When not on hiatus, Yoshihiro Togashi brings Hunter x Hunter to life. And in that famed manga, it appears he keeps making secret references to idol girl group Keyakizaka46.
Featuring a slew of members, Keyakizaka46 debuted in 2015 and is the sister group of Nogizaka46, which is AKB48’s official rival group.
As Hachima points out, Togashi appears to be a big Keyakizaka46 fan if the continual references are anything to go on.
冨樫先生、ハンターハンターに欅坂46ネタ仕込み過ぎやろ。こんな細かいところまでw pic.twitter.com/lBn2GoECqd— 社畜のよーだ (@katou443) March 21, 2018
CD product numbers appear on a seemingly unrelated sign.
冨樫の欅ネタが止まらねぇ・・— ギエピー (@peletake_giepi) March 12, 2018
The group’s pose also popped up in Hunter x Hunter.
Keyakizaka46 has a song called “AM1:27.”
“Which do you like better, keyaki written in kanji (欅) or keyaki in hiragana (けやき)?” asks a character in a seemingly non-sequitur question. Keyakizaka46 is written officially both with kanji (欅坂46) and hiragana (けやき坂46).
ハンターハンターのサイレントマジョリティーって欅坂46が元ネタだったのか pic.twitter.com/attf5Nhf3A— わあちゃん (@K9999_KUSANAGI) March 21, 2018
The hairstyle Keyakizaka46 member Yurina Hirate sported in the “Silent Majority” video appears to have inspired this.
But the references do not stop there.
Now, this might seem like a series of kwinky-dinks, right?
Well, here is a Togashi talking about buying music in Shibuya, including Keyakizaka46’s single “Garasu Wo Ware!”
流行り風邪からようやく復活。武道館大円団に喜びつつの涙。— yoko k (@otomodachipunch) February 2, 2018
Togashi also sent the group flowers for their first performance at the Budokan. Looks like he prefers “keyaki” in hiragana.
For more on Hunter x Hunter, check out its English language site.