Sixteen Things You Didn't Know about Ishida Sui (Creator of Tokyo Ghoul)
Ishida Sui is the author of the popular Tokyo Ghoul manga and its sequel Tokyo Ghoul:re. The Tokyo Ghoul manga began its serialization in the Weekly Young Jump on September 8th 2011, and ended on September 18th 2014 counting 14 Volumes (143 Chapters). The manga continued its serialization with Tokyo Ghoul:re on October 16th 2014 and is still ongoing.
The manga was made into an anime TV series produced by Studio Pierrot. The first season of the anime ran from July 4th 2014 to September 19th 2014, while the second season,Tokyo Ghoul √A ran from January 9th 2015 till March 27th 2015, each season counting 12 episodes.
Even though the manga and anime are very popular, very little is known about the author Ishida Sui. Here are some things that we found.
In this article we will talk about Ishida's:
Works and illustrations
Interests and pranks
Social media accounts
Hisoka's side story
Ishida Sui (石田 スイ) is a Japanese manga artist born on December 28th in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan. Apparently, Ishida is most likely male, since he was referred to using masculine language in an ad looking for assistants. Japanese is a relatively gender-neutral language, so it's intentional when referring to someone with gendered language. Moreover, he depicted himself as a male in one of the omakes that he drew. Also, when a fan asked him how he looks like, he answered that he looks like Kazuo Yoshida from Tokyo Ghoul.
Ishida, before becoming a manga artist, worked as a tattoo artist. He has one older and one younger sister. Ishida seems to lead a healthy life. He stated on Twitter that he doesn't smoke, goes running sometimes and drinks a lot of Calpis, a Japanese uncarbonated soft drink. When a fan asked him if he read a lot when he was a child, Ishida replied that he was constantly swinging on horizontal bars.
In 2010, Ishida Sui won the Young Jump 113th Grand Prix award with Tokyo Ghoul. Later, in March 2011, the Tokyo Ghoul oneshot was published in the 2nd Issue of Miracle Jump. Then in September 2011, Tokyo Ghoul started as a series in the 41st Issue of Weekly Young Jump. In December 2011, Ishida made another oneshot about Rize Kamishiro which was published in the 6th Issue of Miracle Jump. And in 2013, he also started Tokyo Ghoul: Jack in the digital magazine Jump LIVE.
Other than Tokyo Ghoul, Ishida Sui has many works which he was publishing online before making Tokyo Ghoul.
- The Tale of Longing for Sex (2009) - webcomic
- The Penisman (2010) - webcomic
- Tokyo Ghoul (2010/2011) - oneshot
- Tokyo Ghoul (2011) - series
- Tokyo Ghoul: Rize (2011) - oneshot
- Tokyo Ghoul: Jack (2013) - series
- Tokyo Ghoul: Joker (2014) - oneshot
- Tokyo Ghoul:re (2014) - series
- Hisoka Story Draft (2016) - oneshot
Ishida also wrote the scenario and designed the main character, Rio, for the Tokyo Ghoul: Jail RPG video game. The story is about the ghoul Rio, who was imprisoned in Cochlea for suspicion that he is the ghoul under the name Jail. He also made a non-canon parody webcomic - School of Ghoul, where all the Tokyo Ghoul characters are in high school together while trying to hide the fact that they're ghouls from each other. Ishida also likes to write poems which he posts together with his drawings on Tumblr.
In addition, Ishida, as the illustrator, and Shin Towada, as the author, created three Light Novels: Tokyo Ghoul: Days, Tokyo Ghoul: Void, Tokyo Ghoul: Past, and a special short story Tokyo Ghoul: 6th Ward Playing Cards, which you can read here (© goes to the translator): Special Short Story. On October 17th 2014, Ishida published an illustrator book Tokyo Ghoul: zakki, which contains artwork and comments by Ishida, and has 112 pages.
