The many works of Leiji Matsumoto are some of the oldest and most prolific series in history, as such some elements from those series appear in other works as fiction, often as tribute or parody.

Anime and MangaEdit

  • Excel Saga features a few references to the Leijiverse:
    • One episode has Excel being held in a South American detention camp along with another prisoner in an iron mask, who is ultimately revealed to look like Maetel.
    • Ms. Manager resembles Emeraldas.
    • A Harlock and Emeraldas stand-in appear in episode 22 uttering the character's famous lines.
  • The preview for the third episode of Gunbuster features the line "The sea of space is my sea!" is the famous first line of the Captain Harlock opening.
  • Captain Harlock's primary qualities "strong, silent, and unshakable" helped Naoko Takeuchi create Tuxedo Mask from the Sailor Moon series.
    • Sailor Moon also borrows heavily from Starzinger, Queen Millennia, and Galaxy Express 999.
  • Axel Row from Last Exile was modeled after Harlock.
  • Space Dandy's episode A Merry Companion is a Wagon in Space, Baby shows two alien hunters using Cosmo Dragoons.
    • In the same episode, a train that looks remarkably similar to the 999.
    • Another episode features the abandoned robot leader wearing a bullet-riddled worn hat similar to Tetsuro's.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann features several shout-outs based on the Leijiverse:
    • The show began with an homage to Arcadia of My Youth.
    • Kamina's father is modeled after some of Matsumoto's characters.
    • Simon after the time-skip aesthetically resembles Harlock.
    • The Super Galaxy Gurren Lagann is modeled after the Arcadia.
  • Towa no Quon features artwork that is based on Matsumoto's.


  • In one of Marvel's early Star Wars comics, Lando Calrissian wears a disguise that resemble's a palette swap of Captain Harlock's clothes.

Western AnimationEdit

  • In ReBoot, the city of Mainframe and (especially) the Supercomputer bear a striking resemblance to Planet Prometheum in the Galaxy Express 999 TV series.
    • One of ReBoot's main charaters, Dot Matrix, was voiced by the actress who voiced Maetel in the Viz redub of the Galaxy Express 999 movie.
    • Dot Matrix notably, like Maetel, also lives in a glitzy, futuristic setting, also had a scientist father who was disembodied in an accident, is also acting as the mother figure to a parentless child, and also has a name that means "mother".
  • An episode of Megas XLR featured a ship captain based on Captain Harlock inviting Coop and co. onto his ship.
  • Blue Diamond from Steven Universe was inspired by Leiji Matsumoto's artwork, her mysterious and ghostly appearance references Maetel as well as other women in the Leijiverse.[1]
    • Lars Barriga's title of Captain Lars references Captain Harlock including a similar costume as well as a scarred eye.

Light Novels Edit

  • Bodacious Space Pirates features several shout-outs to Space Opera series including from the Leijiverse:
    • In the first episode, the first line of the Captain Harlock theme song is used as a challenge and response by Ririka and her crew.
    • San-Daime's plastic model hobby references Yattaran.
    • A liner ship called Queen Esmeralda was brought up as a target for the Bentenmaru.


  • The episodes "Four to Doomsday" and "Enlightenment" of the original Doctor Who TV series are homages to Galaxy Express 999 and Space Pirate Captain Harlock, respectively.
    • The 21st-century revival series episode "Mummy on the Orient Express" is an even more blatant homage to Galaxy Express 999, to the point that one early visual of the titular train flying past a black hole copies a similar visual in GE999's penultimate episode practically detail-for-detail.
  • The short-lived Babylon 5 spinoff Crusade was rather similar in premise to Space Battleship Yamato.

Tabletop GamesEdit

  • In the Warhammer 40,000 Roleplay tabletop games, the legendary Rogue Trader Solomon Haarlock is presumably named after Captain Harlock and Robert E. Howard's Solomon Kane.

Video Games Edit

  • Infinite Space's Valentin and Celina resemble Harlock and Emeraldas.

References Edit