72 years ago one of the first world wide known and most influential mangaka ever was born. He is universally acknowledged as the legendary creator of the Super Robots genre, where gigantic androids controlled by hyper skilled human pilots fight against evil alien invaders - equally gargantuan in proportions - to save earth from conquer and tyranny.
Yeah, it’s a very basic plot, and it was similarly repeated in many of his works, from Mazinger to Grendizer and so on. But it definitely set a new unseen standard back then, and when you think of its subsequent evolutions (one for all - the most obvious - Neon Genesis Evangelion) or of the mentions and nods popped up through the years (Pacific Rim was one of the latest tributes, since Guillermo Del Toro has always been a huge declared fan of both Nagai’s and kaiju’s stuff), you can’t help but remembering every time WHERE DID IT ALL COME FROM.
His works were also influenced by horror (Devilman was spawned by his knowledge in his younger years of famous Divine Comedy’s lithographies) and erotism (from Cutie Honey to Kekko Kamen… 😸). He’s always been a multifaceted artist whose various interests were converted into mangas for kids, teens and adults too… sort of a Renaissance man, in a certain way.
If Go Nagai is a living godlike legend and his stories are STILL cool and enjoyable after 50 years and even more, there is surely a reason. And it’s no mystery, after all: he simply took us with him into “the journeys of his mind”… and, let’s admit it, THEY’RE A HELLUVA RIDE!!!
Happy birthday Nagai-san!
A tribute to Japanese movie Yojimbo （用心棒） (1961) and Italian-American movie A Fistful Of Dollars (
Per un pugno di dollari) (1964)
I actually watched A Fistful Of Dollars first but I have always known Akira Kurosawa and his classic movies. However I respect Clint Eastwood and Ennio Morricone, but the director for A fistful of Dollars totally ripped off Akira Kurosawa’s original work, although Akira Kurosawa sued him lately and won case. Both movies have brilliant casts and awesome music. Personally, I think Yojimbo is better over all (especially the directing).
I love both Toshiro Mifune (三船 敏郎) and Clint Eastwood. :)