Fushigi Yugi - The Mysterious Play

This is the story of a girl who gathered the seven seishi of Suzaku, and acquired the power to make every wish come true. The story itself is an incantation. Whoever finishes the book shall recieve this power. As soon as the page is turned, the story will become truth and begin...

A magical tale of two girls who are transported to a world within a book. Their travels are one of great change and exploration. This is also a love story, one that transcends time and worlds. Follow Miaka and Yui on their travels through this other world and the quest to become priestess for two gods. Each girl is searching for the seven celestial warriors to help her on their quest. The story goes on and each girl follows a different path in this world. Can two friends fight each other? What will this get them in the end? What is the real meaning behind the "Universe of the Four Gods Book"?


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Fushigi Yugi - Guardians of the Night Sky:

According to ancient Chinese astronomy, the sky was divided into four quadrants, each quadrant representing a season of the year. These quadrants are then each divided into 28 different segments, called "seishuku". The quadrants themselves are associated with colored animal deities that serve as guardians. These are Suzaku the Red Bird, Seiryu the Blue Dragon, Genbu the Black Tortoise or Warrior, and Byakko the White Tiger. The unique circular formation of the quadrants and constellations has many different explanations. One is based off of an ancient Chinese creation myth about a goddess (Nu Kwa) who had, in the course of a divine war with rival deities damaged one of the "pillars" holding up the sky, causing water to pour from it onto the land and the horizon to become lopsided. In order to stabalize things, she rebuilt the square-like "pillar" using colored stones that shone in the night sky, and placed four guardians in each corner of it, in order to keep it from collapsing. Another explanation concentrates more on the "time" application of the Four Gods formation. The moon's orbit was used by the ancient Chinese to measure the passing of seasons, each season represented by a guardian in the sky. It was believed that the moon passed one of the constellations ("seishuku") every few days, and that it took the passing of all 28 constellations to complete a full orbit of the moon, and therefore of all the seasons. Each season was thus represented by the four guardian deities mentioned before.

Speaking of the Four Gods, let's take a closer look at them and the "seishuku" that comprise them:

Seiryu, Blue Dragon of the East (Spring): Seiryu is the Eastern part of the quadrant, and one which is represented by a Dragon. While at times the color of Spring is usually green, Seiryu is depicted as a blue Dragon in part because Dragons were thought of by the ancient Chinese to be aquatic creatures that reside in the sea. Spring is also thought of to be a rainy season, so the color blue is also indicative of water. As one of the oldest, most powerful, and respected of all Chinese mythological creatures, the dragon was usually symbolic of authority and strength, and was usually worn as such by major figures of power or the royalty (Nakago even wears what could be seen as a Dragon's Claw for a shoulder plate). The seven "seishuku" that make up Seiryu are: Nakago (heart), Soi (chamber), Ashitare (tail), Suboshi (horn), Amiboshi (throat), Miboshi (basket), and Tomo (root).

Suzaku, Red Bird of the South (Summer): Suzaku is the Southern part of the quadrant, and one which is represented by a Bird (though in the story, Suzaku does hint at having properties of the legendary Phoenix which is known to die in its own flames and be reborn anew). Because of its association with the heat and fiery temperatures of summer, Suzaku is usually red in color, and may contribute to some people's conclusion that Suzaku is more like the phoenix than an ordinary bird. Red also has connotations of being a color associated with romance and love, and in the series it is from love that Suzaku draws his strength. Suzaku has a multicolored plume like a peacock's, and is meant to emphasize its rarity and beauty, as well as its virtue as a guardian deity. The seven "seishuku" that make up Suzaku are: Tamahome (ogre), Hotohori (star), Chichiri (well), Nuriko (willow), Chiriko (net), Tasuki (wings), and Mitsukake (sadness).

Byakko, White Tiger of the West (Fall): Byakko is the Western part of the quadrant, and one which is represented by a Tiger. Tigers in Chinese mythology represent ferocious defense like metal or steel when it comes to soldiering. They were also considered to be natural guardians and the king of all animals (and thus their protector). The white color is possibly from an original myth that stated that a piece of metal left behind at a king's grave supposedly turns into a white tiger to guard it from being defiled. White can also be a part of the symbolism of autumn, as things are still alive, but are growing "old" and gray at this time of the year. The members of the Byakko Seven that are present in the series encounter age as a determining factor in bringing out their full potential, and Subaru's age-reversing magic is possibly a nod to the whole "age" association with the color of Byakko. The seven "seishuku" that make Byakko are: Subaru (unity), Tokaki (foot), Tatara (lasso), Kokie (stomach), Amefuri (net), Toroki (snout), Kagasuki (investigator 3),

