(Basutādo!! Ankoku no Hakaishin)
|Written by||Kazushi Hagiwara|
|Original run||March 14, 1988 – present|
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Katsuhito Akiyama|
|Written by||Hiroshi Yamaguchi|
|Music by||Kohei Tanaka|
|Released||August 25, 1992 – June 25, 1993|
|Runtime||30 minutes per episode|
Bastard!!: Heavy Metal, Dark Fantasy (Japanese: BASTARD!!-暗黒の破壊神-, Hepburn: Basutādo!! Ankoku no Hakaishin, lit. "Bastard!! The Dark God of Destruction") is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kazushi Hagiwara. It began in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump in March 1988, and continues to be published irregularly in Ultra Jump since December 2000. The series is currently on an extended hiatus, with the latest chapter released in 2012. Its chapters have been collected in 27 tankōbon volumes as of March 2012. The manga was published in English by Viz Media. Only volumes 1–19 have been translated, with no plans to release the rest.
Hagiwara is an enthusiastic fan of heavy metal music and Dungeons & Dragons, using ideas from both of these in the Bastard!! story. Many characters and places in the story, for instance, are named after members of Hagiwara's favorite bands.
Bastard!! is one of Shueisha's best-selling manga series of all time, with over 30 million copies sold by 2008.
In Bastard!!, the Kingdom of Metallicana is attacked by the Four Lords of Havoc. This prompts the high priest to ask his daughter to awaken Dark Schneider, a wizard and former leader of the Riders, from within the body of 14-year-old Luche Renren.
Bastard!!'s history is about sorcery, revenge, and other power struggles in a Dungeons & Dragons–like world. It is a dystopian world, where people need magic to survive against wild beasts, and evil monsters. There are four kingdoms, each one the protector of one of the four seals that keep the God of Destruction in stasis.
While the first half of the manga follows most a theme similar to Dungeons & Dragons scenarios, it later also focuses on aspects such as beliefs, morals and religions.
- Dark Schneider (ダーク・シュナイダー, Dāku Shunaidā, aka Darsch, D・S) / Lushe Renren (ルーシェ・レンレン, Rūshe Renren, aka Lucien, Lushe)
- Voiced by: Kazuki Yao (Dark Schneider) and Yuriko Fuchizaki (Lushe) (Japanese); Daran Norris (Dark Schneider) and Brianne Siddall (Lushe) (English)
- Dark Schneider (noted to be named after Udo Dirkschneider) is the most powerful wizard in the series. 15 years prior to the story's beginning, he had an army of thousands of wizards and warriors, led by his adjutants "The Riders of Havoc" (consisting of Arshes Nei, Abigail, Gara, and Kall-Su.) He was defeated by Lars Ul Metallicana, the prince of the kingdom Metallicana. He escaped death however by using his dark arts to reincarnate himself into the form of a young child, Lushe Renren. Geo Soto Noto, the head priest of Metallicana then sealed Dark Schneider's spirit so it would not resurface in the young boy. After all-out war erupted to break the seals of Anthrax, the high-priest ordered that Dark Schneider be unleashed into the world once again to conquer it. Dark Schneider's main goal is to take over the world and "have all the women in the world". The early part of the story is mainly based on him getting his crew back, known as the "Riders of Havoc" or the "Four Heavenly Kings", as well as achieving the power he once had so he can begin his goal of world conquest yet again.
- After losing his battle against Antrax (also called Anthrasax), who reveals himself to be an angel, Dark Schneider is cast into the depths of the upper levels of Hell and encounters Satan. Satan tells him that he is a major part of the end times prophecy, and will lead demons and mankind to war against God and his army. He also reveals that he is, in fact, Dark Schneider's "father", and thus deems Dark Schneider the "Anti-Christ" mentioned throughout The Bible. Dark Schneider, however, refuses to align himself with Hell and then is thrust into battle with the High Commander of Hell, Porno Diano. Four years later, he returns to Earth and fights alongside the Seraphim against the devil Konron (Conlon). His body is destroyed by Konron's Trelldor Spinning Fist attack, but his head survives.
- Tia Noto Yoko (ティア・ノート・ヨーコ, Tia Nōto Yōko)
- Voiced by: Yuka Koyama (Japanese); Wendee Lee (English)
- Yoko is a mild prude, strong-willed and somewhat temperamental redhead, daughter of the Great Priest (and an 80% chaste virgin in the anime and a 100% chaste virgin in the manga), self-appointed guardian and friend of Luche. She is the primary love interest of Dark Schneider. She is the first to use the "virgin's kiss" to awaken Dark Schneider. Having undergone priestess training she does not show any magical talent until later in the manga (acting as the party's cleric) and never in the OVA. Despite this, she is the one person that DS fears and (mostly) respects.
