Space Pirate Captain Harlock (宇宙海賊キャプテンハーロック, Uchū Kaizoku Kyaputen Hārokku?) is a manga series written and illustrated by Leiji Matsumoto, serialized Akita Shoten's Play Comic from 1977 to 1979. The series was adapted into an animated television series in 1978 directed by Rintaro and produced by Toei Animation.
The series follows the titular Captain, an outcast turned space pirate after he rebelled against Earth's Government and mankind's general apathy.
In the future, Mankind has achieved a vast starfaring civilization, but is slowly and steadily succumbing to ennui or despair, often due to defeat and subjugation by a foreign invader. Rising against the general apathy, Harlock denies defeat and leads an outlaw crew aboard his starship Arcadia to undertake daring raids against Earth's oppressors.
The oppressors are the Mazone, a race of vegetable-based women who explored Earth in the mythic past and are now back to reclaim it. Only Harlock and his mismatched crew are brave enough and capable enough to face the enemy.
Harlock is the archetypical romantic hero, a space pirate with an individualist philosophy of life. He is as noble as he is taciturn, rebellious, stoically fighting against totalitarian regimes, whether they be earthborn or alien. In his own words, he "fight[s] for no one's sake, only for something deep in [his] heart".