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Published by VegettoEX
23 April 2018, 3:53 PM EDT

The official Dragon Ball website’s seventieth entry in “The Nearly Complete Works of Akira Toriyama” — an on-going series highlighting rare and important pieces of the author’s work over the years — is the spine artwork of Arale for the 1980 No. 5-6 double issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump (released 05 January 1980), which contained the two-chapter debut of Dr. Slump:

With the series just beginning and Toriyama was still relatively unknown, Dr. Slump did not receive its own exclusive cover splash until later that year with the 1980 No. 15 issue (released 11 March 1980), which contained the series’ 11th chapter. As was the case for several years, the first issue of a new calendar year featured the various Jump authors on the cover. Though his series does not appear on the cover, this would be Toriyama’s Jump cover debut in a very literal sense.

In his author comment accompanying the chapters, Toriyama — true to form — notes a word from his Nagoya dialect:

初の連載。全力でメチャンコがんばります。あっ“メチャンコ”って名古屋弁で“とっても”の意味よ

My first serial. I’ll work mechanko hard and give it all I’ve got. Ah — mechanko means “very” in Nagoya dialect.

Toriyama had not yet begun signing his comments with <明> (“Akira”), something he would begin the following month alongside Dr. Slump‘s sixth chapter.

Prior to Dr. Slump, Toriyama’s professional publications had included Wonder Island (released 28 November 1978 in the 1978 No. 52 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump), Wonder Island: Detective Harry’s Big Panic (later called Wonder Island 2, released 27 December 1978 in the Shōnen Jump 25 January 1979 Extra Issue), Today on Hairai Island (released 22 March 1979 in the Shōnen Jump 20 April 1979 Extra Issue), and Gal Detective Tomato (released 20 July 1979 in the Shōnen Jump 15 August 1979 Extra Issue).

The title page from the first chapter of Dr. Slump was previously shared as the 21st entry in this “The Nearly Complete Works of Akira Toriyama” series.