I’ve been an anime and manga fan for long time, and there have been some titles that were thought to be more far off dreams than actual candidates for licensing. One of those dreams was getting anything from Leiji Matsumoto, co-creator of Space Battleship Yamato, and creator of Space Pirate Captain Harlock, Galaxy Express 999, and Queen Emeraldas among many others. At best, all we had were 5 volumes of the second Galaxy Express 999 manga series published by Viz back in the late 90s-2000s. But now, it seems the flood gates have opened as new licenses are being announced left and right.
Saint Seiya, also known as Knights of the Zodiac here in the west, is a series with a long lineage. The main series started in 1985 and was among the titles that helped make Weekly Shonen Jump the power house it was in the 1980s and 1990s. Since the end of original series, there have been some spin offs that are now reaching a conclusion.
As you can tell from my last post, I really like Saint Seiya, and not just the manga. Saint Seiya also has an anime, and it’s where I was first introduced to the story. One of the things that really pulled me into the series was the opening animation and music. Here it is:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Px2zX-M2alQ
Being a child of the eighties, I also really loved watching Transformers (G1 of course). Apparently, other people share my loves, and one person, with a lot of talent (and time on their hands) has taken these two great things and made them great together! I give you Saint Transformers!
“On the Fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, Five Bronze Saints!”
Long ago, the ancient Greek goddess Athena, had an army of warriors known as Saints. They were young boys who trained to control their Cosmo, a power within, that allowed them to perform supernatural feats. Thousands of years later, Athena has been reborn, and a new group of knights are training to earn cloths, or armor, and gain the honor to be one of her saints. Seiya is one of these saints, who has one the Pegasus cloth and returns to Japan to compete for the prestigious gold cloth of Sagittarius. But to win it, he must defeat the other returning bronze saints. Shun, Shiryu, Hyoga and Ikki start out as rivals and enemies, but they soon become friends, and Athena’s staunchest protectors.
Saint Seiya is an old passion from my first getting into manga and anime in the eighties. There were no translations of either at the time, so when Viz announced the release of it in English, I had to have it! I just had know what was going on in these stories! Saint Seiya is a basic shonen fighting manga, with our 5 protagonists getting ridiculously strong with each story arc. They are only bronze knights, the lowest of Athena’s saints, but by the end of the first arc, Seiya is already handling gold cloths, that only the most powerful of saints can handle. But I love mythology and the constellations, and this manga has plenty of both, as all the enemies are from Greek mythology, gods who are reborn just like Athena.
There’s only one thing I don’t like about this title, and half isn’t the title’s fault, is Saori, the reincarnation of Athena. She’s supposed to be a powerful goddess, but she’s always getting herself kidnapped, or arrows stuck in her chest, so that the bronze saints have to get their butts kicked, and faces dragged through stone to save her. It gets tedious after a while. And then, for some mystifying reason, Viz changed Saori’s name to Sienna, but no one elses’. Why? What was the point of doing that? Dumb.
Anyway, Saint Seiya is a great action manga. So many other mangaka that are big today credit it as an influence on them. Study your manga history properly and pick up this title! There are only 4 volumes left until the end…
It’s another Shonen Jump edition of my Mini Musings. Expect to see a lot of these, as I read a lot of Viz. I’ll try to mix it up a little with some other pubs and some Shojo. But a look at my shelves will show more SJ than Robofish. Reviews after the cut.