Violence Jack is a Japanese manga, co-written and co-illustrated by Go Nagai since 1973, all the way to 2008. It has had several serializations and one-shot stories which have run in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. Most of the stories have been compiled in around 45 tankōbon while a few of them have been published as special tankōbon or have yet to be published in that format. Violence Jack is credited with creating the post-apocalyptic manga and anime genre.
|Written by||Go Nagai|
Chuokoron-Shinsha (complete edition)
|Magazine||Weekly Shōnen Magazine|
|Original run||July 22, 1973 – September 29, 1974|
|Written by||Go Nagai|
Chuokoron-Shinsha (complete edition)
|Magazine||Monthly Shōnen Magazine|
|Original run||January 1977 – December 1978|
* Both serializations by Kodansha share the same volumes.
|Written by||Go Nagai|
|Published by||Nihon Bungeisha|
|Magazine||Weekly Manga Goraku|
|Original run||August 5, 1983 – March 23, 1990|
|Original video animation|
|Violence Jack: Harem Bomber|
|Directed by||Osamu Kamijo|
|Produced by||Naotaka Yoshida|
|Written by||Mikio Matsushita|
|Released||June 5, 1986|
|Written by||Yasutaka Nagai|
|Illustrated by||Go Nagai|
|Published by||Kadokawa Shoten|
|Original run||August 1986 – April 1987|
|Original video animation|
|Violence Jack: Evil Town|
|Directed by||Ichiro Itano|
|Produced by||Kazufumi Nomura|
|Written by||Shō Aikawa (as Noboru Aikawa)|
|Music by||Hiroshi Ogasawara|
|Released||December 21, 1988|
|Original video animation|
|Violence Jack: Hell's Wind|
|Directed by||Takuya Wada|
|Produced by||Yoshio Nakamura|
|Written by||Takuya Wada|
|Music by||Kaoru Ohori, Hiroyuki Kozu, Takeo Miratsu|
|Released||November 9, 1990|
|Violence Jack Mao Korin Hen|
|Written by||Go Nagai|
|Published by||Nihon Bungeisha|
Chuokoron-Shinsha (complete edition)
|Published||November 1, 1993|
|Violence Jack: Ogon Toshi Hen|
|Written by||Tatsuhiko Dan|
|Illustrated by||Go Nagai|
|Violence Jack Sengoku Majinden|
|Written by||Go Nagai|
|Magazine||Weekly Young Jump Special|
|Published||December 10, 2001|
|Shin Violence Jack|
|Written by||Go Nagai|
|Original run||May 13, 2005 – April 11, 2008|
|Violence Jack 20XX|
|Written by||Yū Kinutani|
|Magazine||Monthly Young Magazine|
|Original run||February 19, 2021 – present|
A set of sagas from the manga were adapted in three independent OVAs released in 1986, 1988 and 1990. These OVAs have been released in the United States, Italy, France, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. In some of these countries, the contents of the OVAs have caused censorship issues, while in Australia the second OVA was banned altogether.
The original manga reuses many concepts and characters from other works by Go Nagai.
This titular antihero is a complete mystery to those who have encountered him. He is often described being 7 to 10 feet tall with the muscles of a gorilla, the fangs of a wolf, and having burning primordial eyes.
The man called Violence Jack had his name given to him for his unpredictable, violent nature and for his signature weapon, a large foldout jack-knife that he conceals and sometimes brandishes whenever necessary.
Having appeared out of nowhere after the Great Kanto Hell Quake, Jack wanders throughout Kanto, often picking street fights with those he sees as a threat to Kanto. He often helps those who're weaker than him who are preyed upon by violent nomads and criminals who scour Kanto.
Although Jack is described as human, he is often the focal point of strange phenomena that occurs in Kanto. Often when he is finished helping the weak, he will suddenly vanish without a trace of him ever actually being there.
Many of the towns he visits are often subjected to mysterious earthquakes that occur during or after his arrival. His presence alone sometimes incites those he is around to become violent and seek to attack him.
He is also shown to utilize hallucinations to those he encounters, having once shown a young woman who was planning to sell a girl into slavery where she and her boyfriend are ruthlessly slaughtered. He is also frequently accompanied by a Golden Bird that is only seen at the end of certain arcs.
The main antagonist in the central arc of Violence Jack, Slum King is a sadistic warlord who rules over the majority of the devastated Kanto region.
