Shonen Mangas

Manga, or Japanese comics and cartoons, come in many different styles. A very popular example is the shonen manga genre. Shonen means "a young person's comics," in English, and they are typically marketed toward young to teenage boys; however, girls are known to enjoy shonen manga as well.

Action is the hallmark of shonen manga, and often central to the storyline, as well as male friendships, between groups of friends, teammates, or people who meet throughout the adventure. Camaraderie is emphasized and there is often plenty of comedy intertwined with the action, which tends to take the form of fighting against rivals or monsters.

For example, three very popular shonen manga are BLEACH by Tite Kubo, Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba, and Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa:


Soul Reaper Rukia is dumbstruck when Ichigo Kurosaki can see her. An evil spirit called a Hollow appears and severely injures her. Ichigo inadvertently absorbs most of her power and defeats the Hollow easily, stranding Rukia in the human realm and forcing Ichigo to do her job of destroying Hollows, but there seems to be something more complex afoot.

Death Note:

Death God Ryuk "drops" his Death Note -- a notebook in which anyone's name can be written, causing their death -- in the human world, where it is found by Light Yagami. Light believes he can free the world of crime, but soon his obsession with power begins to take over, and the mysterious detective L is set o­n the case.

Fullmetal Alchemist:

Alchemy is a complex science, and the brothers Edward and Alphonse have a terrible accident, where they are both badly injured. They become focused o­n finding the Philosopher's Stone: a catalyst which would allow them to heal themselves.