Fushigi Yugi gets an anime makeover

first_imgBut don’t fret! Watase has written a 51 page one shot manga called Fushigi Yugi: Byakko Ibun, which is a prequel to the original series. The story deals with the priestess of Byakko, but has yet to be licensed for North American release just yet.Fushigi Yugi, also known as Fushigi Yugi: The Mysterious Play or Curious Play, was a popular girls’ manga serialized in 18 volumes from 1992 through 1996. The manga debuted in English via Viz Media in 1999.The story revolves around two friends Miaka and Yui who are pulled into The Universe of the Four Gods novel where they meet many, many adorable and hunky men. In this magical ancient world, Miaka becomes the priestess of the southern kingdom Suzaku, while Yui is coerced into becoming the priestess for the eastern kingdom of Seiryuu. They become enemies and must make tragic choices to help save their new friends and the mysterious world they end up in.The story has the classic elements of a typical shojou (girls’) manga, like friendship, love, and adversity. However, what makes this series stand out for so many fans were the mature themes at the forefront. Death, betrayal, sexuality, and rape are all issues dealt with in this series that may otherwise seem to be about blushing girls in historic clothing.Yuu Watase’s commitment to making sure all of her characters were constantly challenged about their ideals and choices made Fushigi Yugi one of the top shojou series of the 90s.The fandom surrounding Fushigi Yugi is intense and unflappable. Many fans who read the manga and saw the anime back in the 90s still have vehement opinions on their favorite parts of the series. There was a fervent camp for Team Tamahome and Team Hotohori before Twilight was even a twinkle in Stephanie Meyer’s eye. Fans still love Fushigi Yugi with an intensity usually reserved for fighting wars.Here are just a few golden quotes from fans asked about the series recently:Jennifer Newman: It ate my baby weeb life in ’98. My BFF and I would split the cost of ordering all of those fan sub VHSs and have viewing parties. My walls were plastered with Fushigi Yugi wall scrolls (along with Kenshin, X, and all that late 90’s goodness). My friend and I were totally Miaka and Yui. IT WAS LIFE.Valerie Wei: I loved it so much and still have a soft spot for it. How much do I love it? Let’s just say I’m making [my fiancé] Vince transcribe the OP for our wedding.Max Song: My heart has never been so played with. It’s such a great seriesDennis Magat: Watched it. Own the old Pioneer DVDs still: Red set, blue set, black OVA set, and green OVA set. We don’t really talk about the green OVA set of Eikoden.Valerie Wei: Hotohori is my husband. Miaka chose wrong.Zach Grafton: This is objectively correct. She COULD HAVE BEEN AN EMPRESSKrystine Neuscheler: Fushigi Yuugi was the anime that got me into Japanese culture! I had never seen it and a friend introduced me to it in 1998 and I was OBSESSED! Like, plastered my room in posters, spent hundreds on obscure merchandise found online (which was MUCH harder back then, in the days of AOL and dial-up!). Watching the show and listening to the music made me want to study Japanese, and I taught myself hiragana and katakana by transcribing [romanized] lyrics of Fushigi Yugi songs. Then it became my gateway drug to other anime and eventually Visual Kei bands.Convinced you need to watch this little slice of 90s anime ASAP? You can find the box sets and manga on Amazon, and watch it streaming on Crunchyroll. Miaka!Tamahome!Miaka!Tamahome!Miakaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!(Repeat 500,000 times).That’s the heart of Fushigi Yugi. Two lovers trapped in a novel about ancient China getting separated but then finding each other. A lot.Fans of the 90’s anime franchise remember the ensemble cast and beautiful depictions of ancient China well. Manga author Yuu Watase surprised fans last week when she hopped onto Twitter and posted sketches she did of the characters revamped in 2016 anime style.Please don’t freak out: There is no anime reboot planned. She’s just having a little fun. With our hearts.Check out the adorable sketches below. Miaka particularly got 99999x cuter. Miaka and Tamahome! They sure liked yelling at each other a lot. Tamahome is still dreamy. A+++.<><>last_img read more