Thirty years before the Hellquake, he was known as Takatora Doma and was the oldest son of the noble Doma family from Shinshu. Born with a rare medical condition that accelerates the growth of muscle tissue which can potentially be fatal. He given a heavy set of Samurai armor and an iron mask to prevent any overgrowth of muscle tissue and is locked away in a shed by his family out of fear. Doma is later given a private tutor who helps him to read and write. During later sessions, the tutor becomes aroused by Doma’s lack of sexual experience and strips naked in front of him. He later escapes his confinement after discovering his brother and tutor having sex and violently murders them and the rest of his family before disappearing.
A large giant of a man, Slum King is extremely strong and is a highly skilled swordsman. While his armor is meant to help in his medical condition, it also provides him with protection against most attacks. Violent and sadistic in nature, Slum King is widely feared throughout Kanto and is known to make anyone who angers or upsets him into dogs by cutting off their arms and legs to the joints and then cutting their tongues out to prevent them from speaking or killing themselves.
A young boy who survived the hell quake and became the leader to a group of children who live on the outskirts of Slum Town.
Once a fifth grade student with a good heart and innocent spirit, Ryu's world changed forever after the Great Kanto Hell Quake.
Losing all of his family, Ryu endured the new world alone and gathered a group of followers.
He initially views Jack as a savior until witnessing Jack's thirst for violence and putting him and his group at risk.
After being forced to fight against Slum King's men, Ryu becomes the leader of over three hundred children who banded together to fight Slum King.
A criminal seeking his destiny in wasteland of Kanto. Alongside his friend Mido, Mondo escaped to Kanto but was greeted by Jack, who proceeded to attack the two.
He is killed by Jack in a duel to the death with rocket launchers but is later resurrected by Mido via alchemy.
Both he and Mido originate from the manga Gakuen Taikutsu Otoko, also known as Guerrilla High.
The series takes place in the ruins of the Kanto region, after a massive earthquake (which in the OVAs was triggered by a Comet strike) dubbed 'The Great Kanto Hellquake'. Cut off from the rest of the world, The survivors of the disaster are divided between the strong and the weak, and the land becomes a haven for criminals and renegades from around the world. Violence Jack is uncovered among the rubble and demolished granite by the inhabitants of a ruined city, asking him to help the weak people and helping them destroy what, in most cases, are the strong groups commanded by killers and rapists (this is the story line of "Violence Jack: Evil Town"). In the three OVAs, Jack is requested to help different groups, such as the Zone A (later he ends up helping Zone C women) or a small town, as shown in "Hell's Wind". As for the manga, the stories change drastically, the first being the story Violence Jack helping a group of female models in a tropical forest in Kanto by possessing a boy living in said forest in order to fight off a roving tribe of bandits. Although Jack maintains a ruthless facade, he often helps the weak, and expects nothing in return. However, Jack's unpredictable nature means that bystanders get injured or even killed on occasion as a consequence of his vicious fighting style.
When it was originally published there were several hints that pointed out the relationship between Devilman and Violence Jack. The final chapter reveals that the apocalyptic world in Violence Jack is in a world re-created by God. Satan (Ryo Asuka) is punished by being constantly humiliated by Slum King, who is the reincarnation of his second-in-command, Zennon. As part of this punishment, Ryo has had all four of his limbs removed, and is forced to walk on the stumps like a dog. Jack is actually Akira Fudo, and is one of three parts that form Devilman, the others being a child Jack and woman Jack, both of which were normally seen as birds around Jack from time to time. Eventually, Ryo regains his memories and identity as Satan, and leads his army of demons into battle alongside Zennon to resume his battle against Devilman. This time, Devilman is victorious.
Shin Violence JackEdit
In Shin Violence Jack, a reboot to the series, the storyline is set out somewhat differently. In this continuity, Jack is an alternate form of Amon, while Akira is now living as an amnesiac warlord known as the Skull King, with the iconic Devilman demon Jinmen as his chief subordinate. With the help of his child form, his true form as Amon, a young boy named Ushio, and the reborn Sirene (who merges with the heroic Sara, essentially becoming a Devilman), Jack leads the assault on the Skull King's fortress, succeeding in restoring Akira's memories and igniting a rivalry between the duo.
The first serialization ran from July 22, 1973 to September 29, 1974 in Weekly Shōnen Magazine, published by Kodansha. The second ran in Monthly Shōnen Magazine, also published by Kodansha, from July 1977 to December 1978, with a few gaps between months. This two serializations of Kodansha were originally published in 7 volumes.
