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Chōjin (超人, Superhuman) is the Japanese word for Superhumans. It is also the name of a fictional race from Yudetamago's manga and anime series Kinnikuman and its sequel Kinnikuman Nisei. This article focuses on the latter meaning.

About

Chojin are people whose abilities far surpass that of normal humans. Most, like Kinnikuman and Terryman, were born with these abilities while some, like Geronimo and the Brocken Clan achieved it through special means. Most of them reside on Earth. In earlier chapters they were known as Superheroes (スーパーヒーロー), but it was changed to Chōjin after the first Chojin Olympics. In Kinnikuman Nisei, the Brutal, Devil, Perfect Chojin, and one subset of theTime Chojin, are collectively referred to as Evil Chojin (悪行超人, Akugyo Supermen).

History/Origin

Ancient Times

The ancestral origins of the chojin breed predate humanity, and most of the iconic artefacts and features of the world are traces of the chojin passage (Ayers Rock being an ancient arena, the Leaning Tower of Pisa built in imitation of a tower overseeing an ancient ring in Campo dei Miracoli).

The very first chojin civilisation was described as noble and just, living under the chojin Gods' rule, until their pride in their physical prowess led them to quarrel and fight. [1] They adopted a Might is Right mindset with the strongest chojin oppressing and discriminating the weakest ones, building a highly elitist society marred by pride, greed and envy. This caused the Chojin Gods to decide upon wiping out the entire chojin race, returning the mortal plane to a vacant and lifeless lot by bathing the universe in the deadly Capillaria Ray, a godly energy able to melt the flesh of the Chojin sparing every other life form. [1]

A Merciful God rose among them, pleading to be allowed to save the most righteous Chojin and teach them how to be a new Perfect Origin for a new wave of their species: the God allowed the Merciful God to descend in the mortal plane, choose some Chojin and carry them in a space between Heaven and Earth. [1]

The Merciful God, unable to return to Heaven, became The Man, aka Chōjin Enma, aka Perfect Zero and taught his newly christened Perfect Origin with great hope. Unbeknownst to the Chojin Gods and the Merciful God, some of the Chojin fated to die managed to survive the Capillaria Disaster, hiding under the branches of a mystical tree on Earth, the Unforgiving Yggdrasil. In that moment. the Perfect Origin broke as dissent spread among his elements: while The Man still held in his original belief than only the Perfect Origin could be considered worthy of creating a Chojin Race obedient to the Chojin Gods, the two brothers Goldman and Silverman, the closest allies and disciples of The Man, left his side to reach Earth.

Goldman and Silverman took great interest in the surviving chojin, and wished to teach them, feeling the Merciful God had lost his mercy and had become obsessed into denying them a new lease at life. Goldman left first, then Psychoman asked Silverman to follow his brother and spy on him: however Silverman learnt by Goldman about the untapped possibilities of the chojin left in the mortal plane and decided to stay there.

Goldman then taught those who, in the future, would become the Devil Chojin while Silverman, believing peace and mercy had to be preserved, started teaching the Justice Chojin and, by taking a family in the mortal plane, became the forefather of the Kinniku Clan, natural-born leaders of the Justice Chojin themselves.

Despite The Man and Psychoman homed the Justice Chojin and the Kinniku Clan to be loyal servants of the Perfect Origin and just a tool to keep Goldman in check, Silverman had different plans for them, hoping they could rediscover the ideal of Mercy and Justice the first generation of Chōjin lost.

Goldman and Silverman eventually fought one last time, under Justiceman's watch: the Quarrel in Heaven ended up with the two brothers decapitating each other, becoming the Gold and Silver Mask kept in custody by the Kinniku Clan, inheritors of Silverman's teaching but oblivious to their connections to the Perfect Origin. A series of lies and fabrications were put in the Chōjin Archives, describing Goldman and Silverman as Chojin Gods on their own, unrelated to Chōjin Enma, and allowing the Devil and Justice Chojin to flourish and rebuild their society.

Modern Day

In the subsequent millennia, chojin and humans started living side by side, with the Justice Chojin acting as heroes and protectors and the Devil Chojin as villains and heels caring only for battle.

