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Megazone 23

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Megazone 23
Cover to the NA/R1 Blu-Ray release from AnimeEigo for the entire OVA series. The cover shows the Garland mech.
(Megazōn Tsū Surī)
GenreAction,[1][2] cyberpunk[3][1]
Created by
  • Noboru Ishiguro
  • Hiroyuki Hoshiyama
Anime film
Megazone 23
Directed byNoboru Ishiguro
Produced by
  • Hideaki Suda
  • Suichi Onodera
  • Toru Miura
Written byHiroyuki Hoshiyama
Music byShirō Sagisu
Licensed by
ReleasedMarch 9, 1985[4]
Runtime80 minutes
Anime film
Megazone 23 Part II: Please Give Me Your Secret
Directed byIchiro Itano
Produced by
  • Hideaki Suda
  • Suichi Onodera
  • Toru Miura
Written byHiroyuki Hoshiyama
Music byShirō Sagisu
Licensed by
  • NA:
    • ADV Films
    • AnimEigo
ReleasedMay 30, 1986
Runtime80 minutes
Original video animation
Megazone 23 Part III
Directed by
Produced by
  • Toru Miura
  • Isamu Senda
Written byEmu Arii
Music byKeishi Urata
Licensed by
ReleasedSeptember 28, 1989 – December 22, 1989
Runtime50 minutes (each)
icon Anime and manga portal

Megazone 23 (メガゾーン23, Megazōn Tsū Surī) is a three-part Japanese cyberpunk original video animation co-created by Noboru Ishiguro and Hiroyuki Hoshiyama, written by Hoshiyama and Emu Arii, and directed by Ishiguro, Ichiro Itano, Kenichi Yatagai, and Shinji Aramaki. The series debuted in 1985. It was originally titled Omega Zone 23 (オメガゾーン23, Omega Zōn Tsū Surī) but the title was changed just before release.[5]

The story follows Shougo Yahagi, a delinquent motorcyclist whose possession of a government prototype bike leads him to discover the truth about the city. Released on the VHS, Betamax, Laserdisc and VHD formats, the first part was a major commercial success in Japan upon release in 1985. It was also adapted into Robotech: The Movie (1986) in North America. The film's concept of a simulated reality has drawn comparisons to later films including Dark City (1998), The Matrix (1999) and Existenz (1999). It also inspired the video game 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim (2019).



Megazone 23's story is set in the far future of the human race, after, in the early 24th century, various environmental issues rendered Earth uninhabitable, forcing humanity to leave in several massive colony ships, the titular Megazones. The story itself follows the population of Megazone Two Three, based on 1985's Tokyo, Japan, where the population has forgotten their status as space travellers.

Part I and II


The first two parts occur roughly 500 years after humanity left Earth, as the government attempt to hack into the civic computer, Bahamut, for their city, in order to use the city's benevolent artificial intelligence, known as Eve, to influence the people to help them in a near-endless war against the Dezalg, advanced humans from a rival Megazone.

Thrown into this is Shogo Yahagi, after he is given ownership of a strange experimental bike by an old friend of his. Over the course of the story, he discovers how false his world is, and eventually makes contact with the EVE Program, who enlists him to assist humanity in any way he can. However, unfortunately, before he can do anything meaningful, the city's government become focused on the destruction of the Dezalg, and decide to terminate Shogo and Eve, who has fled into cyberspace. In the end, Eve manages to save Shogo and his friends, sending them in Bahamut's system core to Earth as the battling ships are destroyed by an automated lunar defense system called Adam, ending the conflict, at the price of an unknown number of people on both ships.

Part III


The third part occurs several centuries after this, with a hacker named Eiji Takanaka, who is scouted by a rebel group working against the teachings of a mysterious spiritual leader known as Bishop Won Dai. Sion, a high-ranking member of the rebel group, who work under the aegis of Orange Amusements, begins scouting Eiji, while also investigating a strange program called Project Heaven that the E=X Bureau, Won Dai's elite staff, are preparing. Sion manages to confront Eiji as Orange attempt to stop whatever Project Heaven is, and, badly wounded, instructs Eiji to go to the lowest point in the city, finding the real, centuries-old, EVE Tokimatsuri, who was left in suspended animation, meant to be awoken by Shogo Yahagi. She takes him to Bahamut, meeting the AI version of EVE from the previous two parts, while Sion manages to stop Orange from making the same mistake as several centuries before, using it to broadcast the E=X's master plan. In the end, Eiji and EVE confront Won Dai, and he is slain, revealing he is actually Shogo Yahagi as he dies. EVE heads to the ADAM moonbase to shut down and destroy it, while also taking out the city's computer, finally beginning the final part of the plan enacted around a millennia before, while Eiji heads off to meet with his girlfriend Ryo to begin his life anew.



