Babel II


Babel II (read Babel the Second) is a relatively early manga series by Mitsuteru Yokoyama (who also did Gigantor and Sally, The Witch) that was later adapted into an anime series. In it, a Japanese schoolboy discovers that he is the heir to supernatural powers from outer space. He uses these powers to attack an organization akin to the group of mutants headed by Magneto in Marvel Comics.

But also he has three "protectors"/"servants" akin to the kaiju or giant monsters of Japanese film. One is Rodem, a shape-shifting black panther, and another is Ropross, a Pteradactyl-like flying creature. The third, named Poseidon, is a giant robot that always rises from the depth of the ocean when summoned. The boy hero commands these creatures to inflict mayhem on the machines of his enemy at their bases.

The distinction between Japanese and American super-powered beings is discernable from this story. American superheroes have carefully explained and prescribed powers, though in some people's minds, they be extended to the absurd. The super-powered beings in this series have a set of basic powers which they are all expected to possess and certain ways in which they are accustomed to manifest these, such as leaping to stand atop lampposts. For variety, a few have specialities, but there is no explanation nor matching up one set of powers against another.

Video game developer Yu Suzuki of Sega says Babel II was his main inspiration in the creation of the arcade game Psy-Phi

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