Naruto, One Piece’s Luffy, and Dragon Ball’s Goku have been brought together in an epic work of fan art that was recently showcased on Twitter.
When it comes to manga, Naruto, Luffy, and Goku are some of the most well-known heroes in the world. In new fan art from @Justin96636 on Twitter, the three have united in a legendary art style. If these three were to ever truly team-up, they would be unstoppable.
Naruto, One Piece, and Dragon Ball are all best-selling manga with lead characters who have become renowned and beloved on a global scale. Japan has a history of incredible art and art movements, including ukiyo-e, which saw its peak between the 17th and 19th centuries. From subjects including classic actors to landscapes (and now even manga heroes), the ukiyo-e movement has led to iconic works of art. These have included Tōshūsai Sharaku’s Ōtani Oniji III in the Role of the Servant Edobei from 1794 and Katsushika Hokusai’s The Great Wave off Kanagawa from 1831. The style has also highlighted powerful figures such as sumo wrestlers, making it a fitting redesign for some of manga’s best (and strongest) heroes.
On Twitter, artist @Justin96636, also known as Chien Chih Kang, shared a new piece of fan art. Naruto heads up the piece on the left, followed by Luffy, and Goku. This connected piece shows each character in heightened power forms and similar poses, presenting not only their strength but their roles as leaders. Naruto is in Six Paths Sage Mode, Luffy’s redesign takes elements from his Gear Fourth Snakeman form, and Goku is in Super Saiyan 3 form.
This mythic redesign is impressive not just because of the way it combines the three heroes, but because of the deeper connections to the history of the form that it creates. This is especially true of Goku’s inclusion. As many fans know, Dragon Ball and Goku are inspired by the classic novel Journey to the West and the legends of the Monkey King, known as Sun Wukong. One of the last great masters of the ukiyo-e art movement was Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, who did an art series titled, Tsūzoku saiyūki, which translated to “A Modern ‘Journey to the West.'” This series included Son Gokū/Sun Wukong and his adventures. Chien Chi Kang’s illustration of Akira Toriyama’s Son Goku shows how far the character has come, blending his old and new forms together beautifully.
Each of the characters featured in this art started off as a beginner in their disciplines and combat styles. Over many years, they have each grown to gain new physical power forms via different means of training. They already appear powerful within their respective series and have proven to be ridiculously popular for many years. From Naruto and One Piece‘s 23-year histories and Dragon Ball‘s 38-year history, these are the heroes of a new generation of artists. The legends these manga heroes are based on may be ancient, but their influence continues with today’s mangaka and artists like @Justin96636, as Naruto, Luffy, and Goku carry on classical traditions in fan art and other modern depictions.
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