Blue Submarine No. 6

Blue Submarine No. 6

Cover of the original manga
(Ao no Roku-gō)
Genre Science fiction, Dieselpunk, Biopunk
Written by Satoru Ozawa
Published by Shogakukan
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Weekly Shōnen Sunday
Original run January 8, 1967November 5, 1967
Volumes 3
Ao no Roku-gō AO6
Written by Satoru Ozawa
Published by Seika Bunkansha
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Sebun Comics
Original run June 1997November 1998
Volumes 5
Original video animation
Directed by Mahiro Maeda
Studio Gonzo
Licensed by

‹See Tfd›

Released October 25, 1998 March 25, 2000
Runtime 30 minutes
Episodes 4

Blue Submarine No. 6 (青の6号 Ao no Roku-gō, literally "Blue No.6"), officially translated in Japan as "Blue Sub 006", is a post-apocalyptic 3-volume manga series written and illustrated by Satoru Ozawa. The manga was published in 1967 by Shogakukan, and was serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday magazine.

When the OVA adaptation was announced by Gonzo, the manga was revised into 5 volumes under the new name Ao no Roku-gō AO6 (青の6号 AO6). It was published by Seika Bukansha and was serialized in Sebun Comics magazine on June 1997. The OVA series was released in 2000. The OVA had also received two video games for the PlayStation and Dreamcast.

Both manga and OVA have received mixed to negative reviews due to the poor plot and characters, however it was praised for its computer-generated animation.



The story sets in the distant future, when the Earth's oceans have risen and flooded most of the sea-lying land on Earth.

The rogue scientist Zorndyke caused the flooding, which killed countless individuals, and most of humanity's remaining cities have been attacked or destroyed by Zorndyke's army of half-animal "hybrids". The remaining humans begin to wage war against Zorndyke's seagoing creations for survival. Humanity's best hope for a resolution to the conflict lies with its submarine forces, among which is the focus of the story, Blue Submarine #6. It is revealed that Zorndyke is attempting to decisively end the conflict in the favor of his hybrid children by artificially inducing a polar switch using geothermal energy at the South Pole.




The original Blue Submarine No. 6 manga was written by Satoru Ozawa and serialized Shogakukan's Shōnen Sunday magazine from January 8 to November 5, 1967.[1] Three tankōbon (collected chapter books) were released by Akita Shoten between March and August 1974. The manga was later revised and reworked with new cover illustrations provided by Kazutaka Miyatake to compliment the OVA adaptation. The manga was released under the new subtitle AO6. This version was published by Seika Bunkansha and serialized in Sebun Kansha magazine. The manga has been collected into five volumes with new cover art and recollected within two volume Kanzenban format released October 1999.[2][3] Another two-volume collection was released on June 20, 2011.[4][5]

