Outlaw Star (星方武侠アウトロースター, Seihō Bukyō Autorō Sutā?, lit. "Starward Warrior Knight Outlaw Star") is a seinen manga series written and illustrated by Takehiko Itō and his affiliated Morning Star Studio. The series is a space opera/Space Western that takes place in the "Toward Stars Era" universe in which spacecraft are capable of traveling faster than the speed of light. The plot follows protagonist Gene Starwind and his motley crew of an inherited ship dubbed the "Outlaw Star", as they search for a legendary, outer space treasure trove called the "Galactic Leyline".
Outlaw Star was originally serialized in the monthly Shueisha magazine Ultra Jump between 1996 and 1999 for a total of 21 chapters. Three volumes of collected chapters were published in Japan between August 1997 and January 1999. Although no official English version of the manga exists, it has been published in Chinese, German, and Italian. Sunrise Studios produced a 26-episode anime adaptation that was directed by Mitsuru Hongo and aired on the Japanese station TV Tokyo in early 1998. The animated series has since been translated and broadcast worldwide. This includes an English version from Bandai Entertainment that received an edited airing on the North American Cartoon Network blocks Toonami in early 2001 and Adult Swim in early 2002. Outlaw Star has been licensed for release in Australia and New Zealand by Madman Entertainment and in Europe by Beez Entertainment. A few Japanese-exclusive audio CDs and light novels have been spawned since the start of the manga's publication.
Critical reception for Outlaw Star has been mostly positive. Many reviewers praised the anime series, particularly its animation style and its balance of dramatic and comedic elements. However, some found fault with the show's pacing, believing that the storyline quality begins to wane after the first few episodes. Sunrise produced a spin-off television series titled Angel Links (星方天使エンジェルリンクス, Seihō Tenshi Enjeru Rinkusu?, lit. "Angels of the Stars: Angel Links"), which aired in Japan in 1999. Morning Star Studio made preliminary plans to create a direct sequel original video animation (OVA) series to Outlaw Star, but production never began.