This article records the translated dialogue between the original creator of the Toaru Majutsu no Index light novels, Kamachi Kazuma, and the mangaka of the Toaru Majutsu no Index manga series, Kogino Chuuya, found in Toaru Majutsu no Index no Subete.
Illustration and images from the franchise occasionally appear with tidbits of trivia as seen from the original book. Moreover, at the end of the dialogue are short profiles for both participants. The subsections that contain questions for Kogino Chuuya that originally appeared in conjunction with the images are moved into its own separate article.
——What began this project to create an Index manga?
Shimomura (Manga Editor): Let’s see. I think it started when Miki-san from Media Works brought the idea to me. I read the novels and thought they were great, so I decided we needed a manga version in Gangan. And that’s how we got here today.
Miki: I seem to recall you asking “Why?” when I first suggested doing it. (laugh)
Shimomura: No, Gangan gets a lot of requests like that, so I didn’t find it odd. Anyway, when I read it to see what kind of work it was, it really betrayed the image I had of it but in the best way possible. It was an incredibly hot-blooded work and I knew we had to do it.
Miki: If it wasn’t so hot-blooded, would the manga have never happened?
Shimomura: Well…maybe not. (laugh)
Kamachi: Then I’m glad it was. (laugh) When my editor first said he was going to propose this project because he felt Index would fit Gangan’s image, I wasn’t so sure.
——After the project began, Kogino-san was chosen.
Kamachi: Were you initially sent the novels?
Kogino: Yes, I was.
Kamachi: So did you think you would be chosen?
Kogino: No, not at all. (laugh) I didn’t think it was possible. The submission I made to Gangan was the first time I had ever really drawn a straightforward protagonist like Kamijou, so I learned a lot from this.
Kamachi: When you read the novels you were sent, what was your impression of them?
Kogino: Shimomura-san had told me it was half everyday life and half battle, and while the everyday life parts were great, I felt the battles were the true heart of the story. I really wanted to draw those parts.
Kamachi: Thank you very much. Do you like battle scenes
Kogino: Yes. I like to see them and to draw them. I’m not always the best at drawing them, though.
Kamachi: Really? I thought the Stiyl battle was really great.
Kogino: Sorry about going so far with his expressions.
Kamachi: No, you had to go at least that far. (laugh)
Kogino: But when he shows back up, I want to make him look possessed. (laugh)
|Kogino Chuuya has said that the battle scenes are "energetic" as so not to kill the momentum, even while incorporating the description of Magician, Rune magic, and the Imagine Breaker, which has played out well.||The scene where Stiyl first appears. First appeared in the original with the words "Hm? That would be us magicians." Touma get embroiled into battle over Index starting with this encounter. Stiyl who can recite symbols from the world of magic has considerably scary face.||The chase scene with the delinquents that was also present in the original. Touma's comical exchange with them is clearly presented. Having Touma run around Academy City trying to escape allows to greatly express the setting of "Index" visually.|
——Index may be half everyday life and half battle, but it is also half science and half magic. When you heard about that, how did you think you would handle it in the manga?
Kogino: The science part is kind of difficult because I have to show high tech devices as a normal part of life. But that can also be fun, so I hope I can do more of it from here on.
Kamachi: Fuyukawa-san mentioned that the science side is hard to draw. Do you agree?
Kamachi: Are the battle scenes the easiest to draw?
Kogino: Yes. And there were some parts I was prepared to draw on the magic side even before reading it. Like the Christian stuff. It can be hard, but it’s fun.
Kamachi: Come to think of it, you did a good job of rearranging some things, especially in the gag parts. I think that made it a lot better. I can get a bit carried away while writing the novels and the number of pages shoots way up. I think a lot of it is crucial, but there will always be wasted space. It felt like you had neatly shaped up those areas.
Kogino: No, no, no. You have a mood and tempo all your own that helps shape the foundation of the characters. When I have to change things, I start to wonder if I’m changing the characters too much. But with a serialized manga, I only have so many pages to work with...
Kamachi: Novels hold a lot of information in each line of dialogue, so when I heard it was being adapted in Gangan, I felt the hardest part would be dealing with the huge amount of exposition.