Part I

Part I cast
Role Japanese English
Streamline Pictures (1995) ADV Films/Industrial Smoke & Mirrors (2004)
Shougo Yahagi Masato Kubota Bob Bergen Vic Mignogna
Yui Takanaka Maria Kawamura Barbara Goodson Allison Keith
B.D. Kaneto Shiozawa Gregory Snegoff Andy McAvin
EVE Kumi Miyasato Iona Morris Monica Rial
Mai Yumekano Mayumi Shou Lia Sargent Sasha Paysinger
Tomomi Murashita Mina Tominaga Edie Mirman Hilary Haag
Coco Hitoshi Takagi Mike Reynolds John Swasey
Hiroki "Morley" Mori Yuuji Mitsuya Kerrigan Mahan Kurt Stoll
Shigeru "Chombo" Tomota Katsumi Toriumi Kirk Thornton Mark Laskowski
Producer Kazuyuki Sogabe Jeff Winkless Mike MacRae
Senior officer Daisuke Gouri Russel Case Dan Mackey
Nakao Ikuya Sawaki Steve Kramer Mike Vance
Director General Hisashi Katsuta Tom Wyner Mike Kleinhenz
Reporter Hiromi Yokoi Rebecca Forstadt Tiffany Grant
Staff Officer 1 Ken Yamaguchi David Povall Jason Douglas
Staff Officer 2 Kōichi Hashimoto Simon Prescott Kevin Charles
Sergeant Yoshio Kawai David Zed James Reed Faulkner
Prime Minister Kousuke Tomita
Communications officers Nobuo Tobita David Povall

Jeff Winkless

Simon Prescott

Matt Culpepper

Stuart Krohn

Woman in BD's bed Maya Okamoto Kelly Manison
Navigator Ichirou Itano Steve Kramer Stuart Krohn
Eigen Yumekanou Kiyoshi Kobayashi Michael Forest John Tyson

Part II

Part II cast
Role Japanese English
International edition (1987) ADV Films/ Industrial Smoke & Mirrors (2004)
Shougo Yahagi Kazuki Yao Johnny Winters Vic Mignogna
Kerrigan Mahan
Yui Takanaka Maria Kawamura Suzy Allison Keith
Barbara Goodson
B.D. Kaneto Shiozawa Michael McConnohie Andy McAvin
EVE Kumi Miyasato Diane Michelle Monica Rial
Lightning Shigeru Chiba Tom Wyner Jason Douglas
Lt. Yuuichirou Shiratori Show Hayami Lt. Richard Armstrong John Gremillion
Gregory Snegoff
Cindy Akari Hibino Melora Harte Tiffany Grant
Rena Yoshiko Sakakibara Suzy London Kelly Manison
Rakko Tomohiro Nishimura Rocky Greg Ayres
Bill Capizzi
Dump Chika Sakamoto Arlene Banas Christine Auten
Garam Kazuhiko Inoue Gary Chris Patton
Sam Fontana
Guts Kōzō Shioya Jeff Winkless George Manley
Jace Issei Futamata J.C. Tad Hathaway
Jeff Winkless
Eigen Yumekanou Banjō Ginga Richland John Tyson
Michael Forest
Air Grane FX-101 Admiral Kazuo Oka Theodore Lehmann Phil Ross
Nakao Kōichi Hashimoto Nichols Mike Vance
Steve Kramer
Woodsman leader Takurou Kitagawa Tom Wyner Gene Tognacci

Part III

Part III cast
Role Japanese English
Manga Entertainment/ World Wide Group (1995) ADV Films/ Industrial Smoke & Mirrors (2004)
Narrator Yumi Tōma Peter Marinker Tiffany Grant
Eiji Takanaka Takeshi Kusao Michael McGhee Jay Hickman
EVE Saki Takaoka Annemarie Lawless Monica Rial
Ryou Narahara Hiroko Kasahara Larissa Murray Jessica Boone
Dr. Jakob Halm Matoko Ataka Adam Matalon Illich Guardiola
Dr. Shimuka Brody Mika Doi Laurel Lefkow Shelley Calene-Black
Lisa Maria Kawamura Jana Carpenter Anita Vasquez
Zion Kōichi Yamadera Stuart Milligan Tommy Drake
Bud Nozomu Sasaki Walter Lewis Spike Spencer
Lester Kazuki Yao Alan Marriott Kevin Brown
Drakman Osamu Saka William Roberts John Swasey
Miki Yuriko Fuchizaki Julia Brahms Michelle Maulsby
Akira Mitsuo Iwata Martin McDougall Kevin Corn
Edoval Kiyoyuki Yanada Peter Woodward Victor Carsrud
Bishop Won Dai Kōji Nakata Robert Glenister Chris Patton
Clark Masato Kubota Ryan Worthington
Dominique Megumi Hayashibara Tiffany Grant



Megazone 23 was conceived as a 12-episode television series set to air on Fuji TV, but it was changed to a direct-to-video project after the sponsors withdrew their support mid-production. According to Noboru Ishiguro, the end result was a "compilation movie" of already produced episodes. Megazone was not conceived as a multi-part story. As such, the original release of "Part I" lacks the subtitle that has been added to subsequent re-releases.