By modern times, or rather the eighties, Chojins were a common sight on Earth and the Cosmos, with entire planets populated by Chojin themselves, like Planet Kinniku, and with Earth hosting one or more Chojin for every nation, acting as protectors of humanity.

Silverman's inheritance resurfaced in that era when his latest descendant, Suguru Kinnikuman, prince of the Kinniku Clan, developed the Fire of Inner Strength and the Friendship Power, two faces of the same coin, the ability to reach a greater strength in times of need and for the sake of justice and friendship.

Such a power, and the possibility that Kinnikuman could spread it among his brethren, piqued the interest of the Evil Gods, sending the Fated Princes to strip Kinnikuman of his royal inheritance and the The Man himself, who sent the Perfect Chojin to deal with Kinnikuman and attempt to eradicate the Fire of Inner Strength and the Friendship Power forever.

Finally, Kinnikuman managed to ascend to the throne, defeat the Fated Princes and the Perfect Origin itself.

It took Goldman however, now known as General Devil to finally defeat his former master Strong the Budo, aka The Man, aka Chojin Enma. However, Kinnikuman in a display of his ideals of Mercy begged Akuma Shogun to spare The Man, letting him return to the Chojin Graveyard.

Finally, Chojin Enma remembered his former Mercy, and accepted. However, before returning forever to his role as a God of the Underworld, he warned Kinnikuman that, if her ever strayed from his ideals of Mercy, he would send his disciples, now stationed in the Graveyard, to check on him.

Future Times

In the future continuity (actually, the 2010s) of Kinnikuman Nisei a lengthy period of peace left the Chojin weak, living as peaceful, untrained human beings on their respective planets: when a faction of Akuma, Perfect and Brutal Chojin rebuilt the dMp to wage war to humanity, the Muscle League, the alliance of Justice Chojin decided to train their newest members, leaving to Mantaro Kinniku, son of Kinnikuman, the role to rediscover the ancestral power of his family and lead the new generation.

Physical Features

Appearance

There's no uniformity in the physical features of the average chojin. A chojin may look perfectly human, as Terryman and his son, humanoid with some non-human features (like Buffaloman with his Long Horns or the faceless Black Hole) or humanoid with distorted features (as the comically stereotypical Ramenman). He may also look as a common appliance, like Mixer Taitei, Benkiman and Stereo Cassette King, some kind of monster, like Gepparland and Sneagator, a robot (like the cyborg Warsman), or being an utterly non-human creature, like Sunshine.

The Kinniku Clan is composed by fully human looking muscular beings, however they're forced to wear an iconic, Ultraman-like mask on their faces, never meant to be shown to anyone else: if they did, they'd be sentenced to death (or, in the American dub of Kinnikuman Nisei, stripped of their rank, status, forbidden to wrestle or fight again and reduced, by every standard, to un-persons without any right).

Abilities

Chojin are usually far stronger than human beings, [2] save for some exceptions, as the comically weak Kani Base, the bumbling Kinkotsuman and the very early Kinnikuman himself. It is said that chojin are not much different from humans, until they fight, and - at this point - their chojin power takes effect. [2]

Most of them exhibit stereotypical superhuman abilities: in the earliest part of the series the wide majority of chojin, included Terryman and Kinnikuman themselves, were shown able to grow in size and fly through the air. Those powers were never mentioned or seen again when the series shifted to a story based on wrestling, but the chojin were left some other abilities tied to their physical form, like Buffaloman's ability to manipulate his horns or Sneagator's ability to transform, or Pentagon's ability to fly using his inborn wings and alter time and space themselves.

Chojin Power

A chojin's powers are defined by their Chojin Power, a number measuring their inborn power. The power isn't an absolute measure though: a chojin like Canadianman, for example, is shown as strong in its power, but lacking in technique and abilities, thus inferior to lesser chojin whose power is lesser, but with more technique and finesse. The Kinniku Clan have shown the Fire of Inner Strength, which can be used to increase his power when in a pinch, and other chojin have developed forms of the same ability, such as the Robin Clan developing the Maelstrom power.

