Another Hiatus for Hunter x Hunter

This is a sequel to Hunter x Hiatus (Again), which was written the last time this series went on break.

Issue 16 of Weekly Shonen Jump reveals that Hunter x Hunter is set to take yet another extended leave of absence from the magazine. The news comes at the end of chapter 340, which will be the last chapter before author Togashi Yoshihiro takes his series into its newest in a long line of hiatus periods. This most recent run of Hunter x Hunter lasted 30 chapters, which is the new series record for longest streak of consecutive chapters without a missed issue. The previous mark was the run of 20 straight issues in 2010, when chapters 291 through 310 were published without interruption.

This announcement is curiously timed, as it was only days ago that an anime film adaptation was reported. Despite a lack of any concrete details explaining the reason for this hiatus, it’s reasonable to speculate that the timing of the two news items may be no coincidence. The report alluded to the idea that the anime film may be an original story, and it would be safe to assume that Togashi would want direct input in the creation of the film. Still, some clear communication from Togashi would be appreciated.

Although Hunter x Hunter only runs in short bursts, Togashi does manage to include a good amount of plot progression each time. These last 30 chapters have covered the aftermath of the fight between Netero and Meryem, most notably including the revelation that Meryem would die from the poison of the Miniature Rose. Meryem’s humanity was a large focus of the end of NGL, with Shaiapouf’s struggle to keep Komugi a secret from the king ending in vain as Welfin revealed her name. After Palm helped Meryem find Komugi, the leader was content to live the remainder of his life playing Gungi with his companion. As a result, the Chimera Ant arc ended without the satisfaction of its most fearsome villain experiencing defeat. This arc’s examination of humanity as a concept, from Meryem’s fluctuating ambition to something as simple as the value of a name, proves Togashi’s admirable willingness to eschew shonen stereotypes and traditions. However, the lack of a proper “boss fight” at the end of the arc does leave all of Meryem’s heinous acts unaccounted for. The Chimera Ant arc ran from Issue 28 of 2003 to Issue 43 of 2011, so while such a lack of resolution may be another accurate depiction of life by Togashi, it’s a letdown for readers who expected retribution after following the arc for over eight years.

A powerful scene, but not what long-time fans were anticipating

This last run of chapters has also managed to begin and end a full arc. The 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc followed two distinct yet connected story lines, as the main plot of the election was complemented by the subplot of Killua attempting to save Gon. The election served as a splendid vehicle for Togashi to prominently feature his love for elaborate regulations and clever scheming, the latter most personified by the arc’s standout character, newcomer Pariston Hill. Pariston’s unnerving personality and unpredictability made him the perfect antagonist for a story predicated on debate and intelligence instead of fighting.

The action quota was fulfilled by Killua’s story, in which his plan to save Gon revolved around the abilities of his sibling Alluka, another fascinating new character. With Alluka’s haunting split personality Nanika giving Killua access to immense power, his intent to bring Alluka to Gon is met with active resistance from his own family, whether for safety purposes or to take that power for themselves. The struggle over Alluka led to some good chase scenes, and the prospect of a fight between Killua and Illumi was tantalizing, but that fight ultimately never materialized. In fact, these last 30 chapters didn’t contain a single memorable fight. Again, Togashi’s intent to write a dynamic story without adhering to specific genre guidelines is impressive, but Hunter x Hunter achieved its success by being a superb shonen action series that was supported by an interesting world, not dominated by it.

Another fight that needed to happen

The most important development over these last 30 chapters was the surprising rise of Ging as a prominent character. For the entirety of the series, Ging was merely the goal for Gon; his role in the story was solely to provide the impetus for the main character to adventure and grow stronger in order to be able to reach his father. Therefore, Ging’s nonchalant appearance at the meeting of the Zodiacs was shocking, and his continued participation in subsequent events was surreal. The eventual convergence of the election arc and Killua’s story finally brought Gon face-to-face with his father, but that too was executed nonchalantly. Just as with the end of the Chimera Arc and the absence of a payoff for the tension between Killua and Illumi, this meeting between Gon and Ging was also a divisive plot choice. Certainly, the series never explicitly stated that their reunion would be heated or even particularly dramatic, but outside the context of the story, the expectations surrounding this moment were entirely justified, particularly after the swerve at the end of the Greed Island arc.

