Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Trigun (トライガン) is a 26-episode Anime series which originally aired in 1998 in Japan. Based on a manga by Yasuhiro Nightow, it is the story of Vash the Stampede, a.k.a. The Humanoid Typhoon, and the two Bernardelli Insurance Society employees, Meryl Stryfe and Milly Thompson, who were ordered to follow him and minimize the damage that seems to follow Vash everywhere he goes.
Much of the damage attributed to "Vash" is caused by the activities of the bounty hunters who are after the $$60,000,000,000 ($$ = double dollar) reward on Vash's head for the destruction of a city called July (which, amazingly, resulted in no direct loss of life to the city's inhabitants). Vash does not clearly remember the destruction of July, and only wants "love and peace," as he puts it; though he is a gunfighter of near god-like skill, he uses his weapons only to save lives wherever he can (even the lives of those who try to kill him).
As the series progresses, more is gradually learned about Vash's mysterious history and the history of human civilization on Gunsmoke, the alien desert planet the series is set on. The series is often humorous in tone, but at the same time it involves very serious character development and especially in later episodes it becomes quite emotionally intense. Vash is occasionally joined by the preacher Nicholas D. Wolfwood, who is almost as good a gunfighter as Vash himself, and later is targeted by a band of assassins known as the Gung-Ho Guns for reasons which are mysterious at first.
Trigun evolves into a very serious discussion of the nature of morality, posing questions such as: What is the nature of morality? Can we judge different moral codes? If a person is forced to betray their moral code, does that betrayal invalidate that moral code, and can the person still try to live up to that moral code? Can the person find redemption from their wrongs, and if so, how?
Trigun was created by the animation studio Studio Madhouse and is licensed in the United States by Pioneer USA. In 2003, Trigun began broadcast as part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim programming block.
The original manga and television storylines deviate noticeably with the arrival of the Gung Ho guns, and the TV series 'invented' an ending which expectedly some fans consider too 'rushed'.
Vash the Stampede (The Humanoid Typhoon)
The main character. He was initially discovered by Meryl and Milly imprisoned by some bandits who wanted to collect on the $$60 billion. He escapes, and Milly and Meryl eventually learn that this is the person they are supposed to track. Vash presents an interesting "hero" for this kind of story, a crybaby and a pacifist, and occasionally an apparent buffoon. He is in fact extremely intelligent, and an unrivalled gunman who seeks to preserve life where ever possible. It is possible he exaggerates his foolish characteristics to make people feel unthreatened and to hide his identity. He lost his left arm in an incident involving Knives, and, as a result, possesses a prosthetic arm that transforms into a gun. Vash is in fact not a human, but a human-like "plant", a source of power and energy on the planet; as a Plant, he can, with his gun (a .45 Long Colt revolver), turn his right arm into an amazingly destructive weapon called an "Angel Arm," originating from technology which Knives created. His supposed age is 131. He is superhumanly agile, demonstrating the ability to dodge bullets on several occasions. The inscription on his gun reads; "EF Auto Ejecting Double Action".
Vash the Stampede makes a cameo appearance in Wild ARMs 2nd Ignition .
She and her junior co-worker Milly were sent by the Bernardelli Insurance Society to evaluate claims regarding Vash the Stampede. Despite her serious attitude and short temper, she is a good person. Initially, she didn't know who he was and found Vash to be a nuisance. As time passes, she recognizes that Vash isn't the villain that he is made out to be. Although she doesn't often fight alongside Vash, she hides many derringer style "throwaway" pistols under her coat. Gradually, she comes to respect and love Vash. It is hinted that Meryl has problems involving her family and that she is in her 20s.
