Tokyo: The Last War (1989)

Teito Monogatari (The Tale of the Imperial Capital) was the first novel to popularize onmyōdō — a system of natural science, astronomy, almanac, divination and magic that developed independently in Japan based on the Chinese philosophies of yin, yang and the five elements — and fūsui mythology – Japanese feng shi of the energy flow and exchange both within and external to our bodies — in modern Japanese fiction. It’s also written by natural history researcher and polymath Hiroshi Aramata and re-imagines the 20th century of Tokyo as influenced by the occult. It also has ties to mythology and the story of Taira no Masakado, a 10th-century samurai warlord who has since become something of a demigod thanks to his stand against the central government. However, his malevolent spirit must constantly be looked after and as such, the cities of Edo and Tokyo have felt a debt to keep him happy even a thousand years after his death. His shrine remains well-maintained, even as occupies some of the most expensive land in the world and faces Tokyo’s Imperial Palace.

A sequel to Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis, this is an adaptation of the eleventh book (Great War in the Capital) in the series. In its center, we discoer Yasunori Katō, a mysterious former lieutenant of the Imperial Japanese Army, killed twenty years ago but just like Taira no Masakado he’s become a vengeful oni. Yet he is devoted to the destruction of Tokyo*.

There’s also an anime adaption called Doomed Megalopolis.

In 1945, American forces are unleashing bombs over Japan and to stop this, the Buddhist shaman Kan’nami Kouou has been given the mission of cursing the Allied leaders through magic, but that’s when the innocents killed in the war combine their souls and reincarnate Yasunori Kato, who wants the war to continue and Tokyo to finally be destroyed, and must battle the psychic Yuko Nakamura, who is empowered by the love of a nurse, Yukiko Tatsumiya, who was abused in her youth by Kato.

Obviously, a multi-book epic that draws on centuries of Japanese history is not going to be an easy watch for American audiences. That may be why the second adaption of these stories stays away from the more occult-based magic and sticks to ESP and psychic powers.

And yes, M. Bison from Street Fighter was based on Yasunori Kato, as well as Eagle Cape from Riki-Oh

*The movie is different than the book, where Kato is still alive and never destroyed. The target of his spiritual assassination is not Hitler, but Franklin Roosevelt, who is cursed with polio which allows Truman to become President and drop the bomb on Tokyo.

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