A New Manga First Printing Record Set in Japan

Posted: November 30, 2009 in Manga, News

From Anime News Netowrk:

The Japanese publisher Shueisha is producing 2.85 million copies of the 56th volume of Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece pirate manga — the largest print run that any Japanese manga has ever had in its first printing. The volume will ship on December 4. Since the manga began in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in 1997, Shueisha has printed 176 million copies. The previous volume, volume 55, sold 1,487,845 copies in its first week and 1,720,884 copies in the first five weeks.

Now, that’s just for one volume. To put that into perspective for our American readers Marvel Comics, the number one publisher in the U.S., sold 2.66 million total units in all of October. Those numbers can be found here. The top selling comic in October was Blackest Night #4 which sold 137,000 copies.

The American comic industry has had it’s ups and down for the last couple of decades but it still has a long way to go. Can you imagine the day where Amazing Spider-Man, Detective Comics or Invincible could individually sell 2 million copies? Ya, neither can I.


Anime News Network

  1. One Piece is my second favorite manga. Naruto is my all-time fav manga and possibly my all-time fav comic. I keep meaning to read Gantz, Scott Pilgrim, and Battle Royale…

  2. And the kicker to this is that there is no speculator market driving sales. Honestly, do people read manga because they think the books will be worth something more than the cover price one day? It’s just cheaply produced mass-entertainment.

    Can someone tell me how many copies that X-Men #1 sold back in the 90’s? You know, the one with Claremont and Lee and, like, 4 effin’ gatefold covers?


    • Something like 1.2 million copies I believe.


    • Buuut Wikipedia is saying that it sold 8 MILLION copies. Really!?! That can’t be right, can it?

      And X-Force #1 which was released around the same time sold 5 million copies? Man, I didn’t know the sales were THAT high. THat seems ridiculous.


      • Locusmortis says:

        Yeah I heard the 8 million figure back in the nineties, I’ve heard of amateur speculators stuck with basements full of X-Men #1’s

        I heard the figure of 2.5 million for X-Force, 5 million does seem a bit high. Remember the poly-bag and the trading card they put in the #1. The argument went that if you opened the bag that you made the comic worthless….it was a rob liefield comic, anyone see the irony in that statement?

  3. kurumais says:

    i went to japan in the mid 90s and i thought otaku culture would be more omni present but it really wasnt there werent folks on the trains and buses all reading manga not sure if i saw anyone reading manga, in the bookstores there were tons of manga digests i couldn’t believe the number of volumes for 3×3 eyes one of my favs. the one bit of true otaku culture i did see was salary men in the late20s and 30s dressed in suits just off from work trying to win gundam figures from these machines in the video game arcade i checked out. but i was only there for a couple of weeks

  4. PILKK90 says:

    bleach is my favourite manga at the moment, one piece would probably be 4th on the list, still those numbers are crazy

  5. C4RL0Z says:

    Yep one piece is the best selling manga of all time and really its my favorite along with other. I consider it the only shonen (apart from bakuman) which i find interesting and good. I mostly read seinen VAGABOND, AKIRA, blade of the immortal and several others and honestly one piece is my fav of all time.
    I have always wondered whats going to happen to the american industry in a couple of decades? i mean the readership will start dying and no new readers will start to appear, im a 16 years old and i ike comic books but im one of the few new readers right?.

    Im really worried what will happen to the american comic book business. I have mentioned here in my country (Peru) that these new projects have started to appear where they are selling comic books weekly. People are liking them

    Because there havent been any of it before and all the companies never cared for the market here which i believe is wrong. MARVEL and DC need to start getting into other countries or making new books, like the darktower, which might draw the attention of some fans of that franchise into the mainstream.
    Elliot mentioned it in last rants right? in paris the market could easily expand because there is a “desire” for american comic books. I hope in the future the indsutry wont die again like in the 90´s.

    X-MEN#1 sold 8.2 million copies BTW or at least i think so.

    ROb liefeld had the record of illustrating the best selling comic book of all time around 4 or 5 million, i think an issue of X-FORCE, then jim lee came along with X-MEN#1 and sold 8 million.
    By the way, manga is suffering form sales too, at least the Weekly shonen jump is sufering a lot, the volumes not so much but the sales have also dropped since the 90´sl. It used to sell around 6 million copies and now only 2.8 millions weekly shonen jump copies.

  6. kurumais says:

    you know if i was like 10- 14 or 15 right now shonen jump would probably be favorite look at all the comic you get for the price and yeah a lot of it is quite formulaic dragon ball ish clones buts its pretty darn good i really like much of art in naruto and i dont think there is a bleach character i dont like except maybe su fong. i am really suprised that it doesnt sell really really well. look at all shonen jump manga fan vids on you tube tons of fangirls putting up vids on their favorite couples fanboys putting really bad music to their favorite fights
    jump should be in the top 40 at least for entertain and value

    • I agree that Shonen Jump should be doing better but you know what the #1 reason is to why it’s not? The internet. Fan translations of manga go up on the internet faster than American publishers can put out the comics here. It’s the same thing that killed the anime dvd industry in this country. At least that’s my opinion as to why it isn’t selling more.


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