- She disappeared during the four-year break in the series, apparently getting killed during the fall of King Crimson. In the same time, a woman with the same appearance and known as "Lilith" appeared alongside the Kings of Hell. She was found near the borders of the Lethe and seems to have some memories about DS.
- Ninja Master Gara (ガラ, Gara)
- Voiced by: Tessho Genda (Japanese); David Lucas (English)
- Gara is a master of Ninjutsu, and at least the third (possibly the fourth) General that Dark Schneider took on. He attempted to slay Dark Schneider, who easily defeated him. Dark Schneider was moved by the boy's impetuous and strong-willed attacks, and so offered to take him on as a servant and fighter. Gara agreed. He commands a sword which can draw its life force directly from the swordsman, allowing almost unbeatable magic attacks. Unfortunately, the strongest attack is usually fatal to use.
- When he learned Dark Schneider had been re-awoken, he kidnapped Yoko;Dark Schneider was talked into tracking down the Ninja Master, at which point they battled;at the end of the battle Dark Schneider and Gara both lost an arm, prompting Gara to up the stakes by claiming he had intercourse with Yoko;he was hoping it would make Dark lose his fighting spirit, only to make the wizard horribly angry. It was at this point that Dark Schneider destroyed Gara's base, but kept everyone alive, and restored Gara's arm. Gara realized the error of his ways and rejoined Dark Schneider (the first Lord to do so).
- Thunder Empress Arshes Nei (アーシェス・ネイ, Āshesu Nei)
- Voiced by: Rei Sakuma (anime) and Mami Koyama (drama CD, episodes 1–3) (Japanese); Mary Elizabeth McGlynn (English)
- A half human, half Dark Elf who was kept as a slave by the Wood Elves, Dark Schneider found her after she was abandoned by her tribe and took rare pity. She became both his daughter and his lover, being apparently similarly immortal (or at least long-lived). She was his major confidant, and as such is aware of most of the same spells he is. To prove her loyalty to the Four Divine Kings, she let herself be cursed with the spell Accused by Abigail;in the anime, this compelled her to fight against Dark Schneider while her army marched on Metallikana. In the middle of a magical showdown using Helloween, Lucien's spirit made Dark Schneider aware of what was driving his daughter to attack. DS was outraged and tore out his own heart to drive off the power of the Accused spell (later resurrecting himself). Arshes rejoins him at this point, and they destroy the advancing armies. She was the first Lord of Havoc to join Dark Schneider originally, and the second to rejoin. Her name is a reference to Whitesnake.
- Kall-Su (カル＝ス, Karu Su)
- Voiced by: Toshihiko Seki (anime), Ryo Horikawa (drama CD, episodes 1–3) and Shin-ichiro Miki (drama CD, episode 4) (Japanese); Richard Cansino (English)
- Kall-Su was the second general of Dark Schneider;he commands the Ice-Falchion, a great sword, and is innately magically powerful. His name is a reference to Kal Swan of the bands Lion and Bad Moon Rising. Kall-Su was born in a distant village, his father being an Ice-Dragon in human form. He was feared by the villagers for this, as well as bullied and beaten. He disposed of the bullies through instinctive use of magic and was condemned to a cave to die. At one point, in shame and fear, his mother attempted to slay him with the Ice-Falchion. Though the blow nearly cleaved Kall-Su's head in half, he slew her, and upon leaving the village, was stopped by a torch-bearing mob. He destroyed the mob with a glance, as well as the entire village, and was left to wander the ruins. Dark Schneider found him and took him aboard, declaring him a son, but mostly a slave and servant. He boasts extreme power and is capable of transforming into an Ice-Dragon at will. He destroys the entire city of Whiteos-Neiki with his spell, Vizkaya, which freezes everyone in the Kingdom into solid ice. He is the last general left standing when the series unexpectedly terminates, and wishes for the apocalypse. It is explained that he was told by Anthrax to despise Dark Schneider, thus erupting into a battle between the two.
