Hunter x Hunter’s creator explained why there’s a cut to black during Meruem’s final moments.
Hunter x Hunter fans still remember the end of the Chimera Ant arc as one of the most notable moments in the series, and manga in general, and the creator behind it all has answered why the final moments between Komugi and Meruem cut to all black panels before it’s all over. The Chimera Ant arc played out in a much different way than fans ever expected to see, and there’s no bigger sign of than with Meruem. Teased as a godly level opponent that couldn’t be defeated through normal means, at the end of the day it was through a sneaky poisoning that leads to his defeat.
But it wasn’t the defeat itself that fans remember, however, it was the final conversation between Meruem and Komugi that sticks out the most. As it cuts to black panels with their final words with one another, Hunter x Hunter creator Yoshihiro Togashi recently explained in answered questions to former Sakurazaka46 member, Yumiko Seki (as spotted by @TogashisTroupe on X), that he was inspired by some classic moments from other series to do Meruem and Komugi’s ending in the same way.
Hunter x Hunter: Meruem’s Death Explained
“Almost all the panel layouts are decided right before or during the storyboarding process, when then tension is as high as possible, and this was the case for the idea of ‘having several pages of speech bubbles on black backgrounds divided vertically,” Togashi began. “While drawing the chapter’s storyboards, I thought of a part from Fumiyo Kono’s ‘Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms,’ remembering the scene as a sequence of monologue-only panels on white backgrounds divided vertically (when I reread it later, I realized it was my imagination and that I had mistakenly confused it with panels from another scene…). It was then I decided to continue the exchange between Komugi and Meruem in simple, pitch-black panels.”
Continuing further, Togashi explained, “Most people from the generation before mine will remember Ashita no Joe when they think of a famous scene of a character who burned as brightly as they could. For my generation, Raoh from Fist of the North Star would have a piece of that pie. What they both have in common is their use of [a shading technique that can involve crosshatching] to portray and emotional moment.”
Taking this further, Togashi then opened up about their finale, “I’ve always wanted to take on that challenge, and my wish came true with the double-page spread of Komugi and Meruem. It was really enjoyable to depict two characters who found the meaning of life in the process rather than the result, and I’m satisfied that I was able to reach that double-page spread as the culmination of everything.”
How did you feel about Meruem and Komugi’s ending in Hunter x Hunter? Let us know all of your thoughts about it in the comments! You can even reach out to me directly about all things animation and other cool stuff @Valdezology on Twitter!