Friend and assistant of Meryl, she also works for the Bernardelli Insurance Society. Despite physically towering over Meryl, Milly looks up to her and always refers to her as "sempai" (a term of respect for a senior). Although physically very strong, she appears rather simple and ditzy, but has an extremely kind heart and also reveals a strength of character and genuine optimism. She can seem somewhat dim, but she has some amazing skills (chess playing, for one) which hint at a deeply buried intelligence. She does, however, have a tendency to go a bit overboard when drinking. She seemed to pick up on the fact that Vash was the wandering gunman before Meryl, but she didn't realize that she was right. Milly comes from a very large family, and writes letters to them constantly, usually every night, causing her to run late. She is also very fond of pudding. Somehow under her coat Milly manages to hide a very heavy concussion gun (referred to as a "stun-gun", although it can knock over trucks) that shoots bullets that pop out in a X shaped claw. As the story progesses, Milly begins to form a relationship with Nicholas Wolfwood.
Kuroneko-sama (Japanese for "black cat lord/lady") is, as her name suggests, a black cat. (Yasuhiro Nightow has said that the cat is female, and he would know: Kuroneko-sama was one of the first characters he created for the manga.) Her formal name is Kuroneko Kukan, or Black Cat Space. She appears in every episode (with the exception of episode 17: Rem Saverem) at least once, usually as a running joke of popping her oval-shaped, green-eyed head on screen at some opportune moment and usually uttering a simple "nyaa." (Some of her appearances are truly laugh-out-loud funny: in the episode "Fifth Moon," when Vash is clearing out the city of Augusta, he fires into the air and is quite surprised when the cat lands on his head with a "nyaa," then jumps off.) Kuroneko-sama may have some connection with Vash, but that, like her appearances, is a mystery.
Kuroneko-sama makes a cameo appearance in Wild ARMs 2nd Ignition .
Nicholas D. Wolfwood
A preacher and an excellent gunman, who in the original Japanese version speaks Osaka dialect. Nicholas and Vash meet in the desert when Vash's bus runs across Nicholas' motorcycle. He proves to be a valuable ally, but sometimes Vash and Wolfwood's philosophies conflict. In the end, he comes over to Vash's way of thinking, even though he was associated with Knives the whole time. Nicholas's purpose was to raise money for children he was taking care of at a church. He lived with his uncle when he was younger and shot his uncle because he was a violent alcoholic. Afterwards he was somewhat adopted and trained to fight and shoot by Chapel. Many other facts about Wolfwood are unknown. The giant cross that he carries, the Cross Punisher, holds 10 pistols (right and left arms of cross), is a giant machinegun (long part of the cross) and finally, a rocket launcher. He was inducted into the Gung-Ho Guns for his service to Knives. His cross-weapon plays an integral role in the final fight scene between Vash and Knives when Vash picks it up and uses it after losing all other weapons.
Rem was one of the original crew members who intended to repopulate the planet Gunsmoke for the perpetuation of the human race. She was both a mentor and a mother figure to Vash and Knives when they were children. Her teachings of love and peace, especially that no one has the right to take a life, have a profound influence on Vash. She taught him that each life is important and can not be given a value lesser or greater than any other life. She dies along with the crew and most of the human ships when Knives sabotages their course, causing all but a few human ships to burn up in the planet's atmosphere. Vash has always loved Rem; this love is probably an important source of courage for his actions. He pays homage to her by wearing a red coat based on the red geranium, her favorite flower. As adults, Knives blames her for his brother's softness; Vash blames Knives for the death of Rem. Often Rem is the guiding force for Vash whenever he must face difficult sitations; he often speaks to her indirectly both in dreams and during waking daydream-like sequences.
Vash's twin brother, who believes that humanity is a plague that must be exterminated because their survival means the destruction of the plants. He first tried to convince Vash to join his quest, but eventually the two became bitter rivals. Like his brother, Knives also has an Angel Arm; unlike his brother, he uses it to summon up an array of knives. Knives has an obsessive personality, vowing especially to wipe out the human race. He believes that humans are impure and inferior beings that don't care about the way things are, and act only to better themselves. However, this arrogant reproach to other living things is very much the way that Knives thinks. Vash feels he will never be able to live freely without facing Knives.
