I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Japan wanted to host Olympics in 2020, and Akira is set in 2020 and they are preparing for hosting Olympics. Who would have guessed fact follows fiction in that the Olympics need to be cancelled. I don’t know which is worse, global pandemic or kids with immense psi forces. The latter is quite destructive, but the damage is still local. 


Akira is the story of a bullied kid. Power is represented by reversal of gravity. Consciously lifting heavy things and throwing them and also sheer unintended runoff force that makes small stones levitate. I kind of think (tentatively) that gravity is a symbol for “normal order of things”, including the social system. Tetsuo breaks free of the pecking order that’s been constricting him since childhood, of course it turns out this constriction has also kept him contained and given him form. In the end everyone cares for the survival of Kaneda, no matter that he’s a bully, annoying, has no special great qualities except for physical and social skills. In contrast, Tetsuo’s girlfriend gets crushed by Tetsuo’s uncontrollable bulk and nobody but Tetsuo cares for her death, even though she’s absolutely innocent to the destruction and mayhem. This is what happens, the defeated inner story of the bullied kid says. If there is someone foolish enough to care for me, they will perish alongside me, while the successful and popular ones get everything they wish for. 


Random observations

Weird thing in Akira is that the city is supposed to be built only 30 years ago, but it looks very run-down and used. Could this level of wear and tear happen in 30 years? Maybe if it’s not maintained at all…


CD jukebox in the bar was super cool. I would have thought CD's were already normal technology by 1988 but apparently they still had the wow factor.


I just remembered I found Yamagata’s messy hair quite attractive back when reading the manga in mid-90s. Too bad he got blown up by Tetsuo.