This is about the character of the Classic "Saint Seiya" series. For info on Lyra Orpheus in "Saint Seiya the Movie", click here. For info on the Lyra constellation, click here. For info on the Lyra Silver Cloth, click here.
|Date of Birth||
Stinger Fine, Stringer Nocturne
Lyra Orphée (琴座のオルフェ) is a character from the Saint Seiya manga/anime. He was introduced in the Hades arc, and is based on the Greek mythological character of the same name. While he is officially recognized as a Silver Saint, it is stated that his cosmos rivals even those of Gold Saints.
Viva La Resistance!
"Orphée" (オルフェ) is most likely taken from the French film of the same name - a modern adaptation of the classic Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice.
Although it is not explictedly stated that Lyra Orphée and the Orpheus of Greek mythologies are one and the same, it can generally be assumed that the silver saint is, at least, the reincarnation of the tragic Greek character. Both men share the same exceptional musical talent, and both men have loved and lost a woman by the name of Eurydice.
As the only silver saint to reach the cosmos levels of his gold saint superiors, Orphée can be powerful and deadly when he chooses. Being the Silver Saint of Lyra, Orphée utilizes the lyre from his cloth as part of his offensive arsenal.
"Death Trip Serenade"
A passive technique that, when successful, lures a target to slumber with a soothing melody. At Orphée's discretion, the opponent may fall asleep for 10 days, or for eternity.
Orphée's basic maneuver. The saint wraps the enemy with the strings of his lyre, and electrocutes them with various degrees of electricity.
The sharp strings of the instrument pursues the opponent and slices them upon contact, resulting in significant damage.
Taking Pacifism To Another Level
Lyra Orphée was not only gifted musically, but skilled as a saint as well. His control of the cosmos was so great that he gained infamy for being on or above the level of Gold Saints - a reputation that that even a lower ranking Bronze Saint like Pegasus Seiya was aware of. Nevertheless, Orphée never felt all that interested in his fighting abilities; rather, he enjoyed devoting his free time to playing his lyre for various audiences ranging from the Grand Pope and the Gold Saints, to Eurydice, the love of his life.
A Greek Tragedy Come True
Just like the Orpheus of Greek mythologies, Lyra Orphée, too, loved and lost a woman by the name of Eurydice. To him, she was a vision of loveliness with an angelic personality, and the main reason for his existence. Sadly, their happiness did not last long, as Eurydice would eventually fall victim to a deadly snake bite. So passionate was his burning love for her that Orphée decided to contend death itself over her accident. Orphée vowed to return to her and be at her side always. He would either persuade Hades, the Lord of the Underworld, to release his grip on her soul, or he would remain in the Underworld and accompany her in the depths of hell, for all eternity. No matter the outcome, he would make certain that they will never be separated ever again.
Upon meeting Hades, Lyra Orphée pleaded his case and offered his flesh and soul as an offering for the god to hear him out. He then played his lyre, and even the cold, misanthropic Greek God of the Underworld was captivated by the enchanting melody of sorrow - it reminded him of the beauty of humanity that he felt mankind had lost. The deity agreed to return life to Eurydice so long as Orphée fulfilled one specification: that he must put his faith in the god and not once turn back to check on Eurydice as they exit the world of the dead to the land of the living. Should he succeed, then they shall live happily for the rest of their days. Fail, and Eurydice shall remain where she stood forever and a day, her soul permanently bound to the otherworld. Orphée accepted this reasonable proposition, and the two began their long journey home.
Pandora, faithful right-hand woman of Hades (and later on revealed to be the caretaker and "sister" of Andromeda Shun - whose body was to be used as a vessel for Hades' soul), was also in the audience to Orphée's performance, and noted the silver saint's abilities could be very useful - after all, not even the darkest of the gods were able to resist his music. Thus, she devised a plan to trick Orphée into remaining in the Underworld, and ordered Sphinx Pharaoh, a spectre, to carry it out. By this point, Orphée and Eurydice were closer and closer to home. Suddenly, a bright circular light greeted them, and the silver saint naturally assumed it to be the glow of the sun. As he turned back to rejoice with Eurydice, he was shocked to witness much of her body petrifying to stone. Shattered by the consequences of his error, Orphée dropped to his knees in anguish, his heart heavy with sorrow, and his eyes full of tears. The bright light faded, and so did his one chance to restore his soulmate to life.
