My Hero Academia Is #1 on the NPD BookScan Adult Graphic Novels List for April 2021

Manga volumes occupied all 20 spots on NPD BookScan’s Top 20 adult graphic novels list for April 2021:

  1. My Hero Academia Volume 27 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  2. Chainsaw Man Volume 4 by Tatsuki Fujimoto
  3. Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 9 by Gege Akutami
  4. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 1 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  5. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 2 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  6. Chainsaw Man Volume 2 by Tatsuki Fujimoto
  7. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 21 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  8. Attack on Titan Volume 1 by Hajime Isayama
  9. My Hero Academia Volume 2 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  10. Spy x Family Volume 1 by Tatsuya Endō
  11. Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 1 by Gege Akutami
  12. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 3 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  13. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 8 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  14. Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 7 by Gege Akutami
  15. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 4 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  16. Tokyo Ghoul Volume 1 by Sui Ishida
  17. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 9 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  18. My Hero Academia Volume 26 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  19. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 7 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  20. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 10 by Koyoharu Gotouge

Source: The Fandom Post

Top 20 Selling Manga for March 2021

NPD BookScan has published the top 20 selling manga in the United States for March 2021:

  1. Chainsaw Man Volume 1 by Tatsuki Fujimoto
  2. My Hero Academia Volume 1 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  3. My Hero Academia Volume 2 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  4. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 1 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  5. Attack on Titan Volume 1 by Hajime Isayama
  6. Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun Volume 1 by Aidairo
  7. My Hero Academia Volume 26 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  8. My Hero Academia Volume 3 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  9. The Promised Neverland Volume 1 by Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu
  10. Haikyu!! Volume 1 by Haruichi Furudate
  11. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 2 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  12. Spy x Family Volume 4 by Tatsuya Endō
  13. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 3 by Koyoharu Gotouge
  14. Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 1 by Gege Akutami
  15. Chainsaw Man Volume 3 by Tatsuki Fujimoto
  16. My Hero Academia Volume 24 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  17. The Promised Neverland Volume 2 by Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu
  18. Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun Volume 2 by Aidairo
  19. My Hero Academia Volume 4 by Kōhei Horikoshi
  20. Uzumaki (Hardcover) by Junji Ito

Source: The Fandom Post

Chainsaw Man Is #1 on the NPD BookScan Adult Graphic Novels List for March 2021

19 manga volumes appeared on NPD BookScan’s Top 20 adult graphic novels list for March 2021:

  • Chainsaw Man Volume 1 by Tatsuki Fujimoto (#1)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 1 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#2)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 2 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#3)
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 1 by Koyoharu Gotouge (#4)
  • Attack on Titan Volume 1 by Hajime Isayama (#5)
  • Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun Volume 1 by Aidairo (#6)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 26 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#7)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 3 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#8)
  • The Promised Neverland Volume 1 by Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu (#9)
  • Haikyu!! Volume 1 by Haruichi Furudate (#10)
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 2 by Koyoharu Gotouge (#11)
  • Spy x Family Volume 4 by Tatsuya Endō (#12)
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Volume 3 by Koyoharu Gotouge (#13)
  • Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 1 by Gege Akutami (#15)
  • Chainsaw Man Volume 3 by Tatsuki Fujimoto (#16)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 24 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#17)
  • The Promised Neverland Volume 2 by Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu (#18)
  • Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun Volume 2 by Aidairo (#19)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 4 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#20)

The BookScan rankings collect data sales from more than 16,000 locations including Barnes & Noble and other book chains, independent bookshops, and online purchases — but not sales at comic book stores, Walmart.com, and some other venues.

Source: ANN

Kodansha Adds More Attack on Titan Volumes to the comiXology Unlimited and Kindle Unlimited Subscription Programs for Limited Time

Kodansha has announced that for a limited time, fans can read up to Volume 22 of Attack on Titan, FREE as part of comiXology Unlimited and Kindle Unlimited – the Amazon-powered comics, graphic novel and manga subscription services.

Supporting this special subscription service addition, Kodansha also announced the Attack on Titan Final Season Manga Sale, which discounts Volumes 23-32 of the original series, and volumes from Attack on Titan spin-offs like Attack on Titan: Before the Fall, Attack on Titan: Lost Girls, Attack on Titan: Junior High, and more, up to 50% off. This sale runs from April 6-19, 2021, and is available across all our participating digital vendors including Bookwalker, ComiXology, Google Play, Kindle, Nook and izneo. These combined efforts make it easier than ever for new, existing, and anime-only fans to take a deep dive into the dark fantasy world of the Attack on Titan manga.

