Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East manga ends later this year

The official X account for Emerald magazine has just announced the Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East manga will be coming to an end with its 82nd chapter in the Emerald Summer Issue, which is due to be published in August.

The shoujo manga is based on the Nansō Satomi Hakkenden novel series, and is written and illustrated by Miyuki Abe (Super Lovers).

The long-running series has been published in three different magazines, since its first chapter came out in 2005.

Yep, even if you’re reading it, you may be surprised to learn it is an almost 20-year-old manga series that readers have been waiting a long time to see to completion.

Publication history of Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East

Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East  was first published back in 2005 in Tosuisha‘s Ichi*Raki magazine.

The mangaka then moved it to Kadokawa Shoten’s Ciel magazine in 2011, followed by another move to its present home — Emerald magazine in 2014.

Volume 23 of the manga came out in Japanese last December.

Sadly, it has never received an official English translation.

The Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East anime series

An anime adaptation of the hit manga series was released in January, 2013, with a second season in July, 2013.

The My Anime List anime-focused website describes the Hakkenden plot like this:

The village of Ootsuka—home to Shino Inuzuka, Sousuke Inukawa, and Hamaji—was lit on fire under the preconception that a virus had seen all of its life eradicated. Now surrounded by flames and on the verge of death, the three were approached by a strange man holding a sword. He tells them that they must reach a decision if they want to live. That night changed everything for these children.

Five years later, the family of three now lives under the watchful eye of the small Imperial Church in a nearby village. All is fine and dandy until the Church attempts to reclaim the demonic sword of Murasame.

To accomplish this, they kidnap Hamaji to lure Shino, now a bearer of Murasame’s soul, and Sousuke, who possesses the ability to transform into a dog. The brothers must put their differences aside to rescue their beloved sister from the Church in the Imperial Capital, signaling the beginning of a very difficult journey.

The anime was praised for its “pretty art style” (it is beautiful) at the time of release, but was disliked by some viewers due to the “messy plot” (it is all over the place). Some also complained about what they called the “sub-par animation” by Studio Deen.

The Boys’ Love sub-plot also turned off some viewers, but it is written by the mangaka of Super Lovers, a full-on BL series (which this isn’t), so there’s that.

Should you be interested, Sentai Filmworks currently sells both seasons of Hakkenden on a “Complete Series” Blu-ray.

Personally, even though the Hakkenden anime series does have its flaws, it is still one I enjoyed due to the characters and the unusual plot, and one I have rewatched twice since.

With the Hakkenden: Eight Dogs of the East manga now coming to an end, maybe we will finally get a third season, as that open ending for Season 2 was annoying.


About Steve Reynolds

If Dragon Ball was your first love, we might just have something in common. Throw in Sailor Moon, Akira, Pokemon and Revolutionary Girl Utena, and you and I could be good friends. Problem is, I rarely leave my house as there's that manga collection I need to catch up on.