- Kall, Nei, and Gara figure out why "glowing beings of light" have started a war against them via ancient computers in an underground base. They discover that the Apocalypse is fast approaching and the beings of light are in fact angels sent from God to kill a third of mankind (those deemed sinful for worshiping false gods). One of the twelve elves of Europa (riding an abomination looking similar to a behemoth with human feet, and dozens of eyes) sees the three and is angered that they have discovered the reason behind the current events of the earth through his computer system. After calling forth many monsters, they do battle. Before the battle evens starts, however, they discover that their swords are going erupting with energy and seems to have lost their power.
- Four years after the battle on earth, Kall-Su is found to be blinded (apparently from the scars over his eyes and face). He says that his power has increased exponentially over the past four years, though he does not know why. It is eventually made clear to him through "The Mysterious Boy" that he is filled with the same power as Elijah and deemed worthy to be his successor. It is also said that he is the "true" king of Metallicana, and will eventually have to do battle with Dark Schneider alongside the "Mysterious Boy". Many people do not believe that he is Elijah's successor, namely the dwarf king Jeloy, who was armed with a mighty ax to repel this fact. He and his men, however, were stopped by Lars, thinking that he was truly Elijah's successor (as he is a well-known hero in the dwarven kingdom). He corrects their statement, saying indeed that Kall is Elijah's successor and was told to do the work of God.
- After leaving the dwarf kingdom, Kall-Su decides to go to the world of spirits to seek help and awakes a mighty giant from his frozen slumber. The giant curses him for violating "holy" land and says that he will have to die for his "sins". Kall claims that "death will not be enough to atone for my crimes in this world" and throws a ball of super-condensed water at the giant, throwing his ice falchion at the ball to release a surge of water upon the giant, returning it back to captivity in a pillar of frozen ice. Nei approaches him and tells him that it's not like him to be so rash. The ground begins to rumble and a gigantic gateway appears before the two, Kall claims that he will journey to the realm of spirits to try to ask for help against the upcoming war on Earth.
- Dark Priest Abigail (アビゲイル, Abigeiru)
- Voiced by: Ryuzaburo Otomo (Japanese); Richard Epcar (English)
- Abigail is a bit of an enigma:He is the Fourth Lord of Havoc, and quite powerful. He claims to be the Priest and the Hand of Anslasax, and explains that he has existed since the days of the Old World, and exists to facilitate the resurrection of Anthrax. He curses Arshes with the Accused spell, which forces her to obey him as if she does not, her body will be destroyed, and she will return as an immortal toad. Alone of all of the group he is able to take the "three keys" which seal the God of Destruction in sleep and begin the spell to resurrect her. Abigail is destroyed by Dark Schneider in the end, though he almost succeeds in killing Dark Schneider, Yoko, Arshes and Gara. In the "Requiem of Hell" (the second part of BASTARD!!), he is seen communing with Dark Schneider and his friends, the Samurai. After the angel attack on earth, Abigail converts his spirit into the mainframe grid system of the flying arc King Crimson Glory. There are clues that Abigail may be the "false prophet", the servant of the Antichrist mentioned in The Bible. His name comes from King Diamond's classic album, Abigail.
- Lars/Rarz (ラーズ, Rāzu)
- Voiced by: Masami Kikuchi
- Lars Ulu, whose name is a reference to Lars Ulrich of Metallica, is the prince of the kingdom Metallicana. He is said to be Metallicana's greatest warrior, due to him having the ability to slay armies of thousands single-handedly. A portion of his power comes from the "blood of dragons" flowing through his veins, giving him the increased vigor, power, and speed, as well as the ability to use the "Ki", or spiritual power of the dragon for his attacks. He wields the dragon sword "Heavy Metal", a translucent blade with monstrous attack power, made even more lethal as it absorbs the "ki" of dragons to increase its destructive force.
- Fifteen years before the story starts, he fought Dark Schneider in a battle that would last for several days. Dark Schneider has already succeeded in conquering most of the earth at this time and would only need to get a few more kingdoms to rule to world. Lars found himself losing the battle and had not the chance of victory. Finding no other choice, he summons the "Dragon Knight", a mechanical robot that towers over 500 meters (1,600 ft) and was originally made by the Ten Wise Men of Europa. The dragon itself, absorbing and multiplying the spiritual energy of anyone who used it, proved useful and helped Lars kill Dark Schneider. The Dragon Knight itself, however, was cursed, as it was meant to be used against Anthra-Sax, not Dark Schneider, and transformed him into a baby dragon. After the death of Dark Schneider, Lars is said to have gone missing or even died, as no one knew what truly occurred on that day.
