The beginning of a new week can only mean one thing: time for new Weekly Shonen Jump! This is where Jacob investigates the latest and greatest in the magazine, telling you what’s worth your time and what’s not. You can find coverage of other series under the tag Jump Time. Here’s High School Family chapter 38.
The transformation is complete: as of chapter 38, High School Family has become the new Haikyu!!.
Admittedly, it’s been a long time coming. Back when Ichiro joined the volleyball team at the start of the series, none of us had any idea how important that detail would be, but it has ended up being one of the core parts of this series, alongside its meditations on teen angst and the realities of family life.
In any case, High School Family chapter 38 sees Ichiro have his big moment. He’s been collecting balls and scrubbing floors as the volleyball team’s lackey for some time now, but this chapter finally lets him play a match. Although it’s soured somewhat by the fact that his back gives out halfway through, there’s an element of nostalgic melancholy to the whole thing that is sure to move any reader’s heart.
When Ichiro plays volleyball, he feels so alive that he appears to others like he’s fifteen again. This is only pushed home further by Ryo Nakama’s decision to literally change Ichiro’s character design to look younger at multiple points throughout High School Family chapter 38: at first, this only happens from the coach’s point of view. He went to middle school with him, after all, but eventually the opposing team sees the same way. You just gotta feel happy for him, y’know?
Moreover, the fact that this is just a ‘practice match’ makes it clear that High School Family isn’t done with volleyball yet. Most likely, the rivalry between Ichiro’s school and Sorree High will return in the future, echoing the rivalry between Karasuno and Nekoma High. Albeit not as seriously.
We all have that thing that makes us feel young again. To quote George Bernard Shaw, ‘We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.’ What’s yours?
You can read High School Family chapter 38 for free via VIZ Media.