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Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden is a manga prequel written by Yuu Watase to the popular manga/anime series Fushigi Yuugi. The series premiered on April 14th, 2003 in the shoujo magazine Shoujo Comic, then moved to the jousei mag Flowers until 2010; then it moved to the also jousei mag Rinka until its end in 2013.
The series had 12 volumes, and it also spun into 5 Drama CD's depicting the first 5 volumes of the manga, and a video game, Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden Gaiden ~Kagami no Miko~ for Play Station 2, PSP, and Nintendo DS, marking the first ever video game adaption for a Yuu Watase work.
In the year of 1923, roughly 70 years before Miaka and Yui encountered the book, novelist Einosuke Okuda came back to Japan from China obtaining the original Chinese version of an ancient ceremonial scripture called The Universe of the Four Gods (Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho) where he worked tirelessly translating them into Japanese and bind them into book form. His wife Yoshie is severely ill; she and her and daughter Takiko Okuda recently moved from Tokyo to her mom's hometown in Morioka, for Yoshie's further care. There, an already stressed and depressed Takiko has to put up with a new school life, their cold neighbors, and being constantly teased by her classmates for both being the new kid and having a sick mother. Onto the moment when her mom died, the father and daughter went into a quarrel that led to Takiko angrily, heartbrokenly calling him out for not being there for them, blaming the Universe for the family's unhappiness.
Overwhelmed by her loneliness and uselessness, Takiko took the translated book from her father and tried to going to rip it apart as a symbol of her anger... until the book suddenly started to shine bright and absorbed her into its pages. From then on Takiko finds herself as the Priestess of Genbu, who will have to gather her Senshi and face several trial from then on, which Einosuke follows as he reads the book itself.
The seven celstial warriors' backstories and point-of-views plays an important part for the storytelling of this work. According to Watase, compared to the previous work, the camera viewpoints are more evenly distributed around the interactions between teammates as to just the heroine's character/love developement POV. Therefore you might notice some surprising tropes that can only be found in the character sheet.
Beware that this page contains SPOILERS.
This manga presents examples of:
- Action Girl (Takiko, who quite knows how to use the naginata.)
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Takiko for Uruki, and Firuka for Hagas.
- Badass Crew / True Companions: The Genbu Celestial Warriors along with their miko, being the first miko out of all four, and team of all 28 seishis of the world to appear. Compare to the future Suzaku and Seiryu Teams, they are on average, dangerously powerful and badass to the near extreme. Their miko can wield a weapon, the majority of the warriors work very close together as a group, and their relationship is more like a family unit. Literally all bare Elemental Powers, and whom all has to pave way through hells of prejudice, supression, and racism to make a better ground status for the future seishis to come.
- Since these peeps work so tight together, they would often overlap each other's responsibilities, but each member's standard positions are as follows:
- The Boss / The Team Normal: Takiko
- The Captain: Uruki
- The Lancer / The Heart: Tomite
- The Smart Guy / Team Mom: Hikitsu
- Team Dad: Inami
- The Big Guy / Team Pet: Namame
- Tagalong Kid / The Medic / The Group Emergency Shield: Hatsui
- Sixth Ranger: Urumiya ( Tegu)
- Betty and Veronica: Mr. Oshugi, Takiko's first love (Betty) and Uruki (Veronica).
- Tomite (Betty) and Uruki (Veronica).
- Big Brother Mentor (Soruen towards Uruki.)
- Bittersweet Ending: Hagas dies so Tegu can become Urumiya, Temudan is murdered right as her and Uruki were reaching for a sort-of agreement, Kutou and Hokkan go to war, Hikitsu and Tomite ultimately die, and then Takiko (and her father) perish as well. But Takiko makes an extremely wise use of the wishes she managed to ask Genbu for, securing peace and prosperity for Hokkan, and passes on in peace; Uruki becomes The Good King as Emperor Rimudo and rules very wisely until his death (with a descendant of Tegu and Firuka succeeding him), and the last pages state that he and Takiko reincarnated in normal humans and found one another.
- Blade on a Stick (Takiko has, like many girls in Japan had/have, Naginata training - when she gets sucked into The Universe of the Four Gods she has one constructed for her.)
- Blood Brothers: (Hikitsu and Tomite.)
- Call Forward: These two guys chuckled over this conversation at the time, but little do they know they would be the ones to fullfill that...
Hikitsu: " ...Even if you say that,I don't think we'll have the chance to meet The Suzaku Warriors anyway. This country is peaceful now. "
Tomite: " Haha (true), If we're a few hundred years before them,surely we'll be dead by then! "
- Cast Full of Pretty Boys (And only the Fushigi series out of the whole genre industry is capable to keep the fangirls demanding MORE of them!)
- Cleaning Up Romantic Loose Ends / Pair the Spares: It seems Tomite is headed there with Hikitsu's sister Aila.
- Competitive Balance: (If you think about it in another way, this arc is pretty much just a fantasy RPG between the seven warriors themselves.)
- Cooldown Hand-Pat....with SMACKS included: (Hikitsu on Tomite.)
- Darker and Edgier (Think this is Fushigi Yuugi from two hundred years ago? Think again.)
- Designated Parents: ( Hikitsu and Inami)
- Elemental Powers:
- Everything's Better with Princesses ( Firuka, she's Uruki's cousin. )
- Eyepatch of Power (Subverted as an Eyepatch of Anti-Power. Hikitsu's eyepatch hides his powerful right eye, which in one occasion sends Takiko back to the real world.)
- Fanservice: This is Watase Yuu's work we're talking here, be guaranteed she gives them out generously providing packages full of shirtless scenes and the beyond for BOTH genders of her characters.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling / Sibling Yin-Yang : The Urumiya Brothers. Older bro Tegu is responsible, calm, thoughtful, and friendly, while younger bro Hagas is the foolish one, and reacts to issues in the extreme matter; In his case, a cold concealed persona, along with extreme aloofness.
- Gender Bender (In order to use his power, Uruki has to turn into a woman.)
- Super Gender Bender: Rimudo has the ability to switch between male and female forms (he usually stays male), but his Celestial Guardian abilities are only available when he's in his female form.
- Ill Girl (It is later revealed that Takiko caught tuberculosis from her dead mother Yoshie.)
- Imperial Japan: Takiko lived in the The Roaring Twenties, so this applies.
- Interrupted Declaration of Love: Uruki to Takiko.
Uruki: "Now I realize...that I..."
Tomite: "Hikitsu, wait!"
- Like Brother and Sister: According to Word of God, this is how Takiko and Tomite are, despite the fact that it's pretty clear that Tomite was developing some unrequited romantic feelings for Takiko through their two almost kisses, his rivalry (and a bit of inferiority complex) with Uruki, and how he mutters that he guesses he didn't have a "chance" when Takiko tells Tomite that she is in love with someone else from her world in Volume 4.
- Love Triangle: Mr. Oshigi/Takiko/Uruki and Tomite/Takiko/Uruki.
- Names to Know In Anime: The drama CD's have quite the stellar cast. For the main crew, check to the character sheet, as for the others, check here for now. They include: Kazuya Nakai (Temudan), Ai Satou (Boraten/narrator), Sayuri Yahagi (Aira), Ayako Kawasumi (Airu the Oracle), Mitsuaki Madono (Hakei), Jun Fukuyama (Shigi), Kissho Taniyama (Hien).
- New Powers as the Plot Demands: Somehow Hikitsu keeps surprises us on how far his powers can expand. By far, the major one is...
- Caught on Tape: In which Hikitsu's eye power has made some extremely important discoveries to forward the story plot in the most positive way ever.
- Outdoor Bath Peeping: Tomite came charging into his tribe hotspring attempting to notify that the enemies are near when Takiko just started drying herself from her bath. But then his mom just went out for his blood instead.
- Uruki and Tomite (again) also done this move while Takiko was bathing in their second premium drama.
- Parental Abandonment (Actually, all of the main crew came from this background.)
- Takiko's mother Yoshie dies of tuberculosis in the first chapter, and her father Einosuke is never around because he was researching the Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho to find a way to save his wife, not to mention the fact that he never wanted a daughter to begin with.
- As for Uruki, it was prophesized when he was born that when Genbu was summoned he would kill his father. As a result, his father is after his life, even going so far as to ally himself with the force trying to destroy his own country, even though he is a member of the royal family. It is these actions that lead many to believe that this will turn out to be a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.
- In literal terms, Hikitsu and his sister. His whole entire village ditched them.
- Hatsui and Urumiya's parents were all dead since their childhood.
- Tomite, even though he's the most luckiest dude of the group with a supportive mom and a comedic personality, remember that his dad died when he was a kid too.
- Personality Powers: Subverted with Tomite as An Ice Person while holding a plucky Hot-Blooded personality.
- Plucky Comic Relief: Tomite, the one and only comic relief there is.
- Plucky Girl: Takiko. She works so hard, that this is the reason why all of the joined seishis starting to like her as their boss, and have hope in saving the world.
- Precocious Crush: Takiko's longtime feelings for her first love, Mr. Osugi, who is married and has a daughter who Takiko is a Cool Big Sis to (Suzuno, who'd become the Byakko no Miko some years later). She eventually grows out of this when she realizes her love for Uruki.
- Rags to Royalty (Takiko)
- Refusal of the Call: Would you wanna come out of the closet when it's said that being selected as Celestial Warrior is doomed as a complete curse to mankind and all people of your entire country will discriminate against you?...We think not. Literally every single Genbu Seishi that Takiko encountered openly refused to join her as their initial reaction once she introduced herself as the Priestess of Genbu. ( Except for the very very last one.)
- Second Love: Uruki, for Takiko.
- Shout-Out: The journey to The Konan Country sure is a lot of fun for the gang.
- Uruki and Hikitsu wore the same kind of top, but Uruki gets even with one unbuttoned just like some future Suzaku seishi guy name Tamahome.
- The Four Gods
- Soap Opera Disease (Takiko and Hagas.)
- Warrior Prince (Uruki)