Hunter x Hunter is an anime based on the manga of the same name drawn by the mangaka Yoshihiro Togashi. The manga was first published on March 3, 1998 and although until recently the manga was on hiatus, it now has 349 chapters (about 32 volumes. Yes, I read that.). The first animation of this manga began its broadcast on October 16, 1999 and the last was on March 31, 2001, with a total of 62 chapters. Later in 2011 it began transmitting a second anime called Hunter x Hunter 2011, whose transmission will end on 23 September this year.
I must admit that this is one of my favorite series, even though the first chapters are less interesting than a chemistry class. Just like the manga, really. But as the series progresses it becomes increasingly interesting and these early chapters that bring us nothing but frustration are very well rewarded.
The main character is called Gon Freecs, a 12 year old boy who decides to embark on the adventure of becoming hunter in order to find his father Ging Freecs a hunter who is famous for the difficulty to locate him. During the hunter examination Gon meets Leorio, Kurapika and Killua, who accompany him on his adventure.
The interesting thing about this series is that each character has a story behind it and as Gon’s story develops, the story each character develops as well givin every character a past present and future throughout the series. This is one of those series that are very much attached to reality while still in a fantasy world. It has characters that you’ll always wonder if they are friends or enemies to Gon, as they can help at any given time and then fight him in another.
Also each character teaches us something different, as between tears and laughter each one gets increasingly closer to his goal. Gon, proves that perseverance and persistence eventually pays off, so we must be stubborn and not surrender to anything. Killua teaches us that anyone can change if they really want it. Leorio can’t do anything to change his past, but is determined to change his future. Kurapika shows (in a very complex way, since he doesn’t do it himself) that we must be smart and that we shouldn’t look at the past since it’s no use.
Another thing I love about the series is the surprise effect, there are many times when they catch one off guard during the series. In addition, the series is full of jokes that make an appearance at the most unexpected moments.
Truth be told, after watching Hunter x Hunter, reading the manga and then watching Hunter x Hunter 2011 (Yes, I know I’m sick) I can properly say that the difference between the three is not much. The manga and 2011 are virtually identical. Hunter x Hunter is also quite attached to the manga, however has some filler chapters that, instead of being funny and pointless (As in most animes,) are actually quite interesting.
I think the only thing I did not like was that in 2011 they changed the design of some characters and to those who had seen the first series it’s kind of like hitting your mother in mothers day. For example: Supposedly, Menchi has pink hair, not mint…
And that doesn’t only happen with her. I don’t care that much when they change the color of clothes, I mean, they’re just clothes. But changing things like hair color, eye color or skin color is annoying. I mean, sure, you could die your hair. But why on earth would a 12 year old BOY use contacts?!
Killua before and after.
However, leaving aside my obsession with keeping things perfect, I like the fact that Gon and Killua look younger in the second series because that gives you more drama to the case. It also lets you notice their growth throughout the series.
In short, it is an anime that I recommend to everyone. Those who know me know this. I’m addicted, I love it. In fact, I had promised myself that I would not continue reading the manga since I liked what I’d seen and considered it a good ending. Then I accidentally learned that the mangaka was drawing again and here I am, reading… This story is just too GOOD.
And for those of my readers who play video games, there is a game of this story. It’s called Hunter x Hunter Woder Adventure and it’s for Play Station Portable PSP. I haven’t had the chance to play it because my computer is super old and doesn’t run the emulator, but I can’t wait to play it. But beware, the game is in Japanese. So I wish you all the best of luck with that.
Until next time, goodbye…
Luna von Schmilinsky