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From Viz: Miaka Yuuki is an ordinary junior-high student who is suddenly whisked away into the world of a book, The Universe Of The Four Gods. There she becomes the priestess of the god Suzaku, and is charged with finding all seven of her Celestial-Warrior protectors.
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I Love The Memory.
I think a lot of us like the memory of this manga/anime rather than the actual manga/anime which is why we have such mixed feelings about it. Likewise, I read this in junior high and now a junior in high school I've gone back to the story, but it just wasn't as great as when I first read it.
The suspense, love, action and all that jazz just didn't appeal to me as much as it did in junior high. Maybe it's because I was so simple-minded back then. I remember fan girl squealing at everything, but now I'm just "meh." I suppose we've all grown up a bit and we prefer to reminisce in something we once loved, though we can hardly see the appeal anymore. (I'm not speaking for everyone.)
However, no matter how old you are, I think if it's your first time reading or watching Fushigi Yuugi you'll really love it, but if you try reading or watching it a second time or even third time around you might be put off by it or be like me and skip around to your favorite memorable moments.
Still, give it a shot. There's a reason we liked it so much in the pastXD
The BEST series ever!
I was first introduced to Fushigi Yuugi (the anime version) in middle school by a friend. Only a few minutes in to the first episode and I was immediately hooked. The anime follows the manga very closely, although some small details have been omitted and changed (for the better in my opinion). I highly recommend the anime if you don't want to sit through all 18 volumes.
Our heroine, Miaka, is a 15 year old glutton who is clumsy, dull-wit, and overly naive. She's just your average school girl struggling to pass the entrance exam for high school. After she enters the Universe of the Four Gods, at the request of Hotohori, she decides to become the Priestess of Suzaku to wish for her acceptance into Jonan Academy along with her best friend Yui. As the story progresses, Miaka falls in love with one of her seven seishi, Tamahome, and together, in her quest to summon Suzaku, overcomes various hardships and obstacles and learns the importance of responsibility, courage, and self-sacrifice.
Unfortunately for Miaka, her best friend Yui was also sucked into the book and was manipulated to become her enemy. Determined to take revenge on Miaka, Yui becomes the Priestess of Seiryuu to summon the beast God to grant her wish to go home and to take Tamahome away from Miaka. Can Miaka stay together with her love Tamahome and save her frienship with Yui before Seiryuu seishi Nakago takes over both the book and the real world?
A lot of people complain how Miaka is weak and always needs her seishis to save her, but that's not true. She never backs away from the face of danger and despite being physically weak, throws herself at the enemy as bait just so her friends can escape. Miaka has the strongest will out of all the four priestess. Her belief in her love with Tamahome and in her friendship with Yui never wavered. Although overly naive and innocent, it is precisely these qualities along with her carefree cheerful nature that attracts four of the Suzaku seishi (Tamahome, Hotohori, Noriko, Tasuki) and one Seiryuu seishi (Amiboshi) to fall in love with her.
Everyone compares Miaka to Takiko in Genbu Kaiden. Yes, there is a world of difference in their maturity level. After all Takiko is the oldest of the four priestesses to enter the book. However, Miaka is without a doubt the strongest out of all four which shows at the end because she wasn't devoured by the beast god. Her character is more relatable as she's just your flawed, average 15 year old kid. Takiko is a very unrealistic heorine as she is just too perfect to be true and therefore, has no character development.
All in all, Fushigi Yuugi trumps Genbu Kaiden anyday. While I loved Genbu Kaiden, I find it boring compared to FY, although the art in Genbu Kaiden is WAY WAY WAY better. If I were to describe the plot twists and story development for Genbu Kaiden vs Fushigi Yuugi, then I would say Genbu Kaiden progresses linear whereas original FY is zig zag. There's just a lot more twists in the story in FY than GK, because we have an extremely smart and powerful antagonist Nagako from the Seiryuu side who calculates like 10 steps ahead of the Suzaku seishis.
