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Film Friday- Bio-Booster Armor Guyver

Film Friday- Bio-Booster Armor Guyver

Guyver has been adapted into a single OVA titled Guyver: Out of Control (1986, based loosely on the first volume), a 12-episode anime OVA series (1989 to 1992, based on the first four volumes), two live action movies (1991’s The Guyver and 1994’s Guyver 2: Dark Hero) as well as a 26-episode anime series (2005 to 2006, based on the first ten volumes).

Guyver: Out of Control

Guyver: Out of Control is a 1986 short horror original video animation based on the manga. It was released in the U.S. and Canada in 1993 by L.A. Hero under the Dark Image Entertainment label. It has since been out of print in North America. The story follows high school students Shō Fukamachi and Mizuki Segawa who accidentally discover one of three Bio Booster Armor units stolen from the Chronos Corporation. When Shō and Mizuki are attacked by a Zoanoid, the unit comes into contact with Shō and bonds with him, transforming him into Guyver I and promptly destroying the Zoanoid assailant. Meanwhile, a female Chronos agent named Valcuria acquires a second unit and becomes Guyver II. She then abducts Mizuki in order to challenge Shō for the Guyver I unit. On Anime News Network, Justin Sevakis called it an “extremely dated piece of pulp that still somehow manages to be fun”.

Characters

Cronos

Genzo Makishima  

Director of Cronos’ Japan Branch, he is in charge when the Japan Branch loses the Guyver Units. While initially one of the people in charge of developing new Zoanoids, Genzo has, unknown to him, fallen behind in this category as well once Dr. Barcas begins designing Hyper Zoanoids, Zoanoids of highly enhanced capabilities. His failures to retrieve the Units as well as come up with any significantly new Zoanoid designs results in Commander Richart Guyot relieving him of duty. Genzo is then used as a guinea pig for the new “Enzyme” Zoanoid prototype, a Zoanoid specifically designed to destroy the Guyver Armor by dissolving it with its acid. After he retrieves Guyver I’s Control Metal in battle, he is ordered by Guyot to self-destruct when the dissolving Guyver I attacks Enzyme.

Oswald A. Lisker / Guyver II 

A Cronos agent, or as he describes himself to Shō, “an inspector from Cronos HQ”. Lisker was in Japan to supervise the transfer of the inactive Guyver Units to Cronos headquarters and was considerably annoyed to discover Makishima had managed to lose them. When one damaged unit was recovered, he insisted on taking a look at it and involuntarily became its host. As the second known activated Unit, he was called “Guyver II”. A man vain of both looks and martial arts skills, he decided to take on the task of retrieving the Unit Shō had bonded with. His Control Metal, which had been damaged when the Unit was initially lost, malfunctioned under the stress of combat. Shō took advantage of his weakened state and struck the metal, causing further malfunction. The control metal burst out of his head and the organism that made up the armor began to consume Lisker’s body. Shō then used his Mega-Smasher to put him out of his misery. Lisker is tall, with curly blond hair.

Zoalords

  • Archanfel  
Quite easily the most powerful being on Earth, Archanfel appears to be a young, fair-haired man with pointy ears and cat-slitted eyes. He is the founder, creator and ruler of Cronos. He is an extremely powerful psychic and possesses amazing battle abilities. Archanfel was created by “the Creators” to be the leader of all the Zoanoids and the people on Earth. The Zoacrystals that give Zoalords their powers were all cultivated using Archanfel’s crystal as a base.
Quoted from book 14, page 16:
“And then… cleaving and cultivating one of Archanfel’s Zoacrystals, we created eleven others. Accepting one of them, I became a Zoalord. In the centuries since then, I have searched for the ten chosen people who would become Zoalords as well.”
Although powerful, he has been increasingly dormant since prehistoric days. When the Creators withdrew from Earth, they attempted to destroy it with a gigantic meteorite which was stopped by Archanfel at great cost to himself.
  • Hamilcar Barcas 
Co-founder of Cronos and the second eldest member of the Council of Twelve. He is responsible for designing and creating the first Hyper Zoanoids and completing the final work on most of the Zoalords. He is over 400 years old and is, in fact, the person who awoke Archanfel from his long slumber. He is widely believed to be the top scientist of Cronos and is said to have greater telepathic prowess than any other Zoalord, save for Archanfel. His seniority among the others has resulted in many of the Zoalords to look up at him with much respect and as such he is occasionally referred to as “Old Bal” by those closest to him.
  • Sinn Rubeo Amniculus  
Discovered by Barcas 370 years ago in Armenia. He is a close friend of Freidrich von Purgstall and commands Cloud Gate after his death. He is considered to be the third-in-command of Cronos after Barcas. His brief appearance as a Zoalord showcased his incredible capabilities by being able to target various missiles in long range and in all directions, then destroy them with precision.
  • Friedrich von Purgstall 
Discovered by Barcas 215 years ago in Vienna. He generally seems to be more compassionate toward the civilian population than the other Zoalords. He is one of the weakest in close-range battle, but his lightning-based power can be formidable. Laser weapons are ineffective against him, as he can absorb and redirect the attacks. Unintended for hand-to-hand fighting, his physical defense is minimal. He was murdered by the rogue trio of Zoalords after being severely weakened from his battle with Guyver I.

 

Manga Monday-Bio-Booster Armor Guyver

Manga Monday-Bio-Booster Armor Guyver

Bio-Booster Armor Guyver or Guyver is a manga series written and illustrated by Yoshiki Takaya. The Guyver itself is a symbiotic techno-organic (or biomechanical) device that enhances the capabilities of its host.

The manga was originally serialized in Tokuma Shoten’s Monthly Shōnen Captain, the first appearance being in the February 18 magazine beginning in 1985. When Shōnen Captain was discontinued in 1997, the manga was picked up by Kadokawa Shoten who subsequently re-released all of the previous tankōbon originally published by Tokuma. The manga is currently serialized in Kadokawa’s Young Ace magazine. It has been licensed by Viz Media, Star Comics and Chuang Yi Publishing.

Plot

A test type Zoanoid escapes from the Cronos Corporation with three Guyver Units. Cronos soldiers attempt to recover the units from the test type, but are thwarted when the test type detonates a bomb that he has concealed in his bag. The Guyver Units are scattered in the blast. One of the lost Guyver Units, known as “Unit I”, lands near two young high school students, Shō Fukamachi and Tetsurō Segawa. The second one is retrieved by Cronos and merges with Oswald A. Lisker to become the second Guyver later on. The final unit falls into the hands of Agito Makishima, who merges with it at an unspecified time. Shō accidentally activates the unit which then painfully merges with him.

Over time, Shō learns more about the Guyver and its abilities. The Guyver is virtually invulnerable, with its only weak point being the Control Metal. With this part intact, it can rebuild the host from the data stored within. If this part is critically damaged, however, the host will be eaten alive by the unit and perish. This is disconcerting and Shō starts to question whether he will ever be free from the Guyver. The situation gradually gets worse with continuously more powerful Zoanoids appearing. This makes it increasingly difficult to protect his vulnerable friends.

As the story progresses it also takes a startling turn, in which Cronos succeeds in taking over the world and reshaping it according to its ideals. The Guyvers are then labeled to the public as a “vanguard of alien invaders”.

Characters

Shō Fukamachi / Guyver I  

The main protagonist of the series, Shō is seventeen years old and a second-year student at Narisawa high school. He has black hair and a slim build. He fights Cronos to protect his friends and family than from any need to see the enemy brought to justice. Had he not become host for a Guyver Unit, he would have happily continued in ignorance of Cronos. He cares deeply for Mizuki Segawa with the intensity of first love and Tetsuro Segawa, Mizuki’s older brother, is his closest friend. As he is the host for the first Unit activated, he is known as “Guyver I”.

