Mashiro Moritaka (真城 最高, Mashiro Moritaka) is the main protagonist of the Bakuman. series. He is often referred to as Saikō (サイコー) by his friends, as it is an alternative way of reading his name. He is the artist half of the Weekly Shōnen Jump duo, Ashirogi Muto.


Fourth grade Mashiro

Mashiro's known family consists of his mother, father, and grandfather. His late uncle Nobuhiro Mashiro, the creator of Super Hero Legend, is his inspiration in becoming a manga-ka.

It is Mashiro's dream to create a successful manga that will be adapted into an anime that will star his fiancéMiho Azuki as the heroine. While his former goal of making a reaching number 1 has already been achieved, he and his partner Akito Takagi are now aiming to create a manga that will become a central pillar of Weekly Shōnen Jump.


Mashiro is of average build and height. He has blue hair and blue eyes, with a cowlick at the top of his head. He is usually seen wearing more than 2 layers of clothing, and wears a t-shirt with a jacket on top most of the time.


Mashiro is extremely talented at art, and has received numerous commendations for it even before he decided to become a manga-ka. He has extremely high standards when it comes to his drawings, and refuses to stop redoing them until he is completely satisfied. He is also extremely competitive, especially when it comes to his rival, Niizuma. Other than Niizuma, he also shares a friendly rivalry with Fukuda, Aoki, and Hiramaru.

Mashiro is in a solid partnership with his middle school classmate and best friend Takagi. Mashiro and Takagi have a deep mutual respect for each other, and both have decided to work with other other due to their talent and intelligence. He is also close friends with Takagi's wife, Kaya, whom he has known since they were in middle school.

Mashiro has an extremely wholesome relationship with his fiancé, Azuki. The relationship between the two has been compared by both Takagi and Kaya to those of grade schoolers. Mashiro and Azuki have promised to each other to simply motivate each other through text until their dreams come true. Mashiro is also shown throughout the series to be a hopeless romantic, and tends to get extremely giddy when texting Azuki.

Mashiro is one of the more sensitive characters within the series. He has great insight on other people's feelings and is able to accurately read moods, especially Takagi's. He even could tell beforehand that the manga which Niizuma hated and wanted to end was 'Crow'. He is also noted to be very obstinate, which is noted by many characters in the series. Kaya mentions that he is as bad as Azuki.

Bakuman Series

Legacy of a Mangaka and Mashiro's Beginning

When Mashiro was young, he idolized his uncle, Nobuhiro Mashiro, who was a manga-ka for Weekly Shōnen Jump. Because of his uncle, he developed an interest in drawing, and was praised for his tremendous talent. Also due to his uncle, Mashiro gained a lot of knowledge on how manga is created, approved, and published. When his uncle passed away to overexhaustion, he decided to forget his interest in becoming a manga-ka.

Mashiro as Makoto Doumoto

Teaming Up With Takagi

The story begins when Mashiro forgot his Math notebook in his classroom. Because it contained illustrations of his crush, he decided to go back to school and retrieve it, only to find that it is in the possession of Akito Takagi, the top student. Takagi invited Mashiro to create a manga together because he saw his art, to which he declined. After several more persistent attempts by Takagi to make Mashiro write a manga with him, Mashiro relented and promised to think about it.

Mashiro proposes to Azuki

Later that night, Mashiro received a call from Takagi, asking him to come with him to Azuki's house. Upon reaching Azuki’s home, Takagi revealed that he knew about Azuki's dream to become a voice actress. Mashiro then promised Azuki that he will draw the manga while Takagi writes the story, and that when their manga becomes an anime, Azuki will play the role of the heroine. Due to his nervousness, Mashiro accidentally asks Azuki to marry him after they accomplished their dreams. Azuki, surprisingly enough, said yes.