Summary: - Characters: Fushigi Yuugi (more comedic) = Genbu Kaiden (more mature) - Art: Fushigi Yuugi (meh~) < Genbu Kaiden (WAY more beautiful) - Story: Fushigi Yuugi (way more plots twists and drama) > Genbu Kaiden (a bit boring)
So overall, it's different strokes for different folks. The plot and story in Fushigi Yuugi is SO SO SO MUCH better than the story of Genbu Kaiden. On the other hand, the art in Genbu Kaiden is SO SO SO MUCH better than in Fushigi Yuugi. Fushigi Yuugi is also very comedic while Genbu Kaiden is very sad and dark. They're completely two different stories. It just depends on what kind of story you like. I personally like a great story with comedy sprinkled throughout, so my pick is DEFINITELY Fushigi Yuugi. Genbu Kaiden is a fantastic prequel and beautifully written, but in my heart, its story will never surpass or come close to Fushigi Yuugi (which is a classic in my opinion).
... Last updated on May 3rd, 2013, 4:52pm
for those who like cheesy romance. i enjoyed reading it when i was young and i actually liked miaka, i thought she was cute. the art is good and theres a lot of hot guys and funny parts. the plot is also interesting and i think its supposed to be basically like a put-yourself-in-heroine's-shoes fantasy, with all the guys falling in love with you and stuff. if you arent into cheesy stuff this is not for you.
... Last updated on February 1st, 2013, 11:18am
Complete Damsel is in Distress
It has a setting, it has a story too. But most of it is there so you can have this wishy washy romance. One could give Miaka credit for being brave, or they could give her credit for taking reckless actions that brews up more trouble for the characters.
It's humorous, it's cute, but whatever kind of epic story it was trying to tell was completely ruined the by the pointless separations and angst.
I realize this is a classic, but honestly.
... Last updated on November 3rd, 2013, 11:55pm
I suggest those that hate the heroine of this but like the story can just go ahead read the genbu version much much better. more mature romance, a heroine that can save herself and actually has a priestess power.
It's pretty great
I'm a sucker for cheesy romances so I love Fushigi Yuugi.
One: The male characters are HOT! Specially Nakago!
Two: character development was slow but that's what i think makes it easier to relate to. You can't just change after a few encounters with a bad guy and retain that new, stronger character throughout the story. that just doesn't make sense! True, Miaka is annoying with her being ditzy, naive and weak but that's why I like her! She doesn't have that special power that makes guys fall for her. She doesn't do EVERYTHING right. She doesn't just suddenly pull out some secret power within herself and she doesn't become the ultimate girl every man would want overnight! She's imperfect but she tries. I don't blame her for always calling for help. we've already established that she has no real physical power. But she doesn't always think about herself. All the characters love her for her innocence and the way she tries for all of them. All the characters love her because she IS weak yet she's willing to help them in the only way she's useful, being the Priestess of Suzaku. And if you think about it, she gets sent back to a time where honor, hard-work and courage were admirable but also when people valued it above their lives. I'm just saying that most of the people nowadays don't even know what honor is. So it's only natural to be loyal to her so why not get along along the way?
I'm saying that Fushigi Yuugi is a great anime/manga with realistic character development and an actual plot. I don't understand why people even bother saying that they don't like it now when they enjoyed it before.
Girls should be insulted...
I never thought I'd find a weaker "heroine" than Bella in Twilight but Miaka takes the cake. She's absolutely useless and a pig and yet somehow all the guys are attracted to her. I read through this manga halfway mainly because I liked Nakago but then it got too annoying and melodramatic and I just skipped to the ending.
Reivew with Nostalgia
Lots of hate comments here, and I have to say that Fushigi Yuugi deserves them to some extent. I also see a lot of people comparing the manga series to the anime series, which I personally haven't watched, but I heard that the anime series kept most the plot points intact, so I'll assume the same applies to both adaptations.
Fushigi Yuugi is...a classic. It's not the first of the time traveling school girls, but it's definitely old enough, and sets up enough archetypes to earn the name of a classic. Hell, Miaka and Yui were sucked into the world of a mystic Ancient China a good 4 years before the famous Kagome first made her trip down the well. With this point made, I think it's fair to point out that Miaka fits the image of most shojo characters at the time: an innocent, naiive, cute, ditzy, but ultimately courageous girl that finds the strength in herself to save the world. While that might be overused and seem horrible today, back in 1992, maybe it wasn't so bad, especially considering the target audience.
Of course, our values in good shojo manga have long since changed, and 10 years later, Yuu Watase-sensei shows that she has been improving her storytelling and keeping up with the demands of a new female audience that wants to see more action from the heroine herself rather than the protection of handsome men. I think that this new set of expectations towards shojo manga is what blinds people to some of the better aspects of Fushigi Yuugi, and prevents people from enjoying it as much.
