Akamatsu wants to do hadoukens as well

Canned Dogs recently posted an article about Akamatsu commenting on the recent increase of popularity of the Negima manga, which he says;

Akamatsu’s opinion is that the current direction of the manga is good as the battles have been pretty compact and it’s good to have an increase in readership even if just for a short period of time.

However he feels that it’ll be safe to return the manga to normal again, as the popularity would probably not drop sharply after having become so popular now. As an analogy he says it’s like how he doesn’t want to rapidly do shoryukens, he wants to use some hadoukens to zone too.

And I would like to respond with; “Thank the heavens!”.

Seriously I was waiting for that. If you asked me about my opinion of Negima nowadays, I would say that the Rakan battle is definitely a filler arc. Why so? Because they were concentrating on the fight itself solely. Most people have seemed to forget that there is a pressing story going on involving the fate of Magic World and the seething rivalry between Ala Alba and Fate Averruncus.

In fact, it’s been a long time since there was any real development about that end, ever since the Rakan arc started circa chapter 238 or so. It’s now Chapter 248 which means it’s been 3 months (including Akamatsu’s infamous 1 week breaks every 4 chapters) since the main story ‘stopped’.

It’s an unbearably long time, especially for me who has been reading Negima ever since it’s debut back in 2003. One of the strengths of the Negima manga has been the fact that Akamatsu never neglects the main story even during filler chapters or fights and we’ve all seen that skill over the past 6 years of the manga. In fact, this is probably the first time that Akamatsu has ‘ignored’ the main story for so long and I was beginning to worry about him losing his touch finally.

Now don’t get me wrong, I do love the fights in Negima, and honestly speaking, they are one of the best parts of the manga. In fact, Rakan’s fight is one of the most impressive fights of the series so far.

But every time there is a fight in Negima, it’s not just about the battles and techniques, in the background there is a valid context for the fight to go on and the fights never fully focused on just the fighting. For example the school festival tournament was all about stopping Chao’s plan and we all had that in mind as Negi progressed through the tournament.

Rakan’s fight though, was more about for the sake of fighting than anything about the ongoing story, and while that made for a nice break, it’s been taking a bit long for my liking and having the main story paused for that long is not really a good thing in my books. It will be hard to get back on track with the story after this long and I guess a reread of the older chapters seems in order. Also I am starting to miss seeing the girls, except for Ako, whom surprisingly hijacked quite a bit of the current arc.

The battle with Rakan has definitely taken too long a time and taken up too much attention and I’m glad that Akamatsu himself has expressed intent to return the manga back to normal after this. The core of Negima isn’t just about the fights, there’s also an overarching, engrossing story to tell as well. I just hope that this aspect of the manga will not be forgotten, in light of the new ‘fanbase’ that Negima as gotten.

8 Comments

  1. Soupy Said,

    April 19, 2009 @ 11:51 am

    what happens if akamatsu wanted to do a NEGI FEVER instead ?

  2. Avisch Said,

    April 19, 2009 @ 12:04 pm

    Whilst not a Negima fan. I do feel that this situation is interesting as it really can apply to all manga in some way.

    Particularly I found Negi in his older form makes everything alot more serious with the fighting involved. And thus it did give the fighting a different sort of feel.

    Though god, seeing 15 more blog posts on this fight (ie. 15 more chapters continuing the fight) would not have been fun for any of us I think.

  3. Zan Said,

    April 19, 2009 @ 2:45 pm

    I actually liked the fight with Rakan but I am relieved that it is finally over. I wouldn’t want to see Negima become the second-coming of Change Guy lol. God, nobody ever stayed down in that manwha.

  4. Cup Said,

    April 20, 2009 @ 5:23 am

    Jack”s “arc” (chapter 241-248, actually) can’t be considered fillers…or an arc. You have it all wrong. Even though it was long and went into detail, focusing the attention more to the match than usual, it still advanced the plot, and is obviously is still very much relative to the story and the on-going progressing plot. The match itself IS the developing story that was needed to be completed. It finished/closed up some unanswered and untouched plot stories that have been lingering around via flashbacks, too.

    The first half of the fight was more of Negi just wanting to beat Jack to get it over with, but as things continued, he seems to be getting more into it and actually enjoyed knowing that he’s fighting with Jack. Before, he really didn’t want to fight Jack.

    Chapter 241-248…7 chapters… Looking back, it wasn’t too long… Ken was playing/trying out several new sandboxes that he hasn’t tried before. And it wasn’t bad at all.

  5. Role Said,

    April 20, 2009 @ 11:21 am

    Don’t forget that though this little arc didn’t have as much storyline in it, Fate DID make a bit of an appearance. I wouldn’t be surprised if this is reflected upon later down the road.

  6. Kikaifan Said,

    April 20, 2009 @ 1:30 pm

    The manga will go full-time action manga if real-Eva and Rakan ever meet. They’re the two great drivers of the action/shounen powerleveling elements… with their combined powers, it would be possible.

  7. omgwtfbbq Said,

    April 20, 2009 @ 8:42 pm

    I thought the current arc was supposed to give Negi some power/skills to defeat Fate.

  8. yanipheonu Said,

    April 24, 2009 @ 9:36 am

    METSU HADOOOOOKEN!!!

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