Attack on Titan is the award-winning and New York Times-bestselling series created by Hajime Isayama. First published in Bessatsu Shōnen Magazine in 2009, this series was a sleeper hit until it won the Kodansha Manga Award in 2011 for the shōnen category. Since then the manga has spawned the hit anime TV series of the same name making Attack on Titan a pop culture sensation. The anime is currently in its final season and can be streamed via Crunchyroll and FUNimation.

Comixology Unlimited offers over 30,000 comics, graphic novels and manga for just $5.99 a month with a 30-day free trial at Comixology.com/unlimited. Kindle Unlimited offers over 1 million titles, thousands of audiobooks, and select current issues of popular magazines for just $9.99 a month with a 30-day free trial at Amazon.com/kindleunlimited.

Anime Spotlight: Attack on Titan Final Season

Attack on Titan Final Season aired in Japan from December 7, 2020-March 29, 2021. This season saw WIT Studio turning production duties over to MAPPA, and it was directed by Jun Shishido. As of this writing, FUNimation Entertainment holds the North American license for the Attack on Titan franchise.

It’s established that four years have passed since the end of Attack on Titan Season 3 Part Two, and the focus of the first few episodes is on a region called Marley, which is where Reiner, Bertholdt, and Annie came from. Reiner has made it back to Marley, and we see him interacting with new characters who become important over the course of this season. The most important of these new characters are Falco Grice and Gabi Braun, who are two of the Warrior Candidates who are in the running to inherit the Armored Titan after Reiner.

These early episodes establish the civilization and social structure of Marley. While this was hinted at in a flashback in an earlier season, these episodes allow the viewer to truly understand what kind of a world Zeke, Reiner, Betholdt, and Annie lived in before we met them at Paradis. We see that Zeke is helping to plan an offensive against Paradis, which includes using the Tybur noble family and their War Hammer Titan to announce the offensive during a festival in Liberio.

Meanwhile, Falco befriends an injured soldier in a hospital named Kruger Their friendship gets to a point where Kruger asks Falco to send letters to his family for him, and Falco readily agrees. But on the night of the festival, Reiner and Falco end up in an area below the stage, and it’s revealed that Kruger is actually Eren. I had to feel for Falco when he discovers that Eren had been using him to send messages to his allies in Paradis. Right when Willy Tybur is making his grand speech, Eren transforms into a Titan and interrupts the proceedings. At the same time, the forces from Paradis come in to back him up. The chaos that’s created serves as an important plot point for Gabi and Falco. It leads to the two of them sneaking onto the Survey Corps’ airship, and Gabi killing Sasha. Zeke is also captured in the confusion, and it comes out that Zeke is in league with Eren. This is just one of several twists that show up over the course of Attack on Titan Final Season. Falco and Gabi are also taken prisoner.

Before the story progresses, we get a couple of episodes of flashbacks that establish some more characters who are important in the season. A Marleyan scout ship is captured by the Scouts, and among the crew are Yelena, Onyankopon, and Nicolo (who are Marleyan conscripted deserters who have come to help the Eldians and gain their backing for Zeke Jaeger’s plan to carry out the Rumbling to support Eldia against Marley). Nicolo, who is a chef, becomes friends with Sasha after she compliments his cooking. Nicolo becomes important to the plot after the Scouts return and news gets out of Sasha’s death.

Gabi kills a prison guard, and she and Falco make an escape into the wilderness. They meet a girl named Kaya, who offers them food and shelter at the Braus Stables, which is owned by Sasha’s family. At Sasha’s memorial service, Nicolo meets Sasha’s parents and invites them and their family to his restaurant for a meal on the house. Gabi and Falco end up being part of the group and try to make contact with Nicolo. But when Nicolo learns that Gabi is the one who killed Sasha, he takes it upon himself to reveal the truth about her and Falco to Sasha’s family. The scene here is intense, but I still like how Sasha’s father handled the situation. Instead of being angry and using the knife that Nicolo offers him to kill Gabi for revenge, he uses his words to express his wish that the young don’t have to be made to fight these battles that the adults have started. I thought his speech was very powerful.

