Blue Dragon RalΩGrad (BLUE DRAGON ラルΩグラド Burū Doragon RaruΩGurado) is a Japanese manga by Tsuneo Takano and Takeshi Obata, the latter of which is the artist known for Death Note and Hikaru no Go. The series is loosely based on the actual Blue Dragon video game. Chapters of the manga, referred to as "tales", ran weekly in Japan's Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine beginning in December 2006. The series ended after 29 chapters. The plot of Ral Grad revolves around the journey of a young man named Ral from the kingdom of Sphaelite (スフエライト Suferaito). Ral has a symbiotic relationship with Grad, the shadow of a giant blue dragon.
Viz Media will issue the English version under the title Ral Grad beginning in February 2008. In Germany, Tokyopop will begin publication in October 2007 under the title Blue Dragon RalΩGrad, a spelling mandated by the licensing contract with Shueisha.
In a world where demonic creatures named shadows enter our realm through their very namesakes, little is safe. However, when a young boy by the name of Ral becomes friends with the shadow inside him, he may be the last hope in saving the world. Ral lives on the island of Sphaein, in the kingdom of Sphaelite. There he has been enlisted to protect the kingdom from evil shadows that wish to destroy it. With the aid of his shadow, a large blue dragon named Grad, and his teacher, Mio, Ral can take on any challenger.
- Ral (ラル Raru): The 15-year-old main protagonist who shares a symbiotic relationship with a shadow beast named Grad. His mother died shortly after his birth. Upon his discovery, still an infant child, he began screaming at his saviors in very well constructed phrases. From there a large shadow demon in the shape of a blue dragon emerged from his body. The shadow destroyed his village and burned all the mountains in sight. Lord Roy his father sealed Ral in a prison of complete darkness for 15 years. During this time he became friends with the shadow named Grad and his educator, Mio. His imprisonment was ended abruptly when the kingdom was attacked by a large number of shadow demons. Lord Roy gave the order to free Ral after Mio stated he had control over his shadow. It takes Ral about three seconds to summon Grad. Ral, like Grad, can breathe fire, form wings and claws that look identical to Grad's and use his dragon mane as a weapon. Ral is a great strategist who loves women and will do anything for them. His main goal is to protect all the beautiful women of the world. Ral also has a fondness for breasts, constantly trying to fondle them. Upon meeting Kafka he introduces himself as "Ral the Breast Groper". This sudden announcement of his favorite habit gets him labeled as immoral, though he truly isn't. Despite his immoral habit, he has a pure heart where he sees the reason men fight shadows "to protect their beloved women", and loves the vibrant beauty of the world.
- Grado (グラド Gurado): The Délire Monstre; Grad is the Blue Dragon Shadow revered and feared for its Flamme Bleue. Knowing nothing of the human world, Grad entered Ral's shadow when he was still a baby, hearing how human young made such great hosts. This was in preparation for his quests to kill the Queen of Darkness, Bira, for trespassing onto the human realm and subjugating his fellow Shadow to her desires only and ruining his home, Le Noir. And thanks to Ral, Grad is able to survive in the human's world of light and fight the Shadows in the human world. However, once Le Noir was restored, Grad returned to his home along with Ral due to unique circumstances.
- Mio (ミォ Mio): Ral's sexy and well-educated teacher of Sphaelite. She was the one who originally convinced Ral to fight the shadows and continues to make him focus on his goal. One motivational tactic she uses to get him to do the job initially was to offer Ral her breasts to grope.
- Aia (アイア Aia): A host to a shadow of the first form. Seems she repeats everything twice. She was also sealed away like Ral and is thirteen years old. Ral accepts her immediately without seeing her shadow's powers because she looks so cute.
- Quru Quru (クルクル Kuru Kuru): Aia's chameleon-like shadow partner. He can stretch his shadow up to sixty "machirs" and doesn't make a sound when he walks. Aia also claims he likes it when she pulls his tongue.
- Kafka (カフカ Kafuka): Kafka the flower binder, (also known as Kafka la Chaîne Lord (シェンネロド Shennerodo)), is a very chivalrous knight of Stora Castle. To defend the honor of his beloved Queen, Kafka even went so far as to duel Ral (from groping her) when she announced them both to duel, where the winner can do to her chest as he pleases. Later Ral convinces him to accompany his trope.
- Riz (リズ Rizu): Kafka's Chaîne Lord partner Shadow who possesses amazing defensive capabilities, able to use its thorny roots to strangle its enemies. Riz eventually grew stronger after absorbing Buffle, the Water Beast.
- Sunsu: A boy who joins Ral and wants revenge on Ganette. Greatly admires Kafka and got a shadow just to join Ral's group.
- Gensui: Sunsu's shadow a tiny bug like creature that can skip over water and allows Sunsu to breath underwater for long periods of time as long as it stays above the surface. It got larger by eating shadows killed by Ganette, because Ral told him to become stronger it gained poisonous fangs from the cobra that attacked Ral along with other powers.
