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Big Hero 6, originally released under the title Baymax (ベイマックス) in Japan, is a manga by Haruki Ueno (Phi Brain: Saigo no Puzzle, CV Ore!). It was originally serialized on Weekly Shounen Magazine and Magazine Special by Kodansha in 2014.
The story is a loose adaptation of the movie's plot, with certain characters and plot points changed. It mainly focuses on the characters of Hiro, Baymax, Tadashi and Dr. Callaghan, while the rest of the Big Hero 6 team play minor supporting roles.
The first volume was released in Japan before the movie's premiere and comprises chapters 1 through 4 as well as a special prequel chapter 0 at the end. The second volume was released in 2015 and includes chapters 5 through 8.
Although the manga is considered finished, the story ends in a cliffhanger.
Chapter 0: The Birth of Baymax
Our story begins in the futuristic city of San Fransokyo. A young man named Tadashi Hamada is finishing up his latest project, a healthcare robot designed dispense medical aid. As he finishes up his invention, Tadashi thinks back to the times he spent with his younger brother Hiro and the day it was discovered that Hiro was a child prodigy. He recalls Hiro being bullied as a result of his intelligence, motivating Tadashi to start looking out for Hiro. But as Hiro becomes more isolated, Tadashi decides to build a miniature airplane for him and Hiro to ride in; although the airplane ends up landing in a pond, Hiro is impressed by Tadashi's work. He gradually becomes more invested in spending time with Tadashi, inventing and playing with his brother so rapidly that he soon starts inventing on his own, making Tadashi proud and somewhat jealous. As the flashback ends, Tadashi think about how Hiro's creativity ultimately inspired him to not give up on his project. At that moment, Tadashi successfully activates his creation, Baymax, introducing himself to the robot as his creator and instructs him of his purpose. With Baymax a success, Tadashi only hopes that Hiro will connect to Baymax the same way he connected to Hiro.
Chapter 1: Hiro's Dream
At San Fransokyo Institute of Technology, the Hamada brothers have enrolled into the university. Hiro however has had difficulty adjusting to college life - here, he feels as though his creative mind is being restrained in a setting where he is one step ahead of everyone else; in particular, the lack of recognition from the teachers and students only make Hiro feel bored and eager to cause an upstart in order to add some thrill in his time. Noticing the upcoming science convention the school is holding, Tadashi informs Hiro that this opportunity will let him express his aspirations in the form of a school project. Motivated, Hiro begins to set up his special project - miniature machines called microbots.
During a particular day on campus however, someone activates Hiro's project which causes the shapeshifting Microbots to wreck havoc across the school. Before the Microbot swarm can strike Hiro, Tadashi steps in the way and takes the hit, sparing Hiro but injuring him in the process. Luckily, Hiro manages to deactivate the swarm, but he is accosted by the bystanders and teachers for his invention causing such destruction. But before Hiro can get expelled, Tadashi volunteers to be expelled instead out of his responsibility towards Hiro. Hiro takes particular fury towards this, as Tadashi did not consider Hiro's own feelings in the matter. However, Professor Callaghan steps in and defends Hiro by pointing out the the boy couldn't have known about the Microbots activating prematurely and then subtly points out the real guilty party to be another teacher, Professor Aquino, who had known about the Microbots when no one else had seen Hiro's project yet. With Aquino exposed, the accusations against Hiro are lifted and he is free to continue his project.
Chapter 2: Tadashi's Wish
On the day of the university's showcase, Hiro notices Tadashi accompanied with Wasabi, Honey Lemon, Go Go Tomago and Fred. Confused and irritated, Hiro denies their acquaintance (especially towards Go Go) and instead gestures to Tadashi that his turn in the showcase is up. On stage, Tadashi and Honey present Tadashi's project, Baymax, to the audience by demonstrating Baymax diagnosing Honey (who had tripped onstage a moment earlier). Watching the presentation, Hiro stops to ponder the robot's significance to Tadashi, but he is then called up next to present his microbots. Despite his anxiety, the presentation goes smoothly, and Hiro ends up winning first place. Afterwards, Dr. Callaghan invites Hiro to work at his lab. However, Hiro denies the offer, for working at Callaghan's lab means separating from Tadashi. Though Callaghan considers the possibility of transferring Tadashi, Tadashi reveals that he's going to be transferring to another university in three months, not wanting Hiro to rely on Tadashi all the time. Angered by his brother's decision, Hiro yells at his brother, prompting Tadashi to slap and scold Hiro for his selfishness. However, Hiro runs off from the two hurt and bitter.
At the Hamada residence, Tadashi tries to apologize to Hiro but the boy chooses not to talk to Tadashi. In the middle of the night, Hiro overhears Tadashi and sees him outside riding away from their home. Hiro follows Tadashi back to the university and enters a secret entrance to an underground lab containing a massive portal. Hiro then notices a man in a mask at the consoles who also notices Hiro; before Hiro is caught, a burst of energy suddenly propels Hiro towards the portal. Luckily, Tadashi appears and manages to catch Hiro from being sucked in, however a pipe knocks into Tadashi causing him to get caught in the current as Hiro tries to pull him back. The masked man abandons the scene, leaving Hiro alone to hold Tadashi. Despite his brother's protests, Tadashi ultimately lets go of Hiro to keep him from getting sucked in, and he disappears inside the portal.
Chapter 3: Aunt Cass's Worries
Following Tadashi's disappearance, Cass and Hiro are left in an intense state of grief, despite visits and comforting from Tadashi's friends. To make Hiro feel better, Cass tries to make a special dish for him, but Hiro refuses Cass's efforts in an outburst of emotion. With Cass startled but understanding his wishes, she leaves Hiro in his despair; after which, Hiro decides to kick a nearby toolbox to take out his frustration, which only results in him stubbing his toe. His cry of pain is detected by Baymax's pack, causing the robot to activate and immediately begins to examine Hiro's pain. Hiro is perturbed by Baymax and bitterly requests Baymax to find Tadashi to get the robot to deactivate. Baymax suddenly processes the request and heads off to the university, causing Hiro to follow Baymax to find out what the robot knows. When the duo arrive in the laboratory from before, they find it empty and devoid of its equipment with only Tadashi's hat remaining. Taking it as Baymax mistakenly identifying this memento as Tadashi, Hiro is about to give up when he notices a lone microbot caught inside the hat. Hiro then realizes that the microbot is active and trying to reunite with its peers, so he uses it to locate where the microbot signal is, eventually coming to an abandoned warehouse.
Chapter 4: The Masked Man's Secret
Chapter 5: Brotherly Love
Chapter 6: For Abigail
Chapter 7: The Heart of Baymax
Chapter 8: Hiro's Friends
- In the final chapter of the manga, a news reporter resembling Stan Lee is seen. The reporter's appearance is also identical to Mr. Frederickson, Lee's character in the main continuity.
- Before settling for "The Birth of Baymax", different ideas were planned for the prequel Chapter 0. One of them involved the team fighting a giant monster; to introduce Hiro and Baymax through the eyes of Mochi, and to introduce them from the perspective of a girl character who had a crush on Hiro, exclusive to the manga.