Kogino: There is a limit to how many lines I can use.
Kamachi: I think you do a good job of using your limited panel space to put in the most important lines while still getting in the exposition.
Kogino: No, I still have so much room for improvement.
|Teacher Komoe looks younger than the original. "The smaller the better!" was the unanimous opinion regarding Komoe by everyone's creative side.||Great care was taken on Index's head and body. Her ingenuity and consciousness seems to be beautifully reflected on her character.||Innocentius is one cool finishing move. In the original, it only exists in Haimura Kiyotaka's rough sketch (it is not illustrated in the orignal novel), the impact it had when it appeared in the manga was intense.||Accelerator appeared in silhouette form. Maybe in the world of manga, he and Touma will cross someday.||Agnese, Misha, and Aureolus also appeared in silhouette. It is a scene that makes the original readers grin. By the way, the cross in front is designed by Haimura Kiyotaka.|
——Kogino-san, is there anything you focus on while designing the characters based on Haimura-san’s original designs?
Kogino: Well, Haimura-san makes incredibly sexy illustrations that I quite like, so I really want to emulate that... I know I’ll never match him in some areas though.
Kamachi: You’ve had some issues with the designs, right?
Kogino: Yes. I have it pointed out a lot, but Index has gotten a lot taller and skinnier. Shimomura-san still has to tell me to make her rounder and to make her a loli.
Kamachi: I see. (laugh)
Shimomura: This has become something like an open trial. (laugh)
Kogino: That’s what I try to pay the most attention to right now.
Kamachi: Personally, I think you do a great job with Kamijou.
Kogino: Oh, really? Thank you. Kamijou fits really well into my idea of a protagonist. He’s hot-blooded but has to worry over things before overcoming them. I put that image directly into the visuals, so I don’t have much trouble with him.
Kamachi: You said you had never drawn a character like him before, so does that not cause you too much trouble?
Kogino: I had wanted to but had never had a chance. (laugh) It was sort of my ideal for a kind of character to draw. This gave me my chance.
Kamachi: I see.
Kogino: Kamachi-san, is there character you found surprising in the manga?
Kamachi: I’m not sure surprising is the right word—or character for that matter—but I thought Innocentius was really cool looking. (laugh)
Kogino: Yes, I’m not sure character is the right word either. (laugh)
Kamachi: Come to think of it, Komoe-sensei was even smaller than in the novels. Were you told to do that?
Kogino: No, I didn’t even notice it until someone pointed it out. I wanted to make her rounder than Index and the next thing I knew, she was like that.
Kamachi: Did your opinion of any character change after drawing them?
Kogino: That would definitely be Index. Volume 1 aside, her small animal-like qualities were emphasized in the novels, so I felt like she was the mascot or a magic god of hunger or something. (laugh)
Kamachi: A magic god of hunger? (laugh)
Kogino: But while making the manga for Volume 1, I had to tell quite a serious story. The more carefree impression from later novels is still there, but I was reminded of the earlier stuff.
Kamachi: There are a lot of heavy aspects to the story.
Kogino: Mikoto has a really serious story too.
Kamachi: Yes, the Sisters.
Kogino: But the way the characters don’t let that baggage show, the way they leave a pleasant aftertaste, and the way they build up their strength is one of the best parts about Index. Did you do that intentionally when writing the story?
Kamachi: The story has some dark aspects to it, but if you drag all that along until the very end, it would alter the coloration of the entire series. I think you should finish reading a story with the feeling that it was a cheerful story or an enjoyable story.
Kogino: A shounen manga needs a happy ending!
Kamachi: That’s right. (laugh)
Kogino: Speaking of shounen manga, my favorite character is Accelerator. He is a contrast to Kamijou and can be seen as his destined rival. But I can’t actually bring him into the manga yet. I could only show his shadow at this point. Kamachi: That was in the Level 5 introduction during Chapter 1, right?
Kogino: Yes, just a glimpse of his shadow.
Kamachi: Come to think of it, you showed Agnese and Misha too.
