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Cover of early English translation, featuring Gon
Author Masashi Tanaka
Publisher Japan Kodansha
English publisher United States Paradox Press, CMX Manga
Demographic Seinen
Magazine Japan Morning
Original run 19922002
Volumes 7
Anime and Manga Portal

Gon is a tiny fictional dinosaur and the title character of a Japanese manga series created by Masashi Tanaka. The Gon series features the completely wordless adventures of the irascible title character as he interacts with the natural world, depicted by Tanaka in lush, realistic detail. Gon somehow survived the extinction of his fellow dinosaurs and interacts with paleolithic animals.

In 1998, the manga received an Excellence Prize at the Japan Media Arts Festival.



Gon's exact saurian species is never delved into. He vaguely resembles an outdated depiction of a generic carnosaur in a tripod stance, only about the size of a small dog. He is an omnivore with an enormous appetite. He possesses enormous power and endurance for his size, his feats of strength including supporting his own weight with his jaws, to being able to partially lift a fully grown African Elephant. His scaly hide is almost impenetrable, being able to shrug off the bites of larger predators.

Gon's intelligence seems to fluctuate in each adventure, ranging from total cluelessness (such as failing to notice a bird nest on his head for weeks), to strategic cunning (using a lion as a beast of burden to capture prey).

In Tekken 3, Gon is fireproof, has the ability to spit fireballs and use toxic farts. He vocalizes in chirps and shrieks, reminiscent of raccoons and parrots.

Manga history

Masashi Tanaka (Gon's creator) has said, "This work contains no dialog or onomatopoetic words. People always ask me why I have done this. From the beginning, I didn't think it was necessary. Manga should be without grammar. I also think that it is strange to give animals human language and make them talk. What I set out to do with Gon was to draw something that was more interesting than anything you could say in words. Manga still has great potential that does not exist in other media. I plan to continue developing the art of expression."

Gon's adventures are usually comedic with environmental connotations. There is very little continuity within the series, with Gon appearing in different countries and interacting with their respective fauna in almost every issue. He is often portrayed as being a short-tempered yet good-hearted creature, offering his help to the various animal friends he encounters in each issue.

The English edition of the manga was originally published by Manderin Publishing (UK, 1994) and Paradox Press (USA, 1996).

Manderin Publishing

  • Gon: ISBN 0749396857

Paradox Press

  • Gon: ISBN 1563897490
  • Gon on Safari: ISBN 1563896699
  • Gon Swimming: ISBN 1563893800
  • Gon Underground: ISBN 1563895919
  • Gon Wild!: ISBN 1563894742

CMX, a subset of DC Comics, finished publishing a seven volume series of Gon graphic novels in January 2009. Unlike the Paradox Press versions which were reversed for western readers, these novels are reproduced in their original right to left format.

Video game history

Gon using his fire breath against Jin Kazama in Tekken 3

Gon made his first video game appearance in the SNES game of the same name, Gon. This game featured Mario-like sidescrolling gameplay.

Gon is a licensed character appearing in Tekken 3. He is unlockable by defeating him in the Tekken Ball mode or by achieving a high score in Survival mode and inputing the name "GON". He is one of the two special hidden playable characters, along with Doctor Boskonovitch. It is unknown if Gon's appearance in Tekken 3 is canon or not. His appearance seems purely ornamental, considering no motive is given for him participating in the third King of Iron Fist Tournament. Gon's ending is the only ending in Tekken 3 that goes in a continuous loop. Gon's alternate costume for this game shows him with a turtle shell and blue gloves (The turtle shell being a reference to the time when Gon decided to wear a turtle shell that he found.). Gon is the only character in Tekken 3 who is barely affected by True Ogre's fire blast. It only does 1 damage point to Gon.

Theatrical Movie Release

Sprite Animation Studios has announced that Moto Sakakibara, co-director of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, will direct a theatrical CG Animation based on the Gon manga. The movie was due for release in 2009.

See also

External links

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