Comic Books Magazine

The Unofficial Osamu Fan Club, With Thanks To World Trigger

Posted on the 08 May 2014 by Kaminomi @OrganizationASG

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World Trigger, the sci-fi shounen manga by Daisuke Ashihara, has survived a year, and seems like it’ll keep going a bit further than other recent Shonen Jump titles, especially ones that land in the US version of WSJ.

So let’s ask the question: why?

“It occupies a sci-fi niche that WSJ is otherwise lacking.”

This is one of the sentiments expressed by Hope Donovan, an editor at Viz. World Trigger is a work that’s different from other current shounen titles because of that. But there still are typical shounen trappings that it can’t escape. So why else is this manga lasting this long?

“I think part of the reason for its success is its reliance on standard shounen tropes, yet still maintaining originality”,  says William, a fan of the series. “World Trigger has all of the normal markings: overpowered villains, a weak lead who shows signs of greatness, etc. It also has twists, where normally the weak lead would meet a peer that is far stronger, to play his rival, in World Trigger’s case they are not rivals but friends and comrades from the start. There is a reason they are called tropes, and that is because they often work, you just need to make them work to your advantage and stay original.”

Another thing that keeps World Trigger interesting is its setting, says Tropical Blitz, another fan. “The level of detail that goes into world building and constructing elaborate large scale battle scenarios really fills a niche I don’t think any other manga in WSJ cover, and thus manages to make it a cut above other new manga which only focus on pure battle or fantasy.”

So it seems to have a lot of good elements to attract readers to it every week. That’s why it already has its own club.

Well, “unofficial” club.

Now, it doesn’t always take long for any series to have fans who care about a character or the work itself. But you’d mostly expect that only from the simple fans. How about the persons working on providing it? Yep, the people I spoke to above are members of The Unofficial Osamu Fan Club, which was actually started by the letterer of World Trigger, Annaliese Christman.

This leads to asking one more question: why?

“Because he’s a loser.”

Literally, this is one of the reasons the club got started. But to be more accurate, Annaliese, as she was working on the series, grew to like Osamu Mikumo as a character. Osamu’s a member of Border, an organization created to protect the Earth from Neighbors. He happens to be pretty weak, especially early on when he has to get bailed out by Yuma, who…happens to be a good Neighbor. But as the series progressed, Annaliese began to like Osamu even more. The problem was she felt like there wasn’t a lot of love shown his way. Then one day in November, she received an image from her editor involving Osamu. She proceeded to blow it up to a point where she could put it on her wall, took a picture of it, and sent that to her editor. That was when she said: “I’m now officially the president, the creepy president, of the Osamu fan club!” Her editor’s response? “She thought that was really funny.”

That was when her editor suggested to make T-shirts and stuff. It started to snowball after that.


Needless to say, the unofficial fan club has a good amount of members. That includes the actual author of the manga and his editor, who also received cards that Annaliese took the time to make and print out. “We may be unofficial but the creator and his editor are also members!” So, that would mean they’re legit right? Well, not yet. She doesn’t want to “step” on anyone’s toes she claimed. Or maybe she’s not sure where this club’s gonna go from here. “There’s nothing concrete, but I’d like to do something to kind of bring the members together and not just be random people all over the world who like Osamu. I’m hoping at conventions I’ll meet some people in person.” Otherwise, it’s continuing to send cards to people who like and are interested in World Trigger.

…So how would one get interested in this manga and then in this character?

“If you enjoy other shounen action series you will enjoy this,” says William. “It has detailed and quality art and a story of action and adventure with fun and exciting turns.  The story is fluid, avoiding any long and drawn out battles full of power ups.”

John Bae, also an editor at Viz, gave two different sides on getting into the series. “I think if someone is into crazy alien battles, then it’s an easy sell. For the complicated otaku that likes complicated stuff, World Trigger is the way to go. So many characters with so many different types of roles and weapons = super otaku fangasm.”

Hope ended up with a detailed reason: the characters. “There are a million characters in World Trigger, but Ashihara imbues each with their own individual personality and quirks. In that way, I’d say World Trigger is a lot like Bleach. There are all kind of different hero types, from someone like Yuma who’s superpowered, to someone like Osamu who has strength of conviction, or Kitora who’s talented and proud. And then, there are all types of antagonists, from someone like Midorikawa who’s jealous, to a real rotten guy like the Neighbor Enedora who would rather kill everyone. Plus, Ashihara has invented a fascinating and believable power-up system with the alien technologies of Triggers and Trion.”

Overall though, the best answer came from Zach, another member of the Osamu fan club. And it only makes sense that this would be the reason you should all consider reading World Trigger:


It could only end this way, really.

It could only end this way, really.

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