The data for his webcomic The Tale of Longing for Sex has been lost due to an error. But, you can still read his work The Penisman (© for translation goes to duratrans.tumblr) here: The Penisman. You can read his other works (© goes to the translators) here: Ishida Sui's works.
Do you believe that Ishida is actually Togashi?
Ishida Sui uses an LCD tablet for drawing. He also uses PaintTool SAI among other tools such as ComicStudioPro and Corel Painter.
When one fan asked him where he learned to draw, Ishida replied that he studied by other mangaka (for example Yoshihiro Togashi, creator of Hunter x Hunter) and illustrators. He was copying drawing of Hisoka and Orochimaru so he could improve his own drawing skills. He also stated on Twitter that he was Togashi's assistant. This statement has led many fans to believe that Ishida is actually Togashi. Even though there is a small chance that this is true, the fans still like to cling to this theory and joke by saying that this is the reason why Hunter x Hunter has been on hiatus for so long.
Ishida Sui is strongly influenced by the works of Franz Kafka, Haruki Murakami and Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
The fact that his manga, Tokyo Ghoul, has a similar concept to Kafka's popular novella "Metamorphosis", says a lot about how Kafka influenced Ishida's work. In "Metamorphosis", a traveling salesman, Gregor Samsa, woke up only to find himself transformed into a large, monstrous insect-like creature. The rest of Kafka's novella deals with Gregor's attempts to adjust to his new condition as he deals with being burdensome to his parents and sister, who are repelled by the horrible, verminous creature Gregor has become. This is pretty much similar to how Kaneki Ken, the main protagonist of Tokyo Ghoul, became a half-ghoul and now has to deal with all that this new life causes. Not to mention, Eto Yoshimura (Takatsuki Sen) wrote a book called "Dear Kafka".
The other author is Haruki Murakami, a popular Japanese writer. Eto has a lot of similarities with Murakami. First of all, they both write books with similar topics and themes such as loneliness, having split personalities (two sides of oneself), metamorphosis and gender identity. Both of them are obviously influenced by Franz Kafka, and Murakami even has a book called "Kafka on the Shore", with a transgender guy in it. As I already mentioned above, Eto has a book called "Dear Kafka" which could actually refer to Murakami's book, and in Tokyo Ghoul we also have lots of transgender people, take Nico for instance.
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's influence can be seen on the pictures that Ishida drew for the Tokyo Ghoul calendar. Under two of the drawings, he quoted Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's "The Little Prince" which seems to have a big role when it comes to figuring out some of the Tokyo Ghoul characters, such as Arima Kishou.
Ishida uses a lot of social medias like Twitter, Tumblr, Pixiv, Twipple,Twitch and FC2 Blog (host for The Penisman). He is very responsive to fan messages (especially on Twitter) when he isn't working. He posts on Twitter daily, mostly his drawings, new announcements and even random stuff like his mood or what's on his mind. On Tumblr he occasionally posts his illustrations along with his poems. He uses Twitch to live stream while he's drawing, so you can actually see how he works, hear his voice (even though he uses a voice changer) and hear what music he listens to. Here are the links to his accounts:
There is also his e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ishida's New Year Stream on Twitch
In one of the recent omakes, Ishida drew himself and the Tokyo Ghoul, current and former, staff going to Shuueisha's thank-you party and how he ended up in the hospital on the second day of the trip. Here, the fans could finally learn something new about Ishida-sensei, who included himself in the omake for the first time. From the story he wrote, we can see that Ishida is not very good at skating, he wears long coats, he has a satchel and he's immature (he wrote so himself). He even arrived late, so everyone missed the flight because of him. Later when he went with one of the members to tho the hospital, he injured his broken leg further, because he didn't notice that he was pushing him to the wall.
© for translation goes to randomthoughtpatterns.tumblr
Ishida seems to be in good friendly terms with Atsushi Nakayama, fellow manga artist in Young Jump and author of Nejimaki Kagyu. Atsushi Nakayama even drew a Tokyo Ghoul illustration as a gift for Ishida's birthday. Later, Ishida returned the favor and drew an illustration for Nejimaki Kagyu's last chapter.
