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Name: Gensoumaden Saiyuuki
Abbreviation(s): Saiyuki
Creator: Kazuya Minekura
Medium: manga, anime
Country of Origin: Japan
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The manga Saiyuki is loosely based on the Chinese novel Journey to the West. It was later adapted into an anime. The title is wordplay, and means "Journey to the Extreme." The series features regular anachronisms, like the main group of characters getting across mythical China in a jeep that's actually a miniature, shape-shifting white dragon.

The main group, known as the ikkou, consists of the gun-toting, chainsmoking, foul-mouthed Buddhist priest Genjo Sanzo, the mild-mannered ex-mass murderer and ex-teacher Cho Hakkai, hard-drinking, hard-living half-yokai Sha Gojyo, and Son Goku, a teenager with a bottomless stomach who doesn't remember that he's actually over five hundred years old and Seiten Taisei, the Sage Equal to Heaven.

Cranes for Minekura

cranes4minekura was a project to send 1,000 paper cranes to Kazuya Minekura while she was ill (details?).

This is Minekura. With your help, I've come back to life.
My family carried your gifts to me every single day in the hospital. The thousand-cranes... no, the tens-of-thousands-of-cranes filled the room until it was overflowing. The nurses said they'd never seen so many. After the surgery, when it hurt so bad I wanted to scream, the bright colors of the decorations in the room were incredibly encouraging. They tell me that my scar has healed very cleanly, and I give the credit to my good luck charms. I thank all the people who have supported me from afar from the depths of my heart. I'm so grateful to all of you.
I've been allowed to come home from the hospital, but my wound has yet to heal (it'll be about half a year before it settles down enough), and there are a number of things I physically can't do; it takes all my energy to get through my day-to-day tasks. ...But when I look around at all my beautiful good luck charms (<- I'm bragging), it gives me hope. When I put my manga on hiatus, I was so miserable I cried, thinking that people would be disappointed and angry with me. I feel honored to have received so much support and understanding. [1]



Saiyuki is/was a fairly popular fandom for cosplay.


Popular pairings are various combinations of the ikkou, though pairings with their enemies are also not uncommon.

Occasionally, the pairing names used in fanfiction are based on the Japanese numbers, for example, the yaoi pairing Hakkai/Gojyo would be abbreviated as "85", because "Hakkai" is written with the kanji for eight, and the Japanese word for five is "go".

Popular tropes

Example stories



Character essays:

Shipping essays:



Other resources


  1. ^ Kazuya Minekura's blog, 2010/12/30. Translation by snarp. Original entry (Japanese) (Accessed June 29, 2011)