• One Piece: 10 Times Luffy Was Smarter Than He Lets On

    Monkey D. Luffy is the protagonist of the long-running One Piece manga and his journey sees him set out to sea in search of the Pirate King, Gol D. Roger's treasure, the One Piece. Luffy is often considered to be dull-witted, which while true in some cases, doesn't always apply to his character. Since the beginning of the story, Luffy is shown to have a keen understanding of people.

  • Discover the Top 10 Must-Watch Anime Series of All Time

    Anime has become a global phenomenon, captivating audiences with its diverse genres, compelling storytelling, and stunning animation. Whether you're a seasoned anime enthusiast or just starting your anime journey, there's a world of incredible series waiting to be explored. In this post, we'll introduce you to the ten best anime you should watch to experience the magic of this medium. Get ready to embark on a thrilling anime adventure!

  • Is Luffy Stronger Than Zoro ?

    The Straw Hat Pirates are a crew led by Monkey D. Luffy, the protagonist of One Piece and a fearsome pirate of the Worst Generation who hails from the East Blue. Luffy aims to be the King of the Pirates, and while his crew dedicates their lives to see him accomplish this dream, they also have dreams of their own.

Monday, October 30, 2023

Long-Awaited Final Spy x Family: Code White Trailer Finally Releases

The highly-anticipated final trailer for Spy x Family: Code White has finally dropped, featuring Spy x Family's main characters Anya, Yor and Loid Forger, alongside other important cast members including Yuri Briar, Damian Desmond, Becky Blackbell, Fiona Frost, Sylvia Sherwood and Frankie Franklin.

The TOHO Animation YouTube channel released the trailer for the long-awaited movie late Sunday night, with Spy x Family: Code White set to premiere on Dec. 22, 2023 -- one of the most looked-forward-to anime releases of the year.

Spy x Family: Code White Trailer and Synopsis

The trailer opens with fan-favorite character Anya shooting a toy rifle in a carnival game while Loid and Bond watch from behind. The first part of the video takes place in what resembles a German Christmas market, with snow covering the ground and the Forger family bundled in their winter clothes. The trailer features several action shots of Loid (Agent Twilight) and Yor (the Thorn Princess). In one shot, Anya appears to be kidnapped and is later bound and gagged. The final shot of the trailer shows Loid struggling to take control of what looks to be the wheel of a ship.

Spy x Family: Code White was initially announced in December 2022 at Jump Festa 2023. The first trailer for Spy x Family: Code White released in June, to the excitement of fans worldwide. The movie will be an original story, following the Forger family as they attempt to win the Eden Academy cooking competition. They take a vacation to learn how to make the principal's favorite dessert in the place it originated, but along the way, a series of events threaten to destroy world peace, and it's up to the Forger family to save the day.

The Spy x Family anime, adapted from Tatsuya Endo's popular manga series, premiered in April 2022 and featured 25 episodes in its first season. The story follows the spy Twilight, aka Loid Forger, as he attempts to infiltrate the prestigious Eden Academy and establish contact with politician Donovan Desmond in order to negotiate peace between the warring East and West. For this mission, he creates a fake family with an adopted daughter Anya Forger, a telepath, and wife Yor Forger, an assassin. There are currently four episodes available of Season 2, with 12 total episodes set to be released. A trailer for the popular "Cruise Adventure" arc from the manga was released earlier this week. The first episode of the arc will be released on Nov. 4.

Spy x Family is available to stream on Crunchyroll and Hulu, with new episodes of Season 2 releasing every Saturday. Spy x Family: Code White will premiere in Japan on Dec. 22, 2023.

Source: YouTube


Sunday, October 29, 2023

What Comes After Dragon Ball Super?

Ever since the Dragon Ball Super anime ended in 2018, fans have been waiting on tenterhooks to see what happens next for Goku and friends. The final scene ended with the promise of further adventures, but these have yet to materialize -- on television, at least.

Despite Dragon Ball Super's three-year break from the airwaves, Dragon Ball has continued in various forms. When the Super anime does eventually return, then there's plenty of potential material to cover. That's not to mention a completely new series coming in the form of Dragon Ball Daima, which may answer some fans questions as to what comes after Dragon Ball Super. Here's what fans can watch after Dragon Ball Super, and what they might have to look forward to when it comes back.

Updated by Timothy Blake Donohoo on 10/25/2023: The Dragon Ball franchise has continued to be massively popular, especially with the success of Dragon Ball Super. Thus, fans of the anime and manga are desperate to see more of the story for Son Goku and his friends. This is all made stronger by the recent announcement of Dragon Ball Daima, which continues the series in a different way.

What's After Dragon Ball Super?

Dragon Ball Super: Broly Comes After Dragon Ball Super

What Comes After Dragon Ball Super?

Following on from Super's climactic "Universe Survival" arc, the 2018 film Dragon Ball Super: Broly was the only animated, canonical continuation of the series for four years. The movie depicts the fallout from the Tournament of Power, with the newly resurrected Frieza hatching new schemes while Goku and Vegeta continue to train with Whis. The Saiyan duo eventually come to blows with the titular Broly, a fan-favorite Dragon Ball Z movie villain, here making his debut in the main continuity from the pen of series creator Akira Toriyama.

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Headlines Gohan and Piccolo

What Comes After Dragon Ball Super?

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero premiered in February 2022 and featured the return of the villainous Red Ribbon Army. They unleashed two new androids, the Gamma twins. Super Hero also shifts the spotlight away from Goku and Vegeta, instead focusing on Gohan and Piccolo as the two main heroes.