Ao no Roku-gō
No.Release date ISBN
1 March 1974[6]ISBN 9784253014762
  1. Musuka Raigeki-sen no maki (ムスカ雷撃戦の巻 Musuka's Lightning War Chapter)
  2. Roku-gō tōjō!! (6号登場!! No.6 Appears!!)
  3. Kaisen Arawaru!! (怪潜あらわる!! Kaisen Appears!!)
  4. Furippā no Tōin (フリッパーの東員 Toin's Flipper)
  5. Makkusu (マックス Max)
  6. Berugu shōsa (ベルグ少佐 Major Berg)
  1. Ao-gō shūketsu (青号集結 Blue No. Gathering)
  2. Pairon-gō (パイロン号)
  3. Nokotta ichi seki (残っ た一せき One Seat Remaining)
  4. Raibaru (ライバル Rival)
  5. Yamato Wandā no maki (ヤマトワンダーの巻 Yamato Wonder Chapter)
2 July 1974[7]ISBN 9784253014779
  1. Āā Yamato! (ああヤマト! Oh Yamato!)
  2. Makkusu tōjō!! (マックス登場!! Max Appears!!)
  3. Hōtō gyorai (砲塔魚雷 Torpedo Turret)
  4. Saibōgu (サイボーグ Cyborg)
  1. Yamato hakken (ヤマト発見 Yamato Discovery)
  2. Yamato no Taiketsu (ヤマトの対決 Confrontation of Yamato)
  3. Ao Roku yabu reru (青6破れる)
  4. Sora kara no kōgeki (空からの攻撃 Attacks From the Sky)
3 August 1974[8]ISBN 9784253014786
  • Ao no Roku-gō (青の6号 Blue No.6)
  1. Honkyoku osowaru!! (本局襲わる!! Osowaru Headquarters!!)
  2. Oshidasa reta Ao Roku (おしだされた青6 The Extruded Blue 6)
  3. B-gō pusshu (B号プッシュ)
  4. Fujō shita honkyoku (浮上した本局 Headquarters has Emerged)
  5. Namida no saikai (涙の再会 Reunion of Tears)
  1. Himitsu keikaku (秘密計画 Secret Plan)
  2. Makkusu metsubō (マックス滅亡 Max Destruction)
  • D Rain (Dライン D Line)
  1. Raigeki-sen yoi (雷撃戦用意 Lightning Warefare)
  2. Shitō (死闘 Mortal Combat)
  3. Shukumei (宿命 Fate)
Ao no Roku-gō AO6
No.TitleRelease date ISBN
1Sōgū-hen (遭遇編)June 1997[9]ISBN 9784418975174
2Kakutō-hen (格闘編)September 1997[10]ISBN 9784418975181
3Kaisen-hen (会戦編)November 1997[11]ISBN 9784418975211
4Gekisen-hen (激戦編)March 1998[12]ISBN 9784418975297
5Sōryoku-hen (総力編)November 1998[13]ISBN 9784418985142


The OVA version was directed by Mahiro Maeda, written by Hiroshi Yamaguchi, and character designs provided by Range Murata and Takuhito Kusanagi.[14] It uses a hybrid approach, combining 3D computer graphics with traditional animation, and is a pioneering example of this technique. The jazzy and atmospheric score was provided by rock n' roll big band The Thrill.

The OVA adaptation was released in the United States on April 4, 2000. Bandai Entertainment originally announced that it would air on July 8, 2000 on Cartoon Network's Toonami block, however, Toonami had made no confirmation.[15] Bandai then confirmed that it was delayed until October due to production issues.[16] It aired in the United States on Cartoon Network's Toonami block on November 6 to November 9, 2000.[17][18]

A DVD box set was released in Japan titled Ao no Roku-gō Blue Fleet Box (青の6号 BLUE FLEET BOX). The box set contained 3 discs with the first two containing two episodes each. The third disc contains interviews from Satoru Ozawa, Mahiro Maeda along with the OVA staff, trailers and interviews for the PlayStation video game Ao no Roku-gō Antartica.[19]

The anime was initially licensed by Bandai Entertainment until their shutdown in 2012.[20] Discotek Media has since licensed the OVA and re-released on DVD and Blu-ray in September 24, 2013.[21] However issues were raised when Discotek Media accidentally added in the dub of the Toonami version. Discotek stated that the dub was received from the Blue Fleet box set in which uses the dub of the Toonami version with some modifications to fit into Cartoon Network's standards and practices. Discotek continues to state that they were unaware of there being two versions and will release a single disc DVD with the original dub from Bandai Entertainment along with Japanese Audio and subtitles in 2015.[22]

No. Title Release date
1 "Blues"  October 25, 1998 (1998-10-25)[23]
2 "Pilots"  February 25, 1999 (1999-02-25)[24]
3 "Hearts"  August 25, 1999 (1999-08-25)[25]
4 "Minasoko"  March 25, 2000 (2000-03-25) [26]


Two soundtracks for the OVA have been released. The first soundtrack is titled Ao no 6-gō Original Soundtrack Part.1 (青の6号 オリジナル・サウンドトラック Part.1) and was released on October 28, 1998.[27] The second soundtrack is titled Ao no 6-gō Original Soundtrack Part.2 (青の6号 オリジナル・サウンドトラック Part.2) and was released on April 28, 1999.[28]

