The bag itself even has its own redemption arc.

Now that we’re well into February, the “fukubukuro” lucky bag season around New Year’s is a distant memory. But a few can still be found here and there if you know where to look. Our writer Ahiruneko is one such savvy shopper and came across the Junk Shonen Comics Fukubukuro from the online mail order division of secondhand retailer Surugaya.

The lucky bags were divided into four overarching genres of manga demographics: shonen (boys), seinen (young adult men), shojo (girls), and ladies (women). Ahiruneko decided on shonen, since it’s where many of manga’s biggest titles can usually be found, and bought a 40-book set for just 980 yen ($6.63) plus 300 yen ($2) for shipping, which breaks down to just 32 yen ($0.22) per book.

With the wealth of titles out there, this also promised to be one of those fun lucky bags where Ahiruneko really had no idea what he was going to get. So, he excitedly opened it when it arrived.

▼ Especially when ordered online, “lucky bags” often turn out to be lucky boxes.

He first pulled out Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan, which Ahiruneko could tell from the distinctive cover art alone was a spin-off of the JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure series centering on the character Kishibe Rohan from the Diamond Is Unbreakable arc. It was even adapted into a live-action NHK show and feature film, so our writer was happy to give it a try.

Next was the second volume of Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan, which will come in handy if Ahiruneko ends up enjoying the first. He likes JoJo so it seemed very promising.

And speak of the devil – the next book pulled out was Volume 11 of the JoJolion arc of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.

And after that came another JoJolion, and another, and one more… and a few more after that for a total of 13 volumes. Clearly, whoever packed Ahiruneko’s lucky bag was biased and filled 15 spots of this 40-book fukubukuro with JoJo and JoJo-adjacent titles.

Even more peculiar was that the JoJolion books he got were all in the middle of the arc, leaving him without any set up or conclusion. At least the ones he did get were continuous, so he could… Oh, wait a minute…

Ahiruneko: “Volume 10 is missing!”

Granted, with assorted boxes of manga like this you’re expected to only get partial samples of series. But with this much of the same title in one box, Ahiruneko felt obliged to read through them all. However, the burden of starting in the middle and then having to leapfrog a volume immediately after was too annoying for him to put up with.

Out next was Volume 45 of Bleach. That was right in the middle too, but at least there was only one book which minimized our writer’s time investment.

Then there was Volume 11 of Gag Manga Biyori. Since it’s just a comic of one-off jokes there’s no continuity to speak of, so that worked out just fine.

Also inside the box were Volumes 91 to 105 of One Piece, but unlike JoJolion, these were continuous and covered the entire Wano Country arc from start to finish. Ahiruneko had even been thinking of rereading this arc, so this lucky bag has already earned its worth.

The rest of the books were all from the Mitsudomoe series which stood out as the only series in this set not published in Shonen Jump. This part of the bundle consisted of Volumes 9 to 18 with 16 and 17 left out, which was a little haphazard but not quite as egregious as the JoJolion arrangement.

Ahiruneko had expected more variety and niche titles in this lucky bag but felt satisfied with his haul of big-name manga overall, considering the price. He considered buying the seinen set too but unfortunately, Surugaya was completely sold out of all sets by the time he went back to check on it.

Still, it’d be worth bookmarking for the next time fukubukuro season rolls around to get a bunch of manga you never knew you needed.

Related: Surugaya
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