Despite the global pandemic currently underway, for the world of manga 2020, and this start of 2021, has been an exceptional year. Thanks to works like Demon Slayer and Jujutsu Kaisen, but also to the evergreen ONE PIECE, sales have increased sharply. This good surprise, however, is contrasted by a worrying fact.
Although Covid-19 has hit the Japanese animated industry very hard, leading to delays and cancellations, the manga industry seems to have emerged almost unscathed from the damage caused by the pandemic. According to the data recorded in 2020, in fact, sales of tankobons they literally skyrocketed. Viz Media, for example, confirmed that US sales have increased by 70% since last year. Is it due to the works of Gege Akutami and Koyoharu Gotoge or the effect of the motto “Stay At Home”?
The increase in sales, however, would be causing it a backlash. Ben Applegate, who helps curate manga for Kodansha USA, has warned fans that they would do well to purchase their favorite manga, as there may be several delays in reprints soon.
“If you find a manga you want to read in a store (or online) you should buy it NOW“he wrote on Twitter.”The reprints situation is decidedly apocalyptic and you may not see that manga in stock again for months. “
“Sales of manga have more than tripled from Q1 2020 to Q1 2021 and there is not enough printing capacity to keep some of the mid-range titles in stock. Reprint supply was already in slump before COVID. These problems will be resolved, but not quickly “.
Really in the next few months a “reprint crisis” will explode? Our advice is to stock up as long as possible. Here, in detail, is the crazy growth in the manga sector. Another serious phenomenon is piracy: 40 million yen are lost per month by the manga sector due to scans.