Tuesday, July 31, 2012

AnimagiC 2012: Shouji Sato on the HOTD Hiatus

Over the weekend, Shouji Sato attended the AnimagiC 2012 anime convention in Bonn, Germany. The convention was July 27-29, and Shouji was there autographing on Saturday and Sunday. He also held 30-minute Q&A panels on both days. In an earlier post, I said it would be interesting to see if Shouji gives any news about the HOTD hiatus since the question would obviously come up. Well, after vigorous searching, I finally found the following information from the panel. It's a bit ambiguous, but it at least tells us more than anything in over a year.

As we expected, Shouji was asked about when the manga would return from hiatus. He answered that he is busy right now working on Triage X and doing research for future Highschool of the Dead chapters. This research involves studying weapons, vehicles, and other things so he can draw with the high level of technical detail for which he is known. He asks that fans be patient and give him time to bring us the same high quality we have come to expect.

This answer seems to put the long delay on him rather than Daisuke Sato. To me, it sounds like maybe Fujimi Shobo wanted Triage X to be monthly to boost its popularity, they chose to put HOTD on hiatus because it would be too much work for Shouji, and now he is doing the preliminary work for chapters Daisuke already has planned out so it will be less work when HOTD returns and Triage X doesn't then have to go on hiatus itself. That's just speculation, though it does sound more plausible than other theories I've had in the past. In any case, things are looking very hopeful now that we know work is being done on the series.

He was asked various other questions during the half-hour panel. When asked if any main characters will die (like in other zombie media), he replied that he doesn't know, which makes sense since he isn't the writer. He did say he hopes the main group will survive, though. He was asked how long Shido would be around in the future, to which he again responded that he doesn't know but hopes he will die soon. Someone asked him if he liked Takashi, and he does but says his favorite character is Kohta Hirano. This is obvious to me considering their shared fascination with guns.

In a question unrelated to HOTD, Shouji was asked when he started drawing. He said in grade school he became very ill and had to stay home for a long time. He couldn't do anything active, so he started to draw a lot and really liked it.

This information came from ~Abbadon82 at deviantART, an attendee of the convention. You can see the original post here.

Triage X Volume 4 will be ready very shortly. Look for it within the next day or two. See you soon!


  1. Awesome. I was getting worried there for a while that it was going to end since there was no info or new chapters coming out. Thanks for the post

  2. biggest news about hotd in a year. hooray!

  3. I always believed that Daisuke was responsible for hiatus, especially after rumors of him planning to end the manga in the current story arc. Though, i also heard he decided not to end the manga in the Vol.6 interview with him.

  4. There´s hope!!!
    we just need to be patience...
    as always, thx ^_^

  5. Hey, I'm dobers on DeviantART. A month prior to AnimagiC, I asked around through facebook, message boards, etc. for German HOTD fans. I discovered Abbadon82 after checking out his AMAZING artwork and found out he lived in Germany, I decided to write to him asking if he or anyone he knew was going to attend AnimagiC. He did and the plan was I would get in touch with him after the convention for any info. Thankfully he pulled through, but my computer crashed so I had to reply a few days late. By the way, I'm Speedy_J on the HOTD wiki. Dobers is my last name!

    1. Thank you very much for finding Abbadon82 and getting him to fill us in on the panel Speedy_J/dobers. You've done a great service to all of the English-speaking HOTD fans by helping us find out what was said. It ended up being very hopeful news.

  6. Speedy_J/Dobers here. From Abbadon82:

    No problem!XD
    First I thought my answer suddenly is uninteresting for you!
    That`s good that you have a new computer now.

    Oh! I remember there was the question what kind of zombie Sato likes (the traditional slow shuffle zombies, the fast running zombies, zombie-mutations (like in Resident Evil) et cetera...).
    He only said: "I like sexy zombies!" I think that`s the reason he sometimes draw half-nude undead girls in HotD.

    A friend of me which I met yesterday and who was in the panel on saturday (I was on sunday) said that the 2nd season will come, but Sato couldn`t say a deadline. He was surprised that the fans outside of Japan are generally so uncertain that there will come a second season.
    In the panel on sunday Shoji said he thinks that there must still come some few chapters more to complete the second season for the anime, but then it will come certainly. I wanted to wait what my friend said so I tell you this information only now. In sum the anime will go on, but to finish a second season there must come some few chapters more.
    Perhaps the 2nd season will be shorter or they will make something like a second OVA to complete season 2, when they don`t want to wait for the Satos, but that`s only my opinion.

    1. Since it's not a firsthand account, we should be a little cautious, but it sounds like what we've been assuming all along. The anime can't continue until more manga chapters have been released.

  7. I think the High manga will end in the 12. volume.

    Why? Because 4 volume in 1 colored omnibus.

    I don't think the manga end in vol 8. Too much storyline...

    NBut is the manga end with the volume 12 the can release 3 omnibus volume.

    1. The Omnibus is only the Yen Press English version of the Full Color Edition volumes. There are four FCEs in Japan, one for each of the first four volumes. Anyway the FCEs are independent from the regular manga, that is, the number of new chapters released doesn't depend on how many color volumes they want to make.

  8. Newer mind.

    In this case i happy because the manga continue in the future.

  9. This news MAKES my day! At least we have some concrete information & not just everyone's suppositions about what's happening. It'll keep me patient for chapter 30!


    I'm going to buy the coloured omnibus edition of vol 1-4 to celebrate and encourage the publishers to not give up on this marvelous series.

  11. i'll buy all of it