "focused execution" of shōnen tropes makes it "infinitely watchable", is its "specificity, its personality, its ultra-slick stylishness" what make the show special. He added: "Like with Park's previous work, there is a sumptuous amount of splashy, expensive, mo-cap-enabled animation, delivering on the action promised by the comics".[161] Paul Thomas Chapman of Otaku USA called it a "prime example of average material elevated by excellent execution", adding that it is similar to Bleach and YuYu Hakusho. Chapman commented that Sunghoo Park "puts the "beatdown" in narrative beats", being able to "segue from goofy comedy to chilling horror in an instant", and that he and the crew at MAPPA "make this narrative mutability seem effortless".[162] Ana Diaz of Polygon highlighted the 17th episode, praising the series' treatment of its female characters, different to other shōnen series. Diaz wrote: "Jujutsu Kaisen goes a step further than avoiding gender tropes by presenting a variety of female perspectives. It's not like there's any right way for these young women to deal with the unique pressures they face. The story lets them disagree, and fight for their perspectives and their place". She concluded: "The show's widespread success signals that audiences aren't just ready for change, they're actively craving it. Now, every other creator has the green light to write all kinds of women into their shows".[163]

Accolades

The Jujutsu Kaisen anime was awarded "Anime of the Year" at the 5th Crunchyroll Anime Awards, while Ryomen Sukuna won the "Best Antagonist" category and "Lost in Paradise feat. Aklo" by ALI won the "Best Ending Sequence" category.[164][165] In 2021, the series won the Character License Award at the Japan Character Awards by Japan's Character Brand Licensing Association (CBLA).[166] It also won the Best TV Anime award at the 2021 Newtype Anime Awards, while Hiroshi Seko won Best Screenplay for his work on the series.[167]

The series ranked second in the anime category of the Yahoo! Japan Search Awards, based on the number of searches for a particular term compared to the year before.[168] In 2022, it won the Tokyo Anime Award for Animation of the Year in the television category.[169] In 2023, the series became one of three recipients of the Special Achievement Award at the 65th Japan Record Awards.[170] In 2024, it won the "Most In-Demand TV Series in the World 2023" and "Most In-Demand Anime Series of 2023" at the sixth Global Demand Awards.[171]

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Recipient Result Ref.
2021 5th Crunchyroll Anime Awards Anime of the Year Jujutsu Kaisen Won [164][165]
Best Protagonist Yuji Itadori Nominated
Best Antagonist Ryomen Sukuna Won
Best Boy Satoru Gojo Nominated
Best Opening Sequence "Kaikai Kitan" by Eve Nominated
Best Ending Sequence "Lost in Paradise" by ALI feat. Aklo Won
Best VA Performance (JP) Yuichi Nakamura as Satoru Gojo Nominated
Best Director Sunghoo Park Nominated
Best Animation Jujutsu Kaisen Nominated
Best Fight Scene Satoru Gojo vs. Ryomen Sukuna Nominated
Japan Character Awards Character License Award Jujutsu Kaisen Won [166]
16th AnimaniA Awards Best Online Series Won [172]
11th Newtype Anime Awards Best TV Anime Won [167]
Screenplay Award Hiroshi Seko Won
Yahoo! Japan Search Awards Anime Category Jujutsu Kaisen 2nd place [168]
IGN Awards Best Anime Series Nominated [173]
2022 4th Global TV Demand Awards Most In-Demand Anime Series of 2021 Nominated [174]
Tokyo Anime Award Festival Animation of the Year (Television) Won [169]
6th Crunchyroll Anime Awards Anime of the Year Nominated [175][176]
Best Protagonist Yuji Itadori Nominated
Best Girl Nobara Kugisaki Won
Best Director Sunghoo Park Nominated
Best Animation Jujutsu Kaisen Nominated
Best Character Design Tadashi Hiramatsu Won
Best Opening Sequence "Vivid Vice" by Who-ya Extended Nominated
Best VA Performance (English) Adam McArthur as Yuji Itadori Nominated
Best VA Performance (French) Mark Lesser as Satoru Gojo Nominated
Best VA Performance (German) René Dawn-Claude as Satoru Gojo Won
Best VA Performance (Portuguese) Leo Rabelo as Satoru Gojo Won
Amanda Brigido as Nobara Kugisaki Nominated
Best VA Performance (Spanish) José Gilberto Vilchis as Satoru Gojo Nominated
Best Action Jujutsu Kaisen Won
Best Fight Scene Yuji Itadori & Aoi Todo vs. Hanami Won
Yuji Itadori & Nobara Kugisaki vs. Eso & Kechizu Nominated
16th Seiyu Awards Best Actor in Supporting Role Yuichi Nakamura as Satoru Gojo[e] Won [177]
Best Actress in Supporting Role Mikako Komatsu as Maki Zen'in[f] Won
Japan Expo Awards Daruma for Best Opening "Vivid Vice" by Who-ya Extended Won [178]
2023 7th Crunchyroll Anime Awards Best VA Performance (Italian) Elisa Giorgio as Maki Zen'in Won [179]
17th Seiyu Awards Synergy Award Jujutsu Kaisen Won [180]
18th AnimaniA Awards Best TV Series: Disc Release Won [181]
Best Director Sunghoo Park Won
Best Character Design Tadashi Hiramatsu Won
Best Anime Song "Vivid Vice" by Who-ya Extended Won
65th Japan Record Awards Special Achievement Award Jujutsu Kaisen Won [170]
2024 6th Global Demand Awards Most In-Demand TV Series in the World Won [182][171]
Most In-Demand Anime Series of 2023 Won
8th Crunchyroll Anime Awards Anime of the Year Jujutsu Kaisen Season 2 Pending [183]
Best Action Pending
Best Animation Pending
Best Continuing Series Pending
Best Character Design Sayaka Koiso and Tadashi Hiramatsu Pending
Best Cinematography Teppei Ito Pending
Best Art Direction Junichi Higashi Pending
Best Supporting Character Satoru Gojo Pending
Suguru Geto Pending
Best Director Shōta Goshozono Pending
Best Opening Sequence "Where Our Blue Is" by Tatsuya Kitani Pending
Best Ending Sequence "Akari" by Soushi Sakiyama Pending
Best Anime Song "Where Our Blue Is" by Tatsuya Kitani Pending
Best VA Performance (Japanese) Yuichi Nakamura as Satoru Gojo Pending
Best VA Performance (Spanish) Jose Gilberto Vilchis as Satoru Gojo Pending
Best VA Performance (French) Martial Leminoux as Suguru Geto Pending
Best VA Performance (Portuguese) Leo Rabelo as Satoru Gojo Pending

Novels

Jujutsu Kaisen: Iku Natsu to Kaeru Aki and Jujutsu Kaisen: Yoake no Ibara Michi were among the best-selling novel series in the first half of 2021 (period between November 2020 and May 2021), with 235,170 and 206,059 copies sold, respectively,[184] and both novels were the best-selling-novel volumes in the first half of 2021.[185] Both novels were the best-selling novels of 2021, collectively selling a total of 487,434 copies.[186]

Notes

  1. ^ Home video rights
  2. ^ Jujutsu (呪術) translates as "sorcery", while Kaisen is a coined word by the author, combining two kanji; kai (, "to rotate") and sen (, "battle").[3]
  3. ^ MBS listed the air dates for the series on Friday at 25:25, which is effectively Saturday at 1:25 a.m. JST.[39]
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Including digital copies and Jujutsu Kaisen 0.
  5. ^ Also for World Trigger as Yuichi Jin
  6. ^ Also for Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai as Maam

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External links