From the late 1940’s to the the late 1980’s, Osamu Tezuka was instrumental in developing (if not downright creating) almost every genre of manga possible. Although he is probably best-known for his shōnen (young boys) manga works such as Astro Boy (1952-68), and Jungle Emperor (1950-54), he was equally comfortable in working on shōjo (young girls) manga stories such as Princess Knight (1953-56) and Queen Eggplant (1954-55). Never one to rest on the laurels of his past success, Tezuka was constantly seeking to reinvent himself and find new ways to entertain his audience. This meant branching out into new areas, such as the cutting-edge and avant-garde series Phoenix (1967-88), and his seinen (young men) social commentaries such as Swallowing the Earth (1968-69), and Ayako (1972-73).
As if that was not enough, Tezuka also explored social issues such as sexual education for young people through manga series such as Apollo’s Song (1970), Yakeppachi’s Maria (1970) and Marvelous Melmo (1970-72). He crafted, out of nothing, the sub-genre of “medical thriller” with manga series such as Black Jack (1973-83). He also added significantly to that of “historical super-natural thriller” with the samurai period piece Dororo (1967-69). In fact, just naming the genres of manga that Tezuka created his manga for would be a lengthy process all on its own.