The Jaegerists, along with Eren, come into the restaurant. The Scouts are there as well as Sasha’s family. Eren goes to talk with Mikasa and Armin, and he says some rather hurtful things to both of them. In the later episodes of the series, whenever I saw Eren with the Jaegerists, he came across thinking he was some kind of messiah or something. The Jaegerists seem to act like members of a cult, following orders simply because Eren gives them. Eren’s transformation in this season turned him into a character who no longer comes across as a protagonist. Previously, Eren may have been obnoxious, but the audience could still cheer him on as he tried to get to his family’s basement. But now, he comes across as an arrogant jerk.

I have to admit that when I started this season, the redesigns for the main characters to reflect the four-year timeskip took a lot of getting used to. However, as the season progressed, I was able to accept these new designs. I also feel I should give a lot of credit to MAPPA for how well they took over animation and production duties from WIT Studio. To be honest, I think WIT Studio’s style just wouldn’t have worked with the tone and feel of this season of Attack on Titan. MAPPA was able to give the series a little more of a “grittier” look, which I think works a lot better for the plot points and character changes that take place at this point in the story.

Even though this season is titled, Attack on Titan Final Season, the story didn’t end with the final episode. At the end of that episode, it was revealed that the series will return in Winter 2022. While the ending of Episode 16 was an OK cliffhanger, I still think the ending of the previous episode would have made a stronger cliffhanger to end the season on. I’m looking forward to seeing Attack on Titan return with its next season, and I suspect that the next season will truly be the final season. Are they going to call it Attack on Titan Final Season Part 2?

Additional posts about Attack on Titan:

Attack on Titan Final Season: Episode 16 – “Above and Below”

The episode opens with Zeke lying on the ground, and he appears to be dying. A Titan makes its way over to him, rips open its stomach, and puts Zeke inside of it. We also see Floch and his group, who Hange is leading to Zeke, seeing the Thunder Spear go off in the distance. You can tell that Hange doesn’t have a good feeling about what’s happened. Unfortunately, this episode doesn’t answer what happened to Levi, so it looks like his fate will be revealed when Attack on Titan returns in Winter 2022. It should be noted that the announcement about the next episode that appeared at the end of this episode in Japan was omitted from Crunchyroll’s stream.

We get to see a lot of Yelena and this episode, and yikes… you can tell by the eyes just how crazy she’s gotten. And if that wasn’t enough, her words and tone, along with suddenly shooting one of her comrades for referring to Mikasa and the other imprisoned scouts as devils… dang. In this episode, she came across as mentally unstable. There’s also the meal Yelena has with Pyxis. I appreciated seeing how calm Pyxis remained while Yelena was taunting him, especially when it came to countering what she was saying. Pyxis really is in a no-win situation, and he’s smart enough to realize it.

The imprisoned scouts are asking Armin why Eren beat him to a pulp. He starts explaining what happened, but Mikasa cuts him off, trying to claim that Eren’s words hadn’t hurt her. It’s actually Jean, of all people, who brings up the possibility that Eren may not have meant what he said, and that there might have been a reason for it. I have a feeling this is laying the groundwork for events that will happen in the next season.

Eren goes to see Gabi, who he refers to as “the brat who killed Sasha.” He’s sees her in the hopes of using her for his plan, but Pieck (who has snuck in amongst the chaos) appears. When Pieck tries to threaten Eren, he immediately calls her bluff. Pieck then goes on about how she, like Zeke, wants to take down Marley. Gabi is shocked to hear her say these things, and this once again shakes Gabi’s beliefs to the core. It’s this storyline that leads us to the cliffhanger for the season. Gabi asks Eren to take her to the roof so she can point out the enemies. She and Gabi are handcuffed together, in order to discourage Pieck from transforming into a Titan. When Yelena sees who Eren has brought, Yelena says she doesn’t trust Pieck. Eren says he doesn’t trust her either, and he knows Pieck’s feelings are mutual.

When Pieck is asked to point out the enemy, she grips Sasha’s hand, then turns around and points at Eren. Suddenly, Galliard appears in his Titan form, and Reiner has come with some of Marley’s airships. Eren transforms into a Titan, and the stage is set for a showdown between Eren and Reiner… just in time for the episode to end. While this works as a cliffhanger, I do think the ending of last week’s episode would have been a stronger cliffhanger to end the season on.

