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THE JUSTICE LEAGUE OF ANIME by ninjatron THE JUSTICE LEAGUE OF ANIME by ninjatron
Please full view and read this!

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UPDATE: Thanks so much for all the comments and +favs!

Check out the rest of the Anime Justice League artwork, including the much requested Injustice Gang! [link]




PLEASE stop asking "Where's Naruto?" or "Where's Luffy" or whatever other characters you were expecting. You can read and respond to my thoughts on that issue right here.

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One day, as I was watching DVDs of the awesome Justice League animated series, I wondered... what if?

What if there was a Justice League for anime characters?

And so, I sought to properly assemble a team and paint a piece of artwork based on the classic Justice League artwork by Bruce Timm and Warner Bros Animation seen here: [link] The characters poses, the lighting, the shadows, and the background were all meant to be the same as this original artwork.

My criteria for who from the world of anime would belong in a Justice League was that I wanted all of the members to be classic characters that all anime fans should know, not just new and popular characters, but rather legendary characters that deserved to be there. Wherever possible I wanted the anime characters to fill the same role as the Justice League member they are replacing one way or another, or at least for the different powers and personality archetypes that compose of the Justice League to be mostly represented in this version, even if they are rearranged. I also wanted a wide variety of colors, character designs, and original manga creators to be represented. Not everyone will agree with my choices, mostly because I used more classic characters instead of what is popular right now, but I think those who have a wide knowledge of both anime and comic books will agree that this is what a Justice League of anime should look like!

With that in mind, here is the line up! If you don't recognize any of these characters, don't worry. I'm providing links to information about who everyone is so you can learn about their origins. From left to right they are:

CAPTAIN HARLOCK : [link] Created by Leiji Matsumoto, he is one of the most classic and epic heroes in all of anime. He was actually the last member of the team I decided upon. I knew I needed someone who wore a cape since the pose J'onn J'onzz is in has him holding one. But after picking Harlock, I could see an entire storyline fall into place. Although he isn't an alien and has no actual powers, Harlock would serve the same central role in a Justice League as J'onn J'onzz does. He is the one with knowledge, the one who can unite the other heroes. He is also the darker, more mysterious character, like Batman. I mixed a few of the different character designs and change his black clothing to more of a blue color.

CYBORG 009 : [link] Created by Shotaro Ishinomori, he is Joe Shimamura, the lead character from the very first team of international super heroes. His speed powers are very similar to the Flash, but I would imagine him having more of a serious demeanor in a setting like this, much like Green Lantern. Ishinomori's work is among the most important and interesting in all of anime, and Cyborg 009 is one of his most famous works, so he had to be represented in the League.

CUTIE HONEY : [link] Created by Go Nagai, she is the original kick-ass anime girl! She definitely had to be the one to take Wonder Woman's spot. She also has a limited shape-changing ability, which sort of covers J'onn J'onzz's main power. The design comes from the "Cutie Honey Flash" series, because I liked the colors better, but the face comes from Hideki Anno's "Re: Cutie Honey". She is totally beautiful! Go Nagai is one of the all time greats, and so one of his characters had to be on the League.

GOKU : [link] From Dragon Ball Z, created by Akira Toriyama. Well, who else is going to stand in for Superman? They pretty much have the same origin anyway, and they're both strong goody-two-shoes, so it absolutely had to be Goku! Incidentally, he's the only member of the League who comes from a series that is not named after the main character

LUPIN III : [link] Created by Monkey Punch. Kind of odd to have a thief in the Justice League, but still, he's a classic character who deserves recognition. I don't think he's really a bad guy anyway, and under the right circumstances, he could be a real hero. I put him in Batman's spot since they both use their own ingenuity rather than powers, and he also has the smooth talking and wise cracking attitude of the Flash. He's skinnier than the typical American super hero, so it was hard to make the composition work since he takes up less space than Batman. I did the best I could while still staying true to my intent.

ASTRO BOY : [link] Created by Osamu Tezuka. Come on now, an anime Justice League without The Mighty Atom? Ain't gonna happen! He's the single most famous and important anime character in history, so he had to be here! Although he is standing in Flash's spot, I've decided that he's taking Green Lantern's spot on the team, since they both can fly and shoot beams. I just put him and 009 in these spots because the poses worked better this way. His youthful nature would add a lot to a team like this. I mostly used the 2003 anime design for this, but added the seams around his joints and chest panel from the 80's anime to make him look more robotic. And I found a creative solution to making him stand at Flash's height.