The goal stated by the main character at the beginning of a series is vital, even if it doesn’t always remain the most relevant plot point throughout the series. Judging Hunter x Hunter against its contemporaries, Gon meeting Ging is equivalent to Luffy becoming the Pirate King in One Piece, or the titular character of Naruto becoming Hokage. These characters have all developed additional goals as they have evolved, but their original motivation remains the underlying driving force behind their actions. Achieving such a goal before the end of the series without any fanfare might garner some shock value, but it strips away a core element of the series. This meeting between father and son provided no real benefit, yet it came at the cost of a vital aspect of Gon’s character.

Heartwarming, but critically damaging to the overall persona of the hero

Finally, just before the series went back on break, it introduced the concept of the Dark Continent, a vast and terrifying world outside of the confines of the known map. As with so many of Togashi’s ideas, this concept is exciting but questionable. A plot choice this massive can only be interpreted as a commitment to the readers; while it isn’t necessary to visit every locale and meet every creature detailed in the original visual representation of the Dark Continent, exploring only a small portion of this fantastic new world is guaranteed to disappoint the audience. Once again, then, Hunter x Hunter is hampered by Togashi’s commitment to his craft. The idea of a wilderness full of unfathomable danger would be purely exciting in the hands of another author; in fact, that exact premise has been cultivated successfully for years by Shimabukuro Mitsutoshi in Toriko. For whatever reason, though, Togashi is unable to maintain a regular publishing schedule, and the result is that readers have more difficulty committing to the ideas presented in Hunter x Hunter because those ideas may not be developed or resolved for years. It’s truly unfortunate that the circumstances surrounding this series prevent the full enjoyment of its content.

As Hunter x Hunter once again disappears from the pages of Weekly Shonen Jump, its audience can reflect positively on the developments of the last 30 chapters. Even without a marquee fight, the series did finally conclude the Chimera Ant arc, the peaceful conclusion to which was only frustrating to readers who had stayed current with the series all that time. Now that it is over, that arc can be appreciated solely for the plot it presents over 134 chapters, rather than scrutinized for what didn’t happen for over eight years. The 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc may have had its flaws, but it provided the satisfaction of a full story told without interruption. Introducing the Dark Continent right before a hiatus definitely makes for a painful cliffhanger, but at least the plot will be exciting whenever the series returns.

To close, here are some Hunter x Hunter statistics, updated from the previous hiatus article:

  • From its debut (Issue 14, 1998) to present day (Issue 16, 2012), Hunter x Hunter has been absent from Weekly Shonen Jump 332 times.
  • The Chimera Ant arc lasted 134 chapters over 402 issues of Jump; that averages out to one-third of a chapter per week.
  • The longest hiatus remains 79 straight missed issues (2006-2007).
  • The series’ record for absences in a calendar year is still 2009, when it missed 46 of 48 issues.
  • There have been 671 issues of Weekly Shonen Jump since HxH began; Togashi has missed over 49% of them.
  • Given 48 issues of Jump in one calendar year, that’s 6.92 publishing years missed.
  • By comparison, One Piece (debut: Issue 34, 1997) has missed 45 issues to date. Naruto (debut: Issue 43, 1999) has missed 23 issues to date. KochiKame, which began in Issue 42, 1976, has still never missed a single week.

31 Comments

  • Unfortunately, the site which I used to research Jump statistics is no longer available, but it is still accessible via the Wayback Machine. Their last archive is from early 2009; statistics on the remainder of the Jump issues from then until now were calculated from my own personal Jump data, which itself was accrued from various sources such as the Otaku Shoten section of the MangaHelpers forums, the Weekly Jump Readers’ Journal, and other readily accessible sites.

  • Why say Togashi failed to contribute to “over 49%” of issues rather than “nearly 50%”? Perhaps it’s just a weird hang up coming from a culture that seems to value numbers that end in 5 or 0.

    • Exactly because of the reason you bring up. In such a culture, “nearly 50″ is vague and could mean anything between 46 to 49. The percentage is closer to 49 than 50, and phrasing it as such sounds more exact.

      Thanks for reading!

  • I only disagree about the chimera ants’ arc conclusion. An normal boss fight usually highlights only the protagonists achievments. Although Gon and Killua are still the main chars in the story, the most developed chars in that arc were the Royal Guards and the King. So, And I think for that reason Togashi chose to give them a dramatic death. Moreover, the antagonists in HxH are usually far stronger than the main chars and Togashi doesnt seem to like the use of plot devices common in shonnen mangas(Hiddden Power, Anger Power, Last breath atk, etc), or at least, not the use without extreme consequences(like what happenned with Gon). So, it is difficult to expect an epic boss fight with this plot restrictions. And I think that’s what makes HxH unique when compared to other shonen.