Five years later, the serialization continued this time in the magazine Weekly Manga Goraku, published by Nihon Bungeisha, and ran from August 5, 1983 to March 23, 1990. This serialization originally produced 31 volumes in total.
On November 1, 1993, three years later after the end of the previous serialization, a special tankōbon called Violence Jack: Mao Korin Hen (バイオレンスジャック 魔王降臨編, Baiorensu Jakku Maō Kōrin Hen) was released by Nihon Bungeisha. Seven years later, on December 10, 2001 a special one-shot story, Violence Jack: Sengoku Majinden (バイオレンスジャック 戦国魔人伝, Baiorensu Jakku Sengoku Majinden), was published by Shueisha in a special edition of Weekly Young Jump, Bessatsu Young Jump #14. This story has been re-printed in GOGASHA, a two-volume compilation of short stories released in 2017.
In May 2005 (cover date May 13, 2005·20) the magazine Weekly Comic Bunch published by Shinchosha, the most recent serialization started, with Shin Violence Jack (新バイオレンスジャック, Shin Baiorensu Jakku). This serialization was irregularly published, stopping on August 19, 2005 and restarting on November 2, 2007 to end on April 11, 2008 in number 17 of Weekly Comic Bunch. This series was compiled and published by Media Factory in two volumes in 2010.
In the February 2021 issue of Kodansha's Monthly Young Magazine, it was announced that a new manga series written by Yū Kinutani, titled Violence Jack 20XX, would begin serialization on February 19, 2021.
Besides the relationship with Devilman, a great number of characters in Violence Jack come from several manga created by Go Nagai. Most of them have a dedicated story arc.
Original video animationEdit
Violence Jack: Harem BomberEdit
A few of the story arcs of the manga were adapted into OVA format. The first OVA, called Violence Jack: Harem Bomber (バイオレンスジャック ハーレムボンバー, Baiorensu Jakku: Hāremu Bonbā) (Also referred to in some translations as Harlem Bomber) was released in June 1986 (some sources place the release date on June 21, 1986, although others place the release date on June 5, 1986).
A comet strikes Earth, severely damaging the Kantō region. Volcanoes erupt and huge earthquakes are unleashed, reducing many cities to rubble and killing thousands of people. In this time of weakness, a ruthless man known as the Slum King took control of the Kantō Plain by brute force and rules it with an iron fist. However, in the middle of a trek across the land with his great forces at his side, he encounters a mighty beast-like man wearing a battered green jacket and a yellow ascot who slaughters his men and then targets the Slum King himself. They clash, but their fight is interrupted by a sudden massive tsunami that separates the two.
The Slum King survives the wave and returns to his immense fortress where he tells his men that no one can dare oppose him and be permitted to live. With that said, he promptly orders his men to find and kill Violence Jack, the man whom he confronted before.
Shortly afterwards, a young woman named Mari is captured by the Slum King's army and sent to a sex camp. Her boyfriend, Ken'ichi, rescues her with the help of Violence Jack.
Before Jack, Ken'ichi and Mari can escape, Harem Bomber arrives and challenges Jack to a fight. With great difficulty, Jack manages to defeat Harem Bomber, but at the price of the life of Ken'ichi, who is killed when he is hurled out a helicopter which Jack used to subdue the Harem Bomber.
Mari awakens among the ruins, and looks up to see Jack taking the form of a gigantic golden bird, who flies away with Mari following him on foot.
Violence Jack: Evil TownEdit
The second OVA, called Violence Jack: Evil Town (バイオレンスジャック 地獄街, Baiorensu Jakku: Jigokugai), was released on December 21, 1988. It was an especially controversial entry for the classifications since some of its themes involved necrophilia and cannibalism.
Due to a massive earthquake, an underground portion of Tokyo has been separated from the outside world. Because of the limited supply of food and the constant threat of intergroup warfare, the underground city's survivors have dubbed the area Hell City. When the story begins, Evil Town has been in existence for several months.
Evil Town is split into three "sections." Section A consists of businessmen and ordinary citizens, and is the most regulated section due to the presence of police officers. Section B, which consists of criminals and lunatics, is controlled by the huge gang leader Mad Saurus and his second in command, the transsexual Blue. Section C, a former modeling agency, avoids contact with the other groups except when necessary.
Section A is attempting to dig their way back to the surface when they uncover Violence Jack, who has apparently been sealed in a rock wall since the earthquake. Section A's leaders invite Jack to stay as their protector, but the other sections have also learned of Jack's existence and call a meeting to see him for themselves.
