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  5. Worldwide Review and Reception - Attack on Titan

OtapediaWorldwide Review and Reception - Attack on Titan

The Attack on Titan manga series written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama and published by Kodansha since 2009 had an immediate success in Japan and became one of the most successful series of 2011. Its anime adaptation directed by Tetsuro Araki and produced by Wit Studio (in cooperation with Production I.G) significantly increased the number of sales of the series.


The ten volumes of the manga were present in the top 50 of Oricon during the week of April 8 to 14, 2013. At the beginning of May 2013, volumes 2, 3 and 4 had passed more than one million copies each. The first 5 volumes all reached one million sales by the end of May 2013. This raised its total number of volumes in circulation to 19,5 million copies in mid-2013.

During fiscal year 2013, Isayama’s work reached the position of second best selling manga series, with 15,933,801 copies. Thanks to the success of the series, Kodansha registered an increase in its turnover for the first time in 18 years.

In April 2014, more than 3 million copies were sold in Japan while the total circulation worldwide exceeded 38 million copies in the first half of 2014 (from November 18, 2013 to May 18, 2014). Volume 13 of the manga had an initial circulation of 2,75 million copies, the current record of Isayama’s work. By August 2014, the total amount of copies reached 40 million. Also, in fiscal 2014, the Attack on Titan manga ranked second in the Oricon ranking with 11,8 million copies sold, representing more than 7,3 million yen in cash and limited editions of the manga.

From January to May 2019, 2,814,044 more volumes were sold in Japan. In November 2019, the manga reached more than 4 million units sold, becoming the 7th best selling manga in Japan, although their sales have decreased since 2013.

In France, manga sales reached 125,000 volumes sold in 2013. Regarding North America, the total circulation of the series was 500,000 in October 2013, 660,000 in March 2014 and reached 2,5 million copies in July 2015. In December 2018, worldwide circulation exceeded 86 million copies, with 76 million published in Japan and 10 million in the rest of the world. On December 25, 2019, Bessatsu Shonen announced through its Twitter account that Attack on Titan managed to reach 100 million units sold worldwide.


The anime adaptation of the Attack on Titan manga series also achieved good DVD and Blu-ray sales in Japan, as volume 1 of the DVD rose to the best-selling position in mid-2013. The following volumes were also located in the first places of sales, achieving an average sale of 52,067 over 9 volumes, totaling 468,603 units as of August 2016.

In the United States, the anime was broadcast on Adult Swim’s Toonami block and achieved an audience of more than one million viewers per episode in the month of May 2014, while its domestic sales exceeded 200,000 units. In France, the first season reached an average audience of 100,000 viewers during its broadcast on Wakanim. In Spain, Selecta Vision made a simulcast on the second season of the anime, which reached an audience of 300,000 viewers.


Here are some of the awards the Attack on Titan franchise has received.


In the United States, the Young Adult division of the American Library Association included Attack on Titan on the first position on the list of the best graphic novels for teenagers in 2013. In 2014, the manga won the Harvey Award for “Best Foreign Work”.

In France, readers of Animeland magazine chose it as “The Most Expected Manga” in the 20th edition of the Anime Manga Grand Prix of 2012. In its next edition, Isayama’s work won in the category of “Best Manga”, “Best Anime” and “Best Opening Theme”. In 2013, Manga-news readers chose it as the best shōnen of that same year. In 2014, the first volume of the manga was selected in the position number 4º of the Angouleme International Comics Festival. In Italy, the manga received the Micheluzzi Prize for the Best Foreign Work in 2014.

The manga won the 2011 Kodansha Manga Sho in the “Best Shōnen” category. That same year, it was also nominated for the Manga Taishō Award. In 2012, it was nominated for the 16th Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize, and in its 18th edition in 2014. Besides, Isayama’s work was elected Manga of the Year in 2013 and in 2014 by Da Vinci magazine.


The television anime adaptation also received many awards. At the 2013 NewType Anime Awards, the anime received five awards: “Best Animated Series”, “Best Studio” (Wit Studio), “Best Director” (Tetsuro Araki), “Best Screenwriter”, “Best Music” (Sawano), and “Best Female Character” (Mikasa Ackermann). The anime also won the category of Best Animation at the 18th Kobe Animation Awards in 2013. In the 2014 Tokyo Anime Award, it won the Best TV Series Award. The editor of the Shūeisha’s Weekly Playboy magazine recognized Attack on Titan as the anime that marked the year 2013.


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Attack on Titan