Tetsurō Segawa  

A large-framed, chubby third-year student, Tetsuro is Shō’s closest friend. He is highly intelligent and can think rapidly when he has to. He is a rabid science fiction fan and the leader of the sci-fi society in the school, which gives him the background knowledge to make numerous accurate guesses about the Guyver armor, Zoanoids and Cronos. He wears his hair short and has glasses.

Mizuki Segawa  

Mizuki is a typical schoolgirl. At the beginning of the story, she has a crush on Agito Makishima, but later begins to appreciate Shō more. She is somewhat short even for a Japanese girl, very slender and wears her hair in a page-boy cut that emphasizes her large eyes.

Agito Makishima / Guyver III 

Agito is of medium build and muscular; he is a third-year student at the same high school the others attend, but looks older. Portrayed as an anti-hero, he almost never allows sentiment to stand in his way. He appears shrewd and calculating. At one point a candidate-member of the Cronos Elite, he is now viewed by them as a traitor. Even though he may have activated his Unit before Oswald A. Lisker, the second Guyver, he did not openly appear in his Guyver armor until after Lisker was eliminated and thus he was dubbed “Guyver III”. Agito shows a frightening knowledge of what the Guyver can do throughout the series. After the Cronos conquest, Agito leads a resistance organization known as “Zeus No Ikazuchi” or “Zeus’ Thunderbolts”, as he plans to overthrow Cronos and steal their power (as the god Zeus did to his father, Cronos).

Shizu Onuma / Griselda  

Shizu Onuma and her family have been serving the Makishima family for many years, tending to their properties and caring for Agito in his youth. Although she is by nature kind and gentle, she can be extremely dangerous when she is acting in his interests since her devotion to him is total and overriding any other consideration. She gave her body to the ambition of Agito and leads the processed “Liberatus” of the Zeus’ Thunderbolts organization, having been transformed into the proto-zoalord Griselda. She capable of protecting the Liberatus from the psychic control of Cronos’ overlords, although her lifespan has been greatly diminished by the transformation.

Fumio Fukamachi 

Fumio is a widower and Shō’s father, but almost nothing else is known about him. He is captured and used by Cronos as a guinea pig and turned into a Guyver-killer Zoanoid to entrap Shō. He ends up being killed by Guyver I in battle.

Aptom  

He is a battle creature that hunts down other Zoanoids created by Cronos (except Lost Numbers). By absorbing small amounts of DNA from other Zoanoids, he can replicate their forms and powers, as well as mix the attributes of several Zoanoids in one body. He can regenerate himself even if only small pieces of him are left. Since discovering this ability, he begins killing Zoanoids to take their powers and bio-matter in order to become the most powerful battle creature and becomes a renegade from Cronos. In time, he comes to ally himself with the Guyvers in various battles. Aptom was one of the lost number commandos along with his two compatriots, Somlum and Dyme, who were killed in battle with Guyver I. This leads Aptom to carry a vendetta against Shō. Over time, Aptom questions his own motives and considers Cronos’ part in his suffering. He was originally developed as a Zoanoid with the ability to morph into different types of Zoanoids and possess the power of the types he morphs into, but the project failed and he became a Lost Number. Dr. Barcas was interested in Aptom’s abilities and carried out further experiments on him. This freed Aptom from the mental control of the Zoalords and gave him the ability to rapidly evolve. Aptom also has other unexpected abilities, including the ability to regenerate himself even from the smallest remaining piece of his tissue and the ability to clone himself, each clone having its own consciousness. Throughout the story, he has gone through several different chosen forms after absorbing multiple Zoanoids. His human shape is of a muscular man with a distinctive scar that runs down the left side of his face from hairline to jaw. He often dresses in a leather jacket, jeans and sunglasses.

Toshiaki Hayami / Bio-Freezer

One of Dr. Odagiri’s assistants, and the one who manipulated security footage at the Relic’s Point base to cover Agito Makishima sneeking Shō Fukamachi and Mizuki Segawa in. He is later the sole survivor of that group of scientists that escaped in the relic, along with the Segawa siblings and Agito Makishima’s aids, after the destruction of the Relic’s point base. The scientists were infected by a deadly virus as Cronos’ means of keeping them under control. The only way to escape death is to be supplied with regular shots or to become Zoanoids. The only way to become a Zoanoid and yet not be slaves to the Zoalords is to become a Lost Number. Since supplies of the medicine were running out, they resorted to attempt to becoming Lost Numbers. Hayami was the only scientist that survived the process, becoming “Bio-Freezer”. He possesses the unique power to affect the temperature of the environment around him to a certain extent. Aptom finds him and, once he realizes what Hayami is, brings him to meet the Guyvers and their friends. Unfortunately, later on his mission with Sho to save Aptom from the three rogue Zoalords, he sacrifices himself to save the latter, knowing that he was going to die anyway, due to flaws in the make-shift optimization process.

Valkyria Forsberg-Lisker / Guyver II Female 

Valkyria is a former member of Cronos and the step-sister of the late Oswald A. Lisker. Her mother was Astrid Forsberg and her stepfather was US Senator Robert P. Lisker. Their marriage was arranged by Cronos to unite the powerful American and Swedish Cronos families together. Robert was quite cold to Valkyria, but initially Oswald acted like a big brother to her. After her mother’s death she came to resent the submissive role she had been dealt and proceeded to work her way up the ranks of Cronos to avoid being used as a pawn the way her mother was. Her goal to show up her brother was destroyed upon his death, shattering her. She stole the artificial control medallion (that was being developed by Cronos to create their own pseudo-Guyver units) and became “Guyver II Female”. She resisted any of Cronos’ attempts to stop her and has teamed with the former Zoalord Richard Guyot. She is plagued by bouts of fatigue and dizziness even in human form as a result of becoming a Guyver.

Apollon 

A mysterious figure that has begun collecting Zoacrystals from the deceased Zoalords. He appears to wear a dark armor made from the same material as Guyver’s control metal. He has demonstrated mind control, an ability only seen used by Uranus or Zoalord. He also mimicked Caerleon’s self division by manipulation of ‘unfolded space’. Dr Barcas has speculated that Apollon could be a vanguard of the Uranus. He also appears to be on a tight schedule. He is likely based upon apollyon. Even though the katakana is closer to Apollon, the kanji that is often used beside it is abyss.

 

Film Friday- InuYasha

Film Friday- InuYasha

It was adapted into two anime television series produced by Sunrise. The first was broadcast for 167 episodes on Yomiuri TV and Nippon TV in Japan from October 16, 2000, until September 13, 2004. The second series, called Inuyasha: The Final Act, began airing five years later on October 3, 2009, to cover the rest of the manga series and ended on March 29, 2010, after 26 episodes. Four feature films and an original video animation have also been released. Other merchandise include video games and a light novel. Viz Media licensed the manga, the two anime series, and movies for North America. Both Inuyasha and Inuyasha: The Final Act aired in the United States on Adult Swim (and later on its revived Toonami block) from 2002 until 2015.

Anime

Inuyasha

The first Inuyasha anime adaptation produced by Sunrise was released in Japan on Animax on October 16, 2000, and ran for 167 episodes until its conclusion on September 13, 2004. It was also broadcast on Yomiuri TV and Nippon Television. In East Asia and South Asia it was aired on Animax’s English-language networks. Avex collected the episodes in a total of seven series of DVDs volumes distributed in Japan between May 30, 2001 and July 27, 2005.

