The Greek god Hypnos (眠りを司る神 ヒュプノス, Nemuri wo Tsukasadoru Kami Hyupunosu, lit. meaning "God who rules over Sleep") is one of the antagonist deities featured in the universe of the Manga Saint Seiya, authored by Masami Kurumada, and later adapted to Anime. He was created by Kurumada based on the mythologic persona of the same name.
As in Greek mythology, he is the personification of sleep and slumber, and the twin brother of Thanatos, the Greek god who personifies death and mortality. In Kurumada's mythos, although he is a subordinate of Hades, the Emperor of the Darkness and ruler of the Underworld, he is a deity with all attributes, and as his lord, he is a sworn enemy of the protector goddess of the Earth, Athena.
Kurumada introduced Hypnos in the final parts of the Hades.
The arc of his manga, specifically in vol. 27, and his portrayal is similar to that of his Greek Mythology counterpart: Calm, calculating, and serene. Unlike his brother Thanatos, who is prone to lose his temper and act without any regard for consequences when influenced by rage, Kurumada's Hypnos remains calm and in control of himself even in the most critical situations. He is more cautious and thoughtful of strategy and consequence, never letting impudence or recklessness take over him. He is highly respectful of the authority of his lord, Hades.
Hypnos spent 243 years sealed in a box marked with the Seal of Athena, and only regained his freedom after the box was opened by a curiosity-driven 3 year-old Pandora, to whom both Thanatos and Hypnos announced that the resurrection of Hades was near, and that she would serve them henceforth. Afterward, both deities bestowed on Pandora the power to rule and command Hades' personal army, the fierce 108 Demon Stars, also known as Specters.
As described by the Pegasus Saint Pegasus Seiya when they first encountered, he is identical to his brother Thanatos, the only differences being Hypnos' golden eyes and hair, as opposed to Thanatos' silver. A strange looking star, identical to a Hexagram, is placed in his forehead.
Kurumada designed Hypnos likeness based in classical representations of the deity in Greek sculpture and art: a beautiful young man with a wing sprouting from the left side of his head, similarly as Thanatos was represented, one of the differences between both was Thanatos's wing, that sprouted from the opposite side. As Hypnos was often depicted surrounded by wings or feathers in Greek sculpture and art, Kurumada also included this motif in his design for his rendition of Hypnos, reflecting it mostly in his Surplice.
Hypnos dwelling place is the Elysion, and he spends most of his time there accompanied by scores of Nymphs, and his twin brother Thanatos, waiting to fulfill their lord Hades's bidding. In the same way as his brother Thanatos, Hypnos offered fierce opposition to the Saints of Athena, when they tried to rescue their goddess from certain death and stop Hades's Greatest Eclipse, which was meant to eradicate mankind.
Hypnos' divine power allows him to induce all kinds of living beings into deep slumber, and whether his victim reawakens or sleeps for eternity depends on his whim. Before his formal introduction in the anime adaptation, he was featured in the opening of the Inferno stage of the Hades arc episodes (episode 128 and on), standing next to his brother Thanatos, and overshadowed by Hades. His full appearance in the anime adaptation occurred in 2008, in the final episodes that adapt the last two volumes of the manga, in which his participation is contained (vols. 27 and 28), 16 years after Kurumada introduced him in the manga. From episode 142 and on, his silhouette in the opening of the anime adaptation revealed his features fully.
Abilities and attributesHypnos' unleashes his Eternal Drowsiness, in a panel from the manga, vol.27. Drawing by the author Masami Kurumada.As the god of sleep, Hypnos main attribute is the ability to instantly induce any kind of living being into deep slumber. Being a deity, he wields the Big Will, or Divine Cosmo, in the same way as his twin brother, and Hades and Poseidon. His power also has effect on divine beings, as he was capable of forcing Athena into sleep to place her inside the Sacred Amphor of the Elysion, that would slowly kill her by sucking her blood.
Hypnos' ability is manifested through his special technique, the Eternal Drowsiness. His victim falls into a heavy slumber, and cannot reawaken unless it is Hypnos' will. The god of sleep will always utilize it to disable his victim, as he himself stated he hates violence and death. Even though the Eternal Drowsiness is a powerful technique, its effect can be reverted by the blood of a deity, as Hypnos stated in vol.28, after targeting Andromeda Shun with this attack. Also, its effect can be neutralized by a highly powerful Cosmo attack, as Cygnus Hyouga and Dragon Shiryuu discovered after resurrecting their Bronze Cloths as Divine Cloths, due to the influence of Athena's blood and charging their Cosmo up to the extreme.As Hypnos added, aside from the mentioned effect of the Eternal Drowsiness, it is harmless for the victim, and it can be compared to a pleasant sleep.