Like I said earlier, it’s been announced that there will be another episode coming in Winter 2022. With this release window, I’m assuming that the next season (or next half of the season, if they decide to go with the Attack on Titan Final Season Part 2 title) will begin in January 2022. But it does make me wonder why they went with the Attack on Titan Final Season title for this season to begin with if they already knew it wasn’t going to end here. Maybe this title should have been saved for the next batch of episodes that will come out next year, and that this portion of the story had been given something different for a title. While this cliffhanger may not have been as strong as what I would have liked, I’ll still come back when the next season of Attack on Titan starts. I’ve made it this far in the series, and I intend to see it through until the end.

Additional posts about Attack on Titan:

Attack on Titan Anime to Add Episode 76 “This Coming Winter”

Episode 75 of the Attack on Titan The Final Season anime ended with an announcement that the anime will have an episode 76, “Danzai” (“Sentencing”), “this coming winter” on the NHK General channel in Japan. FUNimation Entertainment describes the episode’s release window as “Winter 2022.”

Yuichiro Hayashi directed the anime at MAPPA. Hiroshi Seko returned to oversee the series scripts. Tomohiro Kishi designed the characters. Hiroyuki Sawano returned to compose the music, alongside Kohta Yamamoto.

The Attack on Titan The Final Season anime premiered in Japan on December 7, 2020. FUNimation Entertainment and Crunchyroll are streaming the anime with English subtitles.

Source: ANN

Attack on Titan Final Season: Episode 15 – “Sole Salvation”

I was wrong with the ending of my previous writeup. It turns out this episode focuses exclusively on Zeke’s backstory, with the final scene taking place in current time. But in order to convey how complicated Zeke’s story is, it really needed the entire episode. While we have seen bits and pieces of the story sprinkled throughout the series up to this point, this episode allows the viewer to see everything from start to finish, and adds scenes to help embellish what the audience had seen previously.

As we see, Zeke keeps getting conflicting messages growing up. For example, we see Zeke being left at his grandparents’ house, where they’re teaching him the version of history that Marley wants the children to be taught. However, at home, Zeke is being taught what Zeke’s grandfather refers to as the “real history.” We also see that Grisha is trying to make it so Zeke can become the Warrior Candidate to inherit the Beast Titan in order to make a plan of his work. But we see early on that Zeke really doesn’t have the drive, and he also doesn’t have the physical stamina or skill to be a serious contender for a Warrior Candidate.

It turns out that the current man with the Beast Titan takes an interest in Zeke when he watches the Warrior Candidates training. Later, Mr. Ksaver (the current Beast Titan) throws a baseball to Zeke in order to initiate conversation. Mr. Ksaver has been spending his time as the Beast Titan doing research on Titans, thanks to the access he has to his predecessors’ memories. Zeke and Mr. Ksaver form a friendship, and as we see, he ends up acting more like a father to Zeke than Grisha.

Things come to a head when Grisha and his wife go to watch him train, and Grisha realizes that there’s no way that Zeke will be able to become the Beast Titan and carry out his plan. Grisha basically goes ape-shit crazy at this point, and all he seems to do is yell at Zeke. When Zeke reveals to Mr. Ksaver what’s going on, and that his parents are Eldian Restorationists, Mr. Ksaver convinces Zeke to turn in his parents to Marley. As Mr. Ksaver points out, his parents only seemed to care about him as long as there was a chance he would be able to make their plan move forward. Yes, Mr. Ksaver has an agenda of his own because of what happened to him in his past, but if you had to choose which agenda you would prefer to live under, which one looks better? In the end, it’s really no surprise that Zeke turned his parents in. One of the final scenes that takes place before Zeke meets Eren is Mr. Ksaver giving Zeke the information he needs in order to come up with the plan that Zeke is currently trying to make happen.

One of the final scenes in this backstory takes place more recently, when Zeke and Eren are talking to one another. This shows the moment that Eren decides to team up with Zeke to carry out Zeke’s plan. Seeing Zeke handing Eren a used baseball at the end of this scene made me think of the idea that this is a kind of symbolic “passing of the torch,” if you will. If we assume this is a baseball Mr. Ksaver and Zeke used, then it could symbolize how the torch has passed from Mr. Ksaver to Zeke, and now from Zeke to Eren.

Right at the end of the episode, we see Levi transporting Zeke. On the journey, Levi hears Zeke muttering about euthanization, so he stops the wagon and goes to confront Zeke. But Zeke decides to resist and loosen the Thunder Spear that’s been put through him, which causes it to go off. The episode ends with the explosion, so the audience is left with the cliffhanger of what happened to Zeke and Levi.

