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The Legend of Black Heaven

Season 1 1999

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  • 1999-07-08T14:00:00Z on WOWOW Prime
  • 25 mins
  • 5 hours, 24 mins (13 episodes)
  • Japan
  • Japanese
  • Anime
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Once he was Gabriel Tanaka, lead guitarist for Black Heaven, the hottest band around. His life was filled with passion and excitement, but no longer. Now he's just Ouji Tanaka, saddled with a mundane job, little pay, a shrewish wife, and a young son. The only thing he has left are the memories of his youth until an odd and beautiful woman asks him to pick up his guitar once more, and help save the galaxy with his song.

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13 episodes

1x01 (1) Stairway to Heaven

  • Series Premiere

    1999-07-08T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Somewhere in the depths of space two mighty space fleets clash. Meanwhile, back on Earth Oji Tanaka, once the lead guitarist for the hot heavy metal band Black Heaven has hit the wall. Oji cashed out of the rock biz and is now trapped in a life he considers a lie - that of a dull salaryman with a young family. But even as Oji tries to cling to his past, his ruthlessly practical wife Yoshiko, once the founder of his fan club, is throwing out his prized rock mementos to make room for their growing family. On the day he hits rock bottom, she trashes his last and most cherished Flying V guitar. His life changes forever when he meets the lovely Layla Yuki, a new employee in his office. Professing to be an old fan, she ushers a drunken Oji to a private stage secreted in the back of an empty model home and up a glowing stairway where she reunites him with his lost Flying V. Oji is overjoyed, and plays for her. But Layla isn't what she seems.

1x02 (2) All Night Long

  • 1999-07-15T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Oji wakes up the next morning wondering if his time with Layla was a dream, but she soon appears to assure him it wasn't, asking for his help to save her people. Oji assumes she's joking about inter-stellar battles, but he can't wait to play his guitar again, so he plays along with her story. They step through an office door and onto a large stage, where he plays the night away.
Oji's recent all-night disappearances have got Yoshiko steamed, but to make it up to her, Oji offers to take her to tour the new model homes in a nearby development. While there, though, Layla appears to tell him his playing is desperately needed, and leaves her three ditzy lackeys Kotoko, Eriko and Rinko to keep Yoshiko distracted. Oji really cranks his guitar this time. But while he beams, thinking he's playing in a trendy nightclub, his music is actually powering a super-powerful weapon that destroys an enemy fleet.

1x03 (3) Hot House

  • 1999-07-22T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Layla's commander and ex-lover Fomalhaut is determined to reproduce Oji's killer sound without depending on the artist himself. He dispatches her to more closely observe Oji, and, as a backup, also sends Kotoko, Eriko and Rinko to make more remote observations. Meanwhile, the other housewives living in the Tanakas' apartment building buzz with rumors that Oji has taken a lover, and while Yoshiko doesn't believe it, she is none-too-pleased when beautiful Layla shows up on their doorstep, on the young couple's anniversary no less, and proceeds to spend the entire day mooning over Oji's career. Matters don't improve when Kotoko, Eriko and Rinko decide to create a love nest for Layla and Oji when Yoshiko steps out to shop.

1x04 (4) Space Child

  • 1999-07-29T14:00:00Z — 24 mins

Oji agrees to watch Gen, the couple's son, while Yoshiko heads to a high school reunion. While strolling with the little tike in the park, Oji realizes that he knows virtually nothing about his son aside from the boy's total obsession over the TV show ""UFO Ranger Flying 5"" (which curiously stars a woman who looks just like Layla and seems to feature adventures which parallel Oji's own).
While watching Gen play, Oji gets a cell call from Layla who, with her fleet under attack, insists that he perform immediately. Oji drops everything, leaving his son in the park. As Oji revs up his sound, Gen sneaks aboard the mothership and immediately becomes a target for the ship's deadly defense systems.

1x05 (5) These Are the Days

  • 1999-08-05T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Oji Tanaka, formerly the lead guitarist of the '80s metal band Black Heaven, is walking on air. He's playing his guitar again, he's pulled out his old hip duds, and his Muse has returned - he's composing a new ballad. He bugs Layla about a chance to try his new song, and, based on his confidence, the aliens enter a key battle counting on increased power from his sound. Unfortunately, Oji's new mellow sound is utterly ineffective in powering the weapon, and it is only when Fomalhaut arrives to pull the plug that Oji finally twigs to the fact that he's participating in a galactic war - and that Earth will fall into jeopardy if they fail. Even worse, he learns that no one cares about his music beyond its ability to wreak destruction. His delusions and dreams shattered, Oji smashes his guitar and walks.