Physiology

It is said that the DNA of humans and chojin is 99% the same, and the 1% different can be altered either through mystical means or divine intervention. [3] Even a humanoid chojin is still fundamentally different from a human; for example, Ramenman broke a MRA machine and other human diagnostic devices just by being examined, explaining the doctors that human western medicine was no good for an eastern chojin like him. It is also shown that chojin bodies in the series are able to withstand surgical and medical procedures that would be impossible for a human being (like Kinnikuman getting a prosthetic bone made by Buffaloman's long horns, or Terryman getting a fully functional prosthetic leg made by his farrier).

Chojin are also said to heal faster than humans, but will typically die if they lose 60% of their blood. Chojin are physically stronger and more fit than humans, able to withstand a bigger deal of punishment and heal much faster: [4] Ramenman shrugged in a few days wounds that a human doctor described as needing months to heal. This ability may be linked to their power and training, as an earlier Kinnikuman witnessing Ramenman's healing quipped that he takes even more time than a human to heal, but as Kinnikuman is a bumbling, happy-go-lucky joker, it could also be read as a joke.

Female Chojin

The series lack any actively fighting female chojin, with the exception of the non-canon series: Kinnikuman Nisei ~All Out Assault~. The notable exception is that of Bibimba. In the non-canon series, we see Fiona and Okan taking active roles, with the latter being a prominent supporting character for the duration of the series. Typically, female chojin take passive and supporting roles in the series, much like their human counterparts.

It is worth noting, within the anime dub (Ultimate Muscle), it is stated that Chojin are 'neither male or female', and that is possible that chojin have a different concept of sex and/or gender. In the American dub of the anime, Jacqueline expresses a desire to wrestle, as such it is possible that there could be cultural reasons among chojin why female-identifying chojin are not seen to battle, despite it being explicitly shown in various manga series that it is possible for them to fight. [5]

Breeding

Despite the differences in physiology, chojin and human may interbreed. The result can be a human or a chojin, but never a mixture of the two groups. Despite this, there is a discrimination to biracial chojin (typically) by other chojin. [6][7]

Terry the Kid is the half-Japanese and half-American son of the chojin Terryman and the human Natsuko Shono, and he's a full-fledged chojin. Kevin Mask is also the son of the chojin Robin Mask and human Alisa Mackintosh, but also a full-fledged chojin. On the other hand, Victory Ramenman's sister is fully human.

Becoming a Chojin

It is said that the DNA of humans and chojin is 99% the same, and the 1% different can be altered either through mystical means or divine intervention. [3]

Chojin and human beings remain though two separate species, tied to a different afterlife and even subjected to different gods: some chojin however are born as humans. The Brocken Clan, for example, is made by human beings that - after a gruelling training - are granted a mystical item (a skull or a small eagle, according to the continuity) granting them a chojin body. After his physical death, the human Geronimo was granted from the Human God the boon to be able to meet in spirit a Chōjin God and petition him to be reborn as a chojin.

Divine Intervention

This method requires the human to meet three challenges set forth by a god, and to prove their worth via outstanding achievements. If they have proven themselves worthy, and succeed in the three challenges, the god will grant them chojin status.

Examples

Geronimo is taken back to his village, where - even in his unconscious state - he manages to defend Terryman from an attack by his people. Chief Cheyenne reveals that Geronimo cannot be revived as a human, but could be revived as a Justice Chojin. [8] They summon forth the chojin God, while bringing forth the Superhuman Road. [9] Geronimo travels along the road and encounters three different gateways; he breaks through the first with quick thinking and bravery, as he uses his body to allow two children to cross a ravine, and he passes the second by self-sacrifice to save others from a falling boulder. In the last, he is able to distinguish between good and evil, as he kills the image of Chief Cheyenne that threatens the lives of children. Geronimo is thus made a chojin. [10]

Mystical Means

A few humans have traditions or methods of becoming chojin. [3]They are human when they are born, but - through rigorous training from an early age - are able to prepare themselves for transformation into a chojin at a later age. The most famous example of this is the Brocken Clan. [3]

Examples

The Brocken Clan is originally human, but at adulthood a young man is given a skull badge, or "Totenkopf." This turns them into a Chojin as evident by the Swastikas (now Death's Heads due to Japan's increasing cultural sensitivity) on their shoulders.

