Fujiko Mine

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Fujiko Mine
Lupin III character
Fujiko Mine.jpg
Fujiko Mine, as seen in Alcatraz Connection
First appearance Lupin III chapter 3: "死んでゆくブルース"
Created by Monkey Punch
Voiced by Japanese
Eiko Masuyama (1969, 1977-1985, 1989-2010)
Yukiko Nikaido (1971-1972)
Mami Koyama (1987)
Miyuki Sawashiro (2011-present)
English:
Unknown (Toho/Frontier)
Edie Mirman (Streamline)
Michele Seidman (AnimEigo)
Toni Barry (Manga UK)
Dorothy Fahn (Animaze/Manga)
Meredith McCoy (FUNimation)
Michelle Ruff (Phuuz/Pioneer/Geneon, FUNimation)
Portrayed by Eiko Ezaki (1974)
Meisa Kuroki (2014)
Profile
Aliases Margo/Margot (Some international dubs)
Nationality Japanese

Fujiko Mine (峰 不二子 Mine Fujiko?) is a fictional character created by Monkey Punch for his manga series Lupin III, which debuted in Weekly Manga Action on August 10, 1967. She is a professional criminal and burglar that regularly uses her attractiveness to fool her targets. Unlike the rest of the Lupin III cast, Fujiko's physical appearance changes for most installments. Her name means "mountain peaks of Fuji", a pun on the size of her breasts, which is usually the only thing consistent in her various designs.

She is the star of the fourth Lupin III TV anime, The Woman Called Fujiko Mine which aired from April to June 2012, making it the first not to star Arsène Lupin III as the protagonist.[1]

Personality[edit]

While Fujiko is not part of Lupin's gang, she often participates in their exploits either as a partner or a competitor. Her principle tactic is to stick with Lupin and company until the plunder is made available then double-cross her colleagues. Frequently, she finds it necessary to betray Lupin to get close to the enemy, then after ingratiating herself into his trust will acquire the swag and escape (rarely, she will help to extricate Lupin, Goemon and Jigen for the trouble she put them into, as if to atone). Fujiko is also known to provide Zenigata or other law enforcement officers with information and assistance in order to gain her own freedom . [2] At one point, Fujiko was made Zenigata's replacement on the ICPO's Lupin operation, however this was a cover for her to get into a secret vault.[3]

Of this two-faced nature Lupin is surprisingly forgiving. In the 1995 movie Die! Nostradamus, Lupin carefully treats the amnesiatic Fujiko, hoping she gets better as he "looks forward to her betrayals".

Fujiko is an excellent shot, her favorite weapon being a Browning M1910, typically holstered in her garter. In recent years, she's revealed superb martial arts skills, capable of rendering an attacker twice her weight unconscious with a single blow. She is as well very good at disguises and accents and apparently can speak dozens of foreign languages in addition to her native Japanese. Like the other members of Lupin's team, she is able to pilot virtually any land, sea, and air vehicle, with her personal preference being a conventional Kawasaki motorcycle. She can be very promiscuous when necessary to complete a job, and has kissed and even slept with different men for information or to escape a situation. The 2012 anime series implies heavily that Fujiko is bisexual.[4]

Daisuke Jigen despises Fujiko and sees her showing up as a sign of rough times ahead, although despite this, in the original manga he was still one of her suitors. Goemon Ishikawa XIII, who had a brief romance with Ms. Mine, has been known to work on capers with Fujiko independent of the other gang members, but can be equally distrustful of her when he thinks she is manipulating Lupin.

Lupin is completely infatuated with Fujiko, and will do anything for her. While Fujiko is aware of this and always uses it to her advantage, she never gets Lupin into trouble where he cannot escape. Monkey Punch has said that the two "enjoy each other", and are quite content with their bizarre yet amicable relationship, comparing it to his own marriage.[5]

Although she is more willing to contain her feelings, Fujiko does have a love for Lupin. She rarely wishes to fully reveal her affection except if she thinks one or both are dying. On occasions where Lupin appears to have died, she grieves and considers him the most important person to her.[6] However, her not-altogether-hidden feelings submerge again when she finds him alive.