Kogino: It means nothing to people who don’t know them, but anyone who does can smile at it.
Kamachi: I know I smiled.
Kogino: Oh, and... Do you think I’ve showed Kamijou properly in the manga?
Kamachi: I think you have. He has a drastic difference between comedy scenes and serious scenes, but I feel you’ve managed to fuse the two sides together well.
Kogino: Kamijou can actually be a bit more foul-mouthed than I’ve had him, but he gives off a goodhearted impression. I kind of want to show that side of him off a bit.
Kamachi: You said you go outside on your days off, right?
Kogino: Yes, I need to get some exercise. I have to worry about my blood sugar level. (laugh)
Kamachi: Your blood sugar level? (laugh)
Kogino: What do you do on days off, Kamachi-san?
Kamachi: I guess I work on writing my manuscripts and search for materials for future novels.
Miki: To let you in on a secret…well, it doesn’t have to be a secret. Anyway, Kamachi-san is a really fast writer.
Shimomura: I’m jealous.
Kogino: Really, really jealous.
Miki: As his editor, I barely have time to keep up with his manuscripts. (laugh)
Shimomura: Amazing. (laugh)
Kogino: I wish you could teach me how to write so fast or how to be so passionate about creating something. It doesn’t seem humanly possible both in quality and quantity.
Kamachi: Do remember, I’m only writing one series. And of course, even if I’m writing away, my writing speed and thinking speed are different. Even as I’m writing, I come up with the next story and want to hurry up and write it.
Kogino: That’s... really quite amazing. (laugh) And you said it so casually.
Kamachi: But I don’t think I could manage it if I was writing multiple series. This only works when writing a single series for so long like this.
Kogino: So... um... are you a Level 5?
——Tell us what you plan for the manga in the future.
Shimomura: I’ll handle this. We first want to finish up Volume 1 in a way that will leave the fans of the novel will be satisfied. Our current battle is harsh enough that we cannot see very far ahead, but we will give it our all. You can expect something great. Isn’t that right, Kogino-san?
Kogino: Yes, sorry. (laugh)
Kamachi: You just apologized when Shimomura-san asked you a question. From a third party standpoint, it makes me think you’ve done something horrible. (laugh)
Kogino: He can be... kind of scary. (laugh) Even if he is always quite calm. (laugh)
Shimomura: Now, now, now. (laugh) Okay, Kamachi-san. Your opinion.
Kamachi: As far as my role is concerned, the Kanzaki battle is important, but I wonder if you can shorten all the exposition after that. When I went back and checked, there’s a bit of drama when Kanzaki and Stiyl stop by, but Chapter 3 is almost entirely exposition.
Kogino: If you have any suggestions, that would be a huge help.
Kamachi: I’ll give it some thought. (laugh)
Kogino: On that note, you still haven’t written a story about Stiyl, Kanzaki, and Index’s past, right?
Kamachi: No, I have not referenced back to their past yet.
Kogino: See? I was thinking it would be good to show a bit of that in the manga, but it seems somehow rude to put in something you haven’t written yet. If I could discuss it with you, I think it could be great for the story.
Kamachi: There’s a manga in Dengeki Daioh too and it adds scenes that I did not have in the story. I think you should feel free to add supplementary scenes, too.
Kogino: Mikoto really is cute in the Daioh manga. And the way Kamijou shows up only every now and then really seems to double his charm.
Miki: The various editors actually got together and had that manga use your delinquent characters, Kogino-san.
Kogino: Oh, I though they looked familiar.
Miki: The same scenes need to match after all. The visuals don’t always quite match, but we try to produce it so one manga shows Kamijou’s viewpoint and the other shows Mikoto’s. By the way, based on Haimura-san’s suggestion, those delinquents were casually slipped into the novel SS.
Kogino: Oh, that. (laugh) Now I really feel the need to work hard. I’ll be working steadily along, so keep up your excellent work, Kamachi-san.
Kamachi: You keep up your excellent work, too.
|Kogino Chuuya Profile|
|Resident of Okayama. He was picked up in the Index Project where he draws pictures based off society.|