The Ninja and his people are said to be human in nature, but are able to later become chojin. [11][12]

Becoming a Human

Conversely, a chojin can choose to become a human. [3] This can be by the removal of a mystical object, such as if a member of the Brocken Clan removes their skill badge, or by using a special technique via Stonehenge, in which after three days one's chojin power will be absorbed and removed from them. Any power lost by these methods can be regained. [3]

Examples

Robin Mask was able to hold a piece of Stonehenge above his head for three days, which removed his chojin power, and this was returned to him when Terryman helped him to make contact with the stone again. [13] Brocken Jr. was able to become human to escape the Capillary Rays during one match, by removing his skull badge.

Culture

Costumes

A chojin's outfit - whether shorts, tights, or a body-suit - is said to be a chojin's life; when Kinnikuman Soldier rips his attire, it thus causes immense shock to Brocken Jr. [14]

Law & Order

Justice Chojin are charged with protecting people from evildoers. [15] The Hercules Factory graduates are charged with protecting Japan in specific, and there is also a group called the "Chojin Untouchables", whose purpose is to travel the universe to arrest the most dangerous of criminals. [15]

Education

There are a series of chojin schools throughout the globe, with one created in Texas, USA, and one in England. Terryman and Robin Mask work as teachers there respectively, while also holding other positions and purposes. There is also the Hercules Factory, which is a school set on another planet, where children of elite chojin go at the age of fourteen to train and study, and will be eventually stationed in Japan to protect the people and maintain order.

Souls and Afterlife

Chojin possess an immortal soul, and they're subjected to several gods: after their death however their souls are sent to the Chojin Graveyard, overseen by the fallen god Chojin Enma, first of the Perfect Chojin, where they can be revived by gathering enough Chojin Kyodo turning the Mortier du Pileur, an ancestral machinery able to turn magnetic power into Chojin Kyodo. As for the Perfect Origin Arc, General Devil forbid Chōjin Enma from using it ever again, damaging the Mortier du Pileur beyond repair and prompting Enma to become again a righteous god caring for the fallen souls of the Chojin and granting them eternal rest.

A chojin can - however - still be revived if enough chojin spare with him their power, as chojin can transfuse their power (just like giving blood), [16] and they can also be revived by the Face Flash, the elusive power that some talented members of the Kinniku Clan may shine on their bodies. Is still uncertain if General Devil's ban on resurrection affects those ways to cheat death, too.

Classifications

Justice Chojin

Justice Chojin (正義超人) are Chojin who use their powers for the sake of justice, mainly battling Kaiju in earlier chapters. There are said to be 1,000 of them on Earth. Particularly popular Justice Chojin are referred to as Idol Chojin. Friendship is absolute for Justice Chojin, and if - for some reason - a crack begins to appear in their friendship the ancient Iron Sweat (アイアン・スエット) begins to flow from their bodies. It continues to flow and weigh them down until their friendship is restored.

The Justice Chojin answer to a central Committee, in which the Kinniku Clan has always a prominent role, deciding about their roles, position and ruling over their actions. However, in the earliest part of the series, when the chojin were monster hunters for hire, they answered to their governments.

The more experienced Chojin are meant to teach the younger ones, and, as told by General Devil and Silverman. The younger chojin are also taught in chojin schools throughout the world, although this seems to have been retconned into just one establishment in Kinnikuman Nisei: the Hercules Factory. When an old Justice Chojin is too old to continue fighting or being able to serve in any facility, he's given an ornate walking cane as a prize for his efforts.