Most people complain about Miaka's character, but I think her character makes her human. She does develop bit by bit throughout the series as well. I'm not a particular fan of her character, and god knows how many times she's frustrated me, but I think people tend to focus too much on the negative traits and fail to see the development of her character. Beyond just the character of Miaka though, I think that people fail to give the vast and colorful supporting cast enough credit. Fushigi Yuugi has a myriad of different characters, from the seven soldiers of Suzaku to the seven soldiers of Seiryuu. Chihiri, Tatsuki, Nuriko, Mitsukake, Suboshi, Amiboshi...most people can find at least someone to relate to.
As for the length, while 18 volumes seems hefty, I think it's necessary in order to cover through all the plot points that Watase-sensei did. 13 volumes to develop and describe the huge cast of characters as well as move forward the plot that took place in ancient China wasn't really too long. If it had been any shorter, things might have been overly rushed. I think there were some scenes that could have been cut, but I don't think they were negatively impacting the story since the plot is very character driven and each scene helped develop at least some of the characters. I wasn't nearly as fond of the latter half of the series, but it helped in showing Miaka as she matured and gave an almost 'coming of age' type of air to the series, so it kept me until the end.
As for the art, I personally like Watase-sensei's art, and she improved through the course of the 18 volumes. As for Miaka 'ugliness' as commented by a few other people...I don't think it's important to the plot at all, and besides that, it's purely subjective based on one's opinion of the art in general, so I won't bother commenting.
This is a pretty biased review since I have a lot of fond memories tied to Fushigi Yuugi. If I had read this series today and not back when I was first introduced to manga, my opinion would probably be very different, and I might have hated the series. But nostalgia does a lot, and I really do appreciate the classic storytelling of Fushigi Yuugi.
It seems Krysic is confused...
To Krysic: This IS THE ORIGINAL STORY. Fushigi Yuugi: Genbu Kaiden was a prequel; a simple glance at the years should already tell you so: this was done in 1992, while Genbu Kaiden followed in 2003, more than 10 years after this.
Spoiler (highlight to view)
And the guardians you referred to were not the Genbu Celestial warriors but those of Byakko's. The only Genbu Celestial warriors who were shown here were Hikitsu and Tomite. So yeah, Watase Yuu got nothing wrong. Sorry, but... you did.
So having said that, I think it's only fair that we shouldn't compare this with Fushigi Yuugi: Genbu Kaiden. Rather, it should be the other way around. 10 years is a lot of time for a mangaka to improve.
This was a very entertaining read. It was a nostalgic experience for me, having watched the anime more than a decade ago. Not a big fan of shoujo, but this makes me want to explore Watase's other work. It's definitely not perfect, but a manga doesn't have to be perfect to entertain.
And I agree with spiritedaway, Miaka is a strong woman. Yes, she's an idiot glutton who doesn't know how to fight... but she has a strong sense of self-sacrifice. Countless of times she'd rush the enemy as bait... just so her celestial warriors, who are obviously much more able than her, could get away safely. Stupid? Maybe. But as they say, there's a fine line between stupidity and courage.
This one wasn't good. Original was better.
Spoiler (highlight to view)
I was terribly upset when they brought in the ORIGINAL characters of the better version of the 'universe of the four gods' incident that happened in the 20's. (Manga before this one) They got the guy wrong and the girl wrong. The guy did not control plants, he can change his gender and control wind. The girl didn't look anything like the original. But that was only a small part of this story. I didn't like how in the anime whenever they had a uhh...'intimite' moment they played this cheesy saxaphone or w/e hahaha But now to the STORY. I didn't like Miaka OR her friend (forget her name), both terribly stupid and annoying. I didn't like how they kept hurting the emperors feelings, I didn't like how the gay guy started turning straight as the story progressed, creating another pointless love triangle...for a short time. : P You don't even remember half of the characters, in my opinion that is usually not a good thing. This was a very immature story, I wanted to pick up miaka and throw her into a river with a rock tied to her foot. The ORIGINAL story: Fushigi Yuugi Priestess of GENBU, was AMAZING. The girl was strong and dependable and SMART, the warriors had their own personalities and stories that was interesting, not dull. and the GUY was smart, cunning, and mysterious. as well as incredibly handsome, not godly like but a more realistic as a manga can get. I really loved it so much, I hate this one. I guess if you're a big fan of sailor moon, this thing is ok, but I seriously recommend the genbu version. That one was the best.