- Ganette: A skilled yet easygoing swordsman. His two traveling companions are young women, named Leela and Senole, equipped with shadows of their own; Blatz a bat and Meesh a cat. And he also seems to speak Spanish from time to time, as when he kills a shadow "Adios" and "tardes". And seems to be able to kill shadows with just his strength alone.
- Gaira: Ganette's white-tiger shadow and one of the 5 that can exist in the friends' form. It took Ganette as its host because he was the strongest swordsman, and Gaira wanted his help to defeat Bira and return to Nior. Gaira planned to eat Ganette and switch hosts if he ever became weak.
- Yaya: A young emotionless girl under Lady Bira's control, who was given the pheonix shadow at a young age, in order to have her "ripen" for Lady Bira's use, and now is used to guard the female prisoners. It turns out that she isn't emotionless on her own accord, which is Cory's doing as she reverts back into her true nature (a scared girl) when Cory is incapacitated or decapitated and has to relinquish emotional control of Yaya to reform himself.
- Cory: Yaya's phoenix shadow and one of the 5 that can exist in the friends form. Cory is a huge phoenix who was placed in Yaya by Lady Bria. known as the immortal one Cory cannot die even while in the world of light and is powerful enough to hold back Grad (dragon) and Gaira (tiger) using its healing bood as well powerful wings. But it admitted defeat when it saw the true human heart shown by Ral in the battle of each other.
- Lady Bira (ビラ様 Bira-sama): The queen of darkness also known as Queen Opsquria (オプスキュリア Opusukyuria), who rules the shadows from the castle Jugil, inside the kingdom of Kabil. Only the queen can give birth to new shadows. Bira and her lust for beauty are the reason why the shadows entered the human world. She collects and possesses beautiful girls, sucking their soul orbs from them and turning them into cripples and invalids. The shadows in her court wish for everything from her hair to her saliva in order to become stronger. As soon as she is satisfied with how much beauty she has gained and produced a successor with her favorite male shadow she plans on annihilating all human beings. She is one of the 5 prime shadows, along with Cory, Grad and Gaira, that is, the Clear Human. Her most terrifying ability is to instantly disintegrate a shadow merely by glancing at it a technique called the eye of sorrow, but had no effect on Grad, which had fused with Ral, which proceeded to blast her back to oblivion with the powerful Flamme Bleue.
Other Hosts and ShadowsEdit
- Malero (マレロ Marero): A host to a shadow of the first form. Like Ral, Malero was sealed away. After seeing a demonstration of his strength, Ral asks Malero to stay behind and protect the castle in his stead.
- Golbago (ゴルバゴ Gorubago): Malero's shadow partner. He claims he will do anything to see Opsquria killed so that he can return to Noir, the world of the shadows.
- Lord Roy (ロイ Roi): A knight and lord who is Ral's father. Roy imprisoned Ral in complete darkness to seal the shadow that slept within the boy. Lord Roy also gave the order that set Ral free. Ral attacked and killed him immediately after as Ral and Grad had decided to do upon being released.
Demon-like creatures born in the world of darkness. They have no dimensions and no complete form. The Humans believe them to be evil beings God sent away into the darkness. Eventually, these shadows came into the human world from the world of light. They enter through the shadows of creatures and take shape. They can gain extra abilities by eating other creatures or by first entering the creature's shadow and then eat them from within. There are three forms that shadows can take in the world of light. A shadow can return to the world of darkness when Noir is revived unless they are in the Second form or Third form in which they cannot return to the world of darkness.
- Parasitic Form - Also known as the First Form. This form is made when a creature allows a shadow to take shape in its shadow. In this form, the shadow is like a symbiotic parasite, only coming out when the host gives it permission. When a shadow takes shape, it must store its energy into the host. There is a time limitation on the shadow's power.
- Corrosive Form - The Second Form takes place after a shadow has eaten the creature from the inside out. In this form, the shadow makes the spirit and flesh of the creature its own. The shadow is free to take two separate shapes in this form, either the creature's normal shape or its shadow shape. It has no time limitation or dependence on the creature's shadow.
- Augmentative Form - The Third Form, which is the most powerful form. In the Augmentative form, the shadow can eat other creatures and turn the power of the creatures into its own power. The shadow can then take a shape of any creature it has eaten as well as mix shapes. How far the shadow can evolve is limited by its size and power. If the limit is exceeded, then incompatibility might occur and death is imminent.
- Blend Form - A special fusion form for the 5 animals, similar to the parasitic form in its symbiotic nature. The host creature receives the flesh and blood of the shadow itself. The host can then use the abilities of the shadow. The five shadows that have this form is the Blue Dragon (Ral), White Tiger (Ganette), Red Phoenix (Yaya), Black Rhino, and the Clear Human (Lady Bira).
- ↑ http://www.simonsays.com/content/book.cfm?tab=31&pid=592325 Simon and Schuster listing