The silver saint would keep his word and remain in the Underworld, decorating the spot where Eurydice stood with beautiful flowers - a rarity found only in the glorious Elysium fields. As a display of gratitude to the kindness that Hades had given him, the Lyra sworn alligence to the King of the Underworld, and would play for him in the chamber hall of the throne room once every 13 days. Years passed on Earth, and the Grand Pope and the other Saints of Athena presumed that Orphée had somehow died. No one from Sainthood would see the Lyra Saint ever again, until many years later when bronze saints Pegasus Seiya and Andromeda Shun invaded the Underworld in the holy war against Hades.
Walk Like An Egyptian
A man of music himself, Sphinx Pharaoh was no doubt Orphée's fated rival. He was the man who gladly destroyed Eurydice's second chance at life, and he also strongly considered himself to be a superior musician over the silver saint. Years before Hades met Orphée, Pharaoh was the sole musician of the Underworld, and the one appointed to perform for the god. Once Orphée had arrived and exhibited his gift to Hades, however, Pharaoh quickly fell out of favor and was largely forgotten. This sparked bitter resentment from the spectre that would ultimately end in a decisive confrontation between both men.
When Orphée discovered the truth that Pharaoh was the one responsible for creating the artificial bright light that robbed him and Eurydice a life of happiness, the silver saint discarded his loyalty to Hades and challenged the spectre to a battle to the death. Sphinx accepted, and almost immediately went after the G string in Orphée's lyre - the source of the saint's attacks. However, Orphée was able to improvise, and managed to reflect the Sphinx's deadly "Balance of Curse" technique back at him. Pharaoh was soundly defeated after this.
Music To His Ears
Immediately after killing Sphinx Pharaoh, Lyra Orphée joined Seiya and Shun in their quest to defeat Hades. During the fight with Pharaoh, the silver saint had finally understood that it was wrong to temper with fate, and that all humans live and die only once - it is this that makes life so beautiful and unique. Eurydice wept, happy that her lover was finally able to acknowledge the cards fate dealt him and redeem himself as a true saint of Athena.
Orphée exchanged goodbyes with Eurydice one last time, and devised a strategy with the two bronze saints to take down Hades. As luck would have it, the day the saints invaded the Underworld also happened to be the 13th day where Orphée and the deity were scheduled to meet. Hiding Seiya and Shun inside a large metal case of flowers, Orphée traveled far to the throne room and prepared for the show. If everything proceeded as it should, then Hades and Pandora will become hypnotized with the "Death Trip Serenade". Once that happens, it would be the saints' cue to strike.
Before Orphée could even grab his lyre, however, he was struck with a surprise twist: the three Judges of Hell. The spectres made their presence known, and Pandora announced that she had summoned them as part of the audience, for extra company and for additional security - today was the day that Saints of Athena had invaded the Underworld, after all. This was a troubling turn of events for Orphée, as he hadn't thought to anticipate their presence - and there was no way that he nor the two bronze saints would have enough manpower to take them out along with Hades and Pandora. The silver saint quickly revised his scheme. The best way to deal with the situation would be to put the judges to sleep under the same hypnosis prepared for Hades. Nervously, he began to play, and quietly snuck out a "Death Trip Serenade". All appeared to be going well, and all of the audience remained quietly in their seats, enchanted by the melody. When the coast was clear, Orphée stopped the music and rushed towards Hades for the kill. And just as quickly, the Lyra Saint found his chest pierced by a beam of energy. As the silver saint dropped to one knee, a shadow cast itself over him - Wyvern Rhadamanthys. The Judge revealed that he actually chose to ignore the music because he had long suspected that, with the advent of the Holy War, Orphée was going to betray them and revert back to Athena's side. Still, he felt the need to commend the Lyra Saint's abilities for being able to put two of the three Judges of Hell into deep slumber. At this point, Seiya and Shun jumped out of the metal case to Orphée's rescue.