The English dub of the anime was licensed to be released in North America by Viz Media. The series was first ran on Adult Swim (although it had originally been planned for Cartoon Network’s Toonami) from August 31, 2002, to October 27, 2006, with reruns from 2006 to 2014. When Toonami became a block on Adult Swim, Inuyasha aired there from November 2012 to March 1, 2014, when the network announced that they had lost the broadcast rights to the series. On August 25, 2017, Starz announced that they would be offering episodes of the series for their Video on Demand service starting September 1, 2017. The series aired in Canada on YTV’s Bionix programming block from September 5, 2003, to December 1, 2006. Viz collected the series in a total of 55 DVD volumes, while seven box sets were also released.

Inuyasha: The Final Act

In 2009’s 34th issue of Weekly Shōnen Sunday, published July 22, 2009, it was officially announced that a 26-episode anime adaption of volumes 36 to the end of the manga would be made by the first anime’s same cast and crew and would air on Japan’s YTV. The following week, Viz Media announced it had licensed the new adaptation, titled Inuyasha: The Final Act. The series premiered on October 3, 2009 in Japan with the episodes being simulcast via Hulu and Weekly Shōnen Sunday in the United States. In other parts of Asia the episodes were aired the same week on Animax Asia. The anime completed its run on March 29, 2010. Aniplex collected the series into a total of seven DVDs released between December 23, 2009 and June 23, 2010.

Viz Media released the series in two DVD or Blu-ray sets that include an English dub. The first thirteen episodes comprising set 1 were released on November 20, 2012, and the last thirteen episodes were released on February 12, 2013. The series began broadcasting in the United States and Canada on Viz Media’s online network, Neon Alley, on October 2, 2012. On October 24, 2014, it was announced that Adult Swim would air The Final Act on the Toonami block, beginning on November 15, at 2:00 a.m. EST.

Films

The series spawned four animated films which feature original plot, rather than being based specifically on the manga, written by Katsuyuki Sumisawa who wrote the anime episodes. The films have also been released with English subtitles and dubbed audio tracks to Region 1 DVD by Viz Media.

  • 2001.12.16. InuYasha the Movie: Affections Touching Across Time
  • 2002.12.21. InuYasha the Movie: The Castle Beyond the Looking Glass
  • 2003.12.20. InuYasha the Movie: Swords of an Honorable Ruler
  • 2004.12.23. InuYasha the Movie: Fire on the Mystic Island

The four films have earned together over US$20 million in Japanese box offices.

Video games

Three video games based on the series were released for the WonderSwan: Inuyasha: Kagome no Sengoku Nikki (Inuyasha: Kagome’s Warring States Diary), Inuyasha: Fūun Emaki (Inuyasha: The Sealed Scroll Picture) and Inuyasha: Kagome no Yume Nikki (Inuyasha: Kagome’s Dream Diary).

A single title, Inuyasha: Naraku no Wana! Mayoi no Mori no Shōtaijō (Inuyasha: Naraku’s Trap! Invitation to the Forest of Illusion), was released for the Game Boy Advance on January 23, 2003 in Japan.

Inuyasha has been adapted into a mobile game released for Java and Brew handsets on 21 June 2005,

Two titles were released for the PlayStation, an RPG simply titled Inuyasha, and the fighting game Inuyasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale, with the latter being also released in North America. For the PlayStation 2 the two released games were the RPG Inuyasha: The Secret of the Cursed Mask and the fighting game Inuyasha: Feudal Combat, that also received an English version. An English only RPG, Inuyasha: Secret of the Divine Jewel, was released for the Nintendo DS on January 23, 2007.

Inuyasha appeared in the crossover video game Sunday vs Magazine: Shūketsu! Chōjō Daikessen as a playable character.

Inuyasha’s sword, Tessaiga, has appeared in Monster Hunter, as a craftable weapon using items gained from a special event.

An English-language original collectible card game created by Score Entertainment that was first released on October 20, 2004.

Novel

A light novel, written by Tomoko Komparu and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi, has been published by Shogakukan.

Live-action

In 2000, a Japanese live-action play was shown from April through May in the Akasaka ACT Theater in Tokyo around the time the anime was first in production. The play’s script follows the general plot line of the original manga, with a few minor changes to save time. A second run of the play ran from January through February in 2001 at the Akasaka ACT Theater in Tokyo. In February 2017, it was announced that a new stage play adaptation of Inuyasha will be performed at Tennozu Galaxy Theater in Tokyo from April 6 to 15, featuring Yutaka Kyan from Golden Bomber as Inuyasha and Nogizaka46’s Yumi Wakatsuki as Kagome.

The Chinese TV series The Holy Pearl is loosely based on Inuyasha. It stars Gillian Chung and Purba Rgyal in lead roles.

 

Character Special- InuYasha Part 2

Character Special- InuYasha Part 2

Recurring characters

Kikyo

was a powerful, high-ranking priestess who lived fifty years prior to the events of the series. Kikyo was given the task by demon slayers to guard and purify the Shikon Jewel. She fell in love with Inuyasha, who considered using the Shikon Jewel to turn him completely human so it would fade and she could live with him as a normal human. However, having had an indirect role in his creation, Kikyo is mortally wounded by Naraku posing as Inuyasha and believed the real Inuyasha betrayed her. Kikyo found Inuyasha, who also fell for Naraku’s deception when he assumed Kikyo’s form to antagonize the half-demon into attacking the village, and sealed him to the Sacred Tree. Though Naraku had expected her to use it to save her life, and corrupt it so he can have it, Kikyo dies after requesting to have the Shikon Jewel be burned with her body on the funeral pyre. Though Kikyo intended to keep it safe within her soul, the Shikon Jewel is brought back to the feudal era through her modern-day reincarnation, Kagome Higurashi. She is then revived by a demon witch Urassue with a deep grudge against Inuyasha for his apparent betrayal and supposedly inflicting her with deep, fatal wounds on her chest and left shoulder. She tried to drag Inuyasha to hell as revenge. Later, upon knowing that Naraku was the one who tricked her and Inuyasha to hate each other, Kikyo set her goal to destroy him by allowing the evil man to complete the Shikon Jewel; fragment by fragment and then purify him along with it.

She is killed once more when she got caught in Naraku’s trap at the sacred mountain of Mt. Hakurei, where she was struck through with Naraku’s venomous tentacles and fell into a river polluted with toxic miasma. She was eventually found in a waterfall, and healed by her own modern-day reincarnation, though only for a short time. After being fatally hurt at the hands of Naraku yet again, she had spent her final moments with Inuyasha before she passed on for a third and final time; her spirit being carried among the twinkling stars by her Soul Collectors.

Sesshomaru

is a powerful dog demon, feared throughout the feudal era. Born of a great demon bloodline, he is the older half-brother of Inuyasha. Chronologically, he is over 200 years old, while according to the official Inuyasha Profiles guide by Rumiko Takahashi, his appearance is equivalent to that of a 19-year-old male. He appears as a tall and handsome young man. He has fair skin, golden eyes with slit pupils, waist-length white hair (in the anime, his hair reaches as far as his knees), and a purple crescent moon on his forehead. Sesshomaru’s true form is that of a giant red-eyed white dog. He produces an acidic poison that is mainly released from his claws in the Dokkasō attack. While in his true form, the Dokkasō attack is transferred to his fangs.