Two Japan-exclusive video games based on the Blue Submarine No. 6 OVA have been released. The first is titled, Ao no Roku-gō: Antarctica (青の6号 Antarctica), and was developed and published by Bandai for the PlayStation and released on September 28, 2000.[29] A soundtrack sharing the same name of the video game was released on July 28, 2000.[30]

The second video game titled, Ao no Roku-gō: Saigetsu fumahito -Time and Tide- (青の6号 歳月不待人 -TIME AND TIDE- Blue No.6 Inactive Machibito Year -Time and Tide) was developed and published by Sega for the Dreamcast on December 7, 2000.[31]

In 2005, Shōji Murahama of Gonzo stated with NewWords Magazine that a live-action Blue Submarine No. 6 film will be produced for approximately 10 billion yen (US$84 Million). Masahiko Ōkura has been confirmed to direct the movie. This is to be G.D.H.'s first live-action project with 30 more live-action projects under consideration.[32] However, since the announcement, there has been no news nor reports of any progress.


Eric Luce of Ex criticized the second manga for its characters and pacing stating, "This manga moves so slowly, one is tempted just to skip pages at a time to find a scene where something is happening. The characters seem to exist without a past so they lack any real depth."[33]

The Blue Submarine No. 6 OVA was ranked as the 70th best anime of all time by the Japanese magazine Animage.[34] It was ranked 25th best anime of all time by Wizard's Anime Invasion.[35] The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation awarded the it "Best OVA, U.S. Release" for 2000.[36]

Anime News Network praised the OVA for its animation stating, "Oceanscapes are beautifully rendered, aircraft looks extremely realistic, and the underwater fighting is simply breathtaking." However criticized the characters stating, "The characters, although nicely designed, are sparsely drawn and shaded, and there is absolutely no personality to them whatsoever."[37] Eric Luce also praised the graphics and animation stating, "The producers of this show are pushing many boundaries in composition and editing. [sic] this show is probably one of the best uses so far of integrating the two."[38] Bryce Coulter of Mania criticized the plot stating, " The flashy production and great musical score doesn't mean a whole lot without a decent plot. Blue Submarine No. 6 tends to ride the fence in this area."[39] Carlos Ross of THEM Anime Reviews initially praised the series for its graphics, plot and characters. However a decade after the review and CGI and cel shading became the norm in animation, he updated his review criticizing the characters and plot. He had since referred it as a transition between classic "acetate age" and the modern computerized form of Japanese animation.[40]

For the Blu-ray release of the OVA, Anime News Network gave a more positive review stating, "Despite some dated-looking CG, on the whole Blue Submarine No. 6 stands up surprisingly well. Its writing flaws may have become more apparent over time, but it can still be a thrilling view and its roughly 120 minute total length keeps the story so compact that viewers do not have much opportunity to get bored."[41] Helen McCarthy in 500 Essential Anime Movies claimed that anime had "an interesting story, beautifully animated, with some jaw-droppingly good design concepts". She praised the characters design, especially Zorndyke's and stated that director Maeda "is one of the most imaginative visualists in anime".[42]

