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I checked the synopsis here and I was wondering about the genre of parody.

One Punch Man on

I’ve completed the season of One Punch Man and there was no parody of anything in the animé. The only parody animé I’ve experienced before is Gintama and the parody is altogether at another level! Whereas, One Punch Man had relatively none. Am I missing something or is it an error?

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Because it is based off and makes fun of the superhero stereotypes? – Ero Sɘnnin Jan 17 at 13:47
U answering, suggesting or asking? XD @EroSɘnnin – abhishah901 Jan 17 at 13:56
None. I was commenting. *Ba dum tss*~ – Ero Sɘnnin Jan 17 at 18:49
up vote 15 down vote accepted

TL;DR: One Punch Man is not a parody of a single manga, it is a parody of the whole shonen genre. It makes fun of its codes and therefore can be seen as a parody.

To help understand it, I will compare One Punch Man to Dragon Ball. I will use the anime for comparison, but it is pretty much the same for the manga. This can and should be applied to many shonen series and not only Dragon Ball. Its use is only intended as an example.


In One Punch Man, the fights are over at the moment Saitama punches an enemy (except the final fight). The moment where the fight is going on is very brief. In Dragon Ball, the fights can last a lot of episodes. As an example, the famous fight between Frieza and Goku took 10 episodes (see How much broadcast time did it take for planet namek to blow up)

Reason to fight

Saitama fights because he just wants to be a Super Hero. Being a hero is considered a hobby for him. On the other hand, Goku fights because he wants to save his friends and the Earth, while Vegeta fights to become the strongest fighter ever, Gohan wants to save the Eath so he can study peacefully, and so on. One Punch Man is deconstructing the shonen hero goals: by reading/watching it, you have the feeling that anybody can be a hero, it's not that hard. This is going even deeper as C-Class heroes are quite casual people.


As mentionned in this post, compared to the power he acquired, Saitama's training is just ridiculous, and it is even more so if you compare it to the training in other anime.

The hero itself

Saitama is not badass. While this can be viewed as primarily opinion based, there are some elements that can help us to understand that he was not intended as a charismatic character. Even though every enemy and character are well drawn, Saitama is drawn in a quite basic style and leads us to the feeling that Saitama is out of universe. A good example is the transformation of Boros, which is quite similar to Dragon Ball's evolutions (this is not even my final form). While the transformation itself is very well drawn, Saitama's reaction is quite out of universe:


And so on...

There are a lot other things that could be mentioned, such as the fact that we see the hero doing casual things (groceries, eating in restaurant alone, ...).

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No +1 just because you said he wasn't badass. – akaltar Jan 17 at 16:51
@akaltar I said that he way not designed to be so, which is quite different :p – Ikaros Jan 17 at 16:52
One-punch Man basically takes tropes relating to the shonen genre (and not only, the parody can easily be extended to western media) and makes fun of them by showing them in a very skewed way either by blowing them out of proportions (killing everything with a single punch, superhero organization, area of city completely devoid of people because of danger), by ridiculously downplaying them (Saitama's training, Class C heroes) or straight by mocking them (Class C heroes gathering together to fight the sea king only to be squashed in a few seconds). – Maurycy Jan 17 at 19:32
Saitama's simplistic appearance is a throwback to the original webcomic, where he always looks like an unremarkable person. That was the central feature of his design and backstory: just some generic, unassuming, normal chump who achieves overwhelming power, and through rather generic and normal means. In your particular image, the use is homage to one of the iconic moments in the webcomic. The anime is based off the manga, where the "serious mode" Saitama originates. He is chiseled, well-drawn, emotionally tense. The webcomic style is used to underscore his ennui and simplicity. – zibadawa timmy Apr 24 at 4:38

I would assume, that, the concept itself, of a character that would immediately vanquish any foe, no matter how tall, strong, heavy, experienced, etc, with just one punch, would obviously be intended as the ultimate parody, in itself. My only real question would be: when the OPM video game is released, does OPM simply throw the punch, or, is there a fourteen button sequence that needs to be learned?

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