Sesshomaru holds his father in high esteem for being a powerful demon and desires to take his legendary sword, Tessaiga, for himself. He displayed an animosity towards Inuyasha for being named by their father to have ownership of Tessaiga. However, in order to teach Sesshomaru compassion, his father bestows him Tenseiga, a sword that cannot harm the living yet can bring back someone from the dead only once. Because it was a weapon that could not harm, Sesshomaru keeps the weapon as a decorative piece on his person for occasional use. He is accompanied by Jaken and A-Un, and later a human girl Rin after she treated his injuries. He earns his own sword Bakusaiga later in the series along with a newly regenerated left arm. Sesshomaru initially targets Inuyasha due to his obsession with possessing the Tessaiga, but he later shifts his focus to Naraku, his pride having been injured due to Naraku repeatedly manipulating him and Inuyasha against each other and having killed Kagura.

Jaken

is a small green imp-like demon who is extremely loyal to Sesshomaru, often praising his master’s greatness, although Sesshomaru usually ignores and sometimes abuses him. Jaken himself is not especially powerful, but he wields the Staff of Two Heads, a fire-throwing staff that Sesshomaru gives him. The manga explains little about Jaken’s past, but the anime shows that Jaken was once a lord among similar demons.

Rin

is an eight-year-old orphan girl who is always barefoot. She finds Sesshomaru in the woods beneath a huge tree and tends to his injuries. After witnessing some bandits brutally murder her parents, Rin is sent into a period of shock, only communicating with hand gestures and friendly smiles. Rin is mortally wounded during the wolf demons’ raid of her village. Sesshomaru finds Rin’s lifeless body and, uncharacteristically revives her using Tenseiga. After this, Rin starts to speak and remains in company with Sesshomaru, Jaken, and A-Un. Despite his established contempt for humans, Sesshomaru continually protects Rin for the rest of the series, even showing genuine grief during The Final Act when Rin’s soul is lost in the netherworld, though his mother is able to save her. Throughout the series, she is known for her kindness and loyalty to Sesshomaru, and develops a good relationship with Kohaku over the course of the series.

A-Un

is a two-headed dragon demon with some horse-like features and Sesshomaru’s beast of burden who is one of two yōkai in the series and is explicitly stated to be a herbivore, like Totosai’s ox. Despite traveling with Sesshomaru for centuries, he has no name until Rin gives him one, calling the right head “A” and the left head “Un”. A-Un can fire yōkai energy from both mouths. The right head shoots blue beams of lightning, while the left shoots green lightning that can control clouds and possibly the weather and has the ability to fly like Sesshomaru. A grey cloud-like gas trails from his legs in flight, similar to Kirara’s flames.

Kohaku

is Sango’s eleven-year-old brother who, like his family, is also a demon exterminator. Disguised as a young nobleman, Naraku summons Sango’s family and companions to slay a false demon on Kohaku’s first day on the job, then controls him with a spider web and makes him kill all of the other exterminators, with Sango surviving solely by sheer luck. While Kohaku is seemingly killed by the castle’s guards, Naraku resurrects him as an amnesiac puppet to use against his sister using a shard from the jewel. After several encounters with Sango and her friends, Kohaku begins to recover his painful memories, and seeks to atone for the sins he committed while under Naraku’s control by doing whatever he can to kill him. Kagura helps him escape from Naraku, and later joins with Kikyo to use his shard to destroy Naraku. After Kikyo’s death, he begins traveling with Sesshomaru’s group. During a confrontation with Naraku, the piece of his Shikon Jewel was taken, but Kohaku survived thanks to Kikyo’s power allowing him to live. At the end of the series, Kohaku travels with Kirara to continue his demon-slaying job to help those in need.

Naraku

is the main antagonist of the series, having caused the misery of most of the main cast. He was born fifty years ago from the desires of a gravely burned bandit named Onigumo, who was found by Kikyo who tended to his wounds. As the injuries had severely crippled him, Onigumo forms a pact with the surrounding demons attracted to his darkness to consume him in return for his soul to occupy a new body created from their merged bodies so that he could satisfy his frustrated lust for Kikyo. However, with Onigumo buried deep in his subconscious, the newly born Naraku acted against his human self’s desire as he arranged for Kikyo’s demise and her falling out with Inuyasha in the expectation that events would corrupt the Shikon Jewel. When Kikyo had the jewel burned with her corpse, Naraku bides his time until the Shikon Jewel is brought back to the feudal era by the priestess’s reincarnation, Kagome Higurashi.

While Naraku originally appears in the form of a hooded figure wearing a robe made from a baboon pelt, which is also utilized by his Golems, he later permanently assumes the guise of the young lord Kagewaki Hitomi.

Naraku’s basic abilities are shape shifting and absorbing his opponents, later gaining new abilities as he enhances himself over the course of the series. Unlike other half-demons, Naraku can choose what time of the month he loses his demonic powers where he is reduced to a human head attached to multiple demons. Much to his distaste, Naraku permanently has a spider-shaped birthmark on his back that is a constant reminder of the humanity that constitutes his being. Naraku possesses several poisonous abilities, such as producing a deadly miasma and the poisonous Saimyōshō wasps, the latter used chiefly to prevent Miroku from uncovering his Wind Tunnel.

It is revealed near the end of the series that the Demon of the Shikon Jewel has been the true enemy of the entire story, manipulating Naraku as an instrument he created to assure his continued existence.

Demon of the Shikon Jewel

is the incredibly powerful dragon yōkai created from numerous demons from ancient time that battled the priestess Midoriko before forcing the priestess to trap their souls in what became the Shikon Jewel. From his spirit was born the evil called Magatsuhi.

In the manga, he was created when many minor demons possessed a mortal man who secretly desired Midoriko and formed into one demon in order to kill her, similar to how Onigumo loved Kikyō and created Naraku. However, unlike to Naraku, he was not a half-demon but a full demon completely devoid of human feelings. In fact, while Onigumo’s deadly body was completely devoured by demons and his evil soul used as their adhesive, the human who loved Midoriko was only incorporated on the base of the dragon’s neck, where you can see only his head and right hand.

It was only after Naraku’s death that he reveals the Shikon Jewel’s intention to trap Naraku and Kagome, then replacing him and Midoriko, to prolong its existence. Then, after Naraku’s death, he became the ultimate enemy of Inuyasha inside the jewel: he has been the true enemy of the entire story, manipulating Naraku as nothing more than an instrument he created to assure his continued existence. In fact, while being the main antagonist, Naraku himself has never found happiness and wanted Kikyo’s love. He had promised to satisfy Naraku’s desire once the jewel had been completed, but in reality he did nothing but manipulate him to his liking. In fact, once the jewel has been completed, he did not satisfy this desire.

Inuyasha fights through him to reach Kagome before holding the composing demons off. In the manga, he is destroyed forever by Inuyasha when he cuts the point of light in the darkness inside the Shikon Jewel with Meido Zangetsuha, which is the key to destroy the jewel’s evil. In fact, with Inuyasha’s attack at this very point, the purity of the Jewel called Naohi annihilates forever the evil corrupting presence within it, then the Jewel’s shimmering and voice completely stopped. Instead, in the anime version, Kagome destroys the demon for good when she made a selfless wish for the Shikon Jewel to be erased from existence.

 

Character Special- InuYasha

Character Special- InuYasha

Main characters

Inuyasha

is the main character of the series. Born of a dog-demon father and a human mother, his appearance equivalent to that of a fifteen-year-old boy. As a half-demon, he had a difficult and lonely childhood, as demons and humans despised him for his mixed bloodline. He has dog ears, claws, superhuman strength, and other demonic abilities. He sports a red garment called the Robe of the Fire-Rat and is always barefoot.