    • +1
      You forgot Nakama Love atk always used by GayryTail. Overpowered by the Antagonist they are in the brink of defeat but you know they are about to win when they cry and say gay things about friendship and BOOM WTF OMG WHERETHEFVCKTHATPOWERCAMEFROM attack finished the antagonist.

  • I get your point about how the Chimera Ant arc’s conclusion was anti-climactic for a lot of readers and definitely strays from good sense in that it leaves Meryem’s atrocities unaccounted for. The Chimera Ant Arc, after all, is the most violent one we’ve seen in HxH. However, I think Togashi was being subversive and took the unbeaten path when it comes to shounen manga – the author seems to be especially good at this. He gets props for an unexpected though unpopular resolution to the arc.

    The Election arc was more cerebral, which is refreshing for a shounen manga – however, I wish Togashi would have played this up the way authors did with Death Note, since there wasn’t a pivotal fight in the arc. Hisoka’s short battle was more of a quick jog for readers rather than the all-out marathon it promised.

    That said, I’m worried about the future of the series. From when it started out in the late 90s til now, I can tell that the fandom has been reduced to half and even an anime remake couldn’t generate the same enthusiasm that greeted the title when it first came out.

    All in all, great take on HxH. Thanks for posting.

  • I feel like you miss the point of Hunter x Hunter. This series goes against all common conventions and provides more emotionally fresh and satisfying conclusions to storylines than just about any other manga out there. The fact that the story of the Chimera Ant King ends not with a bang but by being humbled in the arms of a woman, is a beautiful thing. Togashi didn’t set out for the King to be a villain that all the main character band together to defeat, no, he set out to create a character that realises the worth of humanity and the value of love and life. The final moments with the King and Komugi are enough to make a grown man cry and I think you really missed the point of that ending.

    • I have to disagree on some points. The series closely follows convention for the majority of the time, only to eschew it at critical moments, but that’s more of a play for shock value rather than true originality. That’s exactly why I can’t agree that the manner of the King’s death was appropriate; yes, Togashi did clearly establish the King as hungry for the meaning of humanity, but that was far from his sole focus.

      It’s not as though I came into this arc with predetermined expectations regarding the King, or indeed Gon and Killua. The arc quite clearly established expectations regarding the development of Gon and Killua, only to marginalize them later, and about the overwhelming combat prowess of the King, only to avoid his involvement in a properly conclusive fight. Rather than me missing the point of the arc or the character, I think you’re giving Togashi too much credit for the manner in which he let down his own writing.

      That said, if you liked the arc, great! I wish I got the same enjoyment from it, honestly. While I disagree with your argument, I respect your point of view; thanks for sharing it!

  • chimera arc wont anti climatic me, shoot it was epic aside from most of the art work…then again when i started reading HxH, i saw the anime first.. then read from where it left off to chapter 310 so i didnt get no 8year hiatus.. only like a few months. its boss fight to me was the chairmen. who said every boss fight ends with a final punch? the chairmen used an attack that would utinmately kill him. so even when he died. the fight was still goin on. only thing im mad about is….Gatos death..

  • I couldn’t disagree more, who said there should be fights every arc, since the arc is interesting I don’t care, in fact I loved Election arc!
    Also loved the Chimera arc and its conclusion, I think you missed all the evolution of the king from life to death, I don’t know maybe I’m just a fanboy

  • Togashi = The world biggest Troll. What kinda guy writes a shonen manga without boss battles, then ends it one a cliffhanger, like introducing a massive world for our hero Gon to explore. Don’t get me wrong I love HxH, for me only One Piece trumps it, but Ive been reading for a looooong bleeding time and its starting to grate on me. I just hope Togashi is only away during the production of the film and he’ll be back stronger than ever. But I’m not gonna hold my breath.

    • Bro, I really agree. Damn i’m so happy that finally someone got the same taste on anime. Only One Piece beats HxH.

