Samurai Deeper Kyo

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Samurai Deeper Kyo
SamuraiDeeperKyo vol1 Cover.jpg
The cover of the first volume of Samurai Deeper Kyo as published by Kodansha on October 15, 1999 in Japan
サムライ ディーパー キョウ
(Samurai Dīpā Kyō)
Genre Chanbara, Supernatural, romance, martial arts, action, adventure, drama
Manga
Written by Akimine Kamijyo
Published by Kodansha
English publisher Canada United Kingdom United States Del Rey Manga
Tokyopop
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Weekly Shōnen Magazine
Original run October 15, 1999May 10, 2006
Volumes 38 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed by Junji Nishimura
Studio Studio Deen
Licensed by United States AnimeWorks
Network TV Tokyo
English network United States Encore Action, Encore WAM
Original run July 2, 2002December 23, 2002
Episodes 26
Game
Publisher Bandai
Genre Fighting
Platform PlayStation
Released JP December 12, 2002
Game
Developer Marvelous Entertainment
Publisher Bandai
Genre JP Marvelous Entertainment
NA Bold Games
Platform Game Boy Advance
Released JP December 27, 2002
NA February 12, 2008
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Samurai Deeper Kyo (サムライ ディーパー キョウ Samurai Dīpā Kyō?) is a manga series written and illustrated by Akimine Kamijyo. Set during the Edo period of Japan's history, Samurai Deeper Kyo follows Demon Eyes Kyo (鬼目の狂 Oni Me no Kyō?), a feared samurai seeking to regain his body after his soul is sealed inside the body of his rival, Mibu Kyoshiro. Kyo is joined in his search by the bounty-hunter Shiina Yuya, the heir to the Tokugawa shogunate Benitora; and Sanada Yukimura, a known rival of the Tokugawa.

Samurai Deeper Kyo was serialized from October 15, 1999 to May 10, 2006 in Kodansha's Weekly Shōnen Magazine, and collected over 38 volumes. The manga was adapted into an animated television series in 2002. The Studio Deen production aired on TV Tokyo from July 2, 2002 until December 23, 2002, for a total of 26 episodes. Both the manga and anime have been licensed in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The manga was acquired by Tokyopop in 2002.[1] However, by 2009, Kodansha allowed its licensing contracts to expire, preventing Tokyopop from continuing the English version of the series.[2] Samurai Deeper Kyo was shortly thereafter picked up by Del Rey Manga, who have completed the series by releasing volumes 35 and 36 in a single volume and volumes 37 and 38 in a single volume.[3] The anime series was acquired by Media Blasters under its AnimeWorks label in 2003.[4] briefly aired on Encore network channels in the United States.[5]

Plot[edit]

Set in Tokugawa Japan, this manga begins by following Shiina Yuya, a bounty hunter searching for her brother's murderer. However, Yuya quickly meets a medicine peddler named Mibu Kyoshiro, who turns out to be sharing a body with the feared samurai Demon Eyes Kyo. Over time, Mibu Kyoshiro and, to a lesser extent, Shiina Yuya recede from the story while Demon Eyes Kyo comes to the fore. Kyo's only stated wish is to regain his own body. Following this path leads Kyo, Yuya and a variety of fellow travelers into conflict with both the Tokugawa shogunate and the Mibu tribe, a race of violent superhumans who have run Japan from the shadows for millennia.

Underlying the principal story arc of Kyo's search to reclaim his body, there are many smaller arcs, each leading to the next one. The basis of many later revelations are established many volumes in advance. In the manga, it is revealed that all of the Mibu, except for Kyo, are descendants of "Battle Dolls", creatures created by the Mibu to fight for their amusement. In time, the Battle Dolls come to believe they were the real Mibu, and that the real Mibu eventually became extinct due to in-fighting. The Mibu Battle Dolls are gradually being killed by the "Death Disease". Muramasa's sister was the first to be killed by the disease, but others soon followed. The disease manifests itself when the infected person reaches a certain age. For this reason, the aging process has been stopped in Antera, Tokito, and probably others.

Demon Eyes Kyo ultimately defeats the father and creator of the Mibu, the Former Crimson King, who was also the very first Battle Doll. Originally an extremely beloved and thoroughly benevolent ruler, the King had become totally corrupted by his loss of all faith in humanity, and became an insane tyrant bent on completely eradicating all of mankind. Kyo then goes missing-in-action after the final battle, which blows up the Mibu capital. Kyo shows up at the end of the penultimate chapter being called upon by his sword tenro. In the bonus chapter which contains no dialogue shows Kyo and Yuya living in a house together.

Characters[edit]

Demon Eyes Kyo (鬼目の狂 Oni Me no Kyō?)

He is known for his demonic blood-red eyes and is one of the most feared samurai in the world. He carries a legendary nodachi called Tenro (Heavenly Wolf), made by mastersmith Muramasa. In the manga, he is depicted as a cold, unbeatable samurai. When he was young, he was shunned by all of the Mibu clan for his demonic red eyes except for the Sendai Aka no Ou (Former Crimson King). After killing Oda Nobunaga, he was thrown into the Mibu dungeons until Muramasa rescued him and trained him in Mumyo Jinpu Ryuu. Kyo is the last remaining True Mibu. Sendai Aka no Ou asked Kyo to seek out the outside world and one day stop the former King himself if he was to become evil and destroy the world.

