Kohei Horikoshi, the creator of My Hero Academia, revealed a personal story in the latest Volume 39 released in Japan on November 2, 2023. Horikoshi said chapter 395 originally had 13 pages instead of 15, apparently is shorter than other Jump titles. This is because, as he revealed, Jump made adjustments to his health. But for chapter 395, he realized that there was a story he wanted to tell that was longer than 13 pages, putting the burden on the Jump editorial staff to provide his unusually longer chapter: “Some of you have You may have noticed, but My Hero Academia has a low page count per chapter,” Horikoshi said. “This is because my hands have become slower over the years and my schedule keeps exploding. The editorial team is dedicated to adjusting the number of pages so that My Hero Academia can be serialized. I am acutely aware that this is 100% my fault, but more than once I thought “If only there were more pages…!” This is an extremely embarrassing matter on my part. I’m so sorry.
So the number of pages was set and for Chapter 395: ‘Building on the Joy of Others’, I was initially told it was 13 pages. However, it’s actually only 15 pages long. This is thanks to my editor in charge, Imamura-san. I first drew a 13-page storyboard as a guide. However, it feels like I’m barely getting everything in between my teeth. If I had the ability, maybe I could have finished 13 pages well… But there was no time, so I immediately asked Imamura-san to check it. And after silently looking through the storyboard for a while, Imamura-san said:
‘…What if we could add two more pages?’”
From left to right: Momiyama (Shonen Jump+ Editor-in-Chief), Ishida (Deputy Director of Hatena), Imamura (Weekly Shonen Jump Editor) images © Shonen Jump
“Editors are prohibited from arbitrarily increasing pages. Because after all, it’s a magazine. And Imamura-san is also a relatively young editor. ‘You can do that!?,’ I gaped at her, stunned. That’s when Imamura-san looked straight at me with his pitch black, lightless eyes and said, ‘I’ll be the only one who gets scolded. It’s okay for now, but I want to make this chapter the best it can be. In turn, be sure to complete within the time frame. Not finishing it even after adding 2 pages wouldn’t be a joke, so what do you think, Horikoshi-san?’
A black and white color like a black hole. A pure black void. Darkness. And so Chapter 395 is 15 pages long.”
“What I want to say is that Imamura-san and the editorial board really seriously considered how to shape My Hero Academia well, and My Hero Academia cannot continue without the hard work of the editorial board . I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude. I’m very impressed. And I wish everyone to take their first steps into society soon. This is what it means to cause trouble to others. Meet deadlines…so as not to add more darkness to the darkness in other people’s eyes.
Signed, a man who knew from the start that a proper social life was impossible for someone who had never turned in his summer homework on time.– Horikoshi.
Horikoshi’s health complications have been well-documented, taking a two-week pause in February 2023 as well as breaks in October and December 2022. He stated last October: “I Sorry for all the breaks. My schedule is a mess. I’m back on track.” While this is not uncommon among mangakas, it is a sad and common situation in the industry. One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda took a four-week hiatus from June to July due to eye surgery; Oda often takes several weeks off and his busy schedule means he often only sleeps 3 hours a day. Horikoshi’s latest comment continues to make many fans worry about his physical condition as well as the possibility that My Hero Academia will have an acceptable ending. While the self-deprecating tone of his message and taking 100% responsibility is also a concern, the pressures of the current manga industry mean that his candor isn’t just happening either with him alone. Elfen Lied creator Lynn Okamoto recently opened up to X about his inability to become a master artist, seemingly resigned to that fate. However, given that Horikoshi’s editors have been at the center of fan controversy in the past, it’s reassuring that they appear to be among his biggest supporters.
Class 1-B sketch by My Hero Academia author Kohei Horikoshi
Kohei Horikoshi’s My Hero Academia debuted in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump in July 2014 and has been collected into 39 volumes as of November 2023. To commemorate Volume 39, a series of teaser trailers were released , which includes the Ochaco x Toga Best Friends video as well as a special PV of Midoriya, Bakugo, and Todoroki. The manga series is a bestseller, with more than 85 million copies in circulation, and was adapted into a successful anime that ran for six seasons. Despite the franchise’s success, Anime Corner’s Jay Gibbs gave his opinion on the card game My Hero Academia: UA Heroes Battle, calling it “terrible” in his review. My Hero Academia announced a seventh season in March and a fourth film in August.
VIZ Media licenses the manga in North America and describes the plot: Midoriya inherits the superpowers of the world’s greatest hero, but greatness will not come easy.
Source: © Kohei Horikoshi / Shueisha