Teaming up with Takagi In the exams, Mashiro can't think properly and asks if he can go to the nurse's office. Then Takagi also goes to the nurse. Upon seeing Takagi, Mashiro says he's been thinking of Azuki. On the roof, Takagi says that he picked him to be the artist for his manga not for his drawing skills, but for his personality. Takagi says that people like Azuki are smart because they're sensible. She has a good personality (graceful and well-mannered) rather than Iwase (another girl) who has good grades but is very arrogant. To this, Mashiro agrees to work with him because they think alike but Takagi asks if his parents are okay with this. His mom at first, does not approve but reluctantly agrees because his father doesn't mind him being a manga-ka. Then Mashiro's grandpa gives him his uncle Nobuhiro's keys for his manga studio. Takagi and Mashiro find supplies, action figures, magazines and manuscripts in his uncle's studio. Takagi takes out some manuscripts that look like drafts. Mashiro explains that you have to draw a na-me (draft with words and pictures) for the artist, rather than just writing a script. The artist will then change it and give it to an editor.

First Steps Towards Manga and Azuki’s Mom

Takagi and Mashiro both want to draw a masculine manga (not something weak or shojo). Takagi asks if he can study some of his uncle's na-mes. Mashiro's goal is to make an anime before they’re 18 for Azuki. Mashiro sees that his uncle was working extremely hard and apologizes to his dad for believing his uncle commit suicide. The determination of his uncle persuades Mashiro to work full-heartedly; for manga and Azuki.

Mashiro finds the letters his uncle wrote to the girl he loved in a closet full of manuscripts. The last letter says that she is going to get married and that she won't write anymore after the wedding so she apologizes. Then, they find out that the girl was Azuki's mom. Takagi and Mashiro meet Azuki's mom. They tell her they are sorry for reading her letters. Then Azuki's mom admits loving Mashiro's uncle but she was too embarrassed to say anything to Nobuhiro. She believes his uncle's gag story was based on how Kawaguchi Taro felt. Mashiro tells Azuki's mom that he doesn't want Azuki to know about the letters between his uncle and her.

Mashiro has been practicing to draw using some manga pens and falls asleep in the exams. He explains the three different kinds of pens he has used.

G Pens: The pen most manga-kas use. They’re very hard to use because the lines aren't consistent enough.

Kabura Pens: (What his uncle used) They make very good lines but make the drawings have no flavor. However, they are good for backgrounds.

Maru Pens: Good for very thin lines.

He also says that drawing still figures are easy but it's hard to make movement, expressions, and composition. Mashiro is amazed how his uncle, who didn't use G pens or white-out, became a pro in three years. For the sake of manga, Mashiro has decided to go to Yakusa North High School because it isn't the best school so he will have more time to draw.

Drawing a Manga for Jump

One time as they are Reading Shonen Jump they find Niizuma Eiji, who won the 2nd prize for the Tezuka Award at the age of 15. He's praised for his artwork by the judges. Back in school, they remember a kid in their class called Ishizawa who loves drawing chibi-style girls. Mashiro says once you win an award, you will get an editor. Even if you lose, an editor might like it and still accept you. However, their editors are chosen for them, so they might be good or bad. His uncle once said a really good editor constantly rejected a newbie artist's work. He says because of this, it led the artist to fame.

Takagi and Mashiro decide to create a manuscript for Shonen Jump to see what their editor's opinion is. On their way to his uncle's studio, Mashiro sees Azuki. Mashiro gets really shy and looks down whilst Azuki hides behind her mom. However when they both turned back and saw each other, Mashiro felt as if they really were on the same wavelength.

Takagi gives him a manuscript called Double Earth: The Two Earths. It’s about how the Earth we believe is reality are really just clones of the people on the real Earth. ‘’“We were experimented, and thanks to us, there is no war or pollution on the real Earth”’’. Mashiro thinks it's amazing and asks if they want to publish it for Jump. Takagi has another idea called Sunglass Pitcher. It's about a student who gets hit by a baseball and goes blind but appears ten years later and wins a game with a fastball. It turns out he worked hard with his father and when everyone realizes he's blind, he has to fight against the baseball association and his rivals in order to pitch. However, both agree that Two Earths was more interesting and decide to write Two Earths for Jump by the end of Summer Vacation.