Mibu Kyoshiro (壬生 京四郎 Mibu Kyōshirō?)

A remarkable and mysterious swordsman, depicted as the only rival to Demon Eyes Kyo. He wielded the Shibien (Black Sword), one of the Muramasa weapons. In the manga, he is depicted as one of the heirs to the Aka no Ou throne, the Red Eyes being proof of his Mibu lineage. He is a "Red Cross Knight", created from the flesh of the Sendai Aka no Ou. Though he is able to control the Red Eyes, he is not a true Mibu, but merely a more powerful battle doll resembling the first generation of battle dolls created. It is depicted that he is stronger than Demon Eyes Kyo until near the end of the manga.

Shiina Yuya (椎名 ゆや?)

A young woman who makes a living as a professional bounty hunter in order to track down her brother's killer, the "Man with the Scar on His Back". She uses a three barreled gun and small daggers as defensive weapons. Yuya is actually an orphan found by her "brother", Nozomu, and raised by him as an adoptive sister. He was Sakuya's biological brother. Unlike many of the characters, Yuya is a normal human without any powers, despite the former Crimson King suspecting she can see the future later in the story.

Benitora (红虎?)

Also known as Hidetada Tokugawa (德川秀忠?), the heir to the throne of the Tokugawa clan. He is also known as "The Shadow Master" due to his ability to make multiple copies of himself. He first appeared in volume 2 of the manga, accompanying White Crow. He later challenges Kyoshiro, who he thought was Kyo, to a fight. Benitora loses and decides to join their group. He immediately takes a romantic interest in Shiina Yuya, although the feeling is not returned. Note: Benitora translates to 'Red Tiger'.

Mibu clan (壬生一族 Mibu Ichizoku?)

Ruled by The Crimson King. Most of their members are humanoid in appearance but have very long lives compared to humans and have great strength and power. The lower ranked Mibu are sometimes in humanoid shape with abnormal bodies, i.e. three eyes or clawed hands. These were created by experiments on humans and animals to replenish the clan, because natural childbirth has stopped in the Mibu clan for unknown reasons. The Mibu clan are said to possess the most advanced knowledge in sciences and technology and have been manipulating the country's history from the shadows by helping the Shoguns. They decide to rule the country directly when Ieyasu Tokugawa becomes the first shogun to ever rebel against their power.

All of the current Mibu are battle dolls made by True Mibu, except for Demon Eyes Kyo, the last remaining True Mibu. But as generations passed, True Mibu started engaging in civil wars to seek greater power, which ended up in the destruction of their very clan with only battle dolls remaining. Present Mibu are dying off due to the Death Disease which is caused by their flaw as battle dolls created by True Mibu. Kyoshiro and Chinmei are also battle dolls, but a more powerful version created by the first generation battle doll, the former Aka no Ou. They are called "sons of the God", and have limited power compared to what a True Mibu has. Eventually, they will also inherit Death Disease and die.

Anime adaptation[edit]

The TV adaptation takes extreme liberties with the plot, and only vaguely follows the plot of the manga. Kyo is an artificial construct, born of Kyoshiro's attempt to purge violence and cruelty from himself i.e. Kyo is the dark half of Kyoshiro's soul in a Mibu-made homunculus . While Kyo is resealed inside Kyoshiro after losing a swordfight to him, the circumstances behind it are different. Kyoshiro confronts Kyo at the Battle of Sekigahara in order to stop his bloody rampage, rather than to protect Sakuya. Apart from these and flashbacks to his time with Muramasa, Akira and Hotaru, the anime provides fewer details of Kyo's past. The character of Yuya is often relegated to a peripheral character, while the role of the kenyou is enhanced.

Episodes[edit]