In 2001, Inuyasha won the Animage Grand Prix for Best Male Character.

Kagome Higurashi

is the narrator and coprotagonist of the series. Brave and kind girl who believes in never turning her back on someone in trouble, she develops a close relationship with Inuyasha over the course of the series and begins to fall in love with him during their quest to collect the Shikon shards and defeat Naraku, though she finds herself competing with the revived Kikyo for his affections. Although physically weak, she becomes stronger and skilled in archery as the series progresses, and eventually learns to master her immensely strong spiritual powers.

At the beginning of the series, Kagome is a fifteen-year-old junior high school student who was born in 1982 in modern Japan. She is the reincarnation of the deceased (and later resurrected) priestess Kikyo, and thus resembles the priestess in looks. Kagome has the Shikon Jewel unknowingly hidden inside her body until her fifteenth birthday, when a demon pulls her into the Bone Eater’s Well at her family’s shrine and takes her 500 years into the past. They emerge in the Feudal Era about fifty years after Kikyo’s death, where the demon tears the jewel from Kagome’s body.

Miroku

is an eighteen-year-old lecherous Buddhist monk who travels the countryside performing spiritual services, such as exorcisms and demon exterminations. Miroku can attack enemies with his khakkhara and sutra scrolls, but his greatest weapon is the Wind Tunnel embedded in the palm of his right hand, which is actually a hereditary curse originally inflicted upon his grandfather by Naraku.

However, Miroku remains notorious for his recurring lechery, usually manifesting as shameless flattery, semi-surreptitious groping, and asking every woman he meets to bear him a child. While he learned these bad habits from the monk Mushin, who raised him after his father was engulfed into his own Wind Tunnel, Miroku also has the more serious motive of wanting an heir to continue his journey if he dies without defeating Naraku, and over time Miroku falls in love with Sango.

Sango

is a sixteen-year-old demon slayer. She hails from a village that practices the act as their profession and is also the original home of the Shikon Jewel. While travelling, she wears a traditional woman’s kimono, over which she wears long skirt, most likely “mo-bakama”, and traditional woman’s arm guards and leg guards, and straw sandals. As a demon slayer, Sango dresses in a black skin-tight jumpsuit, and pink armor plates made of demon parts, and a red sash. Of her broad repertoire of tools and tricks for fighting demons, Sango usually wields her most powerful weapon called the Hiraikotsu (飛来骨, “Flying Return Bone”), a human-sized boomerang made of purified demon bones. Her other weapons include a short sword, a concealed blade and various poisons. She is always accompanied by the demon-cat Kirara, her mount.

Sango has suffered more heavily at the hands of Naraku than most; her brother Kohaku was possessed by Naraku and manipulated into killing their father and comrades and wounding her, while her village was destroyed in an attack by Naraku’s minions. Kohaku was subsequently killed, but resurrected as a puppet by Naraku through a Shikon Jewel shard. Left for dead at first, Sango is tricked by Naraku into thinking Inuyasha destroyed her village; after she learns the truth, she and Kirara become the final members of Inuyasha’s team. At first she is motivated solely by the desire to free her brother from Naraku’s influence, but overtime she develops mutual affection and loyalty for the entire group.

Though she harbors disdain for Miroku initially (given his lecherous attitude towards women) Sango gradually develops feelings for him and each of them often risks their lives to protect the other. She accepts Miroku’s roundabout proposal of marriage in the sixth season, and spends much of the seventh season trying to keep him out of danger, as his Wind Tunnel has grown to the point that it might consume him if he uses it again. After Naraku is defeated, she and Miroku marry; by the time Kagome returns to the feudal era, they have three children.

Shippo

is a young orphaned kitsune, who attempts to steal the Shikon Jewel from Inuyasha and Kagome, wanting to become stronger and avenge his father’s death. Though his plan fails, Inuyasha and Kagome aid him after hearing his story, and he becomes their companion. Shippo normally appears to be a young boy with certain fox-like features: his legs, feet, ears, and tail. He can shape-shift, but his other forms (such as a large flying balloon) are temporary and often ineffective, usually given away by his lingering fox tail. He can also create illusory duplicates of himself, as well as weak Foxfire magic and toy-based tricks such as his giant spinning top attack.

Kirara

is Sango’s faithful companion who usually appears to be a small kitten-sized feline with two tails, but can become large enough to carry several passengers whenever the need arises. She is a spiritual entity, like the kitsunes; her full-sized form has fangs and flames, while in her small form, she is small and cute.

 

Manga Monday- InuYasha

Manga Monday- InuYasha

Inuyasha, also known as Inuyasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale , is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi. It premiered in Weekly Shōnen Sunday on November 13, 1996, and concluded on June 18, 2008, with the chapters collected into 56 tankōbon volumes by Shogakukan.

The series begins with Kagome Higurashi, a 15-year-old schoolgirl from Tokyo who is transported to the Sengoku period of Japan after falling into a well in her family shrine, where she meets the half dog-demon, Inuyasha. When a monster from that era tries to take the magical Shikon Jewel embodied in Kagome, she inadvertently shatters the Jewel into many pieces that are dispersed across Japan. Inuyasha and Kagome start traveling to recover it before the powerful demon Naraku finds all the shards. Inuyasha and Kagome gain several allies during their journey, including Shippo, Miroku, Sango and Kirara. In contrast to the typically comedic nature of much of Takahashi’s previous work, Inuyasha deals with a darker and more serious subject matter, using the setting of the Sengoku period to easily display the violent content while still retaining some comedic elements.

Plot

In modern-day Tokyo, Kagome Higurashi lives on the grounds of her family’s Shinto shrine with her mother, grandfather and little brother. On her fifteenth birthday, when she goes to retrieve her cat, Kagome is dragged into the enshrined Bone Eater’s Well by a centipede demon that emerged from it. But rather than hit the bottom, Kagome finds herself in the past during Japan’s Sengoku period. The demon is revealed to have originally been defeated fifty years prior by a warrior priestess named Kikyo who is the keeper of the Shikon Jewel, an artifact created by the sacrifice of a priestess named Midoriko which grants its holder’s desires. As her resemblance to Kikyo pointed out by her younger sister Kaede, Kagome is revealed to be the priestess reincarnated with the Shikon Jewel contained in her own body after Kikyo had it placed on her funeral pyre in an attempt to keep it safe in death. Kagome then came across a youth pinned by a sacred arrow on a tree, learning he is a half-dog demon (yōkai) named Inuyasha whom Kikyo trapped as her final act when he attempted to steal the jewel. Though Kagome frees Inuyasha to kill the centipede demon, the half-demon subdued by a magical necklace to keep him in line, the Shikon Jewel was extracted from her body, and it later was taken by a crow demon before it was accidentally shattered into many shards that fell across Japan and into the possession of those who gain the individual shards’ power.

After Inuyasha gains his father’s sword Tessaiga, placing him at odds with his older brother Sesshomaru, he aids Kagome in collecting the shards and dealing with the threats they cause as they are joined by young fox demon Shippo. But when Kikyo was partially revived while revealed to have been Inuyasha’s lover, her version of how their falling out occurred brings the events into question. It was when the group is joined by the perverted cursed monk Miroku that the events which resulted in Inuyasha’s imprisonment and Kikyo’s death were caused by a devious half-demon named Naraku who also cursed Miroku’s bloodline. The evolving Naraku is revealed to have been born from the soul of an evil man named Onigumo inhabiting a body created by countless demons as part of a pact to acquire the Shikon Jewel for his own ends, seeking out the shard while absorbing demons to increase his power and remove any weaknesses. Inuyasha’s group is soon joined after by Sango, a demon slayer whose clan was killed when her younger brother Kohaku fell under Naraku’s control and is kept alive by a Jewel shard. Over time, Inuyasha enhances Tessaiga into stronger forms while contends with Naraku’s minion incarnations like Kagura and the reanimated Band of Seven. Inuyasha’s team is loosely allied by Sesshomaru who took an orphaned girl named Rin as a ward, the resurrected Kikyo, and a wolf-demon named Koga who seeks to avenge his comrades while flirting with Kagome.

