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Saint Seiya saga

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A presentation of the various mangas which compose the Saint Seiya saga.

There are four titles: the original Saint Seiya manga, its canonical prequel and sequel Next Dimension, and two non-canonical spin-offs: The Lost Canvas and Episode G.

Saint Seiya / Knights of the Zodiac by Masami Kurumada (1986-1990, 28 volumes for the normal edition, 22 volumes for the collector edition)



It's the original manga which inspired the great animated series. It is composed of three story arcs: The Sanctuary (volumes 1 to 13), Poseidon (volumes 14 to 18) and Hades (volumes 19 to 28).

The drawings are not particularily good, but Masami Kurumada is a great writer who created a fantastic universe and a wonderful story.

The Story

When the forces of evil awake, the goddess Athena returns on Earth. By her side stand her holy knights, the Saints of hope. With their fists, they tear up the sky up and the earth shakens within their foots.

Some years ago, billionaire Mitsumasa Kido send 100 orphans children to follow a training with the mission to become a Bronze Saint. Only ten of them have as far succeeded.

Pegasus Seiya. Dragon Shiryu. Andromeda Shun. Cygnus Hyoga. Phoenix Ikki. The five of them are blessed by the power of their sacred cloths and they have all swear to protect Athena with their own lives.

There are three class of Saints: Gold, Silver and Bronze. The Bronze Saints are the weaker.

When the five Bronze Saints discover that the reincarnation of Athena is none other than Saori Kido, the adoptive daughter of Mitsumasa Kido and the girl they grew to hate during their childhood because she was overly physically abusive toward them, they refuse to believe that such a mean girl could be the reincarnation of the goddess of hope.

But they still protect her against the murder attempts by the Silver Knights. The Grand Pope, master of all Saints and holy representant of Athena on Earth, turns out to be a corrupted and tormented soul who tried to murder Athena as a baby years ago and failed. Now that he has discovered where Athena was hidding during all these years, he tries to finish the job.

On her part, Athena wants to return to the Sanctuary, her rightful domain in Greece, to confront and defeat the traitor. According to the prophecy, her Bronze Saints must fight by her side to lead her to the path of victory, confronting their superiors, the Gold Saints, in the process.

But the first people to whom Saori must prove that she is truly the reincarnation of the goddess of hope are her own knights. Will Saori be able to gain their trust and their friendship ?

Saint Seiya: Next Dimension by Masami Kurumada (2006 - on-going, 3 volumes so far)


Preview pages (in french): http://www.manga-news.com/index.php/preview/381

Next Dimension is both the prequel and the sequel of the original manga. Fans of the original manga are generally enjoyed to see the original heroes back in the sequel of the Hades chapter but, unfortunately, the drawings haven't improved so much and the story is good in itself but the narration is awful. The major improvement from the original manga is the fact that Next Dimension is fully colored and it brings a lot of comfort during the reading.

The Story

The Earth is saved from Hades, but at a great cost: the Pegasus Saint has fallen. Searching for a way to resurrect her favorite knight, Saori Kido/Athena travels to Mount Olympus where she hopes to find a way to travel through time, at the holy war of the 18th century against Hades, in order to prevent the events leading to Seiya's death. Andromeda Shun stands by her side as the goddess prepares her confrontation with her fellow sister Artemis, goddess of the moon.

In the meantime (if we can say...), in the 18th century, the young Gold Saints Libra Dohko and Aries Shion are sent by the Sanctuary to investigate the signs of the imminent return of Hades. They determine that the God's vessel is going to be Alone, a gentle and shy boy, but they are prevented to exacute him by the arrival of his friend, Tenma, the Pegasus Saint of this era.

As Hades reincarnates himself through Alone, the Sanctuary prepares for a difficult battle, Tenma joigning them. The reincarnation of Athena still hasn't manifested yet, but some believe that she will come from another time, and with her the most courageous Saints of her era.

Little did they know that the god of Mount Olympus will not tolerate that Athena, guided by her human emotions, could allow herself to change the course of destiny.

Saint Seiya: The Lost Canvas by Shiori Teshirogi (2006-2011, 25 volumes)


Preview pages (in french): http://www.manga-news.com/index.php/preview/99

Lost Canvas is a spin-off of the original manga and is considered a non-canonical title, despite the fact that it's maybe the best Saint Seiya title of all.

The action takes place during the holy war of the 18th century between Athena and Hades, but the story differs drastically from Next Dimension.

The main quality of Lost Canvas is the quality of the story. The author developps a lot the personality and psychology of her characters, main and secondary, heroes and villains, and she turns her story in a war involving great warriors who often fight in the name of something and who fall for the same reason.

The fights are also wonderful: epic, spectacular, well drawn and, at a certain point in the story, strong emotionnally and very dramatic.

In the end, Lost Canvas is a great shonen title and maybe even better than the original manga (especially from volume 16).

The Story

18th century. The Earth will become the theater of the war between two deities, the goddess of hope Athena and the lord of the underworld Hades.

But for now, the orphans Tenma, a impulsive and courageous boy, and Alone, a noble and shy painter, live normal life.

Everything change the day where the mysterious Pandore comes to Alone, saying the return of her lord is imminent. A chain of event happens and the potential of Tenma is discovered by the Gold Saint Libra Dohko when his burning cosmos (his hidden force) saves his village from a flood.

