Otaku USA Magazine
NTV Apologizes, Says It’s Investigating Death of Sexy Tanaka-san Creator Hinako Ashihara

sexy tanaka-san

In the latest news revolving around the death of manga creator Hinako Ashihara, Japanese television station NTV released an official apology to her yesterday. NTV was adapting Ashihara’s manga Sexy Tanaka-san into a live-action series, and in January Ashihara wrote online that the company had not kept its word to keep the adaptation accurate to the source material. Not long after this, she deleted her complaints, apologized, and then went missing. She was found dead on January 29, in what’s believed to be suicide. And judging by the circumstances, there are questions as to whether NTV’s adaptation affected Ashihara’s death.

Initially NTV put out a statement of sympathy and defended its adaptation, insisting that Ashihara had liked the final script. That was in January. Now, in addition to putting out an apology, NTV gave condolences to the mangaka’s family and also said it’s doing an internal investigation into the company. It says it takes this situation very seriously, and is working with Shogakukan, the manga’s publisher. There is also an outside investigation going on.

Meanwhile, Shogakukan has declared that because of Ashihara’s death, Sexy Tanaka-san won’t be able to get a real ending. The final chapter Ashihara wrote and illustrated, which was published on December 5, will essentially be its concluding chapter.

The Sexy Tanaka-san live-action series began in October, and its 10th and final episode aired in December. It got very good ratings from viewers. But Ashihara said it made major changes, not just minor tweaks, and that NTV had promised to be more careful than that. Ashihara’s death has sent shock waves through the Japanese entertainment world.

Besides Sexy Tanaka-san, Ashihara was the creator of Sand Chronicles, SOS and Forbidden Dance. Sexy Tanaka-san has not been licensed in America, but the other three titles are all available in English.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please know that there is help available. In America, you can call 1-800-273-8255. In Canada, you can call 1-833-456-4566. In Japan, you can call 03-5774-0992. For other countries, numbers and resources are available on this site.

Source: ANN


Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, plus its sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.