Aku


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Aku

(pop culture)
Aku, the merciless shapeshifter who describes himself as “the Master of Masters, the Deliverer of Darkness, the Shogun of Sorrow,” was created by animator Genndy Tartakovsky (who also developed the animated hit Dexter's Laboratory) in “The Beginning” (original airdate: August 10, 2001), the premiere installment of the Cartoon Network's Samurai Jack (2001–2004). Eons ago, a consortium of deities—Odin, Ra, and Rama—narrowly subdues a primeval entity of absolute malevolence. Yet a vestige of this amorphous evil survives, creeping like a virus across the globe, the eradication of the dinosaurs among its atrocities. Millennia later, after slaughtering countless Japanese warriors, the demonic force is wounded by a magic arrow but does not die, instead taking the form of Aku. After being imprisoned by an emperor who brandishes a supernatural sword, Aku escapes years later: “Once again, I am free to smite the world as I did in days long past.” He is challenged by the magic sword–wielding Samurai Jack, who has trained his whole life for the eventuality of Aku's return, but the shapeshifting menace banishes the young nomad to the future, “where my evil is law.” And thus Samurai Jack roams the Aku-ruled future Earth, with its dangerous robots, aliens, and Aku's minions (with sinister names like Demongo), seeking a chronal gateway to return to the past to defeat the Deliverer of Darkness before his global empire is built. (Tartakovsky initially drew fire for plagiarizing Frank Miller's similarly themed DC Comics 1983–1984 miniseries Ronin; nonetheless, Samurai Jack quickly established and maintained its own identity throughout its celebrated 52-episode run.) This colorful villain, a Kabuki horror emerging from hellfire, was bloodcurdlingly voiced by Japanese actor Mako, whose numerous film credits include The Sand Pebbles (1966), Conan the Barbarian (1982), and Bulletproof Monk (2003). Aku's malevolence inspired the video game Samurai Jack: The Shadow of Aku (2004), plus a “Flame Blade Aku” action figure and a 12-inch maquette. While Samurai Jack has been relegated to DVD collections and an occasional Cartoon Network rerun, its brave hero still battles Aku in the far-flung era.
References in periodicals archive ?
Only 60 people in Britain and 1,000 worldwide have AKU - among them Ann Kerrigan, of Bristol, who has been forced to have several operations because of it.
The patient used to have high-protein content meals but had changed her diet to one of low protein since being diagnosed with AKU.
Dr Lakshminarayan Ranganath, medical director for the AKU society, said: "At the moment all we can offer people with AKU is pain relief and lifestyle counselling.
Isaac Jebaraj, Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, India, said: "My work is focused on a Romani Community in South India, where we have identified approximately 100 cases of AKU.
Guests will never pay a resort fee when staying at the Daytona Beach Best Western Aku Tiki Inn.
This is also reflected by the fact that American Board of Clinical Neurophysiology now certifies AKU trainees enrolled in Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship programme after taking their examination in Pakistan.
The Best Western Aku Tiki Inn has an on-site restaurant called Traders.
Jamsheer Talati, Professor and Interim Chair, Department of Surgery, AKU.
In his speech, AKU President Mr Firoz Rasul, who has led the school's expansion over the past 8 years, urged the graduates to be the leaders of change their society so desperately needs: "At the core of leadership lies a restless desire to accomplish that which has never been done before, and the willing assumption of responsibility for the success of others.
Ten years ago he founded the AKU Society with his doctor, Dr Lakshminarayan Ranganath, and campaigned tirelessly for a centre for the genetic disease to help future generations.
But Samurai Jack is lifted further by its humour, its story lines and its imaginative plot, which centres around the ancient warrior who, after opposing an evil spirit called Aku, who was on the point of taking over the land, is thrown into the future by a magic spell, into a world ruled by Aku, and in which he is an outlaw.