As pervasive as manga is today, it's hard to imagine this particular type of Japanese comics isn't the only kind. Whereas "Manga" might be translated as "whimsical pictures", gekiga, — the kind of Japanese comics that recently deceased Tatsumi Yoshihori (June 10, 1935 - March 7, 2015) has pioneered since 1957 — translates to "dramatic pictures", implying a far more serious nature.
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Otomo Katsuhiro is most well known for creating Akira, the 2000-pages long manga, whose anime film adaptation Otomo was allowed to direct himself. Akira consequently became the most iconic manga AND anime ever.