He also seems to be friends with Hanada Ryo, the mangaka of Devil’s Line. Apparently, Ishida visited Hanada specifically because he has been unwell. Ishida made sure to specially come to a subway station closest to Hanada, who, at that time, couldn't ride trains due to his health. Hanada also said about Ishida: "He’s an angel.". As a thank-you gift, Hanada drew Mutsuki Tooru and posted it on Ishida's Twitter profile. To this, Ishida replied saying that he will accept it as friendart, rather than fanart and thanked Hanada.
Ishida seems to know Tajika Kouhei, a former assistant of Hara Yasuhisa (creator of Kingdom), very well. He even calls him "manga senpai". Therefore, a rumor that Ishida was also a former assistant of Hara Yasuhisa appeared. In one of the omakes, Ishida even mention speaking with Hara Yasuhisa-sensei. Also, it seems that Tajika just got a new serialization and his photo will appear in the magazine. Upon hearing that, Ishida commented: "So handsome! *heavy breathing*". Tajika replied that he wouldn’t mind if Ishida made this photo his phone screensaver, so Ishida replied with: "Done".
He even sent illustrations he made to the voice actors who interpret the roles of Kaneki, Touka and Amon - Hanae Natsuki, Amamiya Sora and Konishi Katsuyuki.
Ishida was asked to draw an illustration for for Iwai Shunji's new movie "The bride of Rip Van Winkle". The illustration, along with Ishida's comment, will be printed in the movie's pamphlet. "The Bride of Rip Van Winkle" is a movie based on a novel also by Shunji Iwai and is one of the most anticipated Japanese movies of the year, out in cinemas on March 26th.
He also illustrated the book cover of the paperback edition of "Mysterious Tales of Embryos", a collection of short mystery stories by Yamashiro Asako, set in Edo period and connected by the protagonist who is traveling Japan’s onsens, where she hears or encounters all those mysteries. He even recommended two stories: "The Lapis Lazuli Illusion" (an embryo commits suicide in the womb to break its reincarnation cycle and descends into hell) and "Hell" (a person gets ambushed and imprisoned by bandits and is forced to eat human flesh to survive).
Ishida did a sponsor background illustration for Rozen Maiden: Zurückspulen episode 6 as well.
Ishida Sui seems to watch/read other series/manga like Naruto, One Punch Man, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Final Fantasy and Himouto! Umaru-chan. He even draws illustration for these series. Ishida also seems to enjoy Hayao Miyazaki's movies, since he drew an illustration for the movie "Howl's Moving Castle".
Ishida shows great love for shoujo manga, especially Honey by Meguro Amu, KID i LUCK by Osada Yuuko, Hyakunichikan by Kokone Nata and Azuki Ryo's works. By drawing a crossover of Tokyo Ghoul and Ore Monogatari, Ishida showed support to the creator of the manga. He also stated that Takeo-kun is a man among men. In one of his Twitter post he even stated, maybe jokingly, that he would like to draw a shoujo manga with corpses for Bessatsu Margaret, a shoujo manga magazine.
He also stated that he likes playing video games, such as Fallout and Oreshika 2, before going to bed. In the game Oreshika 2, a Japanese game where you mostly have kids with gods and then battle demons, his current head of the household is named Abara Hanbee, which may have been his inspiration for creating one character from Tokyo Ghoul:re, also named Abara Hanbee. Ishida even drew a picture depicting the Quinx Squad with roles from the same game:
- Haise Sasaki: Swordsman
- Urie Kuki: Spearman
- Mutsuki Tooru: Martial artist
- Saiko Yonebayashi: Dancer
- Shirazu Ginshi: Cannoneer
Ishida loves western culture. He is a big fan of Star Wars. He even drew a picture of himself drawing Darth Vader, a pivotal figure in the Star Wars movies.