- In the form of a baby dragon, Lars spends his time looking for a successor to the Dragon Knight. He was eventually found by Gara, the ninja master and one of the "Four Lords of Havoc" and made to be his pet. He even follows Dark Schneider around to observe him, knowing full and well that they were once deadly enemies. Right before the angel attack on earth, the Dragon Knight was destroyed by Anthrax, thus freeing Lars from its spell. He tells Geo and the rest that the Dragon Knight is not holy as they once thought and it was the reason behind his cursed form.
- During the angel attack, Lars fights on against the angels using the power of the dragon. He is the last to stand his ground (as the Sorcerer Shoguns and Samurai were slain), though he eventually is killed by the higher ranked angels.
- Bon Jovina/Von Jobina (ボン・ジョヴィーナ, Bon Jobina)
- Named after the artist Jon Bon Jovi, Bon Jovina is the unfortunate Captain of the Guard of Metallicana. He is constantly being crushed by enemies, but appears to be quite durable, because he survives being smashed by a Hydra, pummeled by a Minotaur with a giant war hammer, flattened by two walls, and blasted through two walls by the Hurricane Sword. He dislikes Dark Schneider greatly but is very loyal to the princess.
- Currently, Bon Jovina is in the Halls of Gathering with the other races of half-humans around the world to decide what to do about the upcoming battle.
- Princess Sheila (シーラ 姫, Shīra Hime)
- Voiced by:Konami Yoshida (Japanese), Bridget Hoffman (English)
- Princess of Metallicana and Lars's sister, she is strong and determined, but only somewhat magically powerful. She has been taken in by Dark Schneider's charms, even going as far as admitting that she "loves" him.
- Geo Noto Sort/Soto
- Voiced by: Nobuo Tanaka (Japanese), Simon Prescott (English)
- The powerful cleric father of Yoko, he transformed and imprisoned Dark Schneider in the form of Rushe at the end of the Great War which occurred 15 years before the main storyline. His name appears to be a reference to Jeff Scott Soto, former singer for Yngwie Malmsteen.
- Sean Ari
- Voiced by: Wakana Yamazaki
- A war orphan who was probably raised and taught High Ancient Magic by Arshes Nei, employing talismans to aid her and becoming one of the three Sorcerer Generals under Arshes' command. When DS' first resurrection was discovered, Sean Ari was ordered to assassinate him:Disguising herself as a lord's daughter, using her feminine wiles and virgin body, she very nearly succeeded;DS only realized how much trouble he was in when he noticed marks made by armor on Sean Ari's upper body. The lecherous wizard proceeded to seduce Sean Ari, and her loyalties shifted from Arshes to him. Sean had a minor role in the OVA. Her name is a reference to Diamond Head vocalist Sean Harris.
- Kai Harn
- Voiced by Yuko Kobayashi (Japanese), Debra Jean Rogers (English)
- A wizard-warrior, the second Sorcerer General. She is a master of the ancient Hariken style of swordsmanship and forgotten magic, and her magical skill is greater than that of Sean's. Dark Schneider encountered her in a town where the citizens had been turned to stone, at first mistaking her for a boy with a crush on Ari Sean, and proceeded to taunt Kai with misinformation about Sean's virginity. Using a spell that turned humans into statues, the enraged Kai gained the upper hand in their fight and would have killed DS, had Ari Sean not interfered and stalled her long enough for DS to find out the source god of Kai's magic (Yng Wie, obviously a reference to the musician) and overpower it with the power of his patron god, Black More. On the verge of defeat, Kai summoned a cockatrice to petrify both DS and Ari Sean, only to have victory snatched away as she was injured by the cockatrice. Dark Schneider helped "care for" her wound against her protests, seducing and winning her in the process. Her name is a reference to Kai Hansen, former singer of Helloween and leader of Gamma Ray.