He loves death, and devotes his life to making Vash the Stampede experience eternal pain and suffering. He is the extremely telepathic leader of the Gung Ho Guns. His strong resonance with Vash as well as his psychic powers actually stem from the fact that Vash's left arm is grafted onto him; its plant properties give him powers not inherently human. He can force his victims to do anything he wishes through powerful telepathy. In the manga he is crushed by Knives for trying to kill Vash, and for the rest of the Manga has his body restricted to a coffin-like container, using his telepathy when he would normally need hands. His coffin is transported by a mysterious character whom little is revealed about. In the anime Legato is not contained at all, he appears to have a sweet tooth but is even more of a glutton in the Manga.
The Gung-Ho Guns
The Gung-Ho Guns are a group of 12 people assembled by Knives to cause great pain to Vash the Stampede. Each one is human, but has sacrificed their humanity in order to gain power, often leaving them mutilated.
Monev The Gale
The third of the Gung-Ho Guns. However, the first Gung-Ho Gun to attack Vash; he trained for twenty years before the fight. He carries two high-powered chain guns on his arms. These guns fire extremely fast due to the pressure chambers located on his back. He can also combine the chain guns and the pressure chambers to make an extremely gun which is capable of shooting faster than the chain guns, it also is capable of firing missiles.
The sixth of the Gung-Ho Guns. Uses his shell to deploy exploding spikes towards an enemy.
Dominique The Cyclops
The fourth of the Gung-Ho Guns in the manga, second Gung-Ho Gun in the anime. Has a device known as the "Demons Eye". The device is installed in her eye and induces hypnosis and sensory paralysis on her foe(s), therefore making her movements seem to move at lightspeed, when she is really just placing the foe(s) in a trance. The eye in the anime simply has a red pupil, however in the manga it has a reptillian look.
Rai Dei the Blade
The ninth of the Gung-Ho Guns. A samurai who seeks the knowledge learned only when facing death. He carries a sword, and is able to swing it with enough force to throw large furrows of earth before it. Later his sword reveals a concealed rifle in the sheath, and the blade can be fired from the hilt.
Caine the Longshot
A talented sniper who can cloak his body and utilizes a long rifle many times longer than a normal rifle. This character was made for the anime and does not appear in the manga.
Leonoff the Puppetmaster
The ninth of the Gung-Ho Guns. Controls mannequin-like puppet creatures from a remote location. In the manga there is a little developed sub-plot that reveals that Leonoffs real name is Emilio, and that Vash knew him when he was a child. It is also revealed in the Manga that Leonoff had some sort of realtionship with a woman named 'Isabelle'.
Gray the Ninelives
The eighth of the Gung-Ho Guns in the manga. Famous for having nine lives. In actuality, he's an android covered in nearly indestructible armor. In the manga his name comes from the fact that there are nine tiny people living inside of him that control him like a tank. In the manga, Wolfwood captures the two surviving midgets after finishing off the body. But in the anime Grey is simply a robot controled by no one.
Hoppered the Gauntlet
The tenth of the Gung-Ho Guns. Capable of very powerful leaps. He carries an industructable shield. The manga goes into his story more, which reveals that the woman he loved was killed after the destruction of July.
Zazie the Beast
The seventh of the Gung-Ho Guns. The youngest Gung-Ho Gun, he uses his youth as a disguise. He can control sandworms with a high-frequency device he wears on his head. In the manga, his body is made up of group-minded insects inhabiting a manufactured body, and after its first form, a young boy, is destroyed, it reapears in a teen-age female form. The anime tells that Zazie is possessed by the demon, and on several occasions attempts to overcome the demon He dies because Wolfwood shoots him to protect Vash.
