Ken the warrior (in the Japanese original Hokuto No Ken what does it mean Ken from the Hokuto school o The blow of the polar star) was released for the first time as a Japanese manga comic in 1983 in the magazine Shonen Jump. Fist of the North Star was conceived by the Japanese screenwriter Yoshiyuki Okamura (aka Buronson) together with the designer Tetsuo Hara and tells the first series of this character in 27 volumes. Given the enormous success its realization as a cartoon made by Hiroshi toda, Shozo uehara e Masaki suda, here his character reaches worldwide popularity. Many twenty-year-olds who practice martial arts such as Kickboxing, Taekwondo and Karate admit to having been influenced not a little by this character, who has transmitted to them the passion for these disciplines. The cartoon of Ken the warrior it was broadcast for the first time in Italy in 1984 and is divided into two main series (there is also a third which, however, has not been broadcast).
The story of Ken the warrior, better known as Ken Shiro is set in a bleak post-atomic world, where following a devastating world conflict humanity has regressed to a level of bestial violence, where values such as friendship and love are almost non-existent. But the Divine School of martial arts Hokuto is the only one to still preserve the ideals of loyalty and respect and Ken Shiro embodies all his philosophy, in addition to the sophisticated fighting techniques that have transformed him into an invincible warrior, in fact he has a technique that allows him to kill his enemies by pressing his fingers on certain points of the body, but which can also extend the life of a few days to those who are seriously injured. The enemies in question are the warriors of the Nanto school, opposed by ideals and philosophy to the Hokuto school. The story begins with a gloomy one Ken Shiro, who together with the two children Bart and Lynn is in search of his beloved Giulia, kidnapped by a teacher of the Nanto school. Ken
he manages to find and kill the perfidious Shin, who before dying confesses to him a sad truth: Giulia has committed suicide, throwing herself from the walls of the "Croce del Sud" building. Along his journey Ken meets Rey a warrior from Nanto, who wants to take revenge on the man with the seven stars on his chest, guilty of having killed his family and kidnapped his sister Airy, between the two will be born a deep friendship that will see them united to face different enemies. Ken has seven stars drawn on his chest, but he is certainly not the criminal. Ken Shiro also meets a beautiful woman, resembling his beloved Giulia, her name is Mamiya.
In order to save the village of Mamiya, besieged by the monstrous Cobra family, Ken Shiro and Rey decide to clash with these wolfweres, but they kidnap Mamiya and force the two warriors to fight each other. The two clash in a heated battle, and both die, but it is only an apparent death, in fact after their awakening they will take the Cobra family by surprise and exterminate them, thus freeing Mamiya. Later Ken Shiro will meet his half-brother Jagger complicit in the kidnapping of Giulia by Shin. Jagger has imprinted the seven stars on his chest in order to blame Ken Shiro for the crimes of which Rei's family has been guilty. Jagger also reveals that the other siblings of Ken, Raul and Toky are alive. Ken Shiro is at the height of his anger and after getting rid of his half-brother, he leaves for Cassandra's prison to free Toky. After battling and defeating Guardian Wiggler, Ken can hug his brother Toky again. It remains the other brother of Ken Shiro, Raul, but we soon realize what this individual is made of, in fact he represents Ken's number one enemy. Raul leads an army that sets Mamiya's village on fire and mortally wounds Rey, Ken's closest friend. Arrived at the village Ken Shiro he clashes with his terrible brother, but the fight is more difficult than expected and Raul proves to be a very strong opponent as he knows the same fighting techniques as Ken. The clash then ends in a draw. Meanwhile, Rey's wound worsens and he dies, not before having proved himself a valiant warrior and having contributed to the defense of his beloved Mamiya's village. Raul's strength continues to surprise even after the fight against his brother Toky, in fact he defeats him, but despite his evil soul he does not kill him as he is forever his brother. The warrior of Sirius, Ryuga, Julia's brother and Raul's ally, decides to fight against Ken Shiro, but he defeats him. On Ken Shiro's side, the five Nanto warriors enter the scene: Shuren of the flames, Fudo of the mountain, Wein son of the wind, Juza of the clouds and Ryaku of the sea. Raul defeats them one after the other and in this phase a mysterious sixth warrior Nanto appears. Soon it will be discovered that this is Giulia, the woman loved by Ken Shiro who did not commit suicide as had been told by Shin, but was saved and protected by the five Nanto warriors. It is time to discover the mysterious sixth warrior of Nanto who will turn out to be Giulia, saved and protected by the 5 forces of Nanto. Raul clashes again with Ken Shiro, but this time our hero has the best and Raul as a last gesture, kidnaps Giulia with whom he is secretly in love and locks her in his castle. Ken comes to save her, but Raul throws all his mighty army at him. At this juncture Giulia confides in Raul about an illness that will soon lead to her death. After defeating many soldiers and being able to avoid several traps, Ken arrives at the castle and fights against his brother Raul. Bart and Linn, the two children who always follow Ken, find Giulia on the ground apparently dead, Ken is furious and lashes out with all his strength against Raul, but the Linn discovers that Giulia is actually alive and Raul tells Ken the secret of Giulia and her illness. Raul sacrifices his life and soul for Giulia, in order to lengthen the girl's life for some time, while he repented of his life dedicated to evil, redeems himself with this solemn gesture of love towards his brother Ken .
