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28th May 2010

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Kouga Amagi (ZETMAN)

Kouga Amagi on the cover of ZETMAN Volume 5.

What is justice? How do we justify what is right and what is wrong? One character, Kouga Amagi, from the series "ZETMAN", is someone who’s trying to figure that out and enforcing his perception of justice onto the world. Kouga is one of the 2 main protagonists of the series. He represents a young man whose idea of justice is shaped from what he watched on television when he was a child.

Kouga is part of a rich family and is the next heir to the Amagi Corporation. However, he wants no part of it and wants to be a superhero. Kouga watched an anime sentai show called “Alphasz” and decided to pursue being a real hero. His ideals of justice were developed from the show as well. A chance encounter with the other main protagonist of the story, Jin Kanzaki, left him even more wanting to be more heroic. Kouga later gets kidnapped and placed in a tortuous game by a bitter ex-researcher of the Amagi Corp. to test his idealism. As a result, Kouga became mentally scarred and questioning whether true justice really exists or not. He eventually becomes a superhero despite all the trauma, but at times, he’s shown that the scars from that incident still remain.

Kouga shows how determined he is to deliver his brand of justice.

Does justice really mean protecting everyone? It’s pretty damn difficult to protect everyone around you. Television really does wonders for people. It can heavily alter the behavioral & cognitive processes of children at a very young age. TV has the power to draw people away from reality and into a virtual world where things are great and pleasant. It allows them to become something they want to be.

A real-life example of TV affecting others is professional wrestling. As you know, kids watch a lot of wrestling and began to copy their moves & mannerisms. When WWE was popular with the Attitude Era (1997-2001), a lot of person were engrossed into it. It was MUST-SEE TV and gave the vibe that it was cool to be an wrestler & act like them. Unfortunately, children became too into it and start hurting each other. It was evident in one case where one kid killed his little sister with a wrestling move several years ago.

Koga as Alphaz, the superhero who fights Players.

People turn to TV because they are lonely and/or have been rejected by others. Kouga is a loner because the only people he talks to directly is his girlfriend, sister, and the research team that made his superhero costume. His thoughts of being a superhero were rejected by his father and most of the company. Watching superhero anime was his way out of despair. You can say that TV has made him really bratty, since Kouga has complained about his costume not having a cape & forehead emblem like superheroes have. At the same time, Kouga has shown signs of maturity and is beginning to accept the harshness that is real life.

We all have been influenced by television at one point in time while we were kids. I’m sure we all had dreams of being a superhero or a larger-than-life icon from watching a variety of programming. Reality does hurt, but we all have to confront it. Using TV as a way to cope with our feelings of loneliness isn’t the best solution because we will begin to grow incapable of living in normal society. You can also say the same thing with the Internet.

The virtual world & the real world getting closer to each other by the minute. Will people be able to tell the difference when the time comes?


Tagged: Kouga AmagiWeekly Young Jumppsychology of televisionmanga psychologyZETMANpsychology of superheroespsychology of justiceMasakazu Katsuraseinen manga

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