With Manga being super popular right now, it’s bigger and better than ever before. Fans have an endless supply of new series to read, ranging from isekai to shounen to shoujo and beyond, as the industry expands rapidly due to new readers appearing all over the world. Some people start with classics like Naruto and Berserk to enjoy the satisfaction of being able to complete the entire story at their preferred pace, while others try more recent titles like Attack on Titan or The Seven Deadly Sins. Meanwhile, both novice and veteran manga fans can keep up with current manga trends by diving into one of the numerous ongoing manga series. So, let's take another look through the pages upon pages of ongoing series and see the top 5 ongoing manga of this year.
5. Witch Watch
- Authors: Shinohara, Kenta (Story & Art)
- Genres: Comedy, Supernatural
- Published: Feb 8, 2021 to ?
Witch Watch is a shonen manga authored and illustrated by mangaka Kenta Shinohara. Despite the title, Witch Watch isn't your cliched magic manga with over-the-top fight sequences to hook you in at the start; instead, it's a cute slice-of-life series about Nico the Witch and her childhood friend Morihito, the Ogre.
Morihito Otogi comes from a long line of ogre familiars, and he possesses inhuman strength to prove it. His father casually announces one day over lunch that his childhood friend Nico is returning from the witches' Holy Land, having completed her training. The kicker? Nico and Morihito will live together for some time while Morihito's father is away on business.
Morihito and Nico have a sweet shyness that seems entirely focused on demonstrating how intense and panicked teenagers can be. The two have clearly been special since childhood, but Morihito's ability to prioritise safety puts the two in the perfect rom-com situation. Witch Watch is full of lightness and humour, and because the art style is clean and crisp, the character designs are easy on the eyes and pleasant... Overall, Witch Watch is an entertaining ride. It perfectly captures the awkwardness of adolescence, from crushes to the first days of school.
4. Mashle (Mashle: Magic and Muscles)
- Authors: Koumoto, Hajime (Story & Art)
- Genres: Action, Comedy, Supernatural
- Published: Jan 27, 2020 to ?
Born powerless and abandoned in a world where magic is everywhere and one's status is determined by one's magical aptitude, our lead character Mash is taken in and raised to be able to defend himself by a man who isn't all that great at magic himself. Mash compensates for it with his superhuman feats. Things would be fine if Mash could just stay out of town, but when a sale on cream puffs tempts him in, he discovers himself to be a magicless freak. He can only save himself by enrolling in magic school and becoming the top student - except, you know, without magic.
Mashle, to be honest, is a very funny series. It twists the basic setup and tropes of a teen attending a magical school, feeling out of his depth, and rising to the top while dealing with aggression and hurdles. Mash has no magic, so the scenes in which he uses his strength to overcome the various obstacles he faces are incredibly charming. The methods are so unusual and outlandish that you'd think he'd be apprehended in no time. The combination of his innocence and brute strength, on the other hand, makes every obstacle exciting to watch. The things he does, how people react to them, the remarks from others, and even how he reacts to various outcomes and results he gets make for some of the funniest moments we've read in a long time in any manga.
- Authors: Tatsu, Yukinobu (Story & Art)
- Genres: Action, Comedy, Sci-Fi, Supernatural
- Published: Apr 6, 2021 to ?
Momo Ayase is depressed after being rejected when she meets Ken Takakura, a boy who is harassed for being an occult fanatic. They form an unusual friendship after being saved by her impulsive kindness - Momo believes in spirits and believes aliens are nonsense, whereas her new companion believes the exact opposite. To settle matters, the two place a bet to see who is correct. They decide to visit locations associated with the occult and the supernatural separately, with Ayase visiting the former and the boy visiting the latter. When the two arrive at their destinations, it turns out that neither of them was mistaken, and what follows is a wonderful story of young love and oddly horny aliens and spirits. This marks the beginning of Ayase and Takakura's adventure as they attempt to fix the surreal supernatural and sci-fi elements around them to return to a normal life.
