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Have you ever read shonen battle manga and wonder why do battles drag on and on for ages? Have you thought about why there is so much talking during battles as well? More importantly, why are shonen heroes so intent on training hard? There’s one manga series that asks these same questions while providing a solution in the most average way possible.
Look out, world, because here comes Onepunch-Man. This extremely wacky webcomic series by ONE and Yusuke Murata (of Eyeshield 21 fame) takes a look at the absurdity of shonen battle manga. It gives us an unappealing superhero who kills everything with one punch and has no desire to help people. Onepunch-Man also greatly questions how motivated can a person be after they achieve their goals.
Onepunch-Man chronicles the life of a young man named Saitama who is so overpowered to the point where he doesn’t feel any joy while fighting. He’s just a regular bald dude trying to live his life. Saitama is more concerned with grocery shopping than protecting people. The series features a variety of villains who all end up being taken out by Saitama in one hit. Imagine if Krillin suddenly became the world’s greatest hero over Goku or if Gintama was a full-blown parody battle manga. That’s Saitama and Onepunch-Man in a nutshell.
Basically, Onepunch-Man asks “What’s so fun about being the strongest in the world?” It’s not a excuse to escape the horrors of reality. How does being the strongest realistically (if you’re not a professional athlete/trainer) help bring food on your table? I don’t know about you guys, but reading Onepunch-Man makes me about the "meat heads" in gyms who are obsessed with exercise. How much are they contributing to society anyway?
Onepunch-Man highlights the cruel possibility of losing your passion once there are no more barriers in your path. Staying motivated is always tricky since what is there left to prove. The series is a reminder to always keep finding some goals or try something different. In the case of Saitama in later chapters, he realizes that he’s not a “widely recognized” superhero by the mainstream media. So he goes out and applies to a superhero school to become an official one. Don’t just stay in one place and be complacent.
Overall, Onepunch-man is a hilarious look at being on the top of the world. Just comes to show that doing one-hit kills won’t save you from death by taxes.