In 1981 an aspiring mangaka, Yoichi Takahashi, passionate about sports and especially football, began to publish in the prestigious Weekly Shonen Jump magazine. He showed up with a manga called Captain Tsubasa which lasted seven years and became known worldwide, upsetting the world of sports manga, the spokons.
A lot of time has passed since those 80s, yet the Captain Tsubasa franchise continues and much of the credit goes to Yoichi Takahashi still working on the character. Over the past thirty years, Takahashi has dedicated himself to expanding the world of Holly and Benji with numerous sequels and spin-offs, as well as self-contained chapters.
A few years after the conclusion of the original Weekly Shonen Jump series, Takahashi returned to the magazine with Captain Tsubasa: World Youth Hen, which with 18 volumes tells the story of Shingo Aoi, Japanese player who plays for Inter in the Italian league. The series lasted from 1994 to 1997.
Once the World Youth parenthesis is closed, the 2002 world championship is approaching for Japan, hosted by South Korea and the Japanese country in the first co-hosted event in history. And there could not miss a manga by Captain Tsubasa about it, entitled Captain Tsubasa: Road to 2002. The Japanese players we met are scattered all over the world, but now they will have to train to gain a place for the world championship. The manga was published between 2000 and 2004 on Weekly Young Jump.
We move from the World Cup to the Olympics with Captain Tsubasa: Golden-23. Direct continuation of Road to 2002, it focuses on Tsubasa Oozora and his 22 companions who will form the Japanese team that will fight for the Olympic medal. The chapters that make up the 12 volumes of this saga were re-published in Weekly Young Jump, between 2005 and 2009.
Then come two short parallel series called Captain Tsubasa: Kaigai Gekitou-hen, focused on some of the protagonists around the globe. The first that arrived in 2009, consisting of two volumes, was dedicated to Hyuga Kojiro, Mark Lenders, looking for luck on Italian soil and had the title of Captain Tsubasa: Kaigai Gekitou-hen in Soccer - Hi Izuru Kuni no Player. The second instead focused on historical protagonist Tsubasa Oozora. Captain Tsubasa: Kaigai Gekitou-hen - En La Liga, as you can understand from the name, brings us to Spain with La Liga with a publication lasting from 2010 to 2012.
The most recent and still ongoing series of Captain Tsubasa is instead Captain Tsubasa: Rising Sun. With the announcement of the 2020 Olympics assigned in Tokyo, the mangaka Yoichi Takahashi and Shueisha did not miss the possibility of a serialization on Grand Jump with this theme at the center. Since 2013, the adventures of Tsubasa and his national team have been continuing in search of a new Olympic medal.
To these series are added several self-contained chapters or very short manga that expand the history of the other characters:
- Captain Tsubasa: All Star Game
- Captain Tsubasa: FCRB
- Captain Tsubasa: Final Countdown
- Captain Tsubasa: Golden Dream
- Captain Tsubasa: I am Taro Misaki
- Captain Tsubasa: Japan Dream 2006
- Captain Tsubasa: Millennium Dream
- Captain Tsubasa: ROAD TO 2002 - GO FOR 2006
- Captain Tsubasa: Saikyo no teki: Holland Youth
- Captain Tsubasa: Tanpenshuu DREAM FIELD
The stories have been published in various Shueisha magazines from 1988 onwards, but there will still be extensions thanks to Capitan Tsubasa Magazine. You knew all of these works dedicated to the career of Holly and Benji?