Fierce duel in the dwelling of the Gods
Kurumada showed Hypnos for the first time during the battle that his brother Thanatos sustained when engaging the Pegasus Saint Seiya, upon the arrival of the latter to the Elysion after the destruction of the Wailing Wall, to deliver Athena's Cloth. After gravely wounding Seiya for the sin of tainting the Elysion fields, Thanatos was ready to inflict death on the Saint. It was in that moment that the god of sleep arrived at the scene and prevented Thanatos from tainting the Elysion any further with bloodshed.
Thanatos stated that the efforts of the Saint in behalf of Athena were futile, as he believed Hypnos had already murdered Athena. Thanatos was shocked to learn that his brother had not finished Athena off, but only induced her into a deep slumber, fearing Hades wrath if blood was spilled in the divine dwelling. Hypnos added that after forcing Athena to sleep, he had imprisoned her within the Sacred Amphora, where she would bleed to death, her ultimate fate depended on Hades will. Upon hearing this, Seiya rose to his feet and desperately sought to save his goddess' life. Hypnos let him go, and advised Thanatos not to underestimate the Saint, because he sensed he was no ordinary warrior, but one who could attack with the ferocity of a cornered beast. Thanatos was amused by his brother's remark. Finishing his words, Hypnos left the scene, heading to Hades' temple, where Athena was being held, and where Hades' body rested since the ages of myth.Athena is imprisoned by Hypnos, within the Sacred Amphora, in a panel from the manga, vol.28. Drawing by the author Masami Kurumada.After a desperate battle, Seiya was finally defeated by Thanatos. The god of death once again was ready to inflict death on Seiya after torturing him, along with his sister Seika and his Bronze and Silver Saint comrades back on Earth. In that crucial moment, the Bronze Saints Andromeda Shun, Cygnus Hyouga and Dragon Shiryuu and Phoenix Ikki arrived at the Elysion and relieved Seiya of such a terrible fate. All five Bronze Saints were overpowered again by the murderous rage of Thanatos, who managed to destroy their Bronze Cloths and even five of the legendary Gold Cloths, that Poseidon had sent to Elysion to assist the Saints in the battle against Hades, and having taken Athena's Cloth from them, was ready to impart death on the brave warriors. Never willing to surrender and drawing renewed strength from Athena's words that reached him through his Cosmo, and by and indomitable will to survive to save Athena and to reunite with his sister at long last, Seiya rose to his feet once again. By burning his Cosmo up to the limit and because of the influence of Athena's blood on the Pegasus Cloth, its shards became ablaze. To Thanatos disbelief, the shattered Pegasus Cloth revived, but it was no longer an ordinary Bronze Cloth. Imbued with the blood of a goddess, the Pegasus Cloth had resurrected and reached its Divine Cloth state, being granted incredible power, that equalled that of the Divine Cloths that only the 12 Olympian Gods were allowed to wear.
Influenced by rage, Thanatos refused to believe that a human could pose any threat for him and attacked the Pegasus Saint fiercely, who now possessing far greater power generated by his Cloth, easily avoided the attacks and retrieved Athena's Cloth. Shrugging Thanatos, Seiya left the scene to help Athena, as time was running out. Feeling insulted, once again Thanatos lost his temper and attacked Seiya, who repelled his Terrible Providence attack and fought back with a powerful Pegasus RyuuSeiKen, that toppled Thanatos and destroyed his Surplice. Rising once again, Thanatos, determined not to be humiliated by a being he considered inferior to a worm, attacked recklessly. Seiya avoided the deity's attack and launched a counterattack in the form of an extremely powerful flying punch, tearing through Thanatos' body. Utterly humiliated and defeated, Thanatos finally met his end at the hands of one of the beings he hated so much.
