When it comes to anime, streaming giant Netflix has a hit or miss track record, whether from hosting major series and films, or with their “original” anime productions. But when it comes to adapting anime into live-action, their binge-watchers agree that Netflix sucks. Their 2017 film take on iconic series “Death Note” got panned by fans of the original, and their live-action series adaptation of another legendary anime, “Cowboy Bebop,” looks to follow the pattern. Not even the early release of the intro (a near-recreation of the anime’s) and a short teaser, have mollified naysaying old fans, until the trailer.
CNET tells us that Netflix has just put up their first actual trailer for their live-action “Cowboy Bebop” series, featuring actual scenes from the episodes. This was in contrast to the “Lost Session” teaser, shown last week, which featured an original fight scene skit that received mixed reception from viewers who have watched the original 1990s anime. Earlier criticism of the series’ promotional material focused on the bizarre blend of psychedelic and grindhouse motifs, as opposed to the anime’s neo-noir and space-western aesthetics. The trailer seems to keep the grindhouse feel, but now adds the neo-noir and anime-like atmospheric visuals.
The trailer begins with bounty hunter Spike Spiegel (John Cho) catching up on old times with a bar owner acquaintance, Ana (Tamara Tunie). In the future Solar System, with planets and moons colonized b mankind, Spike relates that death can befall anyone at the hands of the police, bounty hunters like him, and a Syndicate that had been part of his past. So Spike works together with fellow hunter Jet Black (Mustafa Shakir), captain of the converted spaceship Bebop, and (rather reluctantly) with sultry con artist Faye Valentine (Daniella Pineda), who is also an amnesiac.
Other visuals range from martial-arts street brawls (and Spike training with a Kung Fu wooden dummy), gunfights, and space battles between armed aerospace craft like Spike’s Swordfish II. His disdain towards Faye is also highlighted with his itchy trigger-finger around her. And of course, there is Spike’s unfinished business with old syndicate partner-turned-nemesis Vicious (Alex Hassel). The visual direction for this trailer seems to have won over some former critics, with them looking forward now to when “Cowboy Bebop” premieres on Netflix streaming November 19.
Image courtesy of NME