1x06 (6) Walk Away

  • 1999-08-19T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

His spirit crushed, Oji throws himself into his work, determined to put the ""childishness"" of his music career behind him - he even turns down a ticket to a rock concert held by his idol Michael Schenker. Meanwhile, the three alien ditzes Kotoko, Eriko and Rinko are dispatched to re-ignite Oji's passion for music - but, predictably, their hair-brained schemes fall apart. In the end, Layla simply hands him his restored Flying V. He accepts it without knowing why.

1x07 (7) In Need

  • 1999-08-26T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Fomalhaut's forces are taking a shellacking, forcing Layla to pilot one of their starfighters. To her shock, though, the ultimate weapon goes online and smashes the opposition. She rushes back to find Oji playing under the guidance of the beautiful but cold fleet scientist Hamil. It seems Oji has had a change of heart about playing. But, alas, something has gone out of his music, and the weapon is not as powerful as it once was. Suspecting the source of the problem, Hamil pounces on a startled Oji in a Tokyo alley, feigning a nearly sexual passion for his music. This reinvigorates Oji, but also brings Layla charging in. She sees that Hamil is manipulating Oji, and wanting to come by his talents more honestly, takes him back under her wing - which is actually what Hamil wanted all along. Meanwhile, Oji gets a brainstorm: If he alone can generate such power, what could a reunited Black Heaven accomplish?

1x08 (8) All Right Now

  • 1999-09-02T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Oji reunites with 3 of the 4 other members of Black Heaven in hopes of convincing them to reunite and start playing once again. Unfortunately no one showed up at the agreed time. Oji goes to try once again to convince the other members about restarting Black Heaven when he finally realizes that they all actually have families now with different priorities.

1x09 (9) Get Off Of My Cloud

  • 1999-09-09T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Figuring he could start another band, Oji makes up flyers for auditions and has 3 hits for it. Oji decides to accept them for their ""Outer space attitude"", except the 3 new members all have their quirks and start fighting amongst each other. Oji gets them to reconcile, and they plan to meet at the model homes the next day.
Oji is called to action, but the three members catch the wrong bus and end up in Aomori, 700km away. Oji ends up playing solo but breaks a guitar string. Just as he's about to give up, a drum beat is heard and lights are hit showing that 'Michael' Sato, 'Raphael' Suzuki and 'Luke' Yamada are all there to back Oji up. The band is back together! They easily blow away the enemy. Afterwards at the food cart Oji asks what made them decide to show up after all. And 'Raphael' keeps toasting (again&again&again...) to the belated reunion of Black Heaven.

1x10 (10) 10 Years Ago

  • 1999-09-16T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

The group is once again shown playing on Layla's ship, when they suddenly stop claiming a 'keyboard solo'; Fomalhaut screams to keep playing. They start up again saying keyboard solo over. The reason for not being able to have a full reunion is revealed due to the fact that Watanabe (the keyboardist) is dead (the true story behind his death courtesy of Yoshiko). The group tries to figure out who can fill his place when Layla suggests her self.

1x11 (11) Sweet Emotion

  • 1999-09-23T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

Layla shows up at the warehouse dressed in a 'Chinese waitress' style outfit. She's having problems the rapid changes in notes when trying to play Watanabe's role. Yoko confronts her about being a sort of home-wrecker. In order to boost Layla's confidence, Eriko, Kotoko, and Rinko put her through the most ridiculous training regiment. When about to try again with the rest of the guys, they are all called to action. Layla surprises the guys by nailing the keyboard bit. However, their power is canceled out by the enemy's secret weapon: a clone of Watanabe playing the same keyboard sequence as Layla.

1x12 (12) Into the Arena

  • 1999-09-30T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

After discovering that the enemy has created a 'Watanabe' clone, the group decides to start practicing some new stuff. The guys all tell their families that they have to go away for awhile and Yoko is the only one semi-against it. She believes that Oji is making up the whole story. The end of the episode has the group charging up onto a stage on a new ship created by Hamill named (by the guys) the 'Zappa'.

1x13 (13) The End

  • 1999-10-07T14:00:00Z — 25 mins

The enemy's Mecha-nabe is too much for the group to handle. It's capable of neutralizing their music. With one last option in mind, Oji calls home trying to get in contact with Yoshiko, who appears to be leaving him with divorce papers on the table. To his surprise, she shows up along with other people who were touched by Black Heaven's music. Oji starts to play the soft melody song from earlier episode. The rest of the group joins in and together they destroy Mecha-nabe. As the credits roll, Layla and Oji talk about how they're going their separate ways and how Oji will probably think it was all a dream. She gives him a little reminder to which he'll always know that it was real.

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