Ishida is also fond of american series like "Prison Break". His favourite character is Theodore "T-Bag" Bagwell, played by Robert Knepper. Moreover, he drew an illustration of Robert Knepper and posted it on his Tumblr profile to celebrate Knepper's birthday.
Ishida is a fan of Tim Burton and his works, therefore he drew Sasaki cosplaying Jack Skellington from the movie "Nightmare before Christmas".
After Christina Grimmie, an American singer, songwriter and YouTuber known for her participation in the NBC singing competition, died, Ishida drew a tribute for her with his personal message. Apparently was Christina a big fan of Tokyo Ghoul. In his message Ishida wrote: "Nice to meet you, Christina. I'm the author of "Tokyo Ghoul". I knew your beautiful voice a moment ago. Your singing is so nice. So, this is a present for you. I regret that I couldn't show my drawing to you. I pray that your soul may rest in peace.".
Ishida Sui is a big fan of Yuki Himura, a Japanese actor and comedian. Himura's picture can even been seen in the Tokyo Ghoul manga. Also a poster of a banana which can be seen in Sasaki's room in Tokyo Ghoul:re could be connected to the fact that Yuki Himura, together with Osamu Shitara, makes the Bananaman, a Japanese owarai comedy duo.
He is also a big fan of the Japanese groups österreich and amazarashi, who also performed the opening and ending theme for Tokyo Ghoul √A. Ishida even drew the cover for their albums with Kaneki on it and that is not all. He also participated in the making of amazarashi's newest music video for their song "Ending Theme". He is shown in the video writing messages, but, unfortunately, his face cannot be seen. Here are the messages and information that Ishida wrote about himself in that video (Ishida's messages are on CAM 28):
Name: Ishida Sui
Attributes unfulfilled: Various things
What I didn't want to lose:
What I want to tell to the people I love: I'm sorry
When I cried with sadness: When I didn’t have enough talent
What I loved:
What I have desperately continued to do:
Who I wanted to make happy:
My last words:
*Note that all of the blank ones were not shown in the music video except for the age which Ishida left blank on purpose.
The new music video for amazarashi's song in which Ishida participated.
Ishida loves to prank people, especially his fans. One of his colleagues even stated that he is going to apply for a Guinness World Record for the amount of times he has been disrespected by Ishida Sui. One more example would be when Ishida posted a Hisoka illustration announcing the return of Hunter x Hunter which was actually a prank for April Fools' day.
Later, he even posted that he will start working on a new manga and that the release date has yet not been confirmed, and drew 4 pages of Kaneki and Shachi cross-dressing, which was obviously also a joke.
© for translation goes to randomthoughtpatterns.tumblr
He loves to joke around with his fans. Therefore, he made awards which he handed out to participants of the illustration popularity poll:
- God Aniki Award
- Insane Takizawa Award
- Slit-Eyes Award
- Noble Award
- 13th Ward Award
- Villager 2 Award
- Villager 2 Award 2
- Kinmokusei Award
- Ojisama Award
- Gourmet Award
- Kachi-Kachi Mountain Award
- NEET Award
- Moustache Award
- Angel Macho Award
- Overeating Amon Award
But, not only does he joke with his fans, he jokes with himself too. For his own birthday, Ishida posted one of his illustrations wishing himself a happy birthday. Later, he commented on that same post by thanking himself. In the Tokyo Ghoul calendar he even dedicated December 28th to his birthday, once again writing "Happy birthday Ishida Sui". So, why wait for someone else to wish you a happy birthday, when you can do it yourself, right Ishida-sensei?
Would you like for Ishida to take over and resume Hunter x Hunter?
In an interview with österreich's Takahashi, Ishida stated that his favourite characters are Tsukiyama Shuu, because he is "the easiest to draw since he just seems to move on his own", as well as Yamori (Jason). He also said that he loves all of them in different ways.
