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Ushio and Tora

Ushio and Tora (うしおととら, Ushio to Tora) is a youkai manga by Kazuhiro Fujita. It received the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōnen in 1992. It was adapted into three OVA series: one with six episodes released from September 11, 1992 to February 1, 1993; one with four episodes released from June 11, 1993 to August 1, 1993; and one single episode OVA released on October 1, 1993. The anime was released in the United States by ADV Films.
http://img188.imageshack.us/img188/7116/ushiototora3resurrectio.jpg

Ushio and Tora centers around the travails and battles of Ushio Aotsuki (蒼月潮 , Aotsuki Ushio), who is constantly being stalked and aided by a gigantic, supernatural and sometimes invisible tiger-like monster.

Ushio's family maintains a temple in Japan, where 500 years ago, his samurai ancestor battled that same monster to a standstill, and eventually trapped him against a rock using a cursed spear called the "Beast Spear", which grants strength, speed, and endurance to the wielder in exchange to his soul. Ushio accidentally unsealed the cave Tora was trapped in.

Ushio and Tora 1

Initially, Ushio refuses to remove the spear pinning Tora (とら, Japanese for tiger) down (as Tora made the strategic blunder of mentioning that the first thing he would do upon being freed would be to devour Ushio), but Tora's unsealed presence attracts various monsters to the temple. Ushio is forced to free Tora, who would like to eat Ushio, but dares not since Ushio keeps the spear close by. The series focuses on their relationship, interspersed with battles against mythological foes, and with Tora's attempts to grapple with modern life.
http://i17.mangareader.net/ushio-and-tora/17/ushio-and-tora-999989.jpg

The story also includes Ushio's relationships with two girls: the tomboyish Asako Nakamura (中村 麻子 , Nakamura Asako) and the feminine Mayuko Inoue (井上 真由子, Inoue Mayuko).
Episodic in nature, most of the manga is a series of fights with different youkai or other creatures from Japanese myths. But at thirty-three volumes, the story continues far past the events of the anime, and leads to an epic conclusion.
http://www.zerochan.net/src/zerochan.Ushio.and.Tora.77436.jpg

Major Arcs in the Storyline: i) The Beginnings ii) Journey to Asahikawa iii) Crisis at Kouhamei Sect Monastery iv) The Kansai Yokai Army v) Artificial Monster Technology vi) Brainwash vii) The Final Battles

By AS on Feb 5, 2011
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