Written by: Allysa Malicdem
Published on: August 14, 2021 at 5:08 PM PHT (GMT+8)
In celebration of the 15th year of the serialization of Yana Toboso’s dark fantasy manga ‘Kuroshitsuji’ (Black Butler), an exhibit by Square ENIX is set to open to mark the historic milestone. The first exhibit started in Tokyo at the 8th floor Event Square of Matsuya Ginza. The Tokyo exhibition will run from August 13 to August 31 and will tour in the cities of Osaka, Hyogo and Ishikawa until 2022.
On the night before the opening, voice actors Daisuke Ono (VA of Sebastian Michaelis) and Maaya Sakamoto (VA of Ciel Phantomhive) of the TV anime adaptation paid a visit to the said exhibit and were invited for an interview on the significant event unfolding.
"I am very happy to see the 15-year history of "Kuroshitsuji" at once. I felt the soul with the thoughts that Mr. Kiki put in. Also, I was happy to hear the enthusiasm of the people surrounding "Kuroshitsuji”", said Ono upon seeing the exhibit.
To which Sakamoto added,
"From the moment I entered from the entrance, I felt like I was surrounded by the world of "Kuroshitsuji", and while I was watching it, I felt like I was in another world where I didn't know where it was. There are so many things to see, so I thought it was an exhibition that you could take your time to enjoy."
The theme color for the exhibit is ‘rich black’ (a black deeper than black), superimposing the dark theme behind the manga series. The exhibit features beautiful illustration from Toboso including popular episodes such as “Red Butler”, “Circus” and “Luxury Passenger Ship”, including original artworks of the serialized manuscripts on some famous scenes such as the latest “Memories of Blue” (Blue Cult Arc). Some original goods and merchandise like “Bitter Rabbit Basic Sebastian” (a rabbit plushie dressed as the butler Sebastian) and a “Tsumabeo T-shirt” (a t-shirt with a butler suit’s design imprint) are also available. A display of Ciel’s and Sebastian’s outfits in all black was also put up. Apart from the exhibit, a collaboration cafe with MG cafe was also set-up and features a menu of a variety of drinks and desserts inspired from the series.
For more information on the exhibit, visit Rich Black Exhibition's official website.
Kuroshitsuji (Black Butler) Background
The manga has started serialization on September 16, 2006 in Square ENIX’ shonen manga magazine ‘Monthly GFantasy’. Square ENIX has published the manga in volumes and released volume 1 on February 27, 2007. Yen Press handled the English publication and release.
Manga Synopsis by MAL:
Tucked away in the English countryside lies the ominous manor of the Phantomhives, a family which has established itself as the cold and ruthless "Queen's Watchdog" as well as the head of London's criminal underground. After a tragedy leaves the Earl and his wife dead, many are shocked when their son, a young boy named Ciel, claims his place as the new Earl of the Phantomhive house. At first, many perceive him only as a child surrounded by a few eccentric servants. But they soon begin to realize that it is foolish to meddle with Ciel and his demonic butler Sebastian.
Taking place at the end of the 19th century, Kuroshitsuji follows these two as they face countless mysteries and dangers that plague England and threaten the Queen, uncovering the truth about what really happened to Ciel's parents in the process.
The manga inspired various projects including TV anime series, anime films, live-action films and musicals.
The first TV anime adaptation premiered on October 2008 with 24 episodes. A-1 Pictures was in-charge of the animation. The second season with 12 episodes aired on July 2010 and the third season with 10 episodes on July 2014. Funimation provided distribution for the said installments.
Apart from TV anime installments, a musical titled ‘Kuroshitsuji: The Most Beautiful DEATH in The World’ was held on May 2010. The original work inspired four more live stage plays. In addition, a live-action film was released on January 2014. The animated film ‘Black Butler: Book of the Atlantic’ premiered in Japan on January 2017. The anime film was the adaptation of the “Luxury Liner Arc” from the manga.
As of April 2021, Kuroshitsuji manga has over 30 million copies in circulation.