Phoenix Ikki

Infobox animanga character
name = Phoenix Ikki
series = Saint Seiya


caption = Phoenix Ikki by Masami Kurumada
first = manga: chapter 4, vol.1 (shadowed)
manga: chapter 9, vol.3 (fully)
Anime: ep.6
creator = Masami Kurumada
voiced by = Hideyuki Hori TV
Noriko Uemura (child)
Katsuyuki Konishi OVA
Machiko Toyoshima (child)
age = 15cite book |title= Saint Seiya, Volume 13|year=2006|last= Kurumada |first= Masami |publisher= Viz Media |page=180|isbn= 1-4215-0236-4 ]
gender = Male
born = August 15
nationality = Japan
class = Athena Phoenix Bronze Saint
paux4 = Death Queen Island
paux4 name = Training
nihongo|Phoenix Ikki|鳳凰星座の一輝|Fenikkusu no Ikki|"Ikki" meaning "gleam" is a character from the manga "Saint Seiya", authored by Japanese mangaka Masami Kurumada, and later adapted to anime. Although he was introduced later than the other four main Bronze Saints, Ikki's role in the story is quite significant -- he serves as the first antagonist in the series that the other Saints must defeat, as well as a powerful ally later in the series.

Creation and conception

Character Outline

The Phoenix Saint

While Ikki is officially recognized as a Bronze Saint, his base power easily places him well above most Silver Saints, and his reputation as a powerhouse is common knowledge among his peers and fellow Bronze Saints. Even as a child, Ikki was known as the toughest kid of the 100 orphans, and would often defend his delicate younger brother Shun from the other children. He could easily be recognized as the strongest Bronze Saint when it comes to raw power.

Ikki's personality is drastically different from his fellow Saints. He is almost the opposite of his younger brother -- Shun is calm, soft, caring and very emotional, whereas Ikki is harsh, cold, aggressive, and very much of a loner. Fellow Saint Wolf Nachi once pointed out that it was very hard to believe Ikki and Shun were related due to the extreme difference in their personalities.

As noted by Kanon in the Poseidon arc and by Pandora in the Hades chapter, Ikki's Cosmo is unique to him -- it is full of hatred, anger, incredible aggression and power, but it was still guided by his deep love and loyalty for his younger brother, his friends and loyalty to Athena. Although he dislikes teamwork, he comes to battle whenever Athena's Saints need his help, and is often seen coming in the nick of time to save his younger brother and friends from certain death. This tactic has always been exploited to their advantage, since the enemies are caught by surprise upon meeting/fighting him. He is a noble, complex and mature character, who does not doubt whenever it's necessary to sacrifice his life for his friends.

Power and abilities

Ikki is hinted many times to be the most powerful Bronze Saint as he often pitted against the strongest enemies. Like the myth of the Phoenix, his power increases every time he is killed and resurrected. In his battle with Virgo Shaka, Ikki was able to awaken his 7th sense, which placed him in the ranks of Gold Saints in terms of power and skill. He also awakened the 8th sense. As a Saint, Ikki uses two techniques to dispose of his enemies; one deals physical damage, and the other destroys the mind of his foe.

His physical attack is nihongo|Phoenix's Wings Rise|鳳翼天翔|Hōyokutenshō, which gathers forces of wind and heat into a concentrated point, then unleashed as a single blow. This attack covers a wide range of distance and it is Ikki's signature move. It may also be used on multiple enemies at the same time. In the manga, the attack is performed strictly with his palms only; in the anime, it is revised to include his fists, although the Phoenix Saint has utilized the original manga form of the technique on several occasions.

His other attack is nihongo|Phoenix Illusion Demonic Fist|鳳凰幻魔拳|Hōōgenmaken, which is infamous for destroying the minds of its victims -- the technique is dealt from either a single fist or a finger. Concentrating his Cosmo into his fist to literally destroy his opponent's mind. Once used, it sends various nightmare illusions directly created by the opponent's brain; he or she is trapped within an illusion that is almost indistinguishable from reality. It also considerably weakens ones's control of the Cosmo and depth of perception to reality. Ikki's Phoenix Illusion Demonic Fist usually spells doom for the one in the receiving end -- unless he has an unusually powerful mind or Cosmo, such as a Gold Saint.

In addition to weakening and trapping an enemy in a powerful illusion (followed by instant death) this attack also serves to dwelve deep into an enemy's mind - as was the case when this attack was used on Gemini Kanon during his reign in the Poseidon story arc and many other characters in the anime-only Asgard chapter. In some battles, Ikki first uses the Phoenix Illusion Demon Fist to paralyze his rival, and then deals the Phoenix's Wings Rise to finish him off.

