Magic Knight Rayearth

From Academic Kids

Magic Knight Rayearth (魔法騎士レイアース Mahou Kishi Reiāsu) is a magical girl manga, anime, and RPG Video Game series by CLAMP, whose credits also include Cardcaptor Sakura and Chobits. Originally a manga, it was later brought into television anime with two series totally forty-nine episodes, and later a three-part OVA series unrelated to both the original television anime and manga (although using the same character designs and names, and some other similarities). (The "Magic Knight" phrase used in the series title and the characters' roles is written with the same kanji as "mahou kishi," but CLAMP dictated that it is not pronounced the same way with phonetic characters known as furigana.)

The manga has been released in the United States in English by TOKYOPOP (initially named Mixx) in six volumes. The English manga was at first issued in a flipped left to right format, but was re-released in the original right to left format. Both the television anime and the OVA were brought over to the U.S. as well, as was the Magic Knight Rayearth game for the Sega Saturn, which follows the plot of the first anime series loosely. Unfortunately the Super Famicom was only released in Japan (though there are now fan-translations of it). The Super Famicom game is also well-known for being more faithful to the original story compared to the Sega Saturn game. The two games however are very different to each other. The Sega Saturn game plays more like an Action RPG along the lines of Secret of Mana and Zelda whearas the Super Famicom plays more like a traditional RPG (eg: the Final Fantasy series).

Contents

Plot summary

The main characters of Rayearth, Hikaru, Umi, Fuu, and Mokona, each represent a member of CLAMP. Nearly all other characters and several locations in the story have automobile-related names.

The story is divided into two distinct arcs (one per series). The first begins as three girls from separate schools, all on field trips to Tokyo Tower, are blinded by a flash of light and hear a voice calling for the "Legendary Magic Knights" to save Cephiro.

In the manga, the characters are sucked through the floor while in the anime and game, the floor then disappears from under them. The characters fall through the sky into another world, known as Cephiro. They meet a sorcerer, Master Mage Clef, who gives them magic and explains to them the peril that this world of Cephiro is in.

Here, will has the ability to change reality for better or for worse. The dark fears in people's hearts become monsters, while a well-intended wish can do miracles. One person, the Pillar, whose will is stronger than anyone else's, is responsible for maintaining through his or her prayers the well-being of Cephiro. However, the current pillar, Princess Emeraude, has been captured by her high priest, Zagato. The three girls are charged with the rescue of the Princess by collecting the three "rune-gods" ("Ma-shin," a multiple wordplay on Japanese kanji and the English word "machine") of Cephiro, and given a bizarre creature named Mokona to guide them on their journey.

This is the basis for the first story arc. The second is based off the events that occur near the end of the original series, dealing with the aftermath of the first season's climax.

Characters of the first season

Hikaru Shidou

(獅堂光 Shidō Hikaru)

Hikaru is an eighth-grader who is small for her age, and is often teased for her boyishness. Her parents run a school for Kendo. She is headstrong and determined, and in many ways very childish, but she is fiercely loyal to her friends. In particular, she wants to save Cephiro to get home to return to her dog, Hikari, her precious childhood friend (and also because being a Magic Knight and saving people sounds like a cool idea). She used fire-based magics.

Umi Ryuuzaki

(龍咲海 Ryūzaki Umi)

Umi is tall, elegant, and has long flowing blue hair. She is an only child of rich parents, the two of which dote on her mercilessly and for whom she has great affection. A fencing champion, this quick-tempered and at first uncaring girl is perhaps the best-suited for the task at hand, but is also the most reluctant of the three Magic Knights. She used water-based magics. She falls in love with Master Mage Clef in the OAV, and he loves her back.

Fuu Hououji

(鳳凰寺風 Hōōji Fū)

Fuu has short blond hair and glasses, and is more quiet and reserved than the other two members of the group. Her special skill is archery. Her magics are based off wind, and are mostly healing and defensive in nature. She has a silly and sometimes odd sense of humor. Fuu is in love with Ferio, who gives them help in the Forest of Silence when they cannot use their magic.

Master Mage Clef

He is the chief of all sorcerers in Cephiro, and was formerly Princess Emeraude's attendant. In the anime, he is turned to stone by Zagato shortly after being introduced to the three girls in the first episode, although he fights the spell and communicated with them through Mokona.

Mokona

(モコナ)

Mokona is a mischievous, nonsensical creature with a striking similarity to a marshmallow and has one red gem in his forehead above his eyes. From this gem he can produce a tent for the girls to sleep in, food, and other necessary supplies. He is unable to speak, aside from repeating the sound "puu", although Hikaru seems to be able to understand him somewhat.

Alcyone

A witch tutored under Clef and brought up to attend to the Pillar. However, she fell in love with the high priest, Zagato, and for this love became his servant, although the affection is entirely one-sided. In the manga, she is killed after failing Zagato not once but twice. In the anime, she lives on until near the end of the second series.

Ascot

A young child with the unusual ability to summon monsters who he considers to be his friends. Although hideous, they have no ill will, but villagers still fear them and thus Ascot was driven away until Lord Zagato offered to give him and his friends a home if they promised to serve him.

