Definitions

Fujinoyama

E. Honda

}}, more commonly known as E. Honda, is a video game character created by Capcom for the Street Fighter series of fighting games. Introduced in Street Fighter II as part of the starting lineup, he has appeared in Street Fighter Alpha 3 and the Capcom vs. SNK series, as well as several cameos and mentions. His shikona for sumo is mentioned as "Fujinoyama."

He has black hair in a chonmage and wears only a blue and red mawashi. His face is painted in the kumadori style of makeup used in kabuki. Honda's signature move is the Hyaku Retsu Harite (lit., "Hundred Violent Sumo Hands"; commonly referred to as the Hundred Hand Slap). He is one of the original eight playable characters in Street Fighter II, representing Japan alongside Ryu.

History

Street Fighter II

Honda in initial designs for the game was dubbed simply "Sumo", and stated that he would be a character recognizable by Americans and popular in Japan. In his backstory E. Honda is mentioned to have began his training as a child, singularly focused on becoming the greatest sumo wrestler of all time. He would eventually achieve the highly-revered titled of "Ōzeki" (in the English localization of the early Street Fighter II ports, he is stated as having achieved the title, Yokozuna). Honda became upset that the rest of the world did not view sumo wrestling with the reverence of the Japanese. He entered into the second World Warrior tournament intent on showing everyone that sumo wrestlers rank among the greatest fighters in the world. Beyond this, he yearns also to improve and prove his own strength, as well as earn the title of Yokuzuna.

His involvement with the second tournament is also part of him investigating the Shadaloo organization in response to sumo wrestlers taking drugs, and learning of their involvement after capturing some of the dealers. His face painting and dual nationality name assisted him to an extent with remaining covert during this. This aspect of his character was conceived well before Street Fighter Alpha 3 and his storyline there.

After the tournament and the fall of Shadaloo, Honda returned to Japan where he continued engaging in sumo wrestling and continuing to run his bath house and training his disciples.

Street Fighter Alpha 2

Honda appears here as more of a cameo, but a significant one to Sodom's storyline and a bit to his own in the next game. Sodom, obsessed with both Japanese culture and trying to revive Mad Gear, attempts to recruit sumo wrestlers, citing them as strong warriors. To achieve this he enters a sumo wrestling competition and faces "Fujinoyama", who is revealed to be Edmond Honda. Agreeing to the match, Honda gives the it a go and defeats Sodom, though is impressed by his effort nevertheless according to their dialogue in Alpha 3.

Street Fighter Alpha 3

His storyline in this game serves more of a prologue to his appearance in Street Fighter II, with him traveling the world looking for strong opponents and to show the strength of sumo wrestling. It's here he meets Ryu and has a sparring match with him, and tells Sakura later on where she can find him. About this time he fights Sodom again in a friendly match as well. His wanderings lead him to Shadaloo's base where he meets Zangief, and while the actual extent of which is unknown the two are confirmed to have worked together to help destroy the base. In the aftermath he took in a few of Bison's Dolls to give them somewhere to stay until they could regain their memories (which ones in particular is never exactly certain due to Capcom reusing sprites in his ending for the Dolls). According to this game's ending and supported by his card profile in SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters DS he might have given them additionally training in sumo during their stay, though none of his pupils in other games are female leaving this definitely up to question.

Capcom vs. SNK series

His appearance here is token at best, continuing his Street Fighter II storyline of proving to the world the strength of sumo. He mentions his disciples in his ending, placing this version of him closer to his SF2 counterpart in terms of continuity.

Street Fighter IV

Honda returns for this game, which is set shortly after the events of the second World Warrior tournament. His goals have not changed, as his bio states he is fighting to promote the technique of sumo. To this end, he goes on a world tour. While he is just below the Yokuzuna in terms of sumo rank (now a Haridashi-Yokozuna), Honda's ability is known to be Yokuzuna-class regardless.

Fighting style and techniques

Honda's fighting style, as already mentioned above, is based on sumo wrestling. In his first appearance in the original Street Fighter II, he has two special attacks, the "Hyaku Retsu Harite" (Hundred Hand Slap) and the "Super Zutsuki" (Super Headbutt, commonly referred to as the Sumo Headbutt). In Hyper Fighting, Honda gains a third special attack, the "Super Hyakkan Otoshi" (Super Hundredweight Drop, commonly known as the Sumo Splash), as well as the ability to move while performing his Hundred Hand Slap.