Time Chojin

Time Chojin (時間超人) are mysterious Chojin whose true identities are unknown. A mutated breed of Evil Chojin, they have revealed themselves to Meat and the others, but their origin and background is still unknown. When the Demonic Time Horn (魔時角)}} that sprout from their heads are broken off, they gain the ability to travel a single period of time from within their own lifetimes. At present, only Thunder and Lightning have appeared (although it has been hinted that Chaos may be one as well). They also have the ability to transform parts of their bodies into pieces of a clock (bells, minute hands, etc.), but whether this is an ability exclusive to the Time Chojin is unknown.

At some point in time, Horae Avenir was born among their people. He is said to have been a man with a great sense of justice, which led him to become a leader of his people, and he created a clan of Justice-Time Chojin. They left the Chojin Prisoner Planet with Horae as their leader, and headed to a new planet that they went on to name Planet Avenir. [17]

At first, no crops would grow or thrive on this planet, but Horae inspired his people to cultivate the land and to grow crops that were plentiful and desired. The Time Chojin grew to be a prosperous, peaceful, and happy people; Horae Minutes passed peacefully in his sleep, and eventually - after two-hundred years - Minutes Avenir became king of their people. They create their own form of wrestling for entertainment. [17]

Evil Chojin

Brutal Chojin

Brutal Chojin (残虐超人, Zangyaku Chojin) are Chojin who fight brutally and kill their opponents for their own amusement. They are basically Justice Chojin gone bad, and are even allowed to compete in the Chojin Olympics. Later on, they are divided between those who aid the Justice Chojins (Seigi no Zangyaku Chojin (正義の残虐超人, "Good" Brutal Supermen). This includes Ramenman, Ilioukhine, Warsman, Kinkotsuman, and others. Although very brutal after entering the ring, they are essentially Justice Chojins) and those who oppose them (Aku no Zangyaku Chojin (悪の残虐超人, "Evil" Brutal Supermen), this include the entire True Team Soldier, Shimaou, and others. They mostly appear in the sequel series).

Devil Chojin

Devil Chojin (悪魔超人, Akuma Chojin) are Chojin who have sold their bodies, minds, and blood to demons, and fight under the control of Great Demon King Satan (大魔王サタン, Daimaō Satan). To them, winning means killing your opponent and losing means "death". Ex: Buffaloman, Springman, Asuraman, etc. Originally the Brutal Chojin were included with the Devil Chojin, but this was later changed.

The Devil Chojin answer to a looser organisation, who generally follow Satan as a literal leader or inspirational figurehead. They usually flock around the strongest and more charismatic of their group, like General Devil, Buffaloman (when he is a Devil Chojin and not a Justice Chojin) or Sunshine.

Perfect Chojin

Perfect Chojin (完璧超人) (Read as Kanpeki Chojin in the first anime, Kanpeki being the non-ateji reading of the character 完璧) are Chojin who were so strong that nobody in this world could oppose them, so they exiled themselves to the heavens. There they sparred with each other for thousands of years, transcending emotions and gaining power that rivalled the gods. They follow many strict rules, such as "Never use weapons", "Never show your back to an enemy", and "Defeat is absolutely inexcusable". Ex: Neptuneman, Neptune King, Seiuchin, etc.

The Perfect Chojin answer to Strong the Budo; however, there is a vanguard of them who never saw their true leader, and followed instead Big the Budo.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Kinnikuman (2011): Chapter 59
  2. 2.0 2.1 Kinnikuman: Chapter 183
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Chojin Encyclopaedia: pg 102
  4. Kinnikuman: Chapter 185
  5. Ultimate Muscle: The Kinnikuman Legacy, Episodes 52-54
  6. Dawn of Terry the Kid
  7. Kinnikuman Nisei: Part Two: Chapters 59-78
  8. Chapter 210
  9. Chapter 211
  10. Chapter 211
  11. Deep of Muscle: Episode 3
  12. Chojin Encyclopaedia: pg. 147
  13. Prince of London Arc
  14. Kinnikuman: Chapter 295
  15. 15.0 15.1 Chojin Encyclopaedia: pg. 163
  16. Kinnikuman: Chapter 189
  17. 17.0 17.1 Kinnikuman Nisei: Part Two: Chapter 227
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