Hisao Okawa, the scriptwriter of the unknown treasure Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water, has passed away. On April 19th, he suffered from respiratory failure and later died, aged 88.
Born in Kanagawa, Okawa studied his craft under Ryuzo Kikushima, who’s known for co-writing screenplays to several of Akira Kurosawa’s films. Besides either writing or co-writing all 39 episodes of Nadia, he worked on 14 episodes and the 1979 film of the Heidi, Girl of the Alps anime adapting the beloved Swiss fable, and 11 episodes of Yama Nezumi Rocky Chuck, or Fables of the Green Forest. He also wrote the scripts for Shonen Tokugawa Ieyasu, and certain episodes of Ikkyu-san.
Though even Okawa’s most acclaimed series remains a secret to many, Nadia is kept close to the hearts of those who know it for its heart-rending exploration of human horror, grief, identity, racism, love and family. In a sense, it could be considered a work which paved the way for Gainax’s later series Neon Genesis Evangelion, with its terrible shadows lurking behind bright art and loveable characters.