During this time Miyoshi Kaya, Azuki's best friend at school, wants to talk with Takagi. She's angry because she told Takagi what Azuki wanted to be when she grew up. Takagi then asked Azuki if it was true, even though he told Miyoshi that he wouldn't mention it to anyone. When Miyoshi is leaving he says that he wants to 'talk' with her leading her to actually believe he is hitting on her. Miyoshi goes back to Azuki. Azuki thinks Takagi likes Miyoshi because she's cute, unlike Iwase whose stuck-up. Miyoshi also wants to find out who Azuki likes. She asks Azuki but she gets really embarrassed and says she's really self conscious and blushes when she sees boys.

Meanwhile, Takagi and Mashiro are working really hard on their manga. They finish on 28/08/2008. They decide to bring over the manuscript to Shueisha (Manga Company) on the next day. Also, Niizuma Eiji's manga Large Bander, which got 2nd for the Tezuka Award, gets published into Jump.

Akamaru Jump

Mashiro and Takagi make a one-shot (50-page first chapter), Money and Intelligence for Akamaru Jump, which eventually gets published to the magazine. It is their first manga to be published. {C}Each of the magazine's stories are rated and they get first place in the early results, but they only get third place in the final (real deal) results.

After the drop in the ranking for the manga, Mashiro and Takagi decide to make a manga that is more mainstream (current trend), as opposed to going for a cult hit.

Editing Crow Chapter 5

While Takagi is creating an idea for a more mainstream manga, Mashiro agrees to work for Niizuma Eiji for the summer. He meets Nakai and Fukuda while working there. Mashiro and Fukuda help Eiji with creating a more interesting plot, and discuss popularity in Jump. After learning both Eiji and Fukuda use characters they made up when they were kids for their stories Mashiro quits, wanting to find inspiration in what he drew when he was younger.

Breaking Up

After learning that Takagi hasn't really been working on a new story, he begins to wonder about Takagi's conviction. Mashiro remains silent until the end of the summer, and breaks off his partnership with Takagi. Unbeknownst to both of them they are both thinking of writing a detective story.

Mashiro later learns this from Takagi on the way to school and that Hattori was intending to show them that they were a perfect team by tricking them into both entering a story in the Golden Future Cup. Mashiro then decides to turn the tables on Hattori, by making him believe that they are both working on their stories while he and Takagi are really working together.

Golden Future Cup

Mashiro wants to get Detective trap serialized so Hattori says if they want to get serialized so bad, to enter the Golden Future Cup and write 1 chapter of Detective Trap every 2 weeks.

New Year's Party

Mashiro's Goal

At the New Year's Party, Mashiro and Takagi are introduced to many mangakas. Some of them are new artists just like Mashiro, for example Hiramaru and Arai (Who made Otters 11 and Cheese Okaki respectively). After dinner and bingo, Mashiro says to a board member that his goal is to make a popular manga that can get number one, unlike his uncle.

Detective Trap's Serialization

Moritaka has been working extremely hard while Detective Trap is being serialized. He has been getting less and less sleep and he finally collapses. He was taken to the hospital after that. He is diagnosed with a liver infection which requires surgery. Mashiro wants to keep working while he is in the hospital so that the Trap won't have to go on hiatus, whereas everyone else believes that his first priority should be to get better. Mashiro tries to convince Takagi to bring him his materials, but Takagi decides to call Azuki to see if she can convince him to stop working. Azuki goes to the hospital the next day and begins talking to Mashiro from outside his room.

Cover for Detective Trap's first volume


Azuki asks which is more important; manga or her. Mashiro says manga. He is determined to continue drawing manga in the hospital, even though he is not allowed to until his health improves. Eiji, Takagi and Mashiro's mom go to the hospital. Once they leave, their editor comes in and requests him to stop. He says the head has put them both on hiatus. However, when he comes in, he says he will be putting them on hiatus till they graduate from high school (even after they come out of hospital) because of his uncle who died from working too hard on manga.