Chapel the Evergreen
Wolfwood's mentor. Chapel carries the parent version of Wolfwood's famous Punisher, and cared for young Nicholas after his guardian's death. Always carries a green apple in one hand. Is instrumental in Wolfwood's salvation. Also created just for the anime; Wolfwood is Chapel the Evergreen in the manga.
Midvalley the Hornfreak
The second of the Gung-Ho Guns in the Manga, 11th Gung-Ho Gun in the Anime. A musician; plays a saxophone which is a deadly weapon. It can apparently expel high pressure sound waves causing physical damage. Is often shown collaborating with Legato during the anime, indicating that he has a high rank in the Gung-Ho Guns. In the manga he does not like Legato very much and does not wish to be controled by him. In one sequence, he attempts to shoot Legato (although somewhat unsucessfully.)
- The $$60,000,000,000 Dollar Man
- Truth of Mistake
- Peace Maker
- Love and Peace
- Hard Puncher
- Lost July
- And Between the Wasteland and Sky
- Murder Machine
- Quick Draw
- Escape from Pain
- Vash the Stampede
- Little Arcadia
- Demon Eye
- Fifth Moon
- Rem Seibrem
- And Now, Goodbye (Goodbye For Now)
- Hang Fire
- Flying Ship
- Out of Time
- Live Through
- Beneath the Sky so Blue (Under The Sky so Blue)
Manga Volumes (translated by Dark Horse Comics)
- Trigun Vol. 1
- Trigun Vol. 2
- Trigun Maximum Vol. 01: The Hero Returns
- Trigun Maximum Vol. 02: Death Blue
- Trigun Maximum Vol. 03: His Life As A…
- Trigun Maximum Vol. 04: Bottom of the Dark
Trigun features music by Tsuneo Imahori .
- Trigun Spicey Stewed Donut (US only, from TokyoPop)
- Big Bluff
- Unhappy Song
- PHILOSOPHY In A Tea Cup
- Cynical Pink
- Nerve Rack
- Zero Hour
- Permanent Vacation
- BLUE FUNK
- YELLOW ALERT
- Carot & Stick
- Kaze-wa Mirai-ni Fuku (風は未来に吹く / Wind Blows In the Future)
- Trigun: The First Donuts (Japan only)
- BIG BLUFF
- BLOOD AND THUNDER
- Permanent Vacation
- Blue Funk
- PHILOSOPHY in a Tea Cup
- NOT AN ANGEL
- Cynical Pink
- Sound Life—LEM
- Kaze wa Mirai ni Fuku (風は未来に吹く / The Wind Blows Toward The Future)
- Never Could Have Been Worse
- Stories to Tell
- People Everyday
- Fool's Paradise
- YELLOW ALERT
- Carot & Stick
- Perfect Night
- Trigun: The Second Donuts (Japan only)
- Love and Peace
- Nerve Rack
- West Slag
- Unhappy song
- Kuroneko Ku-klan
- Colorless sky
- Trigun Maximum
- Hash Hash
- Lost Planet
- Blue Spring
- H.T. (remix)
- Zero Hour
- Insurance #1
- The Lowdown
- Insurance #2
- Gunpowder Tea
- Insurance #3
- Scattered Rain
- Blue Summers
- Suna No Hoshi (Sandy Planet)
- "H.T." by Tsuneo Imahori
- "Kaze-wa Mirai-ni Fuku" (Japanese: 風は未来に吹く) (Official English Translation: Wind Blows To the Future) by Tsuneo Imahori
- Character Development
- "Sound Life" by Tsuneo Imahori - associated with the character of Rem, and by extension Vash's early life. It is a story of the development of a world, starting on the first evening and ending on the eighth morning (something like the Bible story of creation). The final verse of the song (in Japanese) is: Saa...atarashii sora ni subete wo shirushita kumikyoku ga hibiku, which translates to "Well then...A song that has recorded everything echoes to the new sky." The song has been on the planet for as long as humans have.
- theOtaku.com fansite detailing episodes and character bios.
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