While Naraku momentarily removes his heart in the form of the Infant, who later attempts to overthrow Naraku through his vessel Moryomaru, Kohaku regains his freewill and memories and attempts to help out of guilt for indirectly killing his father. During that time, Sesshomaru settles things with Inuyasha to enable his brother to perfect Tessaiga to its optimal abilities. Eventually, Koga is forced to stand on the sidelines while Kikyo uses the last of her life force to give Kohaku a second chance at life as Naraku finally reassembles the Shikon Jewel. Although Inuyasha and his allies defeat him, realizing his true desire is for Kikyo’s love despite his hatred towards her and that it can never be granted, Naraku uses his wish to trap himself and Kagome in the Shikon Jewel. Revealed to be sentient, the Shikon Jewel intends to have Kagome make a selfish wish so she and Naraku will be trapped in conflict and prolong its existence. But with Inuyasha by her side, Kagome wishes for the Shikon Jewel to disappear. The action, though, causes Kagome to return to her time with the Well sealed, and she and Inuyasha lose contact for three long years.

In that time, the Sengoku period changes drastically: Sango and Miroku have three children together; Kohaku resumes his journey to become a strong demon slayer with Kirara as his companion; and Shippo attains the seventh rank as a fox demon. Rin lives with Kaede to get her re-accustomed to living with humans in case she so chooses. Back in the present, Kagome graduates from high school before finally managing to get the Bone Eater’s Well in her backyard to work again. Kagome returns to the Sengoku period, where she stays with Inuyasha and becomes his wife.

Development

Rumiko Takahashi wrote Inuyasha after finishing Ranma ½. In contrast to her previous works, Takahashi wanted to do a darker storyline distant from her comedy series. In order to portray violent themes softly, the story was set in the Sengoku Era, when wars were common. For the designs of samurai or castles, no notable research was made by the author who considered such topics common knowledge. By June 2001, a clear ending to the series was not established as Takahashi still was not sure about how to end the relationship between Inuyasha and Kagome. Furthermore, Takahashi stated that she did not have an ending to previous manga she wrote during the beginning, having figured them out as their serialization progressed.

 

Film Friday- Mahoromatic

Film Friday- Mahoromatic

The manga proved popular, and was adapted into two anime series jointly by Gainax and Shaft: “Mahoromatic: Automatic Maiden” and “Mahoromatic: Something More Beautiful”.
The first series consisted of twelve episodes and ran from September 10, 2001 to January 28, 2002 on BS-i in Japan, and more or less followed the manga to the third volume.
The second series also followed the manga, culminating in the story’s end. This series ran from September 26, 2002 till January 16, 2003.
A television special, “Mahoromatic: Summer TV Special”, set in the days when Minawa had become a regular part of the household, was produced and aired around Summer 2003.
A two episode special entitled Mahoromatic: Tadaima Okaeri was announced on August 22, 2009. It aired on October 17 and October 24, 2009. It takes place during the second series, on days 270-268 of Mahoro’s life timer.
Originally the anime was licensed by Pioneer Entertainment (later Geneon Entertainment). As of October 2008, ADV Films had announced that they had regained licenses to both Mahoromatic, and Mahoromatic: Something More Beautiful, through its new Japanese licensor Sentai Filmworks. Currently, the anime is now distributed by Sentai Filmworks (however, the Ep00 Special and Year End Special are absent). They also recently acquired the Mahoromatic: I’m Home special, with the English dub to be produced at Bang Zoom! Entertainment.
Mahoromatic including both seasons and the summer special is currently available through The Anime Network’s free video on demand service, found on many cable systems and DirecTV.

Mahoromatic: End of Year Special

Shown after Episode 10. These feature a refresher of all the events so far along with new conversations and discussions between characters. Both seasons one and two have this special.

Mahoromatic: Summer Special

Released after the second season, this episode takes place during the second season and revolves around the issue of Suguru’s ecchi no hon (dirty books). The Summer Special is the only special to be aired in the U.S.

Mahoromatic おかえり (Tadaima Okaeri—I’m Home)

Takes place during the second season between episodes 2 and 3, on days 270–268 of Mahoro’s life timer. Mahoro and Suguru, along with Suguru’s classmates, are preparing for a Hiryu town festival, when Feldlance attacks in an attempt to capture Minawa

Endings

Anime’s ending

The finale is set on a Saint-Earth colony world, 20 years after Mahoro’s “death” and the mutual defeat of Vesper and Management. Suguru left Japan, deciding never to return, and is now a renegade half-cyborg hunter of the last “Management holdouts.” He has only memories of Earth, and a sole companion who tries to kill him for the bounty on his head.

As Suguru is in critical condition, Mahoro reappears alive, asking to take him home.

Manga’s ending

The ending is set on Earth, 20 years after Mahoro’s death and the defeat of Management. Suguru has been working as a commander within Vesper, and has just returned to Earth from the final defeat of Management’s last vestiges.

Unbeknownst to Suguru, Mahoro was reborn as a baby shortly after her death as an android. She has grown up, and remembers Suguru. When Suguru returns from Vesper headquarters expecting to find an empty house, she is there waiting for him.

 

Manga Monday- Mahoromatic

Manga Monday- Mahoromatic

Mahoromatic is a Japanese manga series about a female android former soldier, Mahoro. Driven by guilt from her actions during her combat days, she decides to dedicate the rest of her life to serving the son of her late commander as a maid.

Characters

Mahoro Andou (CODE: V1046-R MAHORO)
is an android created by VESPER to fight an alien invasion by Saint during the 1980s. She is fast and immensely powerful, and is considered to be a formidable opponent by her enemies. Being an android, she has a limited life span. At the beginning of the story, she has just 398 days to live, and is given the choice to do anything she wants by VESPER. She chooses to become a maid for Suguru Misato: his father was her superior officer who was also killed (as collateral damage) when she killed an alien who had taken him hostage. Mahoro has a very sunny disposition and is friendly to just about everyone—she becomes a welcome regular at the market and becomes famous at Suguru’s school when it is made known that she is working for him. She also quickly becomes an excellent cook, able to emulate and recreate dishes from the best restaurants. She is also quite devoted to Suguru, with feelings for him reminiscent of both a doting mother and a shy girlfriend. She is, however, extremely hostile towards anything perverted. A good portion of the story’s humour comes from Mahoro chasing after Suguru’s secret stash of pornographic magazines which, given her training, she is easily able to find. She is well known for this attitude from her catch phrase: “Ecchi na no wa ikenai to omoimasu” (“I think that dirty thoughts are bad”). Mahoro and Shikijo-sensei’s dislike of one another stems from the fact that Shikijo is constantly trying to engage in an illicit relationship with Suguru. As such, Mahoro is very protective of Suguru when it comes to Shikijo’s advances towards him. Mahoro is very concerned about appearances, refusing to wear normal clothes given her position as a maid. She is also obsessed with her small breasts, and some stories actually deal with her rivalry with Shikijo (who has very large breasts), as well as her techniques and requests to VESPER for larger breasts. Mahoro retains access to many of her weapons and gadgets from her VESPER days, and is able to pull out her gun at any time. She also has access to the “silpheed”, which when worn on her back allows her to fly, as well as her support mech, Slash. She is able to call both the Silpheed and Slash at a moment’s notice from the badge she wears on her maid uniform. In addition, she also has access to a fully equipped and armed BMW sports convertible and MV Agusta motorcycle. Mahoro was created using Saint alien technology, giving her a true soul and a pure heart. Later in the series it is revealed that Mahoro is directly connected to the memories of Matthew, who on some occasions supplies Mahoro with advice. She had no family name until the name Andou (short for android) was created by Suguru.