It’s hard to believe that the next episode is the last one for Attack on Titan Final Season. Obviously, the story isn’t going to end with the next episode, so it’s going to be interesting to see what kind of cliffhanger the audience is left on to entice them to come back for more. The explosion at the end of this episode felt like it would have been a perfect cliffhanger, so what can they do next week to top this?

Additional posts about Attack on Titan:

Attack on Titan Final Season: Episode 14 – “Savagery”

The episode opens with the same scene that ended the previous episode: Eren, with his hand cut open, enters the room where Mikasa, Armin, and Gabi are. It was so strange to see Eren using his wounded hand as a threat against his friends, but it also signifies Eren’s mindset of them. If this imagery wasn’t enough, then Eren’s words certainly showed how his views have changed. He was such an asshole and said very hurtful things toward both Mikasa and Armin. While there may have been some truth in some of the facts he was revealing, his tone and the way he revealed them were just awful. It was tough to see Mikasa, the emotionally strong girl who we’ve come to know, cry. Telling Mikasa that he’s always hated her is one of the cruelest things Eren could have done. Armin gets pissed off at Eren and tries to challenge him in a fistfight, but we sadly know how that’s going to turn out. I can tell from his swagger and from the way he’s talking that Eren has let a lot go to his head. He’s gone from the noisy protagonist that viewers were rooting for to an extreme asshole that the audience can quickly come to hate.

The other main storyline in this episode focuses on Levi and Zeke. Levi is already rather pissed at the guy, and then Zeke runs away and uses his power to turn Levi’s subordinates into Titans, thinking Levi won’t be able to cut down his friends. We see that Levi’s subordinates insisted on bringing the wine along that only the MPs normally get to have, even though Levi argued that they had tea. Sure enough, the others with Levi all drank the wine that contained Zeke’s spinal fluid, and it looks like Levi is going to have a tough time of it. Zeke, meanwhile, is carried away by some Titans and is confident that he’ll escape. The look on his face when Levi catches up is priceless, though. As Levi explains, he’s been forced to kill other comrades before now thanks to Zeke, so at this point, he has no hesitations. Even though Zeke turns into the Beast Titan, Levi manages to take him down, and capture Zeke in the process. Near the end of the episode, we see Zeke being tortured by Levi, and Levi’s anger and hatred toward the man are justified. Levi has lost so many people close to him in this series at this point, and he’s gotten to the point that he’s just tired of it.

We also see Floch take a captured Hange to where Shadis is training new recruits. Before Floch’s arrival, we hear some of the recruits voice that they believe the Jaegerists are better to follow than Shadis and his old-fashioned methods. When Floch asks who among the recruits are loyal to the Jaegerists, a small handful step forward. To prove their allegiance, he says they have to beat up Shadis. These recruits, who were so eagerly supporting the Jaegersists, are shocked and surprised by Floch’s request. Floch then also tells the other recruits that they have to join in if they don’t want to be killed. Floch is another asshole, and is letting what power he thinks he has as a Jaegerist go to his head. It’s becoming pretty clear that the Jaegerists are a bunch of assholes, and that Eren is the biggest asshole of them all.

From the preview, it looks like at least part of it will be focusing on Zeke looking back at his past, and we got a hint of this with one of the final scenes he appears in during this episode. But the preview also seems to indicate that there will be something else besides Zeke’s backstory, so it gives the impression that it won’t just be all exposition.

Additional posts about Attack on Titan:

Attack on Titan’s Quake-Delayed Episode 73 Rescheduled to March 22, 2021

The public television broadcaster NHK has announced that the Attack on Titan The Final Season anime’s 14th episode (73rd episode overall in the series), which was preempted on March 15, 2021 due to its emergency news coverage of an earthquake in Wakayama Prefecture, has been rescheduled to next week. Episode 73 will air at 12:10 a.m. on Monday, March 22, 2021, followed by episode 74 at 12:34 a.m. FUNimation Entertainment and Crunchyroll have also delayed their streams of the new episode.

The emergency news coverage of the magnitude-4.6 earthquake began airing in the middle of episode 73, as the anime normally airs on NHK at 12:10 a.m. every Monday. The Japanese government reported no threat of tsunami as well as no serious injuries or casualties.

Source: ANN