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20 Seiki Shounen  
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Humanity, having faced extinction at the end of the 20th century, would not have entered the new millennium if it weren't for them. In 1969, during their youth, they created a symbol. In 1997, as the coming disaster slowly starts to unfold, that symbol returns. This is the story of a group of boys who try to save the world.

Note: Won the Kodansha Manga Award in the category "Best General Manga" in 2001.
Won the Seiun Award for Best Comic in 2008.


Related Series

Associated Names
20 Seiki Shōnen
20. Yüzyıl Çocukları
20th Century Boys
20th Século Meninos
20세기 소년
Abad ke-20 Anak Laki-laki
amigo símbolo chicos del siglo XX
Chłopaki z dwudziestego wieku
Garçons du 20ème siècle
I ragazzi del XX secolo
Jungen des 20. Jahrhunderts
Những Chàng Trai Thế Kỉ 20
Nijuu Seiki Shounen
Twentieth Century Boys
Мальчишки двадцатого века
فتيان القرن العشرين

Groups Scanlating

Latest Release(s)
v.22 c.9-13 (end) by Manga-Heaven over 12 years ago
v.22 c.8 by Manga-Heaven over 12 years ago
v.22 c.7 by Manga-Heaven over 13 years ago
Search for all releases of this series

in Country of Origin
22 Vols (2000 - Complete)
11 Kanzenban (2016 - Complete)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter

User Reviews
20th Century Boys by cryptic
20th Century Boys by Master_M2K


User Rating
Average: 8.8 / 10.0 (1539 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.75 / 10.0

Last Updated
March 19th 2020, 1:11am PST



Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Big Comic Spirits (Shogakukan)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher
Viz (22 Vols - Complete / 7 Perfect Eds - Ongoing)

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #580 increased(+84)
Monthly Pos #1126 increased(+60)
3 Month Pos #1480 increased(+141)
6 Month Pos #1652 increased(+49)
Year Pos #1714 decreased(-499)

List Stats
On 900 reading lists
On 1466 wish lists
On 3158 completed lists
On 114 unfinished lists
On 467 custom lists

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User Comments  [ Order by usefulness ]
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Not bad  
by Sburator
July 30th, 2019, 8:26am
Rating: 5.0 / 10.0
Not good either.
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is it a classic? i think so. (nothing much else to add)  
by hiji-kun
April 26th, 2019, 8:55pm
Rating: 9.0 / 10.0
i wouldn't tier it among my favorite manga and maybe it's not quite old enough but it just ~f e e l s~ like a classic, like it's something that will endure.
other reviewers have felt that it dragged on too long but i respectfully disagree. my personal gripe would be that a lot of the characters felt a bit...flat. maybe it was due to the nature of the story/plot (timeskips) but it felt like much of the character growth/development was offscreen (unseen),
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
being a great exception.

... Last updated on April 26th, 2019, 8:58pm
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Great start, drags on later  
by NazarethSTG
April 20th, 2016, 4:34am
Rating: 6.0 / 10.0
This series starts brilliantly, with a great premise, great characters and an engaging story. Sadly, what the author starts unveiling is not as interesting as the mistery that precedes it. It starts to drag on and to keep the reader's interest Urasawa starts to machinegun his trademark forced, ridiculous plot twists, a cheap way to tell a story. Maybe the story was too ambitious for Urasawa to handle, or maybe it's just that he's better at building mistery than explaining those mysteries, something that seems to be common in his work.

... Last updated on April 20th, 2016, 4:37am
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by kiriee
November 11th, 2015, 10:34am
Rating: 9.0 / 10.0
For the first half, Everything laid out perfectly but the last half not so great with so many new character being introduced and how the author trying to make it like they are supposed to be there or maybe a twist to me it was just after thought to make the series last longer than it should.

A lot of manga suffer a from this kind of thing, I guess this is kind of thing that you have to deal with popular manga, kinda a shame to see perfectly great manga turn into an good manga near the end. Well still worth reading.

... Last updated on November 11th, 2015, 10:35am
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by Dr. Love
May 21st, 2014, 6:46pm
Rating: N/A
A classic. Anyone who reads manga knows this manga. And even people who don't read manga know what 20th Century boys is! As usual Urakawa develops a world with loads of interesting and diverse characters yet manages to tie all their plot lines up neatly.