Original mecha designs for the OVA series were created by Shinji Aramaki, while character designs were made by Toshihiro Hirano and Haruhiko Mikimoto, who would provide Eve Tokimatsuri's character designer for all three parts. For "Part II", Yasuomi Umetsu was the character designer, and for "Part III", Hiroyuki Kitazume took over.

The original planned title was "Omega City 23," then "Vanity City" and "Omega Zone 23," but trademark issues compelled the producers to a title change. The number "23" was originally a reference to the 23 municipal wards of Tokyo. In the retroactive continuity established by Part III, the number refers to the 23rd man made city-ship, with Megazone 1 named "Big Apple." However, the title is pronounced "Megazone Two Three" as referenced by several reference books and anime magazines published during the release of the series, the Japanese Wikipedia entry,[6] and even within the series itself in "Day of Liberation."

A 2017 ad on the Japanese crowdfunding platform Campfire listed that AIC is working on a remake and a new project in the series.[7] Soon after, AIC announced that the project would be a remake of the series titled Megazone 23 SIN, and a sequel titled Megazone XI would also be in production with character designer Masahiko Komino.[8] At AnimeJapan 2019, AIC announced that only Parts I and II of the original Megazone series would be remade in the reboot series.[9] On March 25, 2023, AIC announced that development on the reboot series started under the codename "G-PROJECT" and that it is currently in its planning phase.[10]

Alternative versions


Footage from "Part I" was combined with Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross by Carl Macek to create Robotech: The Movie in 1986.[11] The new cut reestablished Shogo's character as Mark Landry and included a new ending animated specifically for Robotech: The Movie.



The first part was released on the VHS, Betamax, Laserdisc and VHD formats in 1985.[12]

Megazone Part II International was released on laserdisc in Japan, which included an English-language voice cast that Carl Macek had orchestrated.[13]. The consequent adaptation rewrote Shogo as "Johnny Winters" and Yui as "Sue." This creates a continuity error, as the name that appears on her bike helmet remains unchanged. The International Edition also added a narration to the exclusive alternate footage from Robotech: The Movie; the retooled scene became an introduction to Part 2.[14][15] It was not included in the out-of-print DVD Box Set, but was available as a bonus item to those who purchased all three installments individually. The International Edition was also released as a Region 2 DVD bundled with the Limited Edition of the PS3 game Megazone 23: Aoi Garland.

Macek's Streamline Pictures produced and released an unedited dubbed version of Part 1 to VHS in 1995, which was released to DVD in 1998 by Image Entertainment. Streamline also planned on releasing the other two parts, but was unable due to a dispute with distributor Orion Pictures.[16] Manga Entertainment released a dubbed version of Part 3 in the United Kingdom.[17]

In 2004, ADV Films released each installment of the series with a newly produced English dub and the original Japanese language track. The 2004 editions also contained extensive liner notes on the development of Megazone 23. ADV released a complete collection in 2007. With the closure of ADV in 2009, the series was out-of-print in the US. Megazone 23 was remastered onto Blu-ray in Japan, and released on November 27, 2015.[18]

AnimEigo launched a Kickstarter campaign for the release of the series in August 2019, similar to Bubblegum Crisis one before, and released the Megazone 23 Omega Edition Blu-ray Box in March 2021. It includes the International Edition, Streamline, and ADV English dubs, with only the Manga English dub omitted.[19]

Reception and legacy


The first part was a major commercial success in Japan upon release in 1985, selling over 216,000 copies in Japan, mostly to video rental stores.[12] At a price of ¥7,800,[20] the first part grossed approximately ¥1.7 billion from video sales in Japan.