Despite the fatal wound, Orphée still managed to carry on with his plan to claim Hades' head. All this time, the deity had remained seated on his throne, and his face concealed by the curtains that separated his divine majesty and its audience. Orphée shredded the sheets and confronted the King of the Underworld. The face of Hades was, at last, revealed to all for the first time in the war, and, much to everyone's shock and disbelief, it was one that was familiar: Andromeda Shun. Yet, in that same moment, the real Shun was still engaged in battle with Rhadamanthys by Seiya's side! What was going on? Ignoring the bizarre revelation for the moment, Orphée resumed the game plan and attacked the deity head-on. Rhadamanthys, held back by the two bronze saints, watched in horror as the Lyra Saint decapitated and ripped his patron god's body to pieces.
Unfortunately for Orphée, the body he destroyed was not an actual physical form of Hades. The Wyvern snuck up behind the saint and held him at bay. Orphée, knowing that he was literally on death's door, took advantage of this situation to give his two comrades an opportunity to take out one of the three Judges of Hell. Entangling Rhadamanthys with the strings of his lyre, Orphée urged Seiya to strike them both down with a good "Pegasus Ryu Sei Ken". The bronze saint was hesitant, but his senor urged him to attack without prejudice. The Pegasus Saint reluctantly hit his signature technique, sending both men into the air. Immediately following the impact, Seiya and Shun cradled the Lyra's body. With his last words, Orphée entrusted the life of Athena and the mission of the Holy War to the two young bronze saints. Finally, he could now truly reunite with his lover and soulmate, Eurydice. Smiling one last time, the Silver Saint of Lyra closed his eyes.
Doppelgängers? Clones? Cousins??!
Ghost Saint Lyra Orpheus
The character who bares almost the same name and appeared in the first Saint Seiya motion picture is not the same person as the Silver Saint of the Hades chapter. The Orpheus of the movie is slimmer, has darker hair, and dons a slightly altered version of the Lyra Cloth. He also uses a technique by the name of "Stringer Requiem," which entangles his opponent with the strings of his lyre and leaves his victim at his mercy. Lastly, it is generally accepted that the Orpheus of the movie is far weaker than the Orphée of the Hades chapter, as he was defeated by a single attack in his battle with Phoenix Ikki.
God Warrior Benetnasch (Eta) Mimé
A character from the anime-only Asgard arc. Mimé's appearance is identical to Lyra Orpheus of the Saint Seiya movie, except for color alterations (Mimé sports blonde/orange hair and a red/dark orange god robe) and a rougher armor design. His attack is "Stringer Requiem" as well, although Mimé proved to be far more versatile and capable with the technique than Orpheus was. And just like his movie twin, Mimé's opponent was initially Andromeda Shun, then Phoenix Ikki after the bronze saint arrived to save his brother in a critical moment.
Unlike either Orpheus of the movie or the Orphée of the Hades chapter, however, Mimé was depicted as a fairly cynical and misanthropic character. His disgust for mankind and philosophy on the value of human life stemmed from circumstances surrounding his tragic past. As a result, Mimé is often praised as one of the more fleshed out characters of the series, even though he was not created by the original mangaka. His popularity is also boosted by the fact that he was able to defeat Ikki - a rare feat.
Notes & Trivia
- Considering that both movie Lyra Orpheus and Benetnasch Mimé predate the canon Lyra Orphée of the Hades arc, it can be assumed that Masami Kurumada enjoyed the characters enough to officially create a saint based on them.
- Although Phoenix Ikki served as the final opponent for both Orpheus and Mimé, he does not encounter Orphée at all during the course of the Hades saga.
- Andromeda Shun, however, has met all three incarnations of the character, and owes defeat to both Orpheus and Benetnasch Mimé. Orphée served as the final factor that drove Shun into becoming possessed by Hades.
- The lyre music for both Orpheus and Benetnasch Mimé is the same, while new music was produced for Orphée in the anime.
- It is unknown whether or not Orpheus had a love similar to Eurydice; however, it is unlikely since the movie implied that he had spent quite an amount of time in fiery Hell before his resurrection.
- Benetnasch Mimé was easily one of Phoenix Ikki's toughest opponents in the series. As is the case with Orpheus, Ikki's "Phoenix Genma Ken" did not have the effect he had hoped, and instead infuriated Mimé as Ikki's attack only managed to unmask grim memories buried deep within the God Warrior's mind.
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