This is a strange and hilarious manga. And in some ways wholesome as in its portrayal of characters, no one is particularly dislikeable. Even the story's "villains" have a somewhat good reason. The horror elements are unique to this type of action manga, especially when combined with the massive and mesmerising scenes. Yukinobu Tatsu creates sequences, sometimes full splash pages, with neurotic attention to detail, resembling something out of a nightmare. Something that very few artists, past or present, have ever matched.
2. Kaijuu 8-gou (Kaiju No. 8)
- Authors: Matsumoto, Naoya (Story & Art)
- Genres: Action, Fantasy, Horror, Sci-Fi
- Published: Jul 3, 2020 to ?
Written and illustrated by Naoya Matsumoto. Kaiju No. 8 is a manga that takes place in the near future where beasts known as kaiju terrorize the world. The Japan Defence Force, a military unit tasked with kaiju suppression, exists to assist in keeping the threat under control. But this isn't really a story about the armed services. Kafka Hibino, our protagonist, is a kaiju-corpse cleanup man whose childhood dream of joining the police force was put on hold after multiple failed entry exams. When memories of his childhood friend Mina and their agreement to join the Japan Defence Force and fight alongside her resurface when a young man joins the cleanup crew, Kafka decides to give it another shot. But there's a catch: Kafka is now half kaiju.
The concept of Kaiju No. 8 is really cool. An ordinary man accidentally consumes kaiju, developing a power that he must learn to control while adjusting to his new life and saving people. The fact that Kafka is 32 years old, however, distinguishes this manga. Having the main character deal with issues of growing older and feeling like he's accomplished nothing with his life is a risk for a manga aimed at a young male audience. In reality, Kafka is just an adult working a job that falls just short of his dream, and it's understandable. The manga’s brisk pacing, which flies at the reader like a whirlwind, and the artwork, which is both beautiful and powerful, are two of its other strengths. The violence is palpable, the monsters are terrifying and grandiose, and the adventure itself is unforgettable. The character designs are flawless, and the story is something that no manga fan should overlook.
1. Sakamoto Days
- Authors: Suzuki, Yuuto (Story & Art)
- Genres: Action, Comedy
- Published: Nov 21, 2020 to ?
Meet Mr. Sakamoto, one of the most feared assassins in the world and widely regarded as the greatest hitman of all time. He stood at the top of the underground world until he met and fell in love with a woman. As a result, he abandoned his violent life to be with her, and the two settled down, married, and started a family. The problem is that a hitman's life doesn't always end where you left it, as other hitmen and organisations begin to hunt our protagonist down as he tries to maintain his pleasant daily life while protecting others from the life he once led alongside the mind-reading Shin.
This is basically a manga where the protagonist is John Wick except in Japanese. And Sakamoto is a delightful character to follow, with his comedic timing and genuinely badass moments balancing each other out nicely. Despite his troubled past, his genuine love for his family and desire to keep them safe is a powerful motivator that keeps you rooting for him. The action scenes in this manga are fast-paced and entertaining at the same time. And despite Sakamoto's incredible skill, the fights never feel dull or uninspired, with some authentic thrills drizzled in among the most absurd situations. Overall, Sakamoto Days manages to be humorous, heartwarming, and action-packed all at the same time. It's hard to pinpoint what genre this falls in but whatever it is, it's entertaining to read.
2022 has blessed us with a myriad of new manga to read and the five recommendations mentioned above are worth obsessing over, for good reason too. From the action-packed, battle-laden pages of Kaiju No. 8 to the heart-warming scenes of Witch Watch, we hope you found some amazing new titles to add to your shelves. If you’ve read any of these mangas, would you recommend them to people? Feel free to let us know your thoughts via the comment section below! And don’t forget we have plenty of other recommendation lists here on Honey’s Anime so be sure to check those out.