As Tenma is brought to the Sanctuary in Greece to follow a Saint's training, Alone discovers a world of death and sufferings and eventually accept his fate as the reincarnation of Hades, hoping to use the power of the underworld to bring salvation to the tortured soul of the two worlds.

In the meantime, in the Sanctuary, Tenma meets his childhood friend Sasha, the daughter of Alone, who turns about to be the reincarnation of Athena.

The pawns are in place and the strong frienship of the past between Tenma, Alone and Sasha will become the theater of a tragedy during the fated reunion between the Pegasus Saint, Athena and Hades. Will their friendship be able to survive in this time of war between forces that none of them is able to control ?

Saint Seiya: Episode G by Megumu Okada (2002-2009, currently on hiatus, 17 volumes + volume 0 so far)


Episode G is a spin-off prequel of the original manga. It takes place some years before the events of the original manga and it focuses on the Gold Saints, and especially the Leo Saint, Aiolia.

A special volume called volume 0 was also published, taking place several years before Episode G, during the childhood of Aiolia. His older brother, the Sagittarius Saint Aioros, is the main character of this special story.

This is not really a good title, entertaining at most. It has some good ideas which are poorly executed, a lot of bad ideas which are even poorly executed, and some of the golden rules of the Saint Seiya universe are even broken (real monsters from mythology for example).

The art is special (that's the least I can say). Personnally I like it, but most people hate it and the real problem is... it's very difficult to read the fight sequences. They are epic, very spectacular, but most of the time it's a pain to progress the reading when we must stop to correctly read every page.

The author also focuses a lot on the personality of everyone of the 12 Gold Saints. Sometimes they are interesting (Leo Aiolia, Virgo Shakka), sometimes the prestigious Gold Saints of the original manga look like idiots (Scorpio Milo, Sagittarius Aioros).

In the end, it's not really a good title. Not that bad, but certainly not good, and hardly interesting.

The Story

When something bad happen in the world, the Sanctuary intervenes and send one of his 88 Saints to resolve every conflict.

Aiolia is one of those holy knights, but he doesn't like it that much. Trained from an early age to become the Leo Gold Saint, his life has changed the day his older brother Aioros was framed for the murder of goddess Athena and coldly executed by his fellow Gold Saints.

Now considers an outcast within the Sanctuary, everyday of Aiolia's life has become a nightmare, being hated by almost everyone and hating them in return. He is so disgusting of his blood that he tries to repudiate his own identity.

One of his only emotional support is a young girl he has adopted and raised as a younger sister in an attempt to create a new family.

Despite his responsability as a Gold Saint, Aiolia has also developped a rebellious attitude toward the Pope's authority and, as a result, the distrust of almost everyone against him is increasing day after day.

But when a serious menace, the Titans of myth, manifests, the Gold Saints must forgot their animosity and work together as a team against this new menace. As the battle progress, new relations between the Gold Saints begin to emerge.

Aiolia possesses the key to victory, but when the time will be right, will his mind be strong enough to triomph ?

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I changed the subject of the topic. It now deals with the whole Saint Seiya universe and not just Next Dimension (I'd like to talk also about the original manga and Lost Canvas in the future, but I didn't want to create one topic by title).

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It's with great regret that I learned the near end of Lost Canvas. The manga will end the April 7th and the conclusion is clearly rushed. Many plot's elements are still unresolved and many long-awaited moments last only ten seconds.

It's sad because Lost Canvas, in his last part, became a true masterpiece, and now the conclusion destroys everything the title has built. It's a shame, really !

Source (french):


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Following the end of Saint Seiya - The Lost Canvas, a new Saint Seiya manga (the fifth) has been announced.

Called Saint Seiya - The Lost Canvas Gaiden, it will be a manga focused on the 12 legendary Gold Saints (who all die in Lost Canvas, except Libra Dohko and Aries Shion of course), so a prequel to The Lost Canvas.

By the way, the conclusion of Lost Canvas isn't as bad as I feared from chapter 221 (which was a disaster). Chapter 222, even if it rushes things a little, is actually pretty good and very poetic. One last chapter to be published and Teshirogi's masterpiece is concluded (25 volumes in total).

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The Lost Canvas is now completed (2006-2011, 25 volumes, 223 chapters).

From chapter 221, Teshirogi had to conclude her story, so the last three chapters were a rushed conclusion but, despite that and the limited number of pages, the conclusion of Lost Canvas is still pretty good (even though I was a little worried when I saw chapter 221).

Now, the Lost Canvas saga will continue with Lost Canvas Gaiden, a new story about the 12 Gold Saints. Even though it would appear to be a prequel at first, there is maybe another possibility: a sequel to Lost Canvas about the rebuild of the Sanctuary and of the knighthood and the preparations to the next Holy War, leading from the end of Lost Canvas to the beginning of the Saint Seiya original manga.

Either way, Shiori Teshirogi is certainly the best writer and drawer of the Saint Seiya saga (Lost Canvas is a masterpiece), so no doubt it will also be a great shonen manga.

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Does anybody read episode G? it has got to be the lamest manga in the whole Saint seiya saga. I read some and found the artwork unbalanced(even more so than the original), and the story confusing. Also, why would aiolia dye his hair? it's not like he and his brother are really alike at all or anything...

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