Genbu, Black Tortoise of the North (Winter): Genbu is the Northern part of the quadrant, and one which represented by a Tortoise or Turtle (though this particular constellation may also be called the "Black Warrior". The Tortoise is representative of endurance, wisdom, and longetivity, and is also sometimes used in terms of divination. Though in the series Genbu is shown to be greenish in color, its real color is black, due to the fact that Winter was perceived to be the twilight or end of the seasons. Because of its Winter theme, it appears that members of the Genbu Seven have a mastery or attuning to cold. Hikitsu and Tomite are two such members with these powers. The seven "seishuku" that make Genbu are: Hikitsu (dipper), Tomite (emptiness), Inami (cow), Uruki (woman), Umiyame (rooftop), Hatsui (room), and Namame (wall)


Miaka Yuuki

Miaka is rather easy going and gets along with almost everyone, and is the type that is always looked after by somebody. She isn't exactly the brightest girl in the world and can be impulsive, but she can act and talk very adult when the occassion arises. Amazingly enough, she turns heads and attracts all kinds of attention (both good and bad, it's amazing how many of the seishi fall in love with her.) Yes, she can be annoying, but you've got to admire the girl. She goes through much adversity yet, can keep her spirits up. While most people would have given up on someone like Yui, Miaka maintains an optimistic outlook on her best friend and STILL trys to help her.

Yui Hongo

Yui is Miaka's best friend and sometime during the series her worst enemy especially after she is attacked by a group of thugs in Kutou. Yui is a bit smarter than Miaka and for the first part of the series reads the Universe of the Four Gods before Yui herself gets sucked in completely. She is confident, prompt, and dislikes things that are not black and white. She seems to have a low tolerance for "betrayal" and can be a "bit" hard-headed. Even though she doesn't seem to be the type to need to lean on someone she really does want someone to depend on. That's why she's a bit attached to Nakago who she believes is the only person she can trust in this world. Even though she turns against Miaka, she still loves her friend but torn between what she believes is truth and what is presented before her.

Hotohori (Seishuku/ Saihitei)

He is the emporer of Konan and one of the seven seishi of Suzaku. He is a skilled swordsman who is beautiful and he knows it. Although he seems to be a bit narcisstic (if saying, "I'm so beautiful it's scary" isn't any indication then I don't know what is) he truly is a rather gentle peace-loving person. Being emporer at the early age of 14, Hotohori had to grow up rather fast and has led a rather cramped and sheltered life, ignorant of the world outside (it's especially apparent when he meets Tamahome's family.) He is the second person Miaka encounters and he's the one who relays the legend of the Four Gods to her. Hotohori, we will later find out, has loved the girl of the legend for over 10 years, and when she arrives he hoped that she would love him as well. Because he beleives that she will alievate some of his lonliness, but that doesn't quite work out that way. She falls in love with someone else but he is content to see that they stay together. That' s the kind of guy Hotohori is, he is honorable, intelligent and beautiful. He will fight to the death for those he loves.

Tamahome (Sou Kishuku)

Tamahome, if you couldn't already guess, is Miaka's love interest and one of her many protectors. He is very good at martial arts and defends Miaka and others throughout the series. At first, his relationship with Miaka is almost that of a sibling relationship but it begins to blossom into something of a beautiful love story. You see when he first meets Miaka and Yui, he rescues them and expects to be paid by them. When he doesn't get what he wants he leaves them to fend for themselves. But it also turns out that he has a sweet side which you get to see as the series progresses (but that still doesn't stop him from asking people money for his services.) Tamahome is a rather loyal person who is willing to sacrifice almost anything for those he loves (especially his rather large family and of course, Miaka.)

Nuriko (Chou Ryuuen goes by the name of Chou Korin at the beginning of the series)

Nuriko starts out to be a spoiled princess who is jealous of Miaka since Miaka seems to have Hotohori's attention to herself. When Nuriko is first encountered she's not exactly what she seems. As the series progresses, we find that Nuriko is very good natured and becomes a very good girl friend to Miaka and is always there for her as well as the other seishi. Nuriko is well of good advice not to mention a wonderful confidant, big sibling, protector and the occasional good joke. Nuriko is a wonderful character and the strength and loyalty displayed proves it. I absolutely adore this character and if yes, this is the manga picture. It was my personal favorite and had to post it rather than finding a comparable anime pic.

Chichiri (Ri Houjun)

A wondering monk and the only magician of the seven seishi. His powers are comparable to Nakago's (and trust me, they wouldn't have survied Nakago without him on more than one occassion.) He is elusive, mysterious and hermit-like. He can be incredibly silly (especially when he's in superdeformed mode) but also very serious. This character is very together and he definately is sensible, practicle and logical. Chichiri is an excellent advisor who is always calm when he's serious but can also be humorous as well. He wears a fox eyed mask that looks very "genki" (happy) which hides his scarred face. He doesn't wear it because he's vain (the guy is far from vanity), but to hide that part of his past (which is really sad.)

