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Encyclopedia > Arcadia of My Youth
DVD cover for Arcadia of My Youth.
DVD cover for Arcadia of My Youth.

Arcadia of My Youth (わが青春のアルカディア Waga Seishun no Arukadia?) is an anime film depicting the origin of Leiji Matusmoto's seminal character Captain Harlock. At one time, it was considered to the the central hub of the so called Leijiverse with other works such as Galaxy Express 999 and 1978's Space Pirate Captain Harlock television series occurring sometime after. Image File history File links Arcadia-of-My-Youth_DVDcover. ... Image File history File links Arcadia-of-My-Youth_DVDcover. ... // A scene from Cowboy Bebop (1998) Anime (アニメ) is a style of cartoon animation originating in Japan, with distinctive character and background stylings that visually set it apart from other forms of animation. ... Leiji Matsumoto (松本 零士 Matsumoto Reiji) is a well-known creator of several anime and manga series. ... Captain Harlock in Galaxy Express 999 the movie Captain Harlock (宇宙海賊キャプテンハーロック UchÅ« Kaizoku Kyaputen Hārokku, Space Pirate Captain Harlock (also transliterated Captain Herlock)) is the main character of many animated Japanese series and manga by writer/artist Leiji Matsumoto. ... Galaxy Express 999 (銀河鉄道999; Ginga Tetsudō Three-Nine) is a manga written and drawn by Leiji Matsumoto, as well as various anime films and TV series based on it. ... Captain Harlock in Galaxy Express 999 the movie Captain Harlock (宇宙海賊キャプテンハーロック UchÅ« Kaizoku Kyaputen Hārokku, Space Pirate Captain Harlock (also transliterated Captain Herlock)) is the main character of many animated Japanese series and manga by writer/artist Leiji Matsumoto. ...


"At the end of their lives, all men look back and think that their youth was arcadia."Goethe

During the early 20th Century, some time after World War I, aerial explorer Captain Phantom F. Harlock is embarking on what is to be the magnum opus of his long career, the traversing of the Owen Stanley Mountains in Borneo, New Guinea. His major obstacle is the phantom of the witch that haunts these mountains. In a last desperate attempt to cross the mountains, Harlock ditches all but ten minutes of fuel in order to gain altitude. He carries on to his fate, amidst the mocking laughter of the Owen Stanley Witch. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (pronounced [gø tə]) (August 28, 1749–March 22, 1832) was a German writer, politician, humanist, scientist, and philosopher. ... Combatants Allies: • Serbia, • Russia, • France, • Romania, • Belgium, • British Empire and Dominions, • United States, • Italy, • ...and others Central Powers: • Germany, • Austria-Hungary, • Ottoman Empire, • Bulgaria Casualties Military dead: 5 million Civilian dead: 3 million Total: 8 million Full list Military dead: 3 million Civilian dead: 3 million Total: 6 million Full... Borneo and Sulawesi. ...

Near the end of World War II, Phantom F. Harlock II is an Iron Cross fighter pilot. During a major defeat for his side, he meets Toshiro (Tochiro) Oyama, a Japanese exchange technician working in Germany. Tochiro's project is to design a new gun sight for use in fighter planes. Harlock's most treasured possession is the Revi C-12D which he calls his "eye". Both men believe the war to be wasteful and pointless and Tochiro especially hopes that the rockets being developed by Germany may one day lead to a more positive application, such as a trip to the moon. Tochiro wishes he could escape from the war and possibly go to neutral Switzerland where he might be able to fulfill his dream. Harlock offers to take him in his plane. Stowing Tochiro in the plane's fuselage, Harlock is able to fly to Switzerland, but only after surviving a fierce arial dogfight with disables his plane and forces him to crash land just short of the Swiss border. Carrying an injured Tochiro across the river to sanctuary, Harlock departs, giving Tochiro his Revi C-12D, before crossing back into the warzone where Harlock expects to face the consequences of his actions. Although this Harlock's ultimate fate is unknown, Tochiro pledges friendship between their two bloodlines for all eternity. Combatants Allies: • Poland, • UK & Commonwealth, • France/Free France, • Soviet Union, • USA, • China, ...and others Axis: • Germany, • Italy, • Japan, ...and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total: 50 million Full list Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total: 12 million Full list World War II... A stylized version of the Iron Cross, the logo of the German Armed Forces The Iron Cross (German: Eisernes Kreuz) is a military decoration of the Kingdom of Prussia, and later of Germany, which was established by King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia and first awarded on 10 March 1813. ...

