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Inuyasha Sequel Yashahime Begins Its Manga Adaptation

Yashahime, the sequel series to Rumiko Takahashi's late 90's/early 2000's hit series Inuyasha, has launched its manga adaptation in Japan, with some significant differences from the anime version that came first.

Like many other series from that period, Inuyasha was revived with an anime sequel in October 2020, following the children of Inuyasha and Sesshomaru. The series turned out to be successful enough that it was picked up for a second season, which begins airing in October 2021. While Yashahime's characters were designed by Rumiko Takahashi, she did not actually do any writing for the anime, which was instead developed by the anime studio Sunrise, producers of the original Inuyasha anime. Following the success of the first season, a manga adaptation by Takashi Shiina was announced, running in the monthly magazine Shonen Sunday S, with its first chapter releasing September 25, 2021. Takahashi herself could not take on the project, as she's currently busy with her other demon-slaying series, Mao.

Related: Mao: Rumiko Takahashi's New Series Takes Inuyasha to the 20th Century

While many series are created as manga first and only adapted to anime later, it's not entirely uncommon for the reverse to happen. Oftentimes in those situations, the manga deliberately takes a slightly different track from the existing anime, which is the case with Yashahime. The manga's first chapter spends more time with protagonist Towa Higurashi in the present world and skips the epilogue chapter of Inuyasha characters that acted as the first episode of the anime. Towa's shown to be a new transfer student to a Catholic school, like in the anime, but rather than having a bad reputation and getting in fights, she actually seems to be moderately popular, with many of the girls at the school fawning over her androgynous appearance. Towa's unique half-demon hair and eye color are also commented on and seem to be a big part of what's drawing attention to her in the first place. She also demonstrates that she's been putting her abilities to use in the modern world, exorcising spirits and encountering the occasional demon. While less time has been spent with the Higurashi family overall, they are given a bit more focus when they're around, and they actually mention and discuss Kagome and Inuyasha, something which was conspicuously absent from the anime.

The manga seems to be following Towa much more closely than the anime did; a significant part of the first few episodes was spent in the feudal era, following Moroha and Setsuna. Instead, the centipede demon emerges from the past without warning, putting a fine point on how powerful demons used to be. While both are still skilled at fighting, Setsuna seems to be slightly less confrontational here, and both she and Moroha immediately recognize Towa as the former's long-lost sister. With the pair only showing up in the last few pages of the chapter, however, they only received a minimal amount of characterization, compared to this point in the anime, where Setsuna and Moroha stay in the present for a few days.

All in all, the manga adaptation of Yashahime is working to draw some interesting parallels with the beginning of Inuyasha, while setting itself apart from the existing anime. While fans of manga-turned-anime may sometimes complain about how events unravel differently in animated form, it seems for the best that Yashahime's manga work to setup a unique take on the story, rather than a 1-to-1 adaptation of the anime. There is no word yet on an official English release of Yashahime, but since Viz was quick to get the rights to the anime, it seems likely that the manga won't be far behind.

Next: 10 Best TV Shows Like Inuyasha

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