Meanwhile, at Hades' temple, the god of sleep Hypnos was feeling uneasy, as he thought Thanatos was taking too long to kill the Bronze Saints. Feeling the immense Cosmo emitted by Seiya's Divine Pegasus Cloth, Hypnos realized his fears had come true: the Saints of Athena wouldn't be easily defeated. He remembered that the same phenomenon had occurred millennia ago, in the ages of myth, when they had fought Athena and her Saints, who, in that age, had their Cloths anointed with the blood of an unrevealed deity, and were capable of the same feat of making their Cloths reach their Divine states.
Hypnos repels Phoenix Ikki with ease, in a panel from the manga, vol.28. Drawing by the author Masami Kurumada.Very worried, Hypnos arrived to the place were the battle against his brother was taking place, and despite all his warnings, Thanatos found death at the hands of Seiya. Realizing that Seiya was headed to Hades' temple, Hypnos tried to attack him, but was stopped by Phoenix Ikki. Ikki was defeated by Hypnos and in the moment he was going to kill him, he was stopped by the chains of Andromeda Shun. Hypnos was surprised to discover that Shun still possessed the chains of the Andromeda Cloth, as he thought his brother Thanatos had destroyed the Bronze Cloths. Thanatos did so, but the Cloths were able to resurrect by Athena's blood and the extreme Cosmo of the Saints. In disbelief, he witnessed as how Shun was enveloped by the beautiful and immensely powerful Divine form of the Andromeda Cloth, a moment of distraction Ikki took advantage of to head to Hades' temple, to assist Seiya.
Knowing that the three remaining Saints truly posed a serious threat to him, Hypnos fought back, and unleashed a mighty attack on shy Shun, the terrible Eternal Drowsiness. Hypnos stated that he hated violence and death, so he would resort to the Eternal Drowsiness to disable his opponents. Shun entered a state of deep slumber and would remain asleep eternally. Hypnos feared that Athena's blood might have the power to awaken Shun, so to his regret, he decided to kill the Andromeda Saint in that moment.
Hypnos was stopped by the shock of the resurrection of Hyouga's Cygnus Cloth and Shiryuu's Dragon Cloth, which also reached their Divine states in that crucial moment. Believing he could dispose of the Saints as easily as he did with Shun, Hypnos unleashed once again his deadly Eternal Drowsiness. He was in for a surprise, as Shiryuu and Hyouga benefited of one of the most basic techniques that a Saint learns during his or her training: a technique a Saint has witnessed won't have any effect twice on them. Dodging Hypnos' attack, Shiryuu and Hyouga focused on the Eternal Drowsiness with a powerful Cosmo attack and neutralized it completely. The force of their attacks reached Hypnos, whose Surplice was shattered, and his body obliterated.
Collapsing, Hypnos warned the Bronze Saints that Seiya had to be stopped. Hypnos knew that Seiya would eventually discover that Hades' true body rested at the Sacred Temple, where Athena was being held captive, and try to destroy it. The god of sleep feared that, if Seiya succeeded in doing so, their surroundings, the Elysion and the Underworld, would crumble and disappear, because they were sustained by the life of their creator, Hades, the Emperor of the Darkness. Also, Hypnos knew his brother Thanatos' body and he himself would also disappear, and he warned the Saints that they would suffer the same fate.
Hypnos meets his end, as he is finally killed by Hyouga and Shiryuu, in vol.28. Drawing by the author Masami Kurumada.Some moments later, Hades's soul was able to possess his true body and engaged Ikki and Seiya in battle. Hypnos realized it and warned Shiryuu, Hyouga and Shun that they wouldn't be able to defeat a god of such a terrible might as Hades. Having said so with his last ounces of strength, Hypnos finally fell and died.
Never hesitating to fight to the last consequences, and to sacrifice their lives to protect Athena and the peace of Earth, the five Saints knew they would have to offer their lives in exchange for the salvation of Earth and all its living beings. Having delivered Athena's Cloth to her after Hades accidentally fred her from the Amphora with a reckless attack, and engaging the lord of the Underworld in a bloody battle, assisting and protecting their goddess, the warriors were able to defeat the Emperor of the Darkness with a force of immeasurable might that was unknown to him: Love.
In disbelief, Hades met the same cruel fate he had imposed on living beings during millennia, and as Hypnos said, the Elysion fields and the Underworld vanished. Athena and her Saints, the final victors, having stopped Hades' Great Eclipse and the schemes of his subordinates Hypnos and Thanatos, and having saved all life on Earth, finally returned to a world filled with light.