Caldina

(translated by TokyoPop as Gardina)

This dancer speaks in an Osaka accent, wears extremely skimpy clothing, and has an endless passion for cash (similar to Eddy from Ed, Edd n Eddy. Zagato hires her as an assassin after his other minions fail; in addition to her dancing skills she's also an accomplished illusionist and hypnotist. In the anime she has great affection for Ascot, who she treats as a nave kid brother.

Lafarga

He is the captain of the Guard and charged with protecting the Pillar. Although Cephiro is mostly peaceful, he kept himself busy slaying the occasional monsters that would appear. In his takeover of the country, Zagato hypnotized him into trying to kill the Magic Knights as a last-ditch effort to stop them before they challenged him personally.

Inouva

Inouva was an anime-and-game-only character sporting elven looks and manner. He was a devoted servant of Zagato's, in fact he was a birthday present from Emeraude to her High Priest. Inouva is not, as he appears, human. He is in truth an elemental of lightning, but assumed a human form in order to better serve his new master.

Emeraude

She is the current pillar of Cephiro. Little else is revealed concerning her nature until the climax of the first series, although she is highly loved by her subjects.

Ferio

The Magic Knights first meet Ferio in the Forest of Silence. Tough and possessing a sword taller than he is, he quickly develops a soft spot for Fuu. Never completely honest with others, he made himself difficult for Our Heros to trust. In the anime he gives Fuu a jeweled orb he uses to communicate with her throughout the first series.

Zagato

He is the head antagonist of the first season. However, he is not what he appears to be. He used to be Emeraude's high priest. But does he want to take over Cephiro, or is his motivation something else? Possibly..

The Three Rune-Gods (Mashin)

These are the three legendary guardians of Cephiro. Umi's is Selece, who first appears as a dragon; Fuu's is Windam (Windom in the Manga), a four-winged bird; and Hikaru's is Rayearth (Lexus in the OVA series), a lion with a mane of fire. The three are old and ancient, and in truth are mecha used by the Magic Knights to help them combat Zagato.

Characters of the Second Season

Eagle Vision

He is a well-known and respected commander from Cephiro's neighboring country, Autozam, a technologically advanced world reliant on the mental energy of its citizens for its power. At once an enigmatic but fierce warrior and a gentle and chivalrous gentleman, he is the leader of Autozam's invasion of Cephiro. He pilots a mecha, the FTO.

Geo Metro

The second-in-command of the Autozam invasion of Cephiro. Muscular and good-natured, he acts much like an older brother to Eagle and has a weakness for sweets.

Zazu Torque

Zazu is the extremely short mechanic of Eagle's forces. He has an obsession with pretty girls and machinery.

Lady Aska of Fahren

Lady Aska is the First Princess of the country of Fahren, and the head of the Fahren invasion force that attacks Cephiro. Her ship is the Dome, an immense dragon-shaped vessel. She is very young, self-assured, and somewhat bratty (she wants Cephiro so she can do whatever she wants), but can use all the spells of the Royal Family, including the ability to conjure up creatures that she draws and use them as an attacking force.

Sanyun

Sanyun's is Aska's loyal servant and childhood friend. He's much more thoughtful and studious than she is and hopes to one day assist her in ruling Fahren.

Chanan

Chanan is a Fahren cabinet member and current ruler of the realm until Aska comes of age. He puts a lot of pressure on Aska to become a good ruler, which causes her to think of him as a 'preachy old man'.

Tarta

She is the hot-headed princess of Chizeta, which sends its forces to conquer Cephiro and extend its territory. She is especially good at sword combat and can summon the djinn Rakoon.

Tatra

Is Tarta's somewhat ditzy sister who, when focused, is a formidable warrior. She can conjure the djinn Rasheen to do her bidding and go into battle for her.

Nova

Is an anime-only villain, the "daughter" of Lady Debonair. She holds a special bond with Hikaru (which ties in directly to the end of the second season) and is quite, quite unbelievably insane.

Lady Debonair

She pulls the strings in the second season, and awaits the day when Cephiro will crumble due to lack of support. Debonair was, in fact, called into being by the darkness in the hearts of Cephiro's citizens, and as such has tremendous power. She is an anime-only character, and acts as the series major villain (the manga focuses on the battles between Cephiro and the three invading countries of Autozam, Fahren, and Chizeta).

Lantis

Lantis is the younger brother of Lord Zagato, who journeyed abroad and returned to Cephiro after meeting Eagle in Autozam. He is regarded with suspician by the other primary magic-users of Cephiro, largely due to his reclusive nature. At heart, he is gentle, although is intimidating manner puts people off. Hikaru falls in love with him during the second season.

Primera

Primera is fairy who has acted as Lantis' guardian ever since he saved her from a monster attack. She's very jealous and possessive of Lantis and therefore harbors a deep dislike for Hikaru.id:Magic_Knight_Rayearth fr:Magic_Knight_Rayearth ja:魔法騎士レイアース pl:Magic Knight Rayearth fi:Magic Knight Rayearth

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