In 2015, Ishida drew art for the calendar for the upcoming year 2016. The Tokyo Ghoul Daily Flip Calendar is an official calendar released by Shueisha. It is a hanging Wall Calendar, with a separate page for every day of the year. It includes artwork by creator Sui Ishida, featuring standalone art and short comics. It was released in early December 2015, and features 366 pages.
In the calendar, for his birthday, Ishida asked for presents and even put the address where to send them. Later, after receiving the gifts, he posted them on Twitter. Someone even sent him a recreation of Sasaki's underwear.
He also designed Tokyo Ghoul playing cards where each card has a drawing of one of the Tokyo Ghoul characters.
Ishida is such a big fan of Yoshihiro Togashi and his Hunter x Hunter, to the point that he "fanboys" when talking about it. It has been noted numerous times that he loves to draw Hisoka, his favourite character from that series. He even copied the drawings of Hisoka to improve his own before becoming a mangaka, as mentioned once already above. In the interview between Ishida and Togashi, which you can read here: interview, Ishida stated that the first scene he copied from the manga was the scene where Hisoka is letting down his hair after a bath, after his battle in Heaven’s Arena.
Ishida even drew a spin-off short story about Hisoka which you can read here: Hisoka's side story. He also commented in the interview that in the midst of all the drawing he lost sight of what was fun about it. "I was taking it too seriously, I think.", Ishida said. He even told his editor "If this keeps up I might not be able to make comics anymore" to which his editor replied: "To hear Ishida-sensei say that after coming into contact with Togashi-sensei’s talent makes me happy".
While writing the storyboard, Ishida read over Hunter x Hunter a lot. He marked all the pages Hisoka appears in and tried to figure out a pattern in the suit marks in his lines. When he analysed it, he thought "Diamond" was often used when Hisoka is being serious and "Clover" gets used more when he is thinking something over, but in reality, Togashi revealed that there was no pattern at all. Togashi said: "Just that Hisoka uses a heart with people he likes. I don’t have any idea how diamond and clover are different".
After the discussion, Togashi stated that he would like to draw a story about Hisoka's past connecting to Ishida's story, which made Ishida feel honoured. He also said that if he ever draws it, he will show it to Ishida.
After the 5 years anniversary of the Tokyo Ghoul manga, Ishida decided to redraw the first chapter of the Tokyo Ghoul manga, most likely to see how his art improved through these 5 years he has been making Tokyo Ghoul. To everyone's surprise, the changes in art are more than noticeable and leave most of the fans in awe.
You can read the redrawn version on this link: Tokyo Ghoul chapter 1 remake featuring Ishida's comment at the end of the chapter.
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About Tokyo Ghoul series.
Tokyo Ghoul is a tragic story about Ken Kaneki, a college student. He meets a girl, Rize, who turns out to be a ghoul, a species who are just like humans, except the fact that they are only able to feed on humans and other ghouls. Rize quickly turns on Kaneki Ken, attacking in an attempt to devour him. During the attack, an accident happens that kills Rize. A nearly dead Kaneki Ken gets subjected to an operation that involves an organ transplantation from Rize. Thus Kaneki Ken becomes a half-ghoul.
Tokyo Ghoul is a seinen manga series created by Ishida Sui. In 2010. Ishida won the Young Jump 113th Grand Prix award with a Tokyo Ghoul One-shot, which was later published on March 15, 2011. in the 2nd Issue of Miracle Jump.
The Tokyo Ghoul manga was published from September 8, 2011 to September 18, 2014 in the magazine Weekly Young Jump. The sequel, Tokyo Ghoul:re, began serialization on October 16, 2014 in the same magazine. An anime adaptation ofTokyo Ghoul aired from July 4, 2014 to September 19, 2014 and the second season, Tokyo Ghoul √A, aired from January 9, 2015 to March 27, 2015. The second season has an alternative ending then that of the manga.