The anime received a positive English-language review from Australian magazine Hyper in 1996, calling it "Excellent" and rating it 8 out of 10. The reviewer said it "is one of the more original" sci-fi anime "to have hit these shores" and that, despite "a smaller budget," the art is "beautifully designed and finished." They said it is "a black and cynical look at mankind and technology" which makes it "perfect Cyberpunk fare."[21]



Publisher ADV has compared and found many similarities between the Megazone 23 series and The Matrix (1999),[22] but The Wachowskis have denied it was an influence during the development of the film series.[23] Megazone 23 has also drawn comparisons to the films Dark City (1998) and Existenz (1999).[24] It also heavily influenced the video game 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim (2019).[25]

Video games


Character and vehicles from Megazone 23 appear in Super Robot Wars D for the Game Boy Advance.[26][27]

In 2007, a video game based on the series, entitled Megazone 23: Aoi Garland, was released in Japan for the PlayStation 3.[28]


  1. ^ a b Production company
  2. ^ a b Animation studio
  3. ^ Production and animation
  4. ^ Co-production and co-operative animation


  1. ^ a b Ross, Carlos. "Megazone 23 Part I". THEM Anime Reviews. Retrieved September 21, 2021.
  2. ^ "ADV Films Announces Street Date for Megazone 23 Part 1 And Other Releases". Anime News Network. April 14, 2004. Retrieved September 24, 2018.
  3. ^ Robinson, Tasha (September 7, 2004). "Megazone 23". Sci Fi Weekly. Archived from the original on March 4, 2009. Retrieved September 21, 2021.
  4. ^ Anime-int.com (Archived 2013-06-30 at the Wayback Machine)
  5. ^ 緊急特報!!あの「マクロス」のスタッフがオリジナルビデオアニメに挑戦「オメガゾーン23」 [Breaking News!! The staff of 'Macross' are challenging it with an original anime video 'Omega Zone 23']. My Anime (in Japanese). Tokyo, Japan: Akita Shoten: 117. October 1984.
  6. ^ ja:メガゾーン23
  7. ^ "AIC Ad: New Megazone 23, Pretty Sammy Projects in the Works". Anime News Network. February 21, 2017. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
  8. ^ Antonio Pineda, Raphael (July 6, 2017). "Megazone 23 SIN Remake Project Starts Crowdfunding for Promo Video". AnimeNewsNetwork. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  9. ^ Antonio Pineda, Raphael (March 24, 2019). "Megazone 23 Reboot Project Only Remakes Part I and II". AnimeNewsNetwork. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  10. ^ 新メガゾーン23リブートプロジェクト「G-PROJECT」始動のおしらせ. AIC Rights Co, Ltd. March 25, 2023. Retrieved March 26, 2023.
  11. ^ "Macek Training". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2010-01-25.
  12. ^ a b "Megazone 23 - Production History". The Memory Matrix. Archived from the original on August 16, 2018. Retrieved August 15, 2018.
  13. ^ "Macek Training". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2010-03-20.
  14. ^ "YouTube - UPDATED! Megazone 23 Part 2 Laserdisc opening pt 1 of 2". YouTube. Archived from the original on 2019-09-06. Retrieved 2010-03-20.
  15. ^ "Megazone 23 Trilogy - Buried Treasure info". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2010-03-20.
  16. ^ "Streamline Pictures – Part 4 -". cartoonresearch.com. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  17. ^ "Megazone 23 (OVA) - CrystalAcids.com". www.crystalacids.com. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  18. ^ "メガゾーン23 Blu-ray Archive BOX -30th ANNIVERSARY EDITION-". 27 November 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2018 – via Amazon.
  19. ^ Woodhead, Robert J (August 18, 2019). "Megazone 23 Omega Edition". AnimEigo. Kickstarter. Retrieved August 18, 2019.
  20. ^ "Megazone 23 (1985) VHD back cover". Retrieved November 22, 2018.
  21. ^ "Megazone 23". Hyper. No. 29. March 1996. pp. 38–9.
  22. ^ "Megazone 23 - Retroactive Influence". A.D. Vision. Archived from the original on 2005-02-04. Retrieved 2010-03-20.
  23. ^ "ONLINE CHAT - Larry & Andy Wachowski". Warner Brothers. Archived from the original on 2008-05-07. Retrieved 2010-03-20.
  24. ^ Pellitteri, Marco; Bouissou, Jean-Marie; Fratta, Gianluca Di; Martorella, Cristiano; Suvilay, Bounthavy (2010). The Dragon and the Dazzle: Models, Strategies, and Identities of Japanese Imagination : a European Perspective. Tunué. p. 607. ISBN 9788889613894.
  25. ^ かくして快作『十三機兵防衛圏』は生まれり──インタビュー・総括編。「キラキラしたものを詰め込んだ」開発のヴァニラウェア神谷盛治氏らに訊く. Famitsu (in Japanese). December 11, 2019. Archived from the original on December 11, 2019. Retrieved December 12, 2019.
  26. ^ スーパーロボット大戦D (in Japanese). Famitsu. Retrieved April 10, 2023.
  27. ^ Barder, Ollie (August 31, 2018). "Garland Toy Review: The Cool Bike From 'Megazone 23' Gets An Even Cooler Toy". Forbes. Retrieved April 10, 2023.
  28. ^ メガゾーン23 青いガーランド (in Japanese). Compile Heart. Retrieved April 10, 2023.