SAILOR MOON : [link] Created by Naoko Takeuchi, she is one of the most recognizable figures in all of anime, especially here in Canada. As another important female anime character, I thought she should be on the team. I put her in this spot because I could make her hold her scepter just like Hawkgirl holds her mace. Originally I had almost finished painting her in her original costume, but then decided that she should have wings, so I painted over it with the Eternal costume instead. The wings help to fill out space and balance out the composition, which was lacking on the right side.

Some characters who didn't make the cut for one reason or another were Devilman, Makoto Kusanagi from Ghost in the Shell, and Tetsujin 28. If there was a pet, like the monkey in Super Friends, then it would be replaced by Doremon.

I painted it in Photoshop CS3. I started during the Summer of 2007 and only just finished it this week. Hope you enjoy it and please leave your comments!

I wish this was a real show!
Add a Comment:
 
:iconninja-jedi:
Ninja-Jedi Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2018
Can you think of anywhere Ranma Saotome would fit in?
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2018   Digital Artist
At the beginning of the story, we find that Goku, after having saved the world numerous times, now participates in worked fights in front of large stadium audiences. Other fighters would be different martial arts and wrestling themed characters, like Ranma and Kinnikuman. They would be fun background cameos of this was a real show, and maybe could amount to something bigger down the road. But too bad it's not!

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconninja-jedi:
Ninja-Jedi Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2018
I meant in the JL
Reply
:iconshadowman101:
Shadowman101 Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2018
This is amazing stuff!

Wonder who would be the anime Avengers though...
Reply
:iconmegamaster135:
megamaster135 Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2018
I won't lie about being immature. When i first saw this, I was a bit salty that Luffy from one piece got no recognition, and that I only recognized Goku and sailur moon. But then I realized, these are classic characters. Ones that have been around since nearly the beginning. So now, it makes much more sense. Respect for you dedication!
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2018   Digital Artist
I appreciate that! Thanks for the great comment!

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconsniktbub-iii:
Sniktbub-III Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2018  Hobbyist
10 years later, this is still a Blessed Image.
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2018   Digital Artist
Yeah! I've been mindful of how the 10th anniversary is coming up very soon. I still remember going through the struggle while working on it like it was yesterday.

Thanks for your comment.

Sayonara.
Reply
:icondany61:
Dany61 Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
¡¿Where is Kenshiro?!
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2018   Digital Artist
¡¿Where is Chargeman Ken?!

Sayonara.
Reply
:icondasha-doodles:
Dasha-Doodles Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Neat
Reply
:iconc-blaze21:
C-blaze21 Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2017
Love this concept!!!!!!!!!
Reply
:iconashleysalasmontemayo:
ashleysalasmontemayo Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2017  Student Artist
I only know Goku and Sailor Moon. Dragon 🐉 Ball
Reply
:iconraven120z:
raven120z Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2018  Professional Traditional Artist
Me too
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
I only know all of them.

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconlamp-p0st:
Lamp-P0st Featured By Owner Edited Nov 26, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
is it bad I only recognize 3 of the people here and only have watched one of the series out of those 3?
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
It's never to late to enjoy the classics. Plenty of free and legal ways to watch a lot of them!

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconjnta1234:
JNTA1234 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 26, 2017
Also this team doesn't really have a "DC Trinity", it's more like Goku, Astro Boy and everybody else. Actually, since their Japanese, this feels more like a Super Sentai/Power Ranger team. You got the Red Ranger/Leader (Goku), the rest of the core five rangers (009, Lupin, Honey, Moon), the Sixth Ranger (Astro Boy) and the Mentor who's also a Ranger (Harlock).
Reply
:iconjnta1234:
JNTA1234 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 19, 2017
I just realized if you use the traditional original Justice League from the comics, with Aquaman instead of Hawkgirl, Sailor Moon still fits because they're both royalty in another world, Sailor Moon's the Moon Princess and Aquaman's the ruler of Atlantis. Which also covers apart of Wonder Woman's character.

Obviously there's no real difference with Hal Jordan's Green Lantern instead of John Stewart's
Reply
:icondany61:
Dany61 Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Where is Kenshiro, the father of the Shonen, The First????
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
I don't know. Where is Chargeman Ken?

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconmadstarter:
MADstarter Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2017
This team has quite the sensational lineup of heroic characters, ninjatron! I wouldn't mind seeing Ash Ketchum in it, you know. :)
Reply
:iconelij09:
Elij09 Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2017  Hobbyist
we have a hulk
we have a goku......
Reply
:iconshadowninjamaster:
ShadowNinjaMaster Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
This is so COOL! :D
Reply
:iconcloud-dream:
Cloud-Dream Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Awesome!
Reply
:iconcyraka:
Cyraka Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
You forgot to add Amuro Ray from Gundam!!!!
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
I didn't forget. I simply chose not to use him because there were better options for the idea I was creating.

