Which is better – Hajime no Ippo Manga or Anime?

Hajime no Ippo Manga or anime

If you’re someone who enjoys watching prominent ani-manga series and hasn’t explored the Hajime no Ippo series yet, this might be a sign. Hajime no Ippo Manga started its run in 1989 and continues to publish new chapters even today. The manga has a widespread following across the world and a near-perfect anime adaptation. Some fans believe that it’s one of the best anime adaptations of any source material.

Does that mean the anime is better than the manga? Let’s find out! This article will delve into the strengths and weaknesses of Hajime no Ippo manga and anime to establish which one is better. And if you’re just starting, what’s the best way to experience the series?

Which is better- Hajime no Ippo Manga or Anime?

Hajime no Ippo anime
A still from Hajime no Ippo anime featuring Takamura and Makunouchi | Image Courtesy of Studio Madhouse

First off, the Hajime no Ippo manga and anime both account for different experiences. Here’s a quick rundown of what these experiences are all about and which one of those mediums is the better one:

  • Fights are the soul of Hajime no Ippo. The anime stunningly showcases these fights with the audio-visual medium, amplifying their appeal to a substantial extent. At the same time, the anime doesn’t even cover half of the manga.
  • So in case you want to continue to be in touch with the story (which is highly likely), you’ll have to pick up the manga at some point.
  • The manga on the other hand is a complete experience. It continues the story and doesn’t leave off in between. 
  • Although in the earlier stages of the manga, the art style might put some people off. It’s quite old and might require some getting used to. 
Hajime no Ippo manga
A glance at the earlier stages of the manga | Image Courtesy of Kodansha

With the main strengths and weaknesses aside, Hajime no Ippo Manga is better than the anime. Everything started with the manga and the manga continues to excel in terms of quality and progression of the story. Although the manga is better doesn’t mean that it’s also the better way to enjoy the series. The next section explains why this is so. 

But before that have you checked out the Spiel Anime Newsletter? It comes out twice every week and explains the world of anime with a lot of passion and love sprinkled in there! It also comes in cool designs, is a must-read, and is visually fun as well.

What is the best way to experience Hajime No Ippo?

Hajime no Ippo fight
A representation of what the fights look like in the anime | Image Courtesy of Studio Madhouse

The present state of the anime industry is vastly different from what things were like in the 80’s.

  • Hajime no Ippo Manga was published for the first time in 1989.
  • The art style of the manga is not what we’re familiar with in the present age of anime.
  • This is the reason why it might take you some time to grow warm to the story. It needs to be said that it’s incredibly well-drawn still with beautiful details. 

The anime is better in this regard. It helps you quickly get hooked on the charm of the series. If you’re open-minded when it comes to older art styles and quality, it’s better to just dive right into the manga. But if you’re not, don’t worry there’s an equally better way for you to experience the goodness of Hajime no Ippo. 


Start with the anime, and get familiar with the characters. The way they sound, move and present themselves in fights. Additionally, the soundtrack of Hajime no Ippo is a bonus that you’re likely to enjoy. Once you’ve finished the anime and also watched the movies and the OVAs, you can switch to the manga. In this way, you’ll experience the best of both worlds. 

Where to start the manga after the anime?

Hajime no Ippo manga
One of the earliest fights of Makunouchi | Image Courtesy of Kodansha

This question is bound to pop up once you start the series. If you switch over to the manga after the anime, you can start reading from chapter 415. The last episode of season 3 of Hajime no Ippo anime covers up to chapter 414. With this, you’re ready to continue your Hajime no Ippo Journey. 


At the end of the day, both anime and manga have brought in a huge number of fans. It also comes down to personal preferences sometimes but collectively Hajime no Ippo anime-manga series continues to win hearts decades after its debut. 

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