I’ve been playing Valkyrie Profile recently, and have been thinking about how prevalent Norse mythology is in Japanese media whether it be anime, manga, or games. Odin Sphere, Legend of the Galactic Heroes, and the Little Norse Prince just to name a few. I guess I could just take it for granted, but where’s the fun in that?
While American culture does incorporate Norse mythology in some ways, Greek and Roman themes tend to be more common in America. This makes sense since the founding fathers were really big into Roman and Greek history, and we see that in American architecture and law. So because of that influence, we see a lot of the Greek/Roman pantheon in American media whether it be as those specific characters or archetypes as in the Illiad and the Odyssey.
Is there such a story in Japan of Norse mythology being particularly influential? We do see some instances of Greek/Roman influence in the Shin Megami Tensei games, but it seems like Norse mythos is more predominant in Japanese culture. Could this maybe be because of Germany’s influence in Japan during the early 20th century? That could make sense since we see some words of Germanic origin appear in Japanese media (eg. Wanzers in Front Mission).
I’m honestly not sure, but I’ve always been curious about this. Does anyone have any insight into this or is also curious about this phenomenon?