The year: Approximately 29XX A Solar Federation officer named Captain Harlock returns home in his battle cruiser Deathshadow to find that aliens from the Illumidus Empire have conquered Earth and enslaved humanity. However the remaining humans blame him and other warriors like him as they were not there to protect the planet when they needed it. Harlock, along with the Tokargans who are ashamed of their role in Earth's downfall set out to lead a resistance against the aliens and adopts the fighting strategy of ancient marauders. During the course of the struggle, Harlock meets a former Solar Federation engineer; a Japanese man who he's never met before but feels he knows. This man, Tochiro Oyama reveals his secret project, the dreams of all his ancestors. Hidden in a deep cavern under the occupation headquarters is a space battleship that he designed and built. This ship is called Arcadia, in honor of the eternal friendship forged between Phantom F. Harlock and Tochiro Oyama during another war. A space battleship is a fictional spacefaring warship in a science fiction TV series, movie or story which functions similarly to a modern aircraft carrier crossed with a modern battleship. ... In popular fiction and conspiracy theories, life forms, especially intelligent life forms, that are of extraterrestrial origin, i. ... A planet is generally considered to be a relatively large mass of accreted matter in orbit around a star that is not a star itself. ...

Harlock also meets Emeraldas, an old friend, who immdiately offers herself to the cause. The Tokargans, after witnessing the death of the last female of their race, sacrifice themselves to save the Arcadia from the life sucking flames of the Flame Stream Prominence (aka the Owen Stanley Witch of Space). Harlock's lover and voice of the Underground, Maya is killed by Illumidas gunfire. Honorably defeating the occupational commander in ship to ship combat, the quisling ruler of Earth, Triter, nonetheless declares Harlock and Emeraldas outlaws and exiles them to space. Amidst an Earth that prefers servitude to their new masters over the hard but noble fight for freedom, Harlock, Emeraldas, Tochiro, and their new pirate crew of idealists and romantics set for the stars, heading out for parts unknown.


  • Arcadia of My Youth draws many parallells to the post World War II American occupation of Japan. Maya's nickname as "The Rose" and the "Voice of Free Arcadia" mirrors the romantic image of the secret radio broadcasters of the French Resistance.
  • Arcadia of My Youth was originally released on North American home video under the Just For Kids banner. It was retitled Vengeance of the Space Pirate and was for many, the first introduction to Captain Harlock. This release suffered from having about forty minutes cut out of it, yet the quality dubbing gives evidence that the film was originally dubbed with the intention that an uncut version be at least an option. Indeed, the film was later released by Celebrity Home Video along with most of the other anime released under the Just For Kids label. It was given its original title My Youth in Arcadia and all the cut footage restored.
  • Arcadia of My Youth is the only Harlock story which shows how Harlock actually lost an eye. The trailer for Arcadia of My Youth (included as an extra in Animiego's DVD release) has one of the most confusing and misleading scenes. The trailer has a clip of the Tokargan Zoll shooting Harlock's eye out. Zoll, in the movie, is actually and enemy turned staunch ally and Harlock's injury is attributed to Illumidas gunfire. This trailer scene was recreated for the boxes on the American VHS releases of Vengeance of the Space Pirate and My Youth in Arcadia.
  • The prologue of this movie does not make it clear whether or not Phantom F. Harlock survived his mission. He is assumed to have survived as his voiceover monologue indicates that he is reading from his autobiography which is titled Arcadia of My Youth.
  • This movie is controversial in that Phantom F. Harlock II was portrayed as a German fighter pilot during WWII. The Tochiro of that era, who had read Harlock I's book, at least found it unusual in that he asked Harlock II why he was flying an Iron Cross plane. The liner notes for the Animeigo DVD state that Harlock's response, "Just paying rent", hid a deeper meaning. It refers to the ancient feudal obligations a noble had to his lords for better or worse, even if he didn't believe in their cause. The liner notes also mention that Harlock technically was no longer bound by these obligations since the feudal customs no longer existed at that time. Although it is improbable that an honorable man as Harlock believed in the war, he felt obligated nontheless to honor these customs, if not his masters.
  • There is much confusion as to where Arcadia, Harlock's birthplace is. It was always assumed to be somewhere in northern Europe, despite it's naming after the mythical Greek paradise in the Mediterranean. Harlock gives the proper name of his ancestral birthplace as Hellingstadt meaning that Arcadia is most likely a nickname. Some place Arcadia somewhere in Germany or Austria. During the WWII segment of the movie, Harlock II, while flying to Switzerland muses about Arcadia, leading viewers to assume that Arcadia was located there. However Harlock's cryptic comments about "paying rent" aside, this would still make little sense in the context of the movie as Switzerland was neutral during WWII. Matsumoto has never given a concrete definitive statement on Harlock's ethnicity or heritage However, Harlock is an actual name of Prussian origin.
  • The stories of Phantom F. Harlock I and II are loosely based on short manga stories by Matsumoto. Many of them appeared in his manga anthology The Cockpit. Many elements of Arcadia of My Youth were borrowed from his other stories such as the Deathshadow which appeared in a 1970 manga and in his later adaptation of the original Space Battleship Yamato where the Deathshadow appears along with Susumu Kodai's brother whose alias is Captain Harlock. These elements did not make it into the anime version but they were the source of American fan rumors that the Leijiverse Harlock was actually Mamoru Kodai in disguise or possibly a descendant.
  • The American comic book company Eternity Comics published a series based on Captain Harlock. It theoretically picked up where Arcadia of My Youth left off and was also written in an attempt to bridge the storylines of Galaxy Express 999 and 1978s Space Pirate Capatain Harlock. However, the origin story in the 1978 television series depicts Harlock and Tochiro as childhood friends and Emeraldas meeting them both later. Furthermore, it also shows the Arcadia (this time blue) being constructed on planet Heavy Melder, not Earth. The comic series ran from 1989 to 1992 and was scripted by Robert W. Gibson and drawn by Ben Dunn and Tim Eldred.
  • The fact that both of Captain Harlock's ancestors have the trademark Heidleburg duelling scar gives rise to the widespread fan assumption that the scar must be hereditary. So far, no story has ever depicted how Harlock got his scars. Though Arcadia of My Youth does depict Emeraldas receiving her scar from a glancing shot from the gun of Illumidas officer Muriguson.
  • The proper romanization of the Japanese title is a source of fan dispute. Although Animeigo's romanization (Arcadia of My Youth) has been widely accepted, the original My Youth in Arcadia was used in Japan and better reflects the inspiration from the Goethe quote.
  • Reportedly, Leijii Matsumoto owns an actual Revi C-12D gunsight.