You forgot Chargeman Ken.

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconjamessilvers:
JamesSilvers Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2017  Hobbyist Artist
Lupin is the batman of the team.
Reply
:iconpowerman2000:
powerman2000 Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2017
Brilliant Idea!
I almost wanna get a crack at this! Anyone else try this besides you?
Im also thinking a legion of anime doomdom!

But ....ummmmm....lets be real. Lupin...i love you...but you gettin squished like a bug in the first round XD!
Atleast with the heavyweights these types of heroes can take on. Batman you are not sur! Hahaha XD
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
Thank you. I have also done an anime bad guy team.

There is more to being on a team like this than fighting. Lupin can't fight like Goku, but Goku can't hack a computer like Lupin.

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconpowerman2000:
powerman2000 Featured By Owner Edited Dec 22, 2017
Ya. I know.
Thats why i mentioned batman. Hes not just muscle/a great fighter (even though he is). Hes brains. Hes also an awesome detective, and just plain rich enough to have all those gorgeous toys (which he uses to great effect)
Lupin... atleast imho, lacks the tools to hold up with this group(even though i love the classic show). Thats just me. But....maybe im wrong! You seem to have insight that perjaps i dont in the anime realm. I cant say i am an expert. I just watched some Lupin back in teh day, and really liked playing the theme song on DDR lol. But i did not mean to offend you , or upset.

So ill just say...see ya space cowboy ;)
Reply
:iconcelest0285:
Celest0285 Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
CYBORG 009999999999
Reply
:iconshartist-hunter:
Shartist-Hunter Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This... Is... Badass! :iconbadassplz:
Reply
:icongordhanx:
gordhanx Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2017
Even though, I'm not overly familiar with most of these guys (don't judge me), this is still amazing to see. Just seeing the pioneers of anime together in one picture, is simply amazing to see.
Reply
:iconliepardmon555:
Liepardmon555 Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2017  Hobbyist
So tell me if I am wrong:

Goku=Superman
Cutie Honey=Wonder Woman
captain Harlock=Batman
Sailor Moon=Hawk Girl
Astro Boy=The Flash
Cyborg 009=Cyborg (ironically)
Lupin the Third=Green arrow (due to cockiness)

Right????
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
Almost but not entirely. It's based on the original Justice League artwork and for the most part, each character is standing in for the character that was in that spot on the original artwork. Except for 009 and Astro, who are swapped. But some personality characteristics are mixed around. As long as the team was well rounded, I was satisfied.

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconliepardmon555:
Liepardmon555 Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017  Hobbyist
Ah okay then.
Reply
:iconblaedin:
Blaedin Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2017
lol, Goku in the middle because he could beat each of their -bleep- in a solo or 1 v 6 because that guy is a god.
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
Right, because fighting is the only worthwhile skill that anyone can ever have. No, I disagree!

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconclassof2012:
Classof2012 Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2017
So is Astro Boy, Martian Manhunter?
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2017   Digital Artist
No. He's Astro Boy. That's more than good enough to be on this team.

Sayonara.
Reply
:iconblaedin:
Blaedin Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2017
don't think it would be possible you see he is using his jet feet that makes a very strong flame and as we know Martin Manhunter can't be anywhere near a flame.
Reply
:iconkairu-hakubi:
Kairu-Hakubi Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome, the classics!
Reply
:icongbmelendez23k:
GBMelendez23k Featured By Owner Edited Aug 18, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
I can't wait for the Justice League of anime unlimited
Reply
:iconmandarinmannen:
mandarinmannen Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2017
Where is luffy d monkey and naruto?
Reply
:iconblaedin:
Blaedin Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2017
Luffy Dumass monkey should not be there naruto I say yea he should
Reply
:iconmandarinmannen:
mandarinmannen Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2017
Why does not Luffy want to be there for?
Reply
:iconblaedin:
Blaedin Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2017
I am pretty sure Ichigo would wipe the floor with Luffy and claim a spot on the Justice League of anime.
Reply
:iconmandarinmannen:
mandarinmannen Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2017
I am very sure on that too!
Reply
:iconninjatron:
ninjatron Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2017   Digital Artist
I don't know. How could I know?
Where is Anpanman and Charge man Ken?

Sayonara.
Reply
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