Back in my junior year of high school (Oh God, that was 2004), Marvel came out with its Mangaverse line, and I was inspired to create designs for a DC Mangaverse. You can find those designs here: [link]
. I posted them back on Comics2Film, but I didn't go any further with the ideas after those first designs.
took those initial designs and extrapolated on them, creating an entire Manga DC universe with characters, origins, and story arcs. Nightshade's done an amazing job and continues to do so. Inspired by his extensive work and superhero redesigns on dA as well as Project Rooftop, and with a few years of art school under my belt, I decided to go back and remake those designs.
I started originally with Batman, but this time, I started with Superman. My inspiration for Superman's design is pretty much Dragonball Z; the hair, gi, and boots are reminiscent of Goku, while the cape and shoulders are Piccolo-inspired. There are still the major Superman landmarks: the red, blue, and yellow of his costume, the shield's general shape, and his S spit curl (now it's all spikey, haha). If you look at Goku's backstory, it's not unlike Superman's as well: An powerful alien infant sent to Earth, raised by a kind guardian with strong morals, and dedicated to fighting evil on behalf of his adopted home.
My story premise:
A lone ship carrying a baby of the conquering Kryptonian race is sent by an intergalactic despot to take over Earth. However, the despot destroys Krypton itself soon after, and the explosion interferes with the ship's landing program. Crashing in a rice paddy in rural Japan, the despot's brainwashing within the child is erased. The amnesiac baby is taken in by a farmer and his wife and named him Kentoru. They raise the boy as their own, instilling strong morals of truth and justice.
As Kentoru grew to maturity, he was endowed with powers far beyond those of mortal men. With his parents' moral guidance, Kentoru decided to use his gifts for the good of his fellow man. Kentoru became Sonjotoko, the Superman. Taking a journalism job in Tokyo, Kentoru is in a prime location to learn of emergencies where he may be needed. As shadows of Krypton's past come to earth to finish what the despot started, Superman is the Earth's last line of defense against Darkseid and his invading forces.
- Story contains elements of DBZ: Kryptonians are a conquering race (like the Saiyans), Darkseid destroys the planet (Frieza), the child gets amnesia and is raised on the side of good (Goku)
- "Kentoru" is a Westernized combination of the names "Kenta" (meaning strong/healthy/stout) and "Toru" (wayfarer, traveller); Literally, a strong traveller.
- "Sonjotoko" is a combination of "Sonjo" (superior) and "Otoko" (man); Literally, a superior man.
Superman will be part of a larger pin-up of my Manga Justice League. There will be slight changes to everyone's design, but hopefully the spirit of those initial designs will remain.