      • every one has different taste, your like an enhancer whos love only is fighting, while others are like specialist they like it unique

        and as for me hxh is still the best for me
        even though togashi is so lazy LOL

  • I commend HxH for being different and imho the chimera ant arc was tragic, touching and beautiful as a whole. I think that ging’s speech on top of the world tree summed up the series best. What’s important isn’t reaching the goal, but the journey to get there. Sure, gon reached his current goal, but in life we always reach out for newer goals all the time (until we’re dead of course). And as ging said best, we should enjoy the journey as it comes and the people we meet along the way

  • Maybe I’m the odd man out, but I thought this latest run was Togashis greatest ever. The Chimera arc was getting dull a toast, but somehow he managed salvage it all with a beautiful and genially surprising ending. Then comes the 13th Chairman Election arc which I though was the best so far in the entire series. If he needs hiatuses to make stuff like this, then I say let him.

    Oh, the fact he avoids needless fights and drama is a good thing, and the series is all the better for it. Go read any of the trillions of other Shonen if you think otherwise.

  • All those typical shonen manga are nice and all, but all that fighting business is nothing but boring if there’s not a twist to it. Togashi doesn’t write shonen mangas, he takes them apart. The entire chimera arc was a pure deconstruction of this genre and he deserves the credit for going another way than the rest.

  • I was more or less satisfied with the ending of the chimera arc. Sure, I felt that the whole transform-into-a-girl-if-on-the-verge-of-death thing with Kaito was abit over the top, but all in all, I was satisfied (except for the horrible wait, ofc). As for the Election arc, I loved how it finally showed more of Killua and his family, and although some of the leading hunters inspired by animals were somewhat of a let-down for me I enjoyed them more or less. The one thing I really, really did not like about the Election arc was the apperance of Ging. As the original poster so perfectly states in the summary, catching up to Ging should, at least in my mind, have been the epic ending of this long manga. The two of them meeting up like this, without Gon actually even having to really do anything (ok sure, he climbed a tree) was a massive let-down for me.

    For some reason, however, I feel that this new hiatus might be for Togashi to gather his thoughts and carefully plan out the story that’s to take place on the dark continent. Sure, there’s a movie going on, but I think that’s just part of it, if it even has anything at all to do with it. It might be far-fetched, but if we considder the amount of time spent actually exploring the ‘world’ we quickly realize that we really don’t know squat about the original world either. For me, this whole manga up until now, when faced with the knowledge of the dark continent, feels like the prologue, the first chapter in a book or the first volume in a manga. There are still a gazillion things to do in the original world, so I sincerely hoppe that Togashi spends some more time there before he sets of for the new world.

    Oh, right, one more thing about the election arc. I’m horrified by how little we got to see of Kurapica -.-;;

  • i would say togashi is brilliant artist, the concept of his work is very original it differ from every shonen manga we’ve read, i like how he gather things together and put a twist on it,like i have to read it several times before i get the point, beyond the story there’s a hidden meaning that gives light to its dark concept such in chimera ant arc, its not a typical shonen manga you can see anywhere, older or mature people can only gives enough credit to this story which its deserve. i dont care if i have to wait, as long as the author keeps the quality of the manga. Hunter x hunter is one of the great story i read not just in manga but i can compare it to other great novel like the books of paulo coelho and william golding of lord of flies. For those who still believe in togashi just patiently wait and we will get the great story we want in time.

  • I know this post is a little old but regarding about your opinion on Gon finding Ging and how it should have been saved for the end of the series. Should it have? Debatable. I don’t agree with you with saying that Gon achieving his goal strips away a core part of his character. If anything it allows him to progress his character even further. Togashi can take the story/ character development in directions unfeasible before because it had to somehow tie to Ging.

    Other pieces of entertainment have switched characters goals and successfully got more popular and deeper because of it. Supernatural, an American show about brothers who hunt the Supernatural, had a goal similar to Gon of finding their father for two seasons. After that though the story went into new directions and showed new facets of the characters not possible before but still had deep ties to the first two seasons story content wise

    I have faith that Togashi will take us on a wild ride and continue to show us a different sides/arcs of Hunter x Hunter that we haven’t even thought of. I just want to stress how amazing that is, each arc in HxH is vastly different from each other in tone and story progression yet still feel cohesive and not seperate stories. Other similar manga try to do this but are rarely successful as this story.

  • I don’t think Gon meeting Ging was exactly like Luffy finding the One Piece in One Piece.

    Kaito says that your worth as a Hunter is determined by your ability to track down and find Ging. while Gon didn’t exactly track him down, but Ging did come and meet him, which sort of upgrades Gon’s rank as a Hunter.