In the second series we see Bart and Lynn taking on a leading role, in fact they have now become brave warriors, leading the Army of Hokuto, the army that fights the war against "the Emperor", or Louis, twin sister of Lynn and it was defended by the generals of the Imperial School of Cento. Louis is actually maneuvered by the governor Jako, who without exposing himself to the first person is the real Emperor. Ken will then have to defeat the generals of the Imperial School of Cento, in order to get to the Emperor. The first to challenge and defeat is Sorya of the Purple Light, the one who had attacked the village of Mamyia. The second general is Shoky of the Red light, but in the past he had shown kindness towards Ken and Julia by offering them hospitality, for this Ken spares his life, which the evil Jako will not do, in fact he will kill him for high treason. The third general who will face Ken Shiro is Borz of the Blue Light, which he defeats and can then enter the city of the Empire. Here comes the clash with Jako that Ken manages to defeat thanks to Ain. Now Ken must face the strongest and most valiant enemy of all: Hawk.
KEN: THE ORIGINS OF THE MYTH
One of the main autumn novelties of the Man-Ga satellite chamber is the INEDITA series, Ken: The origins of the myth, a spin-off of Ken the Warrior, born as a result of the enormous success of the historical one that started over the years , to an inexhaustible production of video games, films, live action and OAVs.
Ken: The origins of the myth, delves into the history of the Sacred School of Hokuto, introducing a new protagonist and a rich cast of characters. The series is set in 30s Shanghai. The protagonist is Kasumi Kenshiro (Ken's uncle) a man with a double life: he is an unsuspected professor but he is also Yang Wang, the King of Death, 62nd successor of Hokuto Shinken's school of assassins. For the bond with his friend Pan Guanglin and the beautiful Youling, Kasumi must face the three families of Hokuto and the corrupt Shanghai Triads.
The great novelty of this series therefore lies not only in a different space-time setting but above all in a Kenshiro very different from the classic taciturn and at times unfriendly hero. The protagonist of this story set in the past is a bold man, sure of himself, even a brawler, with the habit of smoking and with an extraordinary sense of smell, which compensates for the very poor sight.
Characteristically there are both similarities and differences between the "old" Ken and the new one: Ken "the uncle", 62nd successor of the sacred school of Hokuto, is a kind-hearted person but has no problem making a league with criminals. Moreover, when we meet him he is already at the top of his fighting technique, while Ken "the nephew" has yet to learn many things at the beginning of his story. The older character is full of vices and also has a parallel career as a professor in Tokyo. At the time of the grandson it is even doubtful that schools still existed. The similarities could have been much more evident if the two had shared the same historical period, instead The Origins takes place in a complex, corrupt and decadent society that unknowingly plunges towards a world war, while the classic series takes place in a simplified society. , brutal and barbaric created precisely by a devastating world war.
The 26 episodes of Ken: The origins of the myth will be broadcast, starting from October 19, from Monday to Friday starting at 21.30, only on Man-ga
Ken the warrior, the names, images and trademarks are copyright Toei Animation - Tetsuo Hara - Tamiya Takeshi - Kominato Yoichi - Koizumi Yoshiaki and those entitled and are used here for cognitive and popular purposes.