Inu Yasha

Inu Yasha, a part demon, wants to become a full demon. He went after the “jewel of four souls”, that was held by Kikyo. Kikyo stopped Inu Yasha and died in the process. In present day Tokyo 1997 the “Shikon Jewel” was given to Kagome, the personage of Kikyo reborn. Kagome falls/is pulled into the well where she meets Inu Yasha, Kikyo younger sister, and her destiny in the past…

INU-YASHA is an out-of-the-ordinary historical fantasy-adventure (with a touch of gothic horror) from the "Queen of Romantic Comedy".

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About Inu-Yasha:

Written with the ideographic kanji characters for "night" and "witch," in Japanese, yasha is typically the word for a "demon" or "devil," while inu refers to a distinctly less ominous-sounding creature, Canis familiaris, as in the common, domesticated pet. A construct of creator Rumiko Takahashi's endlessly creative imagination, Inu-Yasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale is inspired by long centuries of Buddhist tradition and Japanese folklore. In fact, one of the reasons we decided to release the title as "Inu-Yasha" (rather than as, say, the more prosaic "Dog-Demon") is due to our intention to hew more closely to the cultural elements which give manga or Japanese comics their uniqueness. Jumping back in time from modern-day to sengoku jidai or "warring-states period" Japan, the story of Inu-Yasha is clearly unlike any of Takahashi's previous "big" series (Urusei Yatsura, Maison Iku, Ranma½), but as for how different...well, due to the fact that the series is being published in the U.S. nearly simultaneously with Japan, that's something we'll just have to keep reading to find out.

- Text taken from the inside cover of Inu-Yasha number one


Inu Yasha TV Series

Just keeps chugging along! Inu Yasha currently only airs in Japan with over 83 episodes! It can be seen on TV not only in Japan on Nihon TV, but in Italy on MTV and in the USA on Cartoon Network. DVDs are available from Viz in November 2002.

The anime follows the storyline from the manga fairly closely, with the exception of "filler" episodes every once in a while, and playing some of the side-quests out of order, in my opinion, to keep Inu Yasha and Kagome's 'romance' at arms length. The anime directors must want viewers to pine over them a bit harder than the manga readers. For Example, the plot from before the gang even met Sango about the Peach Man wasn't shown in anime form until much later.

Episode 92 aired on Nihon TV on 11/18/02 and it looks like its up to [or perhaps past] about volume 24 of the manga, which is currently publishing the middle of volume 29. Poor English speakers we are! The first 52 episodes are reported to have been or are being dubbed and will air on CN in the US over the coming year or so. Comparatively, this is an amazingly fast turnaround for an anime to reach American audiences.

The opening and closing theme songs are all J-Pop songs by artists on the Avex Mode record label, including the "Madonna of Japan", Ayumi Hamasaki. The back ground music [or BGM] is composed by Kaori Wada and is more fitting a story about the distant past.


Rumiko Takahashi Biography

Rumiko Takahashi was born in 1957 in Niigata Japan. She attended women's college in Tokyo, where she began studying comics with Kazuo Koike, author of Cyring Freeman. In 1978, she won a prize in Shogukukan's annual "New Comic Artist Contest," and in that same year her boy-meets-alien comedy series Lum*Urusei Yatsura began appearing in the weekly manga magazine Shônen Sunday. This phenomenally successful series ran for nine years and sold over 22 million copies. Takashi's later Ranma 1/2 series enjoyed greater popularity.

Takahashi is considers by many to be one of the world's most popular manga artists. With the publications of Volume 34 of Ranma 1/2 series in Japan, Takashi's totla sales passed one hundred million copies of her compiled works.

Takahashi's serial titles include Lum*Urusei Yatsura, Ranma 1/2, One-Pound Gospel, Maison Ikkoku, and Inu Yasha. Additionally, Takahashi has drawn many short stories with have been published in America under the title "Rumic Theater", and several installments of a saga known as her "mermaid" series. Most of Takahashi's major stories have also been animated, and are widely available in translation worldwide. Inu-Yasha is her most recent serial story, first published in Shônen Sunday in 1996.

Characters:

Inu Yasha

This extremely arrogant, insensitive, pompous, can-be-annoying JERK (although a very cute one) (you realise I really don't mean he's a jerk) (a very, very cute one) is half-dog demon (father), half human (mother). He once tried to steal the Shikon jewel (in order to become a full demon) from its protector, only to be put into a deep sleep for 50 years. By a cruel twist of fate (and the command "Sit!"), he is now forced into helping Kagome put the shards together again.

Kagome

Kagome lives in the modern era. On the day she turned 15, she was pulled through the Bone-Eater's Well back into the feudal age, where she was attacked by a centripede demoness. During the fight, the Shikon jewel was rediscovered in Kagome's body. This and the fact that she looks exactly like Kikyo lead everyone to think that she is Kikyo's reincarnation, and thus the new protector of the jewel. Ironically, she was the one who shattered the jewel into small pieces. Her greatest fear is not of demons, but of maths exams. She controls Inu-Yasha through the prayer beads around his neck.

Kikyo

Kikyo was (is?) a powerful priestess who guarded the Shikon jewel, which is said to grant any wish of its possessor. Kikyo was injured when Inu-Yasha snatched the Shikon jewel from her, and using the last of her powers, she 'killed' him with her arrow, pinning him to the tree, meaning to trap him till the end of eternity. The jewel was buried along with her, but somehow resurfaced in Kagome.

Jewel of the Four Souls

Shippou

Shippo is a kitsune - a fox demon. Which means he is capable of changing his form to deceive his enemies (if only for a short while). Shippo met Kagome and Inu-Yasha when he was on a quest to revenge his father, who was killed by the Thunder Brothers.

Sango

Miroku

Hmm...PERVERT. He's a priest who likes nothing more than 'copping a feel'. There is a portal (it's like a black hole actually) in his right hand - a curse by a demon called Naraku. And if he does not defeat Naraku, he shall be devoured. He and Inu-Yasha never seem to get along, mainly due to the attention the former is always paying to Kagome.

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