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I recently came across a lot of questions on Anime and Manga Stack Exchange by this user who is the

curator of an exhibition on Easter Island in popular culture (http://www.moaiculture.com)

I helped him with an answer but then I too was interested in knowing why are there so many references drawn to this place. Similarly Sci-Fi Comics by Korean Authors frequently refer to Jeju Islands.

A bunch of it's appearances are listed here

My Question primarily are-

When did Easter Island start to become such a frequent participant in Japanese Comics? Are there any historical reasons for it?

Some of my research-

I have found that they appeared in European literature as paintings as early as 1775-1776 (could've been earlier but I have found no evidence of the latter so far). The painting was made by William Hodges who was one of the crew members of James Cook's Second Voyage to the Pacific Ocean.

Early European drawings particularly a 1770 Spanish Map also have these structures. The original manuscript maps of the Spanish expedition are in Naval Museum of Madrid and in The Jack Daulton Collection, USA.

These aim to suggest that European literature was the first one to incorporate the Islands but nowhere were there any mentions of it's early incorporating into Japanese Culture.

Some reasons for it being quite popular are

Easter Island is, geographically, very isolated from the rest of the world. Its remoteness has encouraged the myths. Also, many aspects of the island's history continue to be debated and theorised, allowing for alternative ideas to be proposed.

There is a popular myth that the moai are able to come alive: that they can walk, talk, see, and hear. The humanisation of the moai has been aided by mythical accounts that present the island as uninhabited and abandoned. The human-looking moai fill the gap that remains once the native population has been removed.

Another part of the extraordinary history of Easter Island, are the rongorongo inscriptions, of which only 26 tablets and artefacts exist since many were destroyed through war and fire. They are now scattered around the world's museums and archives, and nearly 150 years since their discovery they remain undeciphered. Considering that rongorongo is not widely known, comics depicting moai often weave the glyphs into the story, where they are discovered as an arcane language inscribed into architecture, at the base of the statues, or as tablets found around the island.

Source- http://www.moaiculture.com/

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    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. For technical reasons the pertinent issues cannot be discussed in chat. Please work to identify ways to improve the question in the comments, but please be civil and respectful. – Mark C. Wallace Sep 23 at 20:32
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    Much of the controversy seems to arise from trying to quantify the degree to which Japanese animation features Easter Island. If the question were revised to ask why Easter Island features disproportionately in animation would it be answerable? – Mark C. Wallace Sep 23 at 20:35
  • @MarkC.Wallace Yes the link the OP provides us with just has 2 major comics, which are One Piece! ( sales ranking No1 historically ) and Kiniku Man ( 17th but only 1 chapter out of 100 or more ( See my answer )). His question's scope is so microscopic, I haven't seen Moai statues reading Mangas for over 30 years so far. – Kentaro Sep 23 at 20:42
  • As I expected, no one answers. Because there is no "credible" and especially "official" sources for mangas, comics, and I am the living dictionary reading comics for more than 30 years. Statue of Moai is not a "frequent participant" in any sense to Japanese comics. And here is not the proper place to ask. – Kentaro Sep 29 at 12:10

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