Dragon Ball Super's Manga Keeps the Story Going

For fans who need their Dragon Ball Super fix now, however, there are still plenty of options. While the anime is off the air, the story continues in manga form. Since the end of the "Universe Survival" saga, the Super manga has featured two major arcs: the "Galactic Patrol Prisoner" saga, in which Goku and Vegeta join the Galactic Patrol to fight a foe from the Grand Supreme Kai's time, and the "Granolah the Survivor" saga, where the main duo confront the lone survivor of a Saiyan-inflicted massacre.

Those craving for what's after Dragon Ball Super can check out Super Dragon Ball Heroes, an ongoing series of online shorts that tie into the hit Japanese arcade game. Heroes loosely follows the events of Super, but its approach to continuity is so lax that few consider it canon. It's more a celebration of Dragon Ball as a whole, offering fans a smorgasbord of elements and characters from Dragon Ball Z, Super, GT, the movies and even Xenoverse. For viewers who have ever wondered what Super Saiyan Blue vs Super Saiyan 4 would look like, Heroes offers that and so much more.

While its continuity is incompatible with Super’s, 1996's GT offers a different take on Goku's post-Z adventures. Set five years after the 28th World Tournament, GT sees Goku, his granddaughter Pan and Trunks on an interstellar journey to find the Black Star Dragon Balls. GT is a controversial entry among fans, but it contains many compelling concepts, such as a villainous Tuffle and evil Eternal Dragons. It also features the most beloved finale in all of Dragon Ball, offering viewers a conclusive and melancholy goodbye to Son Goku. Despite its somewhat negative reception, it's still a good entry to watch in Dragon Ball after Super.

What Does the Future Hold for Dragon Ball Super?

What Comes After Dragon Ball Super?

There have also been major developments in Goku and Vegeta's training under Whis. Goku's desire to master Ultra Instinct plays into the new events in the manga, as does Vegeta's desire for an equivalent power of his own. Despite Super's break from TV, modern Dragon Ball shows no sign of slowing down. Fans who miss the anime have plenty of material to dig into, and those eagerly anticipating the series' future have much to look forward to. Its future on television may be uncertain, but it's still an incredibly exciting time to be a Dragon Ball fan, and 2023 promises a plethora of new adventures for Goku and the gang.

Likewise, a new Dragon Ball series has just been announced: Dragon Ball Daima. It's unknown if its takes place after Dragon Ball Super, but it does take the series in a new direction. The synopsis of the upcoming anime involves a conspiracy that reverts many of the series' characters into diminutive, younger forms. This includes Goku and Vegeta, as well as Chi-Chi's father the Ox-King. Fans have noted that it's essentially a new version of the concepts played with by Dragon Ball GT, albeit with more story involvement from Akira Toriyama this time around. It may not be a Dragon Ball Super sequel as many want, but it does continue the series' storyline in an exciting way.

What Comes After Dragon Ball Super?

Spy x Family Season 2 Unveils New Trailer for "Murder Mama's" Cruise Adventure Arc

Spy x Family has released a new promo video spotlighting the series' famous "Cruise Adventure" arc -- a longtime favorite of readers of the manga.

Featured on Toho Animation's YouTube channel, the two-minute PV teases some of the pulse-pounding action that awaits fans in future episodes. In the "Cruise Adventure" arc, Yor accepts a special mission where she must safeguard a client from a clan of elite assassins while aboard the famed "Princess Lorelei." However, the situation becomes more complicated when Loid and Anya join her after winning cruise tickets of their own. The arc's debut episode will premier on Nov. 4.

Spy x Family Season 2 Unveils New Trailer for Spy x Family Season 2 Unveils New Trailer for

After sharing the PV on Spy x Family's main subreddit, fans shared their collective excitement for "Cruise Adventure" while highlighting standout moments from its lineup of action scenes. Comically referring to Yor as "Murder Mama," a Redditor called u_scruffy_Nerfherder applauded how the trailer included a scene of a "guy getting his skull nailed to the wall" from the original manga. Many fans appear to view "Cruise Adventure" as one of the series' best storylines and their all-time favorite arc. At the time of writing, the thread's top comment comes from a Redditor called Huge-Abbreviations-6, whose message simply reads, "FINALLY."

Based on Tatsuya Endo's popular manga, Spy x Family chronicles the adventures of Loid (aka Agent Twilight), Yor and Anya Forger, who are brought together as part of Loid's mission to infiltrate the prestigious Eden Academy, an establishment frequented by an elusive politician called Donovan Desmond. By having Anya attend the school as an ordinary student, Loid obtains an opportunity to form a relationship with Desmond that could prevent the outbreak of war. Unbeknownst to Twilight, Anya also happens to be a psychic who enthusiastically shares his desire for world peace. Meanwhile, Yor moonlights as an elite-level assassin while masquerading as an ordinary housewife and mother.

The "Cruise Adventure" arc is not the only franchise development that Spy x Family fans have to look forward to, as the series' first feature film is currently in production by CloverWorks and Wit Studio. Spy x Family Code: White has the Forger family set out to help Anya win her first cooking competition at Eden. In the process, the trio sets off a chain of events that could potentially threaten world peace if left unchecked. The film will have its Japanese theatrical debut on Dec. 22. The franchise's first video game adaptation, titled Spy x Anya: Operation Memories, is also in the works and is scheduled for release outside Japan in 2024.

Spy x Family is available on Hulu and