Ms. Mine usually dresses in the height of fashion, with formal gowns and fine jewelry her trademark; when informal, she typically wears outfits that accentuate her robust figure. Fujiko's favorite pastimes appear to be shopping, attending social functions, disco dancing, horseback riding, and dating wealthy gentlemen. She enjoys champagne, fine wine and has been seen more than once consuming a martini; she also smokes cigarettes and occasionally uses a kiseru.

Background[edit]

In the original manga series, Fujiko originally arrives in the third chapter of the first volume, thus being the first of Lupin's three associates to arrive. She initially appears as a con woman attempting to worm her way into the fortune of a rich family, whose heir has hired Lupin as security. Immediately upon arriving, she recognizes Lupin through his disguise, and by the end of the arc, Lupin has sided with her to rob the entire family.

Due to the episodic nature of the manga, many of Fujiko's appearances treat her and Lupin as meeting for the first time, even after the incident where Lupin kills her father. Many of the stories feature her trying to capture the same object as Lupin, usually being bested by Lupin, only occasionally being the one who gets the prize. It should also be noted that unlike his anime version, Lupin is a ladies-man in the manga, with he and Fujiko having slept together numerous times.

This is the opposite in the anime adaptations (excluding the fourth series), which often has Fujiko betraying Lupin and for the most part denying his flirting. Fujiko's background includes organized crime in partnership with the notorious Killer known as Pun. The couple was famous for carrying out contract killings without failure. However, the partnership ended abruptly when Pun's employer ordered him to kill Fujiko after she made a mistake. Pun could not face being asked to kill Fujiko and she disappeared. Fujiko claims to suffer from amnesia and cannot remember anything prior those events, however she recognises Pun when he arrives looking for her.[7]

Reception[edit]

In 2007, Oricon polled readers on which characters they would most like to see in their own series.[8] Fujiko appeared in the seventh position among female voters, and fifth place overall. The company also asked their readers in the very same year who they believed is the most beautiful woman in manga. Fujiko Mine was crowned the title by scoring first place overall with high rankings from both male and female voters.[9] She was voted as the 2nd most iconic anime heroine from Mania.com[10] In 2012, in a Japanese poll on which character's voice actor should never change, Fujiko came in second among males and third amongst females.[11]

Fujiko's personality traits served as inspiration for those of the character Eva in the Metal Gear video game series.[12] In the manga Azumanga Daioh, Tomo Takino is a fan of the Lupin III series and admires Fujiko. She constantly makes references to herself as Fujiko Mine, despite the fact the two are totally different in looks and personality.[13] In the Aria the Scarlet Ammo franchise, the character Riko Mine Lupin IV claims to be the daughter of Lupin and Fujiko.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "New Lupin III TV Anime's Staff, Cast, Title Revealed". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 20, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Is Lupin burning.....?!" (in Japanese). Lupin III. Episode 1. October 24, 1971. Event occurs at 21:29.
  3. ^ "The Sweet ICPO Trap!" (in Japanese). Lupin III Part II. Episode 38. June 26, 1978.
  4. ^ "Lupin III: A Woman Named Fujiko Episodes 2 and 6" (in Japanese).
  5. ^ Divers, Allen (2003-11-13). "Interview: Monkey Punch". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2007-07-01. 
  6. ^ "One Chance for a Prison Break" (in Japanese). Lupin III. Episode 4. November 14, 1971. Event occurs at 21:08.
  7. ^ "Killer Sings the Blues" (in Japanese). December 19, 1971.
  8. ^ "Oricon: Fans Want L, Char Aznable Spinoffs". Anime News Network. 2007-01-08. Retrieved 2007-07-01. 
  9. ^ Anime Insider. Vol. 48, Page 16
  10. ^ 10 Iconic Anime Heroines from Mania.com
  11. ^ "MyNavi Poll: Characters Who Should Never Change Voice Actors". Anime News Network. Retrieved August 26, 2013. 
  12. ^ "MGS3 Cinema Kojima Commentary: Snake Eater Operation Arctic Air Space ~ Bolshaya Past Base". Muni_shinobu.webs.com. Retrieved 2014-06-21. 
  13. ^ Azumanga Daioh. Vol. 2, chapter July