- Voiced by: Shigeru Chiba
- The third Sorcerer General, a wizard who turned himself into a vampire before he joined the dark army. Di-Amon is modeled after metal legend King Diamond, even showing a love of music, singing, and face paint in the OVA. The voice is similar as well. He sought the power to overthrow Arshes Nei and Kall-Su by drinking the blood of many virgins. In the anime, Yoko, who was sent to find the absent wizard, was captured by a werewolf working for Di-Amon. The werewolf was killed by Dark Schneider as Lucien, prompting Di-Amon to step in and imprison Yoko, Larz, and Lucien. Ari Sean and Kai Harn were also captured, but this was a ruse that led to a magical battle with Di-Amon. Unfortunately, Di-Amon was very nearly invincible, which led to Kai being bitten, and Sean would have shared that ordeal, had Yoko not defended her. After a struggle against the seal and Lucien's will, Dark Schneider broke free on his own when Yoko was injured by Di-Amon and proceeded to defeat the vampire with superior cunning (and egoism). Di-Amon was turned into dust by the light of dawn, then rose like a giant bat, which DS promptly placed under the Accused spell. Di-Amon later has reappeared, working his hardest to fight for Dark Schneider, whom he now calls his "beloved master". His nail remains bright blue.
Bastard!! is written and illustrated by Kazushi Hagiwara. The series began in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump on March 14, 1988, and ran on a regular basis in the magazine until August 21, 1989. The first tankōbon volume was published in August 1988. In 1990, the series was switched to the Weekly Shōnen Jump Specials quarterly magazine, and the series started to be published on an irregular basis. The series was later transferred to Ultra Jump magazine, starting on December 19, 2000. The manga is published in the magazine on an irregular schedule. The series has been compiled into 27 tankōbon volumes as of March 2012. Shueisha re-released the series in a new kanzenban-like edition, titled Bastard!! Complete Edition, which updates Hagiwara's art style, improving his backgrounds, screentone and includes redrawing of some characters. Volumes were released from December 2000 to December 2009. In 2014, Shueisha released a nine-volume bunkoban edition published from May to September.
In North America, Viz Media announced the license of Bastard!! in July 2001. The Viz edition is based on Bastard!! Complete Edition. Viz edition differs in a few ways from Japan release. Including graphic sexual scenes being censored, the major differences are the changing of place names. The series names places, spells and some people after various heavy metal bands, such as Metallica, Judas Priest, Whitesnake, Anthrax, Megadeth, Venom, Guns N' Roses, and Helloween. Fearing lawsuits, Viz Media (and Pioneer for the OVA adaptation) took the Japanese transliterations of these band names and changed them somewhat, then transliterating them back to English, e.g., Anthrax became "Anslasax", Iron Maiden into "Aian Meide", and the main city in which the story takes place, Metallicana, was changed to "Meta-Rikana". Viz Media published the first five volumes in a left-to-right edition from August 2002 to December 2003. The volumes were later republished in its original right-to-left version starting from November 2003. The manga stopped its publication after the release of volume 19 in September 2009.
Original video animation
A six-episode OVA series by AIC was released between August 25, 1992 and June 25, 1993. The OVA cover the story up through the Four Lords of Havoc's battle against Abigail (volumes 6–7 of the manga).
In North America, Pioneer Entertainment released the series into three VHS set tapes with an English dub between August 28 and December 8, 1998. Pioneer re-released the OVA on DVD on June 5, 2001.
|#||Title||Original release date|
|1||"The Explosive Wizard"|
Transcription: "Bakuen no Majutsu-shi" (Japanese: 爆炎の魔術師)
|August 25, 1992|
|2||"Efreet the Fire Elemental"|
Transcription: "Kaen Majin Ifurīto" (Japanese: 火炎魔神イーフリート)
|October 25, 1992|
|3||"Ninja Master Gara"|
Transcription: "Ninja Masutā Gara" (Japanese: ニンジャマスター・ガラ)
|December 10, 1992|
|4||"The Immortal King Di-Amon"|
Transcription: "Fushi-ō Dai-Amon" (Japanese: 不死王 ダイ・アモン)
|February 25, 1993|
|5||"Thunder Empress Arshes Nei"|
Transcription: "Kaminari Mikado Āshesu Nei" (Japanese: 雷帝アーシェス・ネイ)
|April 25, 1993|
|6||"The Return of Dark Schneider"|
Transcription: "Fukkatsu no Dāku Shunaidā" (Japanese: 復活のダーク・シュナイダー)
|June 25, 1993|
A 1994 Bastard!! 3D fighting game was released for Super Famicom. A role-playing video game with turn-based fighting elements, titled Bastard!! -Utsuro Naru Kamigami no Utsuwa- (BASTARD!! -虚ろなる神々の器-), was released for PlayStation on December 27, 1996.
A MMOG platformer called BASTARD!! ONLINE was also in development by the Japanese publisher Tecmo and software developer Shaft. A beta test was released in 2006, however, Tecmo has canceled development of it as of Friday December 18, 2009.
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