Suguru Misato
is a junior high school student living in Tokyo. He lost both his parents earlier—his mother (who was half Saint), and years later, his father. While he believed his father was killed in an accident during a business trip, he was actually a commander (and Mahoro’s commanding officer) in VESPER and was killed-in-action during the alien war. Although relatives offered to take him in, he refused and lived alone prior to Mahoro’s arrival. He is smart and has an IQ of 130. He makes a favorable impression on members of the opposite sex. Suguru had a whole stash of dirty magazines which were all thrown away when Mahoro first arrived. Although he continues to try to smuggle them in and hide them, Mahoro will often find them—leading to comical confrontations between the two. Suguru uses a whole range of creative tactics to conceal his magazines, and is capable of running away very fast when being chased. Suguru hired a maid because of the filthy state of his house. He was expecting an older woman, and Mahoro’s arrival completely surprised him. At the end of the series Mahoro and Suguru have fallen in love.

Minawa Andou 
is first introduced in Mahoromatic ~Something More Beautiful~. Clumsy and anemic, she ends up living with Mahoro and Suguru and going to school under the pretext of being Mahoro’s younger sister. She has a habit of apologizing for everything she does, even if she has done nothing wrong. She claims to be a runaway member of The Management, but is later revealed to have been sent to gather information on VESPER’s battle android Mahoro after being promised a heart in return. Mahoro, however, convinces her that the fact that she can cry means she already has a heart. Suguru’s friend Hamaguchi develops a crush on her, and, despite her shortcomings, it is later insinuated that they form a relationship. It was later revealed that Minawa is not an android but a cyborg, and her body is in horrible shape due to all the experiments performed on her. Near the end of the series she leaves earth so she can get treatment at Saint’s home world. At the end of the anime, it is suggested she was completely healed and is with Hamaguchi. She had no name until one was created by Suguru, so she could pretend to be Mahoro’s little sister.

Slash
is known as a “support mech” and assists Mahoro during combat. He has the form of a panther and can be summoned at any time by Mahoro. Although he can speak, his mouth never moves except during times when he expresses emotions. Although used for combat in the past, he often now acts as a guard dog around the Misato residence and a friend to the Misato’s dog—a role he was not thrilled to take in the beginning. He is friendly but tough and will lend a helping paw when asked. Although Mahoro is Slash’s master, he will now take commands from Suguru: since Suguru is Mahoro’s employer, he is also her master and thus Slash’s master as well. Near the end of the anime series, he was used to wipe out Management and was last seen standing at the side of the fallen Vesper leader. However,(in the manga) he firmly stood by Mahoro’s side, as she uses her final powers to destroy the asteroid to save mankind.

 

Film Friday- Captain Harlock

Film Friday- Captain Harlock

Captain Harlock  is a fictional character created by manga artist Leiji Matsumoto and the protagonist of the Space Pirate Captain Harlock manga series.

Harlock is the archetypical Romantic hero, a space pirate with an individualist philosophy of life. He is as noble as he is taciturn, rebellious, stoically fighting against totalitarian regimes, whether they be earth-born or alien. In his own words, he “fight[s] for no one’s sake… only for something deep in [his] heart.” He does not fear death, and is sometimes seen wearing clothing with the number 42 on it. In Japanese culture, the number 42 is associated with death (the numbers, pronounced separately as “four two,” sound like the word “shini”—meaning “dying/death”).

The character was created by Leiji Matsumoto in 1977 and popularized in the 1978 television series Space Pirate Captain Harlock. Since then, the character has appeared in numerous animated television series and films, the latest of which is 2013’s Space Pirate Captain Harlock.

History

Though there are slight variations in each telling of Harlock’s story, the essentials remain the same. Matsumoto presents a future (2977 AD) in which the Earth has achieved a vast starfaring civilization, but is slowly and steadily succumbing to ennui or despair, often due to defeat and subjugation by a foreign invader. Rising against the general apathy, Harlock denies defeat and leads an outlaw crew aboard his starship Arcadia to undertake daring raids against Earth’s oppressors. Even though they have defeated Earth and devastated its peoples, the invaders are often presented in a sympathetic light, being shown as having some justification for their actions.

Space Pirate Captain Harlock (1978 TV series)

In Space Pirate Captain Harlock, the Captain’s crew included the mysterious, alcohol-imbibing alien woman Miime, a robot, and a drunken doctor. The series presented a story arc in which a huge black metal sphere strikes Tokyo and ancient Mayan legends appear to be walking the Earth again. The invaders turn out to be the Mazone, a race of plant-based women who explored Earth in the mythic past and are now back to reclaim it. Only Harlock and his mismatched crew are brave and capable enough to face the enemy.

Captain Harlock – Mystery of the Arcadia

This 1978 short film is ostensibly a retelling of Episode 13 of the 1978 series, ‘The Witch’s Ocean Castle of Death.’ It consists primarily of recycled footage taken from this same episode, but presented in widescreen format. Some new alternate footage is added at the beginning of the story, and some soundtrack adjustments were made throughout.

Arcadia of My Youth

The Arcadia of My Youth feature film was released on July 28, 1982. The film, set in a different continuity from the original TV series, chronicles Harlock’s beginnings as a space pirate and his acquisition of the spaceship Arcadia. The movie also includes flashback material dealing with two of his 20th-century ancestors.

Endless Orbit SSX

Arcadia of My Youth was followed by 22 episodes of the TV series Endless Orbit SSX starting in October 1982. Its official French title is simply Albator, although it early became popular among French speakers as Albator 84 since it was first aired in France as of 1984 and the 1978 series had been formerly named in French exactly the same: Albator. The series dealt with Harlock and company’s continuing struggle against the Illumidas occupying force, who still retained control of Earth at the end of the theatrical feature. Both film (Arcadia of My Youth) and second series (Endless Orbit SSX) feature a newly designed starship and lack most of the crew from the Space Pirate series, but are noteworthy for the presence of Emeraldas, a female counterpart to Harlock who originally appeared in a series of Matsumoto-penned graphic novels.

Harlock Saga

In the 1990s, Matsumoto released Harlock Saga, a mini-series based on Das Rheingold. The series recasts the Captain and his crew in roles with analogues in The Ring Cycle and pits them against a race of “gods” set on redesigning the universe to their liking.

Gun Frontier

On March 28, 2002 Gun Frontier, a buddy comedy set in the American Old West, began broadcasting in TV Tokyo. The series follows Franklin Harlock Jr. and Tochiro Ōyama as they search for a lost clan of Japanese immigrants. In contrast to other works, Harlock appears here as Tochiro’s sidekick.

Endless Odyssey

December 2002 saw the release of Space Pirate Captain Harlock: The Endless Odyssey, directed by Rintaro.