See also


  1. "NDL-OPAC(Detailed Record)". National Diet Library (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-11-10.
  2. 復刻版 青の6号 上巻 (in Japanese). JBook. Archived from the original on June 4, 2014. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  3. 復刻版 青の6号 下巻 (in Japanese). JBook. Archived from the original on June 4, 2014. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  4. "青の6号〔完全版〕(上) (マンガショップシリー ズ) (マンガショップシ リーズ 426) [コミック]" [Blue No. 6 [full version] (First) (Manga Shop Series) (Manga Shop Series 426) [Comic]] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2013-01-02.
  5. "青の6号〔完全版〕 (下)(完) (マンガショッ プシリーズ) (マンガ ショップシリーズ 427) [コミック]" [Blue No. 6 [full version] (Final) (End) (Manga Shop Series) (Manga Shop Series 427) [Comic]] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2013-01-02.
  6. "青の6号〈1〉 (1974年) (サンデー・コミックス) [古書]" [Blue Submarine No. 6 <1> (1974) (Sunday Comics) [Old Books]] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  7. "青の6号〈2〉 (1974年) (サンデー・コミックス) [古書]" [Blue Submarine No. 6 <2> (1974) (Sunday Comics) [Old Books]] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  8. "青の6号〈3〉 (1974年) (サンデー・コミックス) [古書]" [Blue Submarine No. 6 <3> (1974) (Sunday Comics) [Old Books]] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  9. 青の6号 1 遭遇編 (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  10. 青の6号 2 格闘編 (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  11. 青の6号 3 会戦編 (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  12. 青の6号 4 激戦編 (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  13. 青の6号 5 総力編 (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  14. "Discotek Media Adds Blue Submarine No. 6 Video Anime". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2013-02-01.
  15. "Toonami Madness". Anime News Network. June 7, 2000. Retrieved 2014-02-15.
  16. "Bandai Delays". Anime News Network. July 17, 2000. Retrieved 2014-02-15.
  17. "New Toonami Schedule". Anime News Network. October 27, 2000. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  18. "Blue Submarine No.6... Finally". Animefringe. October 23, 2000. Retrieved 2014-02-22.
  19. "青の6号 BLUE FLEET BOX〈完全初回限定生産・DVD3枚+CD3枚・6枚組〉 [DVD]" (in Japanese). DC Journal. Retrieved 2014-02-21.
  20. "Companies make announcements at A-kon". Anime News Network. June 6, 1999. Retrieved 2013-02-01.
  21. "North American Anime, Manga Releases, September 22–28". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2014-02-15.
  22. "Discotek Issues Statement on Blue Submarine No. 6 Dub". Anime News Network. June 6, 1999. Retrieved 2014-02-15.
  23. "青の6号 Vol.1「BLUES」" (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  24. "青の6号 Vol.2「PILOTS」" (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  25. "青の6号 Vol.3「HEARTS」" (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  26. "青の6号 Vol.4「MINASOKO」" (in Japanese). JBook. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  27. "青の6号 オリジナル・サウンドトラック Part.1" (in Japanese). Jbook. Retrieved 2014-02-21.
  28. "青の6号 オリジナル・サウンドトラック Part.2" (in Japanese). Jbook. Retrieved 2014-02-21.
  29. "青の6号 Antarctica" (in Japanese). Sony Computer Entertainment. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  30. "青の6号 Antarctica" (in Japanese). Jbook. Retrieved 2014-02-21.
  31. "青の6号 歳月不待人 -TIME AND TIDE-" (in Japanese). Sega. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  32. "Blue Submarine No. 6 Live-Action". Anime News Network. November 28, 2005. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  33. Luce, Eric. "Blue Submarine No.6". Ex. Archived from the original on May 30, 2000. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  34. "Animage Top-100 Anime Listing". Anime News Network. January 15, 2001. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  35. "Wizard lists Top 50 Anime". Anime News Network. July 16, 2001. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  36. "SPJA awards". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  37. "Blue Submarine #6 DVD 1 - Blues". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  38. Luce, Eric. "Blue Submarine No.6 Episode 1: Blues". Ex. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  39. Coulter, Bryce. "Blue Submarine No.6 Anime Legends Complete Collection". Mania. Retrieved 2013-01-01.
  40. Ross, Carlos. "Blue Submarine No.6". T.H.E.M. Anime Reviews. Retrieved 2013-01-02.
  41. Martin, Theron (February 10, 2014). "Blue Submarine No.6 Blu-Ray - Complete Collection". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2014-02-15.
  42. McCarthy, Helen. 500 Essential Anime Movies: The Ultimate Guide. — Harper Design, 2009. — P. 16. — 528 p. — ISBN 978-0061474507
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