It was initially created as an online webcomic, and so far three tankoubon have been published by Gentosha Comics. English translations of the first two volumes have been published by Tokyopop in the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada.
In Japan, the word Hetalia itself is defined in two different meanings :
1. A portmanteau. (See below)
2. The franchise stated above.
In pixiv, almost all of the illustrations are tagged based on the later definition instead of the former.
The word Hetalia is shorten form of the word "hetare na itariagun" (The Pathetic/Gutless Italian Army), which originated from 2ch's Military Affairs (or simply Army) board. This is to make light of Italy's domination by neighboring states since the Italian War of 1521–1526, and it became a frequently used word on 2ch and NicoNicoDouga.
The original Hetalia: Axis Powers web comic was adapted into three tankoubon and published by Gentosha Comics. The first volume was released on March 28, 2008, the second on December 10, 2008, and the third on May 20, 2010.
In January 2009, Anime News Network reported that the series would also begin serialization in Gentosha's seinen manga magazine Comic Birz starting in the April issue, but this was later announced to be a publishing error. The Gentosha press release on which ANN had based their article actually referred a new series by Himaruya, Chibisan Date. Amazon.com has listed Hetalia: Axis Powers as being licensed by Tokyopop for a North American release, with the first volume released on September 21, 2010. It is not known yet who will publish the fourth volume in North America following Tokyopop's move to close publishing in the region.
Hetalia: Axis Powers has been adapted into a series of drama CDs, and so far nine have been released.
An anime adaptation of Hetalia: Axis Powers was announced on July 24, 2008, directed by Bob Shirohata and animated by Studio Deen.
The anime was originally scheduled for broadcast on Kids Station on January 24, 2009 but was later canceled. The cancellation only affected the Kids Stations broadcasts; plans to make the series available through mobile phone and Internet streaming were not affected. Initially it was assumed that the cancellation was caused by controversies about numerous Korean protesters called for the cancellation of the series, claiming that the personified character of Korea was an insulting representation of Koreans. However Kids Station claimed that the Korea character does not appear in the anime and that it was "unaware of the criticism in Korea," and cited "various circumstances" as the reason for the cancellation.
A fourth season has been announced for Hetalia and will premiere on September 10. This season will feature the new characters Denmark and Norway.
On January 8, 2010, Funimation announced it had acquired the rights to release the first and second seasons of Hetalia in the United States and Canada. Funimation later began streaming Hetalia on their website, Hulu, and YouTube with Japanese audio and English subtitles and announced that characters would have accents in the English dub.The first DVD was released on September 14, 2010. Funimation have announced at Otakon 2010, that they have the license the Hetalia World Series and will simulcast the episodes and release them on DVD in 2011. In the UK, the series will be distributed by Manga Entertainment.
The series has made its North American television debut on December 23, 2010 on the Funimation Channel.
A feature-length animated film adaptation was announced on September 23, 2009, and was released on June 5, 2010.
A single-player video game based on the anime titled Gakuen Hetalia Portable (学園ヘタリア Portable, lit. Academy Hetalia Portable) of the action/adventure-comic genre was released on March 24, 2011 on the PlayStation Portable in Japan. It was developed by Otomate, and published by Idea Factory, Inc.
Fandom in pixiv
Hetalia has proven to be extremely famous amongst the females (both Japan and Worldwide), and as of June, 2011, 330035 illustrations related to Hetalia have been submitted to pixiv.
However, since the contents of Hetalia contain aspects about the world and its culture, as well as involving its fandom and memes with fandoms outside Hetalia (for example, World Cup), many dramas occured behind the deriviative creation scene and it has since called for many revisions and control (restriction) on the creation itself.
Contents that reflect real international issues, war, politics, disasters, world sports event (World Cup, Olympics etc) and many more will be considered by the viewers as unpleasant and imprudence. Usually dramas and arguements will occur when illustrations that contain sensitive issues are posted.
Since there are no rules for what should be posted and what shouldn't be posted when it comes to content submission, for artists that insist on posting any works that contain sensitive issues stated above are highly advised to put a disclaimer. Concerns like "What to put for thumbnail view", "Place or block specific tags carefully", or "Set the submission timing off the clock so that it won't enter any ranking board" should be taken into consideration. Do remember that THERE ARE USERS OUT THERE WHO ARE VIEWING YOUR WORK.
Since pixiv does not have space in a tag, it is impossible to list Hetalia: Axis Powers under one tag (as it will be seperated into 3 different tags). Therefore artist will usually just use Hetalia (へタリア), or its short form APH to list any Hetalia related illustrations and fanfictions. It is also possible to use underscore as an alternative full name listing, although it isn't really used.
Characters and Nicknames
Main Article : List of Hetalia Characters and Their Nicknames
While pixiv has illustrations for virtually every single character, they are usually being labelled by their affectionated nicknames. Hence in pixiv it is easier to search through characters through their nicknames instead of their representative country.
Short Form Tags
|General Terms||Country Personification Ethnic Shock|
|Original Artist Site||Kitayume.|
Hetalia Tags Category Articles
|Hetalia Tags Category||List of Hetalia Characters and Their Nicknames|
|List of Hetalia Combination Tags List of Hetalia Trio Tags List of Hetalia Group Tags|
|List of Hetalia Event Tags|
|Specifics||Hetaloid Hetamon Hetalia Biyori Touou Project Danmaku Hetalia Fate×Hetalia Ookami Hetalia Doraemons×Hetalia Jojolia|
（Refer to ⇒ pixiv Event）