Have you ever liked something so much that you wouldn’t compare it to anything else? You would blindly defend that set thing like there’s no tomorrow? That was me with anime. I thought that people that said anime was weird were stupid.
But then one day, out of curiosity, I looked where anime “comes from” and I was surprised to see that anime is not an “original” concept. Anime comes from a main source which is [usually] manga.
Manga is, in simple terms, Japanese comics. These stories are the ones that bring anime to life in most cases. I personally thought manga wasn’t going to be as good. But, in a span of a few chapters I found myself enticed by the idea of reading “anime”.
Then I saw people debating whether anime was better than anime or the other way around. But, which is better?
In my opinion, I think they’re both equally good, for a variety of reasons…
For one, there’s something for everyone, and it’s up to you whether you want to read or watch. Together, anime and manga are able to attract a wide audience.
Both anime and manga come with their strengths and weaknesses, as is explained by this fan on Quora:
“Anime can convey emotion just as well as manga, but often there hasn’t been as much time and effort put into making those parts as expressive as a manga. The only exceptions I can think of at the moment are Violet Evergarden and, to some extent, The Ancient Magus’ Bride. I think an anime needs a lot more attention to make the emotions as expressive as what you can get from a single image in a manga because there is only so much that can be conveyed from the story and a limited amount of facial expressions. However, if an anime is given that much attention, it truly becomes great and, in that respect, I think anime would win over manga. On the other hand, as someone who loves expressive art, I just can’t not think manga has a special charm.”
Anime is able to bring a visual and animated story with amazing moments, packed full of action, emotion, and adventure. Manga brings the same–just in a different format, for someone who’s more accustomed to reading.
Another thing people don’t acknowledge about anime and manga is that the success of one helps the success of the other.
Mainstream anime has helped tons of manga earn recognition. For example, My Hero Academia, as of January of 2022, has sold more than 65 million copies since the first volume of the superhero adventure series was released in late 2014. Jujutsu Kaisen, one of the best anime in 2021, increased its sales by 600% as of 2021.
As explained by Leo Sigh, a contributing writer to The Comicbook:
“Jujutsu Kaisen brought its first season to a close recently, but the franchise is far from forgotten in 2021. In fact, it turns out Gege Akutami’s supernatural story is growing bigger by the day. A new report has gone live regarding the top-selling manga of the year so far, and Jujutsu Kaisen is rather close to overtaking Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba. The report was shared by Oricon as it ranks manga sales weekly in Japan. In partnership with Shueisha, the pair told fans that Jujutsu Kaisen has over 50 million copies in circulation. This total includes both print and digital manga volumes and pre-orders for volume 16 which will be released this week in Japan.”
Anime is its own great thing, so is manga. Both of them build their fanbase and satisfy their audiences in their own way. At the end of the day, it’s all about preference, and we do not need to compare them.