The Lost Canvas
Main Article: Hypnos ( TLC )He first appears as a priest from the cathedral located deep in the forest to persuade Alone, who at the time had trouble finding fitting colors for his painting, to look for a fruit that yields the True Red, the color that surpasses all colors. He subsequently convinces the grieving Alone to believe that death is the ultimate and final liberation of all things, thereby making him accept his destiny as Hades's corporal vessel. And, like his brother Thanatos, he is able to give a fraction of his power to someone else, as Pandora is briefly seen with the same hexagram star on her forehead. While indifferent to his brother's and sons' deaths, he further convinced Alone to embrace the darkness of Hades' essence, and then stood up against the invading Saints, defeating easily (albeit off-panels) Shion and Yuzuriha, and then engaging Hakurei. It was then he used his attack Encounter Another Field (エンカウンタアナザーフィールド, Enkaunta Anazā Fīrudo?), which brings any of his opponents' dreams to reality. After being distracted by the energy ball that Hakurei made out of the summoned, fallen Saints from the previous Holy War, Hypnos is finally sealed by Hakurei who uses his young-age soul.
As God of Sleep, Hypnos has the ability to put their opponents in a state of eternal sleep leaving them defenseless and vegetative. You can also take their opponents for the World of Dreams (Yumekai) that is ruled by him and his sons, the god of dreams. You can also manipulate the dreams and nightmares of his victims when they are in a state of eternal sleep. Also has advanced warrior skills. It can be argued whether he is the strongest of the twins, as he prefers a more subtle and passive way to attack his opponents by manipulating dreams and reality instead of using the aggressive means of his brother.
Eternal Sleep (エターナルドラウジネス, Etānaru Doraujinesu,, "Eternal Drowsiness") Hypnos concentrates his cosmos, raising his right arm in the air, on the same axis while his left arm is pointing to the ground.An area of darkness is created and involves Hypnos and his victims, a sort of limbo, where the enemy fleet confused and stripped of their willingness to fall unconscious plunged into an eternal sleep, while sleep horrific images of death and floating in limbo god sleep, then uses his powers to sink floating opponent confused and stripped of his vountade, falling unconscious in an eternal sleep, sleep while horrific images of death and floating in limbo, then the god of sleep uses his powers to sink their enemies in an eternal sleep.
Another Encounter With Reality (エンカウンタアナザーフィールド, Enkaunta Anaza Firudo, the English "Encounter Another Field"): Only appears on Lost Canvas. Hypnos takes his opponents to the World of Dreams. There, Hypnos has total control over minds and bodies of its enemies can imprison them in dreams, delusions and nightmares. Hypnos is capable of making your dreams real, and can, for example, changing the place of combat in a mountain range, can also precipitate their opponents from the top of a mountain with an altitude of 10,000 feet, or designing meteorites. While not look real, the damage is what they are. This technique is very dangerous because of its almost unlimited potential.
- Hypnos' intervention in Kurumada's manga is somewhat shorter than that of his brother Thanatos.
- Hypnos' image was engraved on the Wailing Wall, as well as his brother Thanatos'.
- Both deities appear in the still non-canon sidestory Saint Seiya Lost Canvas, assisting Hades in his incarnation in the 18th century.
- As Kurumada uses the revered Osamu Tezuka's Star System technique (a stable cast of characters which play a different or similar role in the author's various works, sometimes with the same personality and sometimes with an entirely new one), Hypnos' appearance is very similar to the design he gave to Fou Lafiene, a character in B't X, a manga that Kurumada wrote and drew years after Saint Seiya.
- Saint Seiya manga vols. 27 & 28, by Masami Kurumada.
|Saint Seiya||Athena • Nike|
|Saint Seiya||Poseidon • Hades • Hypnos • Thanatos|
|Animes & movies only||Eris • Odin • Abel/Apollo • Lucifer • Artemis • Loki|
|Saint Seiya: Next Dimension||Zeus|
|Saint Seiya: The Lost Canvas||Modeler Morpheus • Portrayer Phantasos • Vision Icelus • Dream Oneiros • Tezcatlipoca • Hakuryu|
|Saint Seiya Episode G||Chronos • Pontos • Gaia|
|Saint Seiya Omega||Mars • Abzu • Pallas (Omega) • Saturn|