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Frieren Will Overtake Demon Slayer, Says Weekly Shonen Sunday Editor-In-Chief

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Sousou No Frieren has gained quite the popularity after its anime adaptation by Madhouse aired in 2023. It was praised for its poignant story and incredible animation.

The anime has made the top spot in MAL ranking its own for over a month, suggesting that its meteoric rise is not something short lived. In fact, thanks to the anime’s popularity, the manga volume circulation increased from 10 million copies in October 2023 to 17 million copies in December 2023.

In light of Frieren’s newfound fame, a comment made by Weekly Shonen Sunday Editor-in-Chief Kazunori Oshima has come to light regarding the popularity of the series.

This comment was revealed by Shogakukan’s veteran editor Katsuya Shirai in an interview with fellow industry veteran Kazuhiko Torishima.

Shirai and Torishima were discussing the competitiveness and rivalry between manga publishers, with Shirai mentioning how he used to keep an eye out on other magazines to look out for upcoming authors or works that will rise in popularity.

The idea was to poach “treasures” from other magazines in order to weaken competitors, while also strengthening the portfolio of their own magazine. Torishima felt that Shirai’s keen eye led to the prosperity of Weekly Shonen Sunday magazine, however, he felt that after Shirai left, the magazine probably was not the same as before, lamenting a loss of the competitive spirit.

Shirai disagreed, saying that same level of competitiveness existed even now. This is when he pointed out Kazunori Oshima’s comment regarding Frieren being more popular than Demon Slayer. Oshima became Sunday’s editor-in-chief in 2021.

That’s not the point, is it? I think the current editor-in-chief of Weekly Shonen Sunday has a lot of competitive spirit,” Shirai said. “The other day, I was told by the editor-in-chief of Weekly Shonen Sunday, ‘This will be Kimetsu no Yaiba in five years.’ It was a work called Sousou No Frieren, which won the Manga Taisho award. ‘This will surpass ‘Kimetsu no Yaiba’ he said.

The best part of this comment was that it was made in 2022, before the anime adaptation aired, which shows editor-in-chief Oshima’s foresight.

As this comment began making the rounds on various forums, majority of the fans disagreed with the sentiment, saying that the popularity of Demon Slayer will be hard to replicate as both adults and children were equally invested in Demon Slayer.

Other comments pointed out that Frieren was not a battle shounen, so it might fall short of achieving the same level of fame.

However, some opinions on X (formerly Twitter) claimed that even if it doesn’t achieve the same popularity as Demon Slayer, it will still be as popular as Spy x Family.

Frieren overtake Demon Slayer

Katsuya Shirai is a veteran manga editor and anime producer, who worked at Shogagukan. He is most well known for handling Maison Ikkoku manga. Kazuhiko Torishima too started off his career as a manga editor with Shueisha, before serving as an editor in chief for Weekly Shonen Jump and then becoming a director at Shueisha-Shogakukan publications.

Source: Denfaminicogamer

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