No. Title Original airdate English airdate
1 "Road to Armageddon"
"ARUMAGEDON no Yukue" (アルマゲドンの行方) 
July 1, 2002 July 31, 2006
2 "Wanted Dead or Alive"
"Shoukinkubi (DEDDO OA ARAIBU) no Otoko" (賞金首(デッド オア アライブ)の男) 
July 8, 2002 August 1, 2006
3 "Red Mirage"
"Akaki MIRAAJYU" (紅きミラージュ) 
July 15, 2002 August 2, 2006
4 "The Creeping Nightmare"
"Shinobiyoru NAITOMEA" (忍び寄るナイトメア) 
July 22, 2002 August 3, 2006
5 "Tears of the Assassin"
"ASASHIN no Namida" (アサシンの涙) 
July 29, 2002 August 4, 2006
6 "The Duel at Hibiya Bay"
"HIBIYA BEI no Kettou" (ヒビヤ・ベイの決闘) 
August 5, 2002 Not aired
7 "Keichou Era Battle Royal"
"Keichou BATORU ROIYARU" (慶長バトルロイヤル) 
August 12, 2002 Not aired
8 "Demon Spear Cries"
"DEMON SUPIA Naku" (デモンスピア哭く) 
August 19, 2002 Not aired
9 "The Blind Smile"
"Hohoemi no BURANDO" (微笑のブラインド) 
August 26, 2002 Not aired
10 "Cold Blood Illusion"
"Reiketsu no IRYUUJYON" (冷血のイリュージョン) 
September 2, 2002 August 12, 2006
11 "Pitch Black Flashback"
"Shikkoku no FURASSHUBAKKU" (漆黒のフラッシュバック) 
September 9, 2002 August 13, 2006
12 "The Boy From the Deep Forest"
"DIIPU FORESUTO kara Kita Shounen" (ディープ・フォレストから来た少年) 
September 16, 2002 August 14, 2006
13 "Crossing Souls"
"KUROSUsuru Tamashii tachi" (クロスする魂たち) 
September 22, 2002 August 15, 2006
14 "Satan Again"
"SATAN Futatabi" (サタン再び) 
September 30, 2002 August 16, 2006
15 "Our Friend Red Tiger"
"Waga Tomo REDDO TAIGAA" (我が友レッド<紅虎>タイガー) 
October 7, 2002 August 17, 2006
16 "Perfect Victory"
"Kanpekinaru BIKUTORII" (完璧なるビクトリー) 
October 14, 2002 August 18, 2006
17 "The Secret Talk of Girls"
"Shoujotachi no SHIIKURETTO TOOKU" (少女たちのシークレットトーク) 
October 21, 2002 September 16, 2006
18 "Nurturing the Devil"
"NAASU na Akuma ♥" (ナースな悪魔 ♥) 
October 28, 2002 September 17, 2006
19 "Thunderbolt Attack"
"SANDAABORUTO Zangeki" (サンダーボルト斬撃) 
November 4, 2002 September 18, 2006
20 "Far Away, to Absolute Zero"
"ABUSORYUUTO ZERO no kanata e" (アブソリュートゼロの彼方へ) 
November 11, 2002 September 19, 2006
21 "The Demonic Mibu Castle"
"Jigoku no MIBU KYASSURU" (地獄のミブ・キャッスル) 
November 18, 2002 September 20, 2006
22 "The Machine Made Dolls"
"Kikaijikake no DOORUZU" (機械仕掛けのドールズ) 
November 25, 2002 September 21, 2006
23 "Scorching Ecstasy"
"Shakunetsu no EKUSUTASHII" (灼熱のエクスタシー) 
December 2, 2002 September 22, 2006
24 "Last Muramasa Awakening"
"RASUTO MURAMASA Kakusei" (ラストムラマサ覚醒) 
December 9, 2002 September 23, 2006
25 "The One that Surpasses Tach"
"TAKION o Koeru Mono" (タキオンを超える者) 
December 16, 2002 September 24, 2006
26 "The Ballad of the Samurai"
"SAMURAI wa BARAADO o Utau" (SAMURAIはバラードをうたう) 
December 23, 2002 September 25, 2006

Music[edit]

Opening Theme
Ending Theme
  • Love Deeper by Pipeline Project featuring Yuiko Tsubokura
Character songs (from Samurai Deeper Kyo Vocal Album Kyousouka)

Video games[edit]

Two video games based on Samurai Deeper Kyo have been published by Bandai. The first, a versus fighting game for the PlayStation, was released in Japan on December 12, 2002. Alongside the regular edition of the game, Bandai released a "Limited Edition" bundled with a Samurai Deeper Kyo collectible card game.[6] The second, an action-adventure game for the Game Boy Advance (GBA), was developed by Marvelous Entertainment and released in Japan on December 27, 2002.[7] This game was localized for North America by Destineer and bundled with a re-release of the anime series box set in 2008. It has the distinction of being the last GBA game released in North America.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Anime News Network staff (October 22, 2002). "Tokyopop Announces New Manga Titles". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  2. ^ Anime News Network (August 31, 2009). "Tokyopop Confirms Its Kodansha Manga Licenses Have Ended (Update 3)". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  3. ^ Anime News Network staff (June 12, 2009). "Del Rey Manga Announces the Acquisition of Samurai Deeper Kyo, Wild @ Heart". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  4. ^ Anime News Network staff (January 27, 2003). "Samurai Deeper Kyo and Juuni Kokki Licensed". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  5. ^ Anime News Network staff (June 19, 2006). "New Anime on Encore WAM, Starz Action". Anime News Network. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  6. ^ Game Watch staff (November 15, 2002). "バンダイ、21人+1匹が登場する本格格闘ゲーム PS「SAMURAI DEEPER KYO」" (in Japanese). Game Watch. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  7. ^ Game Watch staff (November 15, 2002). "MMV、アニメやコミックの雰囲気をそのままゲーム化 GBA「SAMURAI DEEPER KYO」" (in Japanese). Game Watch. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  8. ^ Spencer (February 21, 2008). "Samurai Deeper Kyo, the GBA’s swan song?". Siliconera. Retrieved April 9, 2012. 

External links[edit]