The French Resistance is the name used for resistance movements that fought military occupation of France by Nazi Germany and the Vichy France undemocratic regime during World War II after the government and the high command of France surrendered in 1940. ...


  • Captain Harlock/Phantom F. Harlock II: (Makio Inoue)
  • Toshiro Ōyama / Tochirō: (Kei Tomiyama)
  • Queen Emeraldas: (Reiko Tajima)
  • Maya: (Reiko Mutō)
  • La Mime: (Yuriko Yamamoto)
  • Zeda: (Tarō Ishida)
  • Zoll: (Shūichi Ikeda)
  • Muriguson: (Takeshi Aono)
  • Old Tokargan Soldier: (Shūichirō Moriyama)
  • Triter: (Hitoshi Takagi)
  • Tori-san: (Hiroshi Ōtake)
  • Mira: (Hiromi Tsuru)
  • Phantom F. Harlock I: (Yujiro Ishihara)
  • The Witch: (Eiko Masuyama)
  • Black-suited Commander: (Hidekatsu Shibata)
  • Illumidus Officer: (Kōji Yada)

  Results from FactBites:
Arcadia/SSX (746 words)
My Youth in Arcadia (or Arcadia of My Youth; it's been translated both ways) is not only a defining chapter in the ongoing saga of Captain Harlock, nor is it merely a really great film.
According to this timeline, the events depicted in My Youth in Arcadia are the beginning of the Harlock story as far as what has actually been animated is concerned.
As a sequel to Arcadia, SSX works just fine, though the recap of the film seen in episode one changes the dialogue so that Harlock, not Tochiro, names the ship "Arcadia." Perfect continuity is plainly not allowed.
Teleport City (1636 words)
He was a space pirate and freedom fighter roaming the universe in his massive starship, Arcadia of My Youth, fighting the forces of oppression.
Arcadia of My Youth is a powerful movie that is highlighted by compelling characters, a wonderful story, plenty of emotion, and a shining message about fighting for freedom and sticking to your beliefs even when it would be simpler and easier to conform to the status quo and surrender.
Arcadia of My Youth is a sweeping epic, a space opera that continues to add depth to the universe created by Leiji Masumoto.
  More results at FactBites »



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