At the meeting, the Section C leader Aila Mu offers to hire Jack as their guardian and tells him a disturbing story: After the earthquake occurred, the men of both A and B ran wild, capturing and raping the women until they learned that there was enough food for long-term survival. Many of the worst offenders are current Section A leaders, who would revert to behaving like animals if another disaster occurred. Convinced by Aila Mu's story, Jack agrees to aid Section C.
Riled by the lingering presence of Jack, Section B launches a surprise attack on Section A; as Aila predicted, A's leaders turn on one another in an attempt to survive, resulting in the near total destruction of the group. The survivors flee to Section C just as the women finish their own tunnel out of Hell City. Section B raiders arrive and finish off Section A, then begin assaulting the women. Jack defeats the raiders, killing Blue and severely wounding Mad Saurus.
Mad Saurus mourns the loss of Blue, who he accepted despite Blue's differences. In order to combine their power, Mad Saurus consumes her corpse, transforming into a devilish red creature to battle Jack a second time. Jack is heavily wounded in the fight, but manages to defeat Mad Saurus by stabbing him through the forehead with his jackknife. Saurus stumbles around for a moment before collapsing, dead.
The battle between Mad Saurus and Jack gives Section C enough time to make their way to the surface, which is now an open, grassy plain with several ruined buildings scattered around instead of a city. Aila Mu laments that her skills as a model are useless in the ruined world, but the rest of Section C assures her that she is a capable and beloved leader.
Violence Jack: Hell's WindEdit
A short while after the cataclysms which rocked Japan, a peaceful town named 'Hope Town' has been established with the intent of returning peace to the region. The biker gang Hell's Wind show up and ransack it. Violence Jack makes his entrance here. The episode starts as a young woman, Jun, and her boyfriend, Tetsuya, are attacked. Tetsuya is murdered by Hell's Wind, and they assault and rape the terrified Jun soon after.
Jack arrives to fight the raiders, and fends off the gang by taking several gunshots which seem to have no effect on him.
Hell's Wind captures a young teacher and takes her to their camp at the Yokota Air Base. They take her top off and strap her to a fighter jet. At the behest of a little orphaned boy, Jack goes to rescue her. They try shooting him with a rocket launcher, but Jack tunnels under the ground and bursts out while being set on fire to kill everyone. The bike leader sends a messenger to their "supreme master" and request reinforcements. Jack finally kills the leader of the gang.
Jack departs, strangely heartened by speaking with the orphaned boy, who vowed to become stronger than anyone to protect the people around him.
The final scene shows another gang of horsemen coming from the distance and showing the messenger strapped to a post. A close-up is made to one of the vehicles to show the Slum King in full armor. The screen turns to black and Jack's eyes appear, as he becomes furious, and the credits begin to roll.
The English releases of the OVAs were out of their original order:
|Japanese title||Japanese release order||English title||English release order|
|Violence Jack: Harem Bomber||1||Violence Jack: Slumking||3|
|Violence Jack: Evil Town||2||Violence Jack: Evil Town||1|
|Violence Jack: Hell's Wind Hen||3||Violence Jack: Hell's Wind||2|
Most non-Japanese versions also use the same order of the English version.
Violence Jack was originally released in an edited form in the US by Manga Entertainment. As fans wanted to see it uncut, the Right Stuf arranged with Manga Entertainment the release of an unedited version in November 1996. The label Critical Mass was created since it was considered to be too intense for the Right Stuf line. The censored version by Manga Entertainment only had dubbed audio, while the uncensored version by Critical Mass was available in both dubbed and subtitled formats. The censored version was also released in the United Kingdom by Manga Entertainment. In New Zealand, also released by Manga Entertainment, it was promoted as the banned version from Australia.
The first release by Manga Entertainment was cut in most countries where it was released (USA, United Kingdom, New Zealand). In the UK release, the cuts amount to 30 in Evil Town of an already cut version for a total of 4:25 mins, 6:43 mins in Hell's Wind, and 25 in Slumking (Harem Bomber) and are related to sex, violence, bondage and cannibalism. The US version also has similar cuts.
The OVA with most censorship problems was Violence Jack: Evil Town. When Manga Entertainment submitted this OVA to the Australian Office of Film and Literature Classification in 1997, the OVA was refused a rating. It is suspected that this version was the already censored version from the UK (the print reviewed ran 55 mins, whereas the original print runs 60 mins.) Since this OVA was banned, the release of the rest was scrapped.