The story is set after the original TV series, with Harlock on a self-imposed exile and his crew either in jail or flying under the Jolly Roger. The series details Harlock’s return and his round-up of the Arcadia crew for a fight against the Noo, a mysterious and ancient evil which has caused the Earth to disappear, and who use fear to conquer their foes. As nearly every part of this series is geared to be a sequel to the original Captain Harlock TV series, Endless Odyssey reintroduces Tadashi Daiba to the Arcadia.

Space Pirate Captain Harlock (2013 movie)

On March 24, 2010, Toei Animation announced the release of the new Harlock movie, they announced a completed pilot for its planned computer-graphics remake of Leiji Matsumoto and Toei’s Space Pirate Captain Harlock manga and anime franchise, and it has revealed a preliminary image and the project’s staff. Mobile Suit Gundam UC author Harutoshi Fukui, Appleseed director Shinji Aramaki, Appleseed mechanical designer Atsushi Takeuchi, and Ninja Scroll character designer Yutaka Minowa worked on the new Space Pirate Captain Harlock pilot with Marza Animation Planet (formerly known as Sega Sammy Visual Entertainment).

The official trailer/pilot was aired at the Kawaii-Kon Anime festival in Hawaii on April 17, 2010, as a special presentation courtesy of Director Shinji Aramaki. This is the first time it has been seen/aired in the United States. The CG animated film is tentatively schedule for international release in 2012.

On January 31, 2013 during the presentation of its upcoming film lineup, Toei announced that the anime will be out in Fall 2013. According to the news source Oricon, this film has Toei Animation’s highest production budget ever at the equivalent of over 30 million U.S. dollars.

The film premiered in Japan on September 7, 2013. It also film premiered on Netflix under the title Harlock: Space Pirate with Japanese, Portuguese and Spanish audio and with English, Portuguese and Spanish subtitles.

Captain Harlock: Dimensional Voyage

On August 2014, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of his debut, Matsumoto launched the manga Captain Harlock: Dimensional Voyage, illustrated by Kōichi Shimahoshi, in the pages of Akita Shoten’s Champion Red magazine. Dimensional Voyage is a retelling of the original 1978 Space Pirate Captain Harlock manga.

 

Manga Monday- Space Pirate Captain Harlock

Manga Monday- Space Pirate Captain Harlock

Space Pirate Captain Harlock  is a manga series written and illustrated by Leiji Matsumoto. It was serialized in Play Comic from 1977 to 1979, with the chapters collected into five tankōbon volumes by Akita Shoten. The series follows the titular Captain, an outcast turned space pirate after he rebelled against Earth’s Government and humanity’s general apathy. On August 2014, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Matsumoto’s debut, he launched a retelling manga, Captain Harlock: Dimensional Voyage, illustrated by Kōichi Shimahoshi, which features some significant plot differences. Seven Seas Entertainment has licensed the manga in North America.

Plot

In the future, in 2977 AD, humanity has achieved a vast starfaring civilization, but is slowly and steadily succumbing to ennui or despair, often due to defeat and subjugation by a foreign invader. Rising against the general apathy, Harlock denies defeat and leads an outlaw crew aboard his starship Arcadia to undertake daring raids against Earth’s oppressors. Their primary oppressors are the Mazone, a race of organic plant-based alien women who explored Earth in the mythic past and are now back to reclaim it.

Characters

The Captain

Harlock is the archetypal romantic hero, a space pirate with an individualist philosophy of life. He is as noble as he is taciturn, rebellious, stoically fighting against totalitarian regimes, whether they be earthborn or alien. In his own words, he “fight[s] for no one’s sake, only for something deep in [his] heart.”

Crew of the Arcadia

Tadashi Daiba 
is the audience surrogate, the viewer’s gateway to Harlock’s world. The 14-year-old son of a scientist who was killed by the Mazone, he joined the Arcadia crew following the death of his father. He lost his mother in a disaster on the Neptunian moon Triton when her pleas for help were ignored by the indifferent government. Tadashi is sometimes in conflict with Harlock early in the series, but he would become a trusted part of Harlock’s senior staff as the series progressed.

Kei Yuki 
A young human woman with blonde hair who was already part of Harlock’s crew at the time Tadashi came aboard. She first met Harlock when he raided a ship that was transporting her back to Earth as a prisoner after she had assaulted a military officer who had belittled her father’s death. There is a slight intimation that she harbors a crush on Harlock (though this would be made more definite in the later SSX series), and initially seems inclined romantically towards Tadashi Daiba, though the two eventually settle into a platonic friendship. She is the Arcadia‘s chief navigator and science officer and the second-youngest crew member after Tadashi.

Miime 
A mysterious brooding female alien with blue skin and body-length blue hair. Like all of her race, Miime has no mouth or other facial features outside of almond shaped yellow eyes. Like others of her race, she uses alcohol as a non-intoxicating foodstuff and uses her psychic and psionic powers as a means of reducing pain of injuries. Originally from the planet Jura, she became the last of her species after being saved by Harlock and crew. In gratitude, Miime became part of the crew of the Arcadia and pledged her life to Harlock’s support and safety, becoming the pirate’s nearest companion. Having no mouth, she can still “speak” and still absorb liquids through the general mouth area. Although not provided an official position aboard the Arcadia, she will help Doctor Zero tend to injured crew members in times of crisis. Her empathic nature makes her a valuable counselor (for example, when she consoles Miss Masu following the loss of the latter’s estranged fiancé) and is capable of quelling pain/anxiety of all onboard by the strumming of her lap harp. In the 1999 Harlock Saga OVA, she is refashioned to appear as a more humanoid woman and provided a different back story, making her a member of the Nibelung clan; here, her preferred musical instrument is the pipe organ and somehow possesses the ability to control time. In 2002’s Endless Odyssey OVA her original look and history return. Miime is depicted as more distinctly alien but with a face featuring a mouth in the 2013 feature film.

Yattaran 
Harlock’s first mate on the Arcadia, he is usually portrayed as comic relief in the series, but when a battle against alien threats become imminent he will be at the captain’s side. He is also a brilliant mathematician and has a major interest in building plastic model kits of ships (he was even seen building a scale model of the Arcadia in one episode). Yattaran is based on manga artist Kaoru Shintani (best known for Area 88) who, in his early career worked for Matsumoto building models for reference.

Doctor Zero 
Chief Medical Officer. Like Yattaran, he serves as comic relief when he argues with the ship’s cook, Miss Masu, over his raids of Masu’s kitchen to get his beverage of choice, sake. He has a pet cat called Mi-kun (named Miaou in the French version), which he adopted after the then-kitten’s mother, which was injured and apparently dying, brought him to Zero’s office, and was later brought with Zero on board the Arcadia. Doctor Zero’s cat, Mi-kun also appears in Space Battleship Yamato as Doctor Sado’s cat. Mi-kun also makes on-off appearances in several other anime such as Queen Millennia and Galaxy Express 999. Mi-kun is based on Matsumoto’s own pet cat, the latest of which is named Mi-kun III.

Maji
Chief Engineer.

Miss Masu
Chief steward. Masu Tsunajima is a cantankerous spinster who is intolerant of her kitchen being raided by Doctor Zero or his cat. She is also a comic relief character in the series, although her back story had her intended to marry her fiancé, Gozo Otowara, before circumstances prevented the wedding from taking place. Masu believed she had been stood up, until she learned the truth years later and reconciled with Gozo in a brief communication before Gozo was killed by the Mazone.

Tochirō Ōyama
Harlock’s old friend and chief builder of the Arcadia. He died of illness prior to the events of the series, but his consciousness survives within the ship’s computer.