By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Late last year, King Records teased at a new Sazan Eyes in the single by voice actress and singer Megumi Hayashibara. The song “Samhāra ~Sei Naru Chikara~” (Samhāra ~Holy Power~) released with very little fanfare September 2015, and Anime News Network (ANN) reported that it was going to be used for a new 3×3 Eyes anime rumoured to be under development. Footage from the original OVAs was used and since then, no further reports have been brought forth about this series’ status. A year is coming close to pass and I want to know what’s happening!
I love this world created by Yuzo Takada. The supernatural is wonderfully represented; it is exotic and steep in Tibetan lore. The politics which goes on between the ladies and lords made me a huge fan. With these powerful immortals running around Earth, the world is not going to remain safe. However, with a helpless human Yakumo turned zombie warrior, the last remaining Sanjiyan Unkara (a powerful mystic), Pai, might find peace if only other magical entities were not chasing after her.
I was introduced to this series in manga form (which originally ran from 1987 to 2002), translated by Innovation, and eagerly sought out the anime once it arrived on DVD. I even met Disney’s Gargoyles co-creator Greg Weisman at Anime Expo 2001; he supervised the English dub version and I loved what he did to Americanize the product. Trying to obtain the original manga was a chore; it took me close to six years in chasing down used copies online and on shelves whenever I visited Vancouver (to check out Sophia, a used Japanese bookstore). Although my Japanese was very limited, I wanted to own all forty volumes just to show how much I enjoyed the series.
Dark Horse Comics picked up the manga and continued it. Sadly, the series was never finished. Sales waned in North America and eventually, all that was left was printed in Super Manga Blast along with What’s Michael? — all the stories eventually was reprinted as trade paperbacks. Ever since I heard Takada is continuing the story in Young Magazine Kaizokuban, I’m only getting anxious for collected editions of 3×3 Eyes: Genjū no Mori no Sōnansha (3×3 Eyes: Survivor of the Forest of Mythical Beasts) to start appearing on shelves (i.e. mail order) soon. Curiously, all I can find are the Chinese trade paperback editions.
According to the release dates listed on ANN, all three volumes are now out; should the new animated series be based on this material, many years will have passed for Yakumo, Pai and gang. This demon hunter is still after the paranormal, and in the preview material offered and in reading Nanaten’s Random Review summary, I’m looking forward to tracking down this new installment.
I’m hoping a North American company (is Dark Horse listening?) will pick up the North American rights. There has to be some form of American fan base still floating around. I depended on Sazan.net to get my fix, and as good fan translations are, a professional version is just better.