Personally I thought 21st Century Boys was unnecessary (or should've been added to 20th Century Boys).
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A good read, but it drags on and loses momentum.  
by Neofit
April 25th, 2014, 5:25am
Rating: 7.0 / 10.0
A great series, to be sure, but it wastes a lot of time on trivial things that do not add anything relevant to the main story. The second half is thus not as good as the first - too many characters are being introduced almost regularly and then quickly set aside, old characters fade into the background, plot elements that looked as if they would play a major part in the story later on are mostly forgotten or set aside as if the author just decided to drop it, and the whole story gets quite silly and loses the original detective thriller/mystery feel; a lot of implausible things get hand-waved just to set up a particular setting for the last part, which ultimately drags on the most without being particularly satisfying and does not even wrap up in the main series.
Ultimately, it is a very good read, it manages to entice and deliver on its suspense (most of the time), and I would gladly recommend it to anyone interested in conspiracy thrillers, but the second half is not quite as satisfying and interesting as the first.
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Loved it.  
by Serendipity_
November 5th, 2013, 3:13pm
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
I'm officially in love with Urasawa Naokis work. His characters, stories, art, everything. This manga didn't disappoint, none of his Manga does really.

The thing with Urasawas manga is that it takes a certain type of audience to get his work. A rather mature audience. I'm not saying that some people here are immature, but if you haven't read many seinen manga or don't like this kinda theme at all, then you would have a hard time getting what Urasawa's trying to do. Personally I'm glad I waited this long before reading any of his work, because I know if I had read them earlier I wouldn't share the same opinion I have now.

Strongly recommended.

... Last updated on November 5th, 2013, 3:17pm
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Huh? Is that a movie?  
by Fantasier
October 5th, 2013, 12:45am
Rating: 8.5 / 10.0
With just only two reads of his manga, I notice that the talent of Urasawa Naoki's is the ability to give a manga feeling of a movie.

20th Century Boys is probably the most famous piece of the author, at least the very first one I heard of Naoki's. The graphic style is just fine. I neither like it or dislike it. I started reading his piece, and what first strikes me is the 'mangatography'. Naokish angles and 'camera' positions in each panel of the manga give me excitements.

The story is what people praise a lot on how it is so engaging, thrilling and suspenseful. I however don't really think so. Sure, it is engaging and makes me want more and more until the secret is revealed. Still, it is not that unpredictable for me; say, I could guess who is 'Friend' very early. I'm not saying I'm clever or anything, but the job can better be done by distracting readers from some facts even more.

Also, this series contains a lot of 'cut's from the current scenes, which are usually good, but sometimes there are just so many of them that I'm irritated rather than excited. The cuts usually lead to Naokish time skips, which seem to be his signature. These time skips are cleverly used, but then again, there are sometimes too many of them, making it unpleasant rather than intriguing.

Those flaws said, I enjoyed it very much. 20th Century Boys deserves its fame.
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by Kamugin
January 11th, 2013, 8:51am
Rating: 5.0 / 10.0
20th Century Boys have its strong points indeed, the mystery hooked me pretty well at first, but man, what a lame bunch of "heroes"! I can't remember having seen before an equal or worse group of such powerless and witless protagonists that have to defeat a strong villain, specially the main character. Chapter after chapter I kept waiting that they would pull out something or do something out of the ordinary against the villains, but they didn't! They only won because the villain was a fan of the main protagonist, his childhood friend, and kind of gave up. Even the girl that had actual super powers didn't do much in the end. Lame, plain lame! I felt deceived after finishing it, the only character I liked was the girl that was the comic relief of the story, while she tried desperately to keep her head attached to her neck in that brainwashing prision school.

... Last updated on June 9th, 2017, 3:56pm
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by Choreboy
October 1st, 2012, 1:12pm
Rating: N/A
I've read many series with time skips, but never one who applied it so creatively. It is one of the most essential components of this series, if not the most, and is used masterfully. That said, this was a very compelling series about childhood friendships that constantly made you ponder and theorize who the true culprit was IMO. Looking back, I honestly can't believe I didn't catch on, but I'm glad the mysteries kept me fooled for some time. It's not like I scrutinized every every aspect of every character, either. I would recommend this series for anyone who enjoys seinen with mystery or a classic (I've never read another manga quite like it). It's not like most of the manga today, centered around repulsively unreal awkward & cliche romance, giant breasts on what's essentially a child (with way too much fanservice), over-the-top super powers, and blushing for no reason (I hate it because most of the time nobody would actually do so is most situations). Quite the breath of fresh air to me. **FOR THOSE WHO'VE READ THE SERIES IN IT'S ENTIRETY ONLY. THIS WILL RUIN YOUR READING EXPERIENCE IF READ BEYOND THIS POINT.**
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
I will add that some aspects were a bit too convenient because too many of the main characters that were thought to be dead were actually alive until the end. This made the ending a bit boring and I wouldn't have tagged this as a tragedy because of that fact. Still, it was a great manga and completely worth the time put in to reading it.

... Last updated on October 1st, 2012, 1:12pm
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