The OVAs were released uncut in Italy and France. In the United States it was also released uncut by Right Stuf under the Critical Mass label. Discotek Media released the OVA series uncut in 2015.
CB Chara Nagai Go WorldEdit
The third OVA of CB Chara Nagai Go World is dedicated to the saga of Violence Jack, where it is confirmed that Jack is Akira Fudo after his battle with Satan.
Two novels were written by Yasutaka Nagai with illustrations by Go Nagai and published by Kadokawa Shoten. The first one, Tokyo Metsubo Hen (東京滅亡編) was released in August 1986 while the second one, Kanto Slum-gai Hen (関東スラム街編, kantō suramu gai hen), was released in April 1987.
In July 1995, another novel titled Violence Jack: Golden City (バイオレンスジャック 黄金都市編, baiorensu jakku ōgon toshi hen), written by Tatsuhiko Dan with illustration by Go Nagai, was released by Kodansha.
Violence Jack is credited with creating the post-apocalyptic manga and anime genre. It depicted its post-apocalyptic setting as a desert wasteland with biker gangs, anarchic violence, ruined buildings, innocent civilians, tribal chiefs, and small abandoned villages. This was similar to, and may have influenced, the desert wasteland settings of later post-apocalyptic franchises such as the Australian film series Mad Max (1979 debut) and the Japanese manga and anime series Fist of the North Star (Hokuto no Ken, 1983 debut). Goichi Suda (Suda 51), who cited Violence Jack as an influence on his video game series No More Heroes (2007 debut), stated: “All of the desert-setting titles are actually inspired by Violence Jack. That came way before Hokuto no Ken, so that’s the real origin of everything. It’s a great Japanese comic.”
Kentaro Miura, creator of the manga and anime series Berserk (1989 debut), cited Violence Jack as an influence. Other Japanese media influenced by Violence Jack include the original video animation MD Geist (1986) and the Atlus post-apocalyptic video game series Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga (2004 debut). WhatCulture listed the Violence Jack anime series as having the second most gruesome death in anime history.
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- Japanese: バイオレンスジャック, Hepburn: Baiorensu Jakku
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Violence Jack a certainement du influencer beaucoup d'œuvres (le manga papier étant tout de même de 1973), comme Mad Max ou encore Hokuto no Ken. Les motards, la violence, les décors détruits, le désert, les innocents, les ignobles chefs de "tribus", les petits villages abandonnés... tous les codes y sont.
- Romano, Sal (9 April 2018). "Interview: Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes' Suda 51 at PAX East 2018". Gematsu. Retrieved 22 May 2020.
- Gabrielli, Ettore (28 September 2012). "40 anni di Devilman". Lo Spazio Bianco (in Italian). Retrieved 24 May 2020.
Eppure senza le sue opere una grossa fetta dell’immaginario popolare non sarebbe la stessa, dai robottoni (che si apprestano a invadere anche i cinema grazie a Guillermo del Toro e al suo Pacific Rim) alle maghette (i Mahō shōjo) delle quali Cutie Honey è antesignana; senza dimenticare le influenze, o quanto meno l’anticipazione di certe tematiche, come l’ambientazione post-olocausto di Violence Jack (1973), che precede di diversi anni film come Mad Max (1979) o fumetti come Ken il Guerriero (1983).
- Bullington, Jesse (2019). "Kentaro Miura, Grandmaster of Grimdark". In Boskovich, Desirina (ed.). Lost Transmissions: The Secret History of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Abrams Books. p. 628. ISBN 978-1-68335-498-7.
- Clements, Jonathan; McCarthy, Helen (2015). The Anime Encyclopedia, 3rd Revised Edition: A Century of Japanese Animation. Stone Bridge Press. p. 1953. ISBN 978-1-61172-909-2.
With 1980s fashions, squealing guitar music, and simplistic post-holocaust bikers-in-a-desert, Geist is a product of the era that gave us Mad Max, First of the North Star, and Violence Jack.
- Castro, Ludovic (2017). Digital Devil Saga: Genèse et coulisses d'un jeu culte (in French). Third Éditions. p. 10. ISBN 978-2-37784-017-5.
Véritable marque de fabrique de la Saga, le contexte post-apocalyptique est ouvertement inspiré de mangas tels que Devilman et Violence Jack de Gô Nagai et Ken le Survivant(Hokuto no Ken) de Tetsuo Hara
- Cotter, Padraig (12 August 2016). "9 Most Gruesome Deaths In Anime". WhatCulture. Retrieved 24 May 2020.