    It’s much like how Luffy met Shanks at the end of the Marineford Arc and Shanks gets the strawhat back for a moment. That moment on, that’s when Luffy is considered within reach of the Yonkohs.

    I think Gon’s meeting of Ging in Hunter x Hunter was not the primary goal, but rather a secondary one like Luffy’s commitment to bring the strawhat to Shanks in One Piece.

  • Speaking about hiatus and review. I’d like to see a review of Berserk.

  • Analying the last arch….has anyone given a thought on how gon and Killua separated? I know it is said it’ll be only for a while,but after all this time, the way it was treated, so swiftly and coldly, it shook me. I’m in love with the series, I’m obsessed with it and have loved every twist. I’ve been a faithful follower for ten years and my love for the story hasn’t but increased as I go learning the true points and highlighs behind each arch with every new read. I want to know what you think regarding this particular point- the time out for frienship. I completely support those who believe he is writing his art purposefully against canon in a slow deconstruction (derrida style XD) of all previous values.
    Therefore, we find a Gon who is now goal free. For the first time we do not know what will be his schedule, he is absolutely free and purposeless, the way Killua was while fighting besides Gon. Killua now does have a goal: to protect his sister. Gon helped him find his purpose. But the pair has separated. A central value to the series: frienship, has slowly been proven the strongest and yet stripped away. From the start of all four characters together we are left with their separation at different parts of the planet.

    What will Yoshihiro do with this separation? What are your predictions? … I want to know what do you think about it. I do believe that Yoshihiro writes behind the manga a complex story which only surfaces in subtleties. This subtleties are expanded in animes and ovas- kurapica’s character, killua’s fears, Gon’s growth, the boys’ friendship, the spider’s personality, etc. But I always have the feeling with Yoshihir that so much is left unsaid on purpose. Was that it, was that the reason he just let killua and Gon turn separate ways with the shortes of goodbyes?After two years together? I’d be pleasedto know hwatyou think.

    • Unfortunately, I can’t possibly make a prediction as to what will happen with the separation between Gon and Killua, because there’s no evidence whatsoever to work with. I do completely agree that it was handled too suddenly and without enough focus. Then again, that applies to just about anything he’s done lately. I suppose Gon and Killua didn’t have any explicit reason to stay together anymore, but there wasn’t sufficient explanation for a split. Togashi makes his audience assume far too much about the story, and not in a good way where fans have fun theorizing future events based on hints, but in a bad way where fans have to invent baseless theories to cover for poor storytelling.

      The real shame is that Togashi could be a great storyteller. He has some brilliant ideas, and I agree with you that he uses subtle elements not found in most series. On the other hand, your point about the anime/OVA adaptations is very important, and in a way that reflects poorly on Togashi: The anime adaptations work because they make sense out of the original author’s disjointed ideas.

      To be honest, it’s difficult to see Togashi ever addressing anything as detailed as you’ve described. Does the Gon/Killua separation deserve proper explanation? Of course it does, but I have no faith in Togashi being capable of providing that. It remains to be seen if/when he’ll even return; I wouldn’t be surprised if he came back to scribble out an ending as rushed and disappointing as Yu Yu Hakusho.

      Even if does try to come back for a proper publishing run, I don’t trust him whatsoever anymore. I’ll always be put off by his introduction of an entirely new world when he hadn’t remotely resolved things in the current one. Also, you pointed out how Gon doesn’t have a purpose right now; that’s catastrophic. In this type of series, the main character has to have a goal, otherwise there is no story. Gon finding his father and addressing him casually, without any sense of accomplishment, was the nail in the coffin. I can’t shake the impression that Togashi has a horrible work ethic and doesn’t care about his audience. Mind you, I would absolutely love to be proven wrong.

      Thanks for reading and commenting! Since you’re so invested in this story, I’d be curious to hear your own prediction about whether Togashi will ever properly address Gon and Killua’s split. What do you think?

  • Chimera ant arc is pretty boring for me. The only thing that saves the arc was the epic ending. It’s heart-breaking when someone monstrous like Meryem find humanity just because a helpless little girl like Gungi. I love the Chairman Election arc, well even though I don’t really like how anti-climatic it was when Gon met Ging. But the scene really potrayed both characters.

    After meeting Ging i guess Gon’s goal is exploring the world and going on an adventure with Ging.

    No, Togashi won’t explain the split. I bet they’re going to randomly meet each other again and start to talk about their adventures when they split.

