License request day: Crest of the Royal Family

You’ve all asked yourself this question, don’t deny it. “What,” you’ve wondered, “would happen if a blond-haired, blue-eyed American teen-ager was inadvertently sent back in time to Ancient Egypt?” As with so many unanswered questions in this life, manga can help you. Specifically, Chieko Hosokawa can help you with Crest of the Royal Family, which has been in serialization in Akita Shoten’s Princess Magazine since 1976.

“Tell me more!” you plead. Well, I’ll let Wikipedia do the initial heavy lifting, because if anyone’s going to be accused of making crazy stuff up, at least Wikipedia is used to those charges:

The main character is Carol, a blonde-haired, blue-eyed American teenager from a wealthy family with an interest in Egyptology studying in Cairo. When her mentor discovers the tomb of a young pharaoh, a curse is put on the excavation team and Carol. The curse sends her back in time to ancient Egypt, where she becomes embroiled in the affairs of Egypt and other ancient countries such as Assyria and Babylonia. Carol meets Memphis, a handsome young pharaoh whose tomb she excavated in modern times. Despite his headstrong and at first violent nature, they fall deeply in love. This angers Memphis’s half-sister, the Priestess Isis, who has longed to marry him. Carol, due to her exotic looks and curious ability to tell the future, becomes a major player in ancient history.

Now I ask you, what sane person could resist thousands of pages of glittery political intrigue set in the cradle of civilization? (Don’t answer that. Seriously. If you’ve started to type a rueful, knowing comment to the effect that there’s simply no market for this kind of thing, I beg you to stop, because that is decidedly not in The Spirit of the Thing.)

From what I can gather, Carol gets kidnapped a lot. Blond hair and a knack for Egyptology only carry one so far in this life, or past lives, and her seemingly eerie prescience gets her in a lot of trouble.

This may be the longest shôjo series I’ve ever seen. The 55th volume was published a little over a year ago, and most sources indicate that it’s ongoing, but I’m not sure. As near as I can tell, it’s never been adapted into an anime series, which makes its enduring presence in Princess even more intriguing. I’m sure things slog along the way, and most sources indicate that Carol can be a victim with a capital “V,” not to mention the fact that the whole “Let’s listen to the white lady, she must know things” notion could get deeply offensive.

But really, over 50 volumes of ancient Egyptian faux-history glazed over with shôjo sparkle? I know it will probably never happen, but I’d totally read it if it did.