Constellation and the immortal Phoenix Cloth

The Phoenix Cloth represents the constellation of Phoenix, which is associated to the immortal bird that is reborn from its ashes, found in folkore and mythologies of diverse cultures.

Ikki is connected to his Cloth and constellation in more ways than one. The Phoenix Cloth has the uncanny ability to reform from atoms if pulverized -- an ability that not even Gold Cloths have. Ikki himself can never truly die for good; while he can be killed, the constellation of the Phoenix grants him the power of resurrection. It is implied in the series that Ikki also receives a boost in strength from every revival as sometimes the Cloth evolves.

Unlike every other Cloths that require a massive amount of blood to repair, the Phoenix Cloth can regenerate as many times as it is destroyed without the need of outside aid. But just as the other Bronze Cloths had, the Phoenix Cloth, too, would come to evolve its design with each regeneration. The Phoenix has changed form twice in the anime so far.

Changes:

*Manga 1st change: When Shaka reforms it from dust after bringing Ikki back from an alternative plane of existence.

*Anime 1st change: After the battle of the twelve temples, his Phoenix Cloth took a new form empowered by the blood of Virgo Shaka.

*2nd change in both: When Ikki reappears in Hell to battle Garuda Aiacos during the Hades arc.

*Manga 3rd change: When Ikki accidentally touched Athena's blood in the Elysion Fields, and along with Ikki's already heightened Cosmo, prompted the cloth to evolve into the Phoenix God Cloth. This change is expected to occur in the anime as well.

The Gold Cloth of Leo

Being born under the sign of Leo, Ikki is allowed a fraction of power from that constellation. As a result, when the Bronze Saints are faced with a threat that requires the aid of a Gold Cloth, Ikki is given the gift of donning the Leo Gold Cloth. This is seen when the Gold Cloth assembled itself on him during the fight with Thanatos, the god of Death.

Plot overview

In order to take revenge, Ikki steals the Sagittarius Gold Cloth from the Graude Foundation and challenges the other Bronze Saints to fight him. After a long struggle, the Phoenix is eventually defeated by Pegasus Seiya, Andromeda Shun, Cygnus Hyoga, and Dragon Shiryu. In true form, Ikki soon resurrects from death and began to assist the Bronze Saints in darting threats from Sanctuary. He later joins Athena in the battle against the Gold Saints in the effort to retake Sanctuary from Pope Ares.

In the Poseidon arc, Ikki aids the bronze saints by defeating Lyumnades Caza and immediately battling Sea Dragon Kanon afterwards. Although he was unable to beat Kanon, Ikki was crucial in extracting valuable information from the Marina General that led to Athena's victory against Poseidon.

Ikki does not appear in the Hades chapter until the Saints are well in their way in the Underworld. He managed to defeat Garuda Aiacos and then confronted Hades himself, of whom had gained possession of his younger brother's body. Ikki unsuccessfully attempted to rip the Greek deity out of Shun's body, and was punished for it with death. Of course, not even the God of the Underworld was able to keep him down, and Ikki eventually traveled to Elysion where he participated with the other Bronze Saints in the battle against Thanatos, Hypnos, and then Hades.

Other media

Ikki appears in all of the Saint Seiya movies, always helping Andromeda Shun and using the same methods to defeat his opponents. In the Heaven Arc Prologue, Ikki would not be able to defeat the Angel of Artemis until he fought with his younger brother and performed a combination of techniques to kill him. Later, he is seen with Shun going towards to the place where Pegasus Seiya is fighting against Apollo. He would also appear in an image of Leo Aiolia in the sidestory Saint Seiya Episode G with the other Bronze Saints. Leo Aiolia and Scorpio Milo had in mind that those Bronze Saints will be the next generation and that they will be stronger than the Gold Saints.

Notes

*The Phoenix Cloth is originally completely orange in the manga, but it is multicolored in the anime.

*As is common practice in the anime media, characters with black hair in the original manga receive dark blue hair in the anime adaptation to avoid palette problems with the character's head outline, as confusion with the backgrounds could occur. Ikki is one more of many manga characters that have received this treatment in the anime adaptation.

*In the anime Phoenix Illusion Demon Punch has the same name with the difference that the word Phoenix it is mentioned in romaji instead of kanji occasionally, but also the original name of the manga was used. (Also, this technique refers to a female phoenix as phoenix is written with another "ō").

References


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