Masashi Tanaka's Gon will finally make its TV debut in Japan on April 2. Having been in the pipeline from Japan's Kodansha and Korea's Daewon Media since as early as 2010, the series is planned to last 50 episodes.
Based on Tanaka's seven-volume manga series which ran in Japan in the early '90s (having since been collected by Paradox Press and DC's defunct CMX imprint, with current volumes from Kodansha) Gon is a silent comic that follows a little dino creature on his adventures in the wild. Tanaka's often realistic, lush linework contrasts with Gon's cartoony actions as he hangs out with cute animals and inadvertently wreaks havoc on traditionally mighty predators with his dragon-like super strength and durability. These traits were put to good use in Tekken 3, where Gon was an unlockable fighter, complete with farting moves.
New Gon manga is in the works as well, with classic Gon material slated to debut in Afternoon Manga Magazine, with TV-series style manga to run in Otomodachi Gold and TV Magazine. There's currently no word on when or if the material will be translated for English-reading fans.
Looking at the preview image, I was a initially weirded out by Gon's smile. It felt like there was kind of an Ice Age vibe about some of the prehistoric animals in tow as well. If Gon and company had actually been making the DreamWorks Face, the headline to this post may very well have dealt with themes of loss, nihilism and despair. Footage from 2010 looks super faithful to the original manga, however, so things are looking up as long as Daewon Media and Kodansha can find a way to bring the series to America...
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