  • Although the quality of the art was distracting for me and made me enjoy the Chimera ant arc less, I find the Kings character well drawn out and quite emotional. I feel like his death was touching on how not all evil doings are punished. And was the king really bad? His species lived on humans much as humans live off cows. Humans always fear and antagonize what’s higher on the food chain, but the ants are very similar to them. I also feel that Gon’s meeting with Ging was touching on a reality of life. Sometimes the thing you wish for with all your heart doesn’t meet your expectations. Their meeting was calm and didn’t have unnecessary drama. And just because Gon’s goal is technically reached, a new goal seems to have sprouted from the completions of the old one. Ging states his desire as “to see what’s not in front of me” And it’s obvious that Gon feels the same in many ways. I feel his meeting with Ging expanded his character and gives him more than “I wanna see my dad”

    I quite like Togashi’s story telling and have no complaint in how it’s done. I just wish his art quality would rise back to the glory it once was. His few good pages mixed with lazy sketches is hardly as satisfying as the beginning of the series. The quality of a manga is determined by the art and story together. One without the other is quite disappointing.

  • I love HxH but I’m just hoping that Togashi will finish HxH before he dies.I’m really worried about him dying suddenly one day and HxH will never be completed.All these hiatuses just worries me more.All that aside I found the separation between Gon and Killua devastating since I’m so used to seeing them together all the time.

  • Well, looks like the 79 straight missed issues record was broken and left far behind. So much for the “Togashi will return to the series after the film release” theory.

    Togashi remains to be one of the most ambiguous mangaka out there. The sketch artwork and ridiculous hiatuses are unacceptable, but he has been redrawing panels for the volume releases. Which raises the question: “Why can’t he do high-quality artwork in the first place?”. D. Gray-man made the jump to a monthly issue while maintaining the 20 page format, Berserk, while suffering from hiatuses, also consistently maintains the quality of artwork. That makes the huge nosedives of HxH drawing even more jarring. I don’t think that Togashi doesn’t care for his audience per se, it’s just that he’s 47 years old, has had phenomenal commercial success with YuYu Hakusho, has a family and is not as motivated to draw manga as, say, ten years ago. Word of the internet says Shueisha let him do as he pleases because HxH is still very popular, especially in Japan, and they’re loathe to lose a best-selling author. But hey, HxH fans, at least you’re still far ahead of Berserk fans, who’re seuffering for a third decade already!

    The Chimera Ant arc was a strange one. It really suffered from not only bad art, but inconsistent writing. The Phantom Troupe cameo, for example, wasn’t much more than a filler (“hey, I forgot to show off the powers of half the Phantom Troupe, so let’s pair them against some bland and easily-killable (except for Zazan, but even she didn’t have much characterization) Chimera Ants. That’ll fill up some of my deadlines!”). But I disagree that the manga eschews Shonen convictions only at critical moments – Togashi had been building this one from the beginning of the arc. The King was declared pretty early as the strongest character of the whole series, so, to have a “climactic, satisfying boss fight”, someone would have to ass-pull new, ridiculously strong techniques, Naruto-style. The point from early on was that conventional fighting wouldn’t work against the more powerful Ants. Another point – only one story arc (Greed Island), was finished with a climactic fight. I’d say that, even in the first arcs, Togashi was toying with conventional shounen tropes before getting bored with them and throwing them away. And that is a part of series you either accept or don’t (the Tower Tournament was pretty randomly cut off, the Phantom Troupe arc had its climax near the beginning and ended underwhelmingly). The ending of both new arcs were standard fare in that respect.

    The Election arc was a lighter-toned breather arc. It was so short, it felt transitional – as if Togashi was setting up the plot pieces for the next story. That’s why there was no serious fighting – the whole premise of the arc was to introduce a new cast of characters, the macguffin of the Hunter Commandments, a new world to explore, and to get Killua off Gon. IMHO, the Killua-Gon split and the meeting with Ging can’t be judged for now. We have absolutely no indication where the story will go next plot-wise, so, for all we know, Gon might be given a new goal and that will brilliantly deconstruct the shonen “Hero with a set goal follows it throgh to a satisfying ending” convention. Or he may not, and Togashi will be reviled by what’s left of HxH fanbase. Or he may become so disinterested he may not finish the series anymore. With his unpredictability, it’s impossible to say, so we mortal ones will have to endure the waiting torture for now.

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