There are plenty of anime that have a lot of filler, such as Naruto or Bleach. However, there are a lot of filler episodes that fit completely in the storyline, and could easily have happened. Wouldn't it make sense for the mangaka to declare some of these as canon?

This would clearly satisfy the audience as it kills a lot of people to see good content that didn't really happen. But building on this, would it be plausible for the mangaka to create a new category of episodes in between filler and canon that simply labels episodes as correct so people can watch them, but skip over them since they don't contribute to the plot? This would seem like a step up since there is a clear distinction between outrageously impossible filler and filler that could actually have occurred.


1 Answer 1


Often times, when it comes to the filler, the original creator or mangaka has no say in it. They may have the ability to influence designs, but that's probably it; much of that would get written by someone other than themselves.

This is largely borrowing from an earlier answer of mine, but I want to highlight a few key points from it:

Studios in charge of the more popular anime series don't really have this liberty; generally, one of these things could happen:

  • The author treats it as non-canon and progresses forward (ignore it)
  • The author incorporates it into canon (think Hayate no Gotoku and the addition of Kayura Tsurugino after the movie) (embrace it)
  • The author decides to reboot the series entirely, which may include some components of the original one and may not, with the liberties largely removed (Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood vs Full Metal Alchemist) (allow both to exist)

Effectively, there's really not much wiggle room between what is and isn't canon. It either gets adapted into canon, or it gets ignored. No one outside of the original mangaka can decide this, and there have been examples of both happening in different works. Series like Bleach likely didn't get to exercise options of adopting it into canon due to the fact that Kubo Tite was working so hard on it, he had to go to the hospital several times during Bleach's run.

  • For examples of cases where non-canon material was backported into canon, see the Canon Immigrant page on TV Tropes.
    – ahiijny
    Commented Sep 1, 2018 at 22:15

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