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Great Japanese artist Kentaro Miura dies – Discover his legacy

Mangaká has gained worldwide fame for its extremely detailed and intense illustration style

In the early hours of the 19th, the death of Kentaro Miura was announced at the age of 54, due to an aortic dissection. The statement was made by Hakusensha, the publisher he has written for since the 1980s, but the death occurred on May 6. Still according to the group, the author’s family has already organized a more intimate funeral to say goodbye; he was not married and had no children.

Miura was born in 1966, in the city of Chiba, Japan, being the son of a couple already belonging to the world of the arts. Her parents also met at Musashino School of Arts and later her mother became a class teacher, while her father majored in advertising storyboards. At the age of ten, he made his first manga, Miuranger, only for his classmates.

The series was limited to internal school consumption and lasted forty volumes; although there is no reprint of the title or official images from any of the forty editions, this is officially considered by fans of the manga to be their first work. From her second manga, Ken e no michi released in 1977, Miura began to experiment with new forms of layout that referred to something more professional. He is constantly reminded that it was from this work that he began to use ink in illustrations.

In the height of 1985, he applied for a place in the art course at Nihon University, the largest in Japan, and for this he applied for his project titled Futatabi for evaluation. This is a one-shot (story limited to one edition and not part of a serialized format) centered on Rick, an apprentice mechanic who lives in an underground community and who one day meets a young woman. who claims to belong to another world.

The work secured not only Miura’s enrollment at the institution, but also a nomination for the Best Young Author Award by the prestigious Weekly Shonen Magazine. With the doors of the market open to him, in 1985 Noa was released, another one-shot. The plot features mixtures of sci-fi elements and post-apocalyptic backdrop where the protagonist, Noah, acts as a sort of protector for those who venture into the Gobi Desert from criminal gangs. His cybernetic body guarantees him an advantage in combat but it is only when he meets Angel that he begins to hope for the future.

The path taken by the artist was not easy and even with the bad reception of “Noa” he did not give up.

In this work, the mangaka already presented certain characteristics which would be present, years later, in his most famous work: a lone warrior; a world without hope; the gradual recovery of the aforementioned hope by the protagonist. Even so, Noa’s sales were very negative, and acceptance of the story was not positive either.

From 1988, Miura’s career will not only stabilize but reach a new level with the launch of the Berserk prototype. Showcasing a world inspired by the European medieval period and in fantastic works like The Lord of the Rings, the black swordsman known as Gatts was first introduced to the world.

It was a different story from anything he had shown so far; not only the quality of the layout presented extraordinary detail or aesthetically each of the enemies was very different from each other, but also because of the melancholy presented by the protagonist and the explicit violence that surrounded every nook and cranny and the life of those who inhabited this world.

With the masterpiece of his career, “Berserk”, Miura raised the bar in the manga industry.

The sudden success ensured the start of a series launched in 1989 by Hakusensha, with the release of the first volume. Protagonist Gatts is presented to audiences as a lone wanderer, armed with a sword so heavy few can wield it and a mechanical arm designed to shoot arrows. With an anti-social and violent temper, he has his own goals and refuses to be called a hero as much as possible.

Ultimately, Miura divided Berserk’s account into periods, or arcs, in Gatts’ own life; the first being called the Black Swordsman has an introductory character to the world and the characters, this is where Gatts is always in his most raw and individualistic form as well as this is where some antagonists (like the five members of the Hand of God) are introduced, since one of them gives way to the introduction of the following arc.

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The second, The Golden Age, goes back to the past when the protagonist at a very young age finds happiness and company with a group of mercenaries called Bando do Falcão, these being led by the charismatic Griffith (the centerpiece of the story and a scar forever.) open in the life of the protagonist). It is the most suitable arc for the anime and the most appreciated.

Miura constantly uses Griffith to remind Gatts how hurt he has been in the past

This is then followed by three more arcs (Conviction, Millennium Falcon, and Fantasy) each inserting a new brick into Gatts’ personality, who gradually relearns to trust others. With 363 chapters published to date, and the story is still open, Berserk is one of the most important pieces in the manga industry; its protagonist is constantly an example of a complex character, formed by several traumas and agonies; the decor is worked as an extension of the psychology of these characters, always hostile but also very varied.

While still responsible for Gatts’ adventures, the mangaka will release other unique titles over the years, such as Japan and Gigantomachia. What Miura achieved with this work was cultural immortality, showing the world that her visual and writing talent was immeasurable. His loss comes as a shock to the fans, the industry and anyone who loves great stories.

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