In Super Street Fighter II Turbo, Honda's super combo is the "Oni Musou" (Unparalled Demon), multiple Super Zutsukis that can go through fireballs. He also gains a grapple hold, the "Ooichou Nage" (Topknot Throw). In Street Fighter Alpha 3, Honda gains two additional super combos, the "Fuji Oroshi" (Descending Wind of Mt. Fuji), a powered-up Super Hyakkan Otoshi, and the "Orochi Kudaki" (Orochi Smash), a powered-up Ooichou Nage.

Other appearances

Honda has had a few appearances beyond the main street fighter series, though save for two major ones these appearances have been nothing more than cameos for the character. A stage title "Honda's Bath House" however makes an appearance in Marvel vs. Capcom, looking drastically different compared to the Street Fighter II incarnation of the stage.

Street Fighter live-action film

In the 1994 motion picture based on the Street Fighter franchise, the role of Honda is played by Peter "Navy" Tuiasosopo. In the movie, Honda is portrayed as a close associate of Chun Li, serving as her news crew technician and aiding her on her quest to avenge her father's death alongside Balrog. Like Balrog, he has a personal grudge against Shadaloo, who ruined his reputation as a sumo (though no details on how are given). In the film's climax he battles Zangief, smashing through Bison's base.

Unlike the games where Honda is Japanese, he appears to be a Hawaiian. His personality is rather laid back compared to his video game counterpart, and is shown to have a near immunity to pain when one of Bison's goons attempts to torture him, something he attributes to his discipline in sumo when Balrog asks about it. He does seem to enjoy fighting when he gets a chance to with Zangief, despite the degree of damage that it causes.

This version of Honda appeared in both the arcade and console games based on the film. In his arcade ending it states that he returned to the world of professional sumo and regained the title of yokuzuna. The console game took this and expanded upon it, stating that he and Zangief had formed a friendship and had practice matches with Honda only having one win over Zangief. The outcomes of said matches however seem to be just as calamitous as their original bout, resulting in the destruction of five sumo dojos.

Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie

Honda appears as one of the more prominent characters to appear in the second half of the anime, unlike a majority of the characters that were not heavily involved in the backstory of the game. He is voiced by Daisuke Gōri in the Japanese version, and Richard Epcar in the English dub. His personality is relatively unchanged from that in the games, however his goal is shown to be to fight for cash compared to his in-game goal of proving the strength of sumo to the world. Several aspects of his character appearance here saw usage in the Street Fighter Alpha series much like many other characters, but moreso in the Capcom vs. SNK games, where outright nods (such as his run anim being a direct copy of his attempt to charge into Bison) were included in the game.

He's first seen wrestling with Dhalsim in Calcutta to win prize money. Dhalsim manages to slip away from his grip however, and attempts to mentally subdue Honda. Ryu's presence however distracts Dhalsim enough for Honda to regain control of the match and win due to forfeit. Honda catches up with Ryu, recognizing he helped him win and the fact Ryu is a fellow Japanese fighter, giving him half the prize money as well as a place to stay for a while.

Guile then Bison find Ryu eventually however. While Ryu tries to deal with a brainwashed Ken, Honda charges forward to take on Bison, only for Bison to teleport out of his path and Ken to send him stumbling forward, straight into Balrog. He and Balrog end up fighting, eventually with both of them falling off a nearby cliff. However Honda seems to recover quickly enough, seen lugging both the unconscious Balrog and Guile back just as Ryu and Ken defeat Bison.

Critical reception

Merchandising

Honda was the seventh action figure made in a series for the 1993 G.I. Joe Street Fighter line. The figure is actually unique compared to the others: no parts were reused to make it, requiring a unique mold needing to be made due to his size.. The character's legs could be squeezed together to have the upper body bend down in a headbutt motion, and was jointed to allow for the Hundred Hand Slap move. The toy was discontinued in 1994. A variant of it was later released in 1994 for the Street Fighter live action movie line of toys by Hasbro, a tweaked version of the previous action figure (complicating a bit, as the toy resembled the actor in the film very little and more the video game counterpart). Like all toys in the line, both came with attachable weapon pieces despite the fact the character did not use any in the game or film.

Another action figure was released much later on as part of SOTA's Revolutions Series 1. The figure featured a positionable waist, arms, and legs, and an alternate head for different facial expression. A limited edition version of the figure using Honda's default Street Fighter II Turbo colors is to be released in the second quarter of 2008, with only 504 of said action figures to be made.

Reception

IGN ranked Honda at number fourteen in their "Top 25 Street Fighter Characters" article, noting his role as one of sumo's few representatives in fighting games, though complained about his gameplay similarities to Blanka.

References

External links

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