After being accused of blasphemy against Islam for the unpardonable sin of including some Quranic text in the anime, the distribution of long running manga JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure was halted by the publisher, fearing the usual Muslim histrionics.
The Islamically approved revised manga is now finally going back on sale, though we seem not to be seeing anything of the offending anime. However, it looks like there was never any reason to pull it in the first place…
The anime edition (an OVA) does unambiguously include the pages in question, and evidently managed to find its way into the hands of a less than understanding watcher:
This is said to have been an error in selecting “Egyptian looking” text and ending up with some Quranic scripture.
This is certainly an understandable error; a search for images of “Arabic text” with Google largely provides images of Quranic text, and doubtless few can name much in the way of Arabic literature besides this and a few ancient classics, fewer still in Japan.
Still, to use unknown text in this manner is a lapse in judgment for a production not intended to rock the boat, although it seems it took nearly a decade for this to come to light.
It’s not clear if the anime will be redistributed at some point; it seems unlikely to be a priority given the expense of dealing with anime and the low sales such an old title likely enjoys.
However, the manga itself seems to have been pulled, and censored, for nothing; looking at the below panels it seems clear that there was no recognisable text, Arabic or otherwise, ever even in the title:
The manga will be going back on sale in February, with there apparently being several volumes afflicted. The reprint is being branded a “remix” edition, so other changes may be involved.
It is not clear just how they will be revised; possibly the books will simply be replaced by walkie-talkies or similar in order to avoid the possibility of offence to any other book reverers.
Of course, there would be no outcry were this a bible or otherwise, though perhaps a map not showing the “East Sea” with all its rocks the proper colour could garner a similar response…