Two of Me, Hitman10, and Future Watch

Two of Me, Hitman10, and Future Watch are all stories that Takagi and Mashiro make up after the cancellation of Detective Trap. Hitman10 and Two of Me are two series they write for their editor; one of them a comedy and the other one serious. Miura, their editor, favored gag manga, and wants them to write a comedy; Takagi is reluctant because comedy isn't his strong point. Fearing that Miura would automatically pick the comedy, Takagi and Mashiro also decide to make a one shot, Future Watch, and submit it for Manga Treasure without letting Miura know.

Rough Draft of Future Watch

When they turn in the two manga, Two of Me and Hitman10, their editor Miura, as they feared, chose the comedy manga. Miura also found Future Watch as an entry for Treasure which led to him arguing with the pair. Eventually Miura would let Future Watch be sent to Treasure as he was confident that Hitman10 would still do better. Miura later calls them for their weekly meeting but avoids mentioning Future Watch and Treasure. Mashiro and Takagi both surmise that Future Watch had actually done well. Miura later tells them that due to the quality of the works the editors decided to run both Future Watch and Hitman10 as one-shots, and whichever did better would be serialized. Both Takagi and Mashiro thought Furture Watch would do really well. However, the result was not exactly what they had wanted; although Future Watch ranked ahead of Hitman10 it was still only to achieve 9th place in the reader surveys.

The two then met with Miura, who collected tons of data that proved comedy was a more stable manga choice because it held more stable rankings even when not highly placed. Takagi agreed with the presented data but Mashiro still argued against doing a comedy as he thought Takagi was more suited to darker mangas. This led to another argument in which Miura stated that they should split up, enraging Takagi. However once they realize how serious Miura was they forgave him and decide to make a comedy manga, however they did not want to do Hitman10. This lead to the creation of Run, Daihatsu Tanto!

Run, Daihatsu Tanto

Early Version of Run, Daihatsu Tanto

A gag manga run by Ashirogi Muto after Trap has ended. At first, Tanto received positive critics from the editors and readers. However, over time, it was slowly outrun by Niizuma Eiji's Crow. Moreover, +Natural also outrun it. They tried to do a lot more change in Tanto, but it's no use. It's downfall makes Eiji didn't want to read it again. After a depression and pressure, Mashiro called Azuki, yelling that he wants to quit Tanto because there's no hope in surpassing Eiji if they keep on serializing Tanto.

Perfect Crime Party

Short-formed as "PCP", it is a story created through the combined efforts of Takagi and Mashiro. It is the story about a group of elementary school kids that has a unique hobby of committing minor but "Perfect Crimes". In order to get inspiration for this story, Mashiro and Takagi even tried out the pranks in real-life, attempting to recreate the emotions and situation of the characters themselves. PCP managed to get serialized, and had maintained its status as a "Popular Manga" for more than a year. This series also brought Ashirogi Muto more fame and popularity than they ever got, turning these two young mangaka's into true pros. However, despite PCP's major popularity, it was deemed unsuitable for becoming an anime, as its contents seems to be provoke its viewers to commit crimes, even though it was not the original intention of its authors.

Perfect Crime Party was used as a weapon for the Ashirogi Muto duo to defeat Tozu Nanamine's manga, "What is Required", and it is their desire to end his series within 10 weeks. PCP succesfully defends against Nanimine's manga, after his plan to use 50 people to create his manga backfires. However at the New Years party Nanamine shows up only to tell Ashirogi Muto that he will return to defeat them in the future.

Love Fiesta

Love Fiesta is a romance one shot created by Moritaka Mashiro ( he's using his pen name though). He wanted to do a one shot because he wanted to get another series because PCP could not get a anime. Mashiro told Takagi that he wanted to do it alone. 5 days later he had no ideas at all. He was thinking about how Fukuda loved bikes so be made a bike manga and how Shun loved his dog and he made Rabuta & Peace. He was spaced out all day until he realized what he loved most. Azuki. Stuck on ideas for his love manga Mashiro calls Azuki. Though shy at first, he explains that his rivaling Eiji and Iwase. Azuki reveals that she fell in love with him at first sight and tells him that she'll assist him in any way to make his love story.


  • (To Akito Takagi) "You won't become a mangaka. The only ones who make it are a tiny percentage of those with talent, True Geniuses; the other percent are just... Gamblers."" [1]
  • (To Miho Azuki) "Dakara sono yumega kana tara KEKKON SHITEKUDASAI?!" [2][3]
  • (To Akira Hattori) "I mean if we make a manuscript with an eye towards serialization and it's good enough can we get serialized?"[4]
  • (To Miho Azuki) "How long... How long will you wait for me?" [5]
  • (To Toru Nanamine) "Manga that's born from people taking responsibility for their own work, banging their head in frustration, feeling cornered, and like they want to escape, and then using that extreme situation, mental ability, stamina, and panic to create... would never lose to some soul-less manga that's just made up of other people's ideas without any kind of resolve!"

Notes & Trivia

  • Moritaka occasionally sits in the same position as L Lawliet, a character from the manga Death Note, which was also created by Takeshi Obata and Tsugumi Ohba.
  • Moritaka states that his favorite manga is Tomorrow's Joe.
  • Moritaka wears Nike brand sneakers. He wears the Air Force 1 model. [6]
  • He ranked 2nd in the Weekly Shonen Jump's popularity character poll.
  • Moritaka could be compared to Takeshi Obata, the illustrator for Bakuman partnered with Tsugumi Ohba.
  • He among Akito Takagi made a cameo in To Aru Majutsu no Index episode 10 walking near Accelerator.
  • It was implied by Moritaka in episode 2 of Bakuman ii, while meeting his assistants for the first time that he has trouble drawing characters looking to the right.

Articles & References

  1. Bakuman Chapter 1, page 20
  2. Bakuman Chapter 1, page 51 - 52
  3. Translation: "So, after those dreams have come true, will you marry me!?!"
  4. (Bakuman chapter 11, page 19)
  5. Bakuman chapter 14, page 16
  6. Bakuman Volume 3, Chapter 19, Page 7

External Links

All Characters
Shōnen Jump / Shōnen Jack

Moritaka Mashiro + Akito Takagi = Muto Ashirogi | Eiji Niizuma | Yuriko Aoki | Shinta Fukuda | Kazuya Hiramaru | Takuro Nakai | Aiko Iwase | Shoyo Takahama | Shun Shiratori | Toru Nanamine | Koji Makaino | Mikihiko Azuma | Nobuhiro Mashiro | Kisaku Arai | Ryu Shizuka | Hino Kunimi | Ikiki Kajiwara | Kyoichi Murasaki | Kyotaro Hibiki | Shigure Yanagi | Shun Hanshaki


Ichiriki Orihara | Natsumi Kato | Naoto Ogawa | Shinta Fukuda | Shoyo Takahama | Shuichi Moriya | Shun Shiratori | Takuro Nakai | Yasuoka


Akira Hattori | Goro Miura | Hisashi Sasaki | Kim Songyu | Koji Yoshida | Masakazu Yamahisa | Yoshihisa Heishi | Yujiro Hattori | Tatsuro Kosugi

Family / Friends / Classmates
Azuki family

Miyuki Haruno Azuki | Miho Azuki | Mina Azuki

Mashiro Family

Masahiro Mashiro | Kayoko Mashiro | Moritaka Mashiro | Nobuhiro Mashiro | Fumi Mashiro

Miyoshi Family

Yosshi Miyoshi | Kaya Miyoshi

Takagi Family

Akito Takagi's Father | Akito Takagi's Mother | Akito Takagi | Akito Takagi's Brother | Kaya Miyoshi


Hidemitsu Ishizawa

Studio 92

Ehara | Tonaka | Ōbayashi | Tamiya

Together Movies

Gotō and Furuike

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