Tasuki (Kou Shun'u also known as Genrou)

A semi-reformed bandit (according to a few sources) and an all around tough guy. Tasuki says he hates women (he ain't gay, he just doesn't like them when he is introduced into the series.) He curses like a sailor (well, he could probably scare one with that mouth), and can really whoop some bootie. Tasuki's weapon of choice is a iron fan that burns anything he wants to burn (namely Tamahome who he loves to tease and call "little ghost".) He's the most fun of all the characters and very easily liked. But like many tough man-like characters he can be a softie and will do anything for his freinds.

Mitsukake (Myou Juan)

He's a rather large and quiet man who when first encounted by Miaka and her seishi, retreated from society when he couldn't save the one he loved the most. It's a rather sweet and sad story and unfortunately his character doesn't do much afterwords other than heal a couple of times. He truly has the soul of a doctor who wants to save whoever he can at all costs. He has the power to heal with his hands but it takes a lot out of him and he can only use it once a day. He is a very gentile man who is noble and calm. He also has an affinity for animals as well (Tama is his cat.)

Chiriko (Ou Doukun)

The adorable little boy who comes a little too late when Miaka tries to summon Suzaku the first time around. The series doesn't really go into Chiriko's personality much but the manga does. In the manga, he's got a dual personality, in the anime series he's just some really smart kid. But for right now let's just concetrate on the anime, eh. Chiriko is a very intelligent 13 year old who likes to study and has a very high IQ. He's also pretty small for his age and gets attached to Tasuki. Like many young impressionable boys he looks up to his elders and he's a sweet and respectful little boy.


Evil sick bastard and perhaps one of the best evil characters I've ever come across. In Fushigi Yuugi, he easily turns Yui against Miaka in the worst possible way. He is a rather intelligent, maniacle, prepared character, very cool, very calm, and ultimately cruel. Nakago is always on his toes and is well aware of the events that unfold around him. It isn't until the end of the series when one can't help but pity the guy (he's still a good evil character, just a little messed up.)

Amiboshi (Bu Koutoku)

Amiboshi is the oldest twin and when their parents died he had to become the parent for his younger twin. He is caring and devoted but capable of violence. He's the gentle one who is thoughtful and loves his younger brother dearly. He becomes torn between being the seishi of Seiryuu and what Suzauku seishi stands for. He pretty much "sacrifices" himself to give the Suzaku seishi and advantage. His weapon of choice is the flute which he can manipulate it by sending his ki through the notes.

Suboshi (Bu Shunkaku)

Suboshi is the exact opposite of his brother. His actions pretty much center themselves towards the one's he loves the most like his brother and Yui and if harm comes to them he lashes out against the person who "hurt" them. He's pretty much like a small child who doesn't think about how his actions affect other people. For example, when Nakago tells him that his brother had died, Suboshi puts the blame on Tamahome and goes off and kills Tamahome's family (which is pretty messed up.) His weapon of choice is the Ryuuseisui which is looks like a couple of spinning yo-yo's.
Amiboshi and Suboshi are very close especially since their parents died during a civil war. They share a spritual and empathic bond (big surprise), it's so intense that one twin can write on his arms and the twin can feel it and see the welt that spells out his twins message. Pretty neat, eh? Kinda beats IM's and pretty useful during tests or if you just don't want to make that long distance phone call. However, there are some minor differnces between the two.

Keisuke Yuuki

He's Miaka's, beer and girl crazy brother. He's about five years older than her and is majoring in ancient China (kinda explains why he can read Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho.) Like Miaka, he can be a bit goofy but he's a pretty good big brother. He narrates the book after Yui gets sucked into it, reading all these wonderful things that happen to his sister and her friend. He's rather protective of Miaka and he goes through a lot of trouble to help her through the book. Hey, can't say that many people would do that for their siblings. Ya gotta admire the guy.

Tetsuya Kajiwara

Keisuke's rich friend wearing the ever present sunglasses. He gets dragged into this after he chases Keisuke at the library trying to get back the 10,000 yen he loaned him. This quote pretty much sums up Tetsuya and Keisuke's relationship: He and Keisuke have a neat little friendship thing going. He's rich and Keisuke's a mooch. All kidding aside, Tetsuya is a very good friend and a little more sensible. When he's the one reading Shi Jin Ten Chi Sho, he spares Keisuke from knowing the worst stuff happening to Miaka (well, not like they can do anything about it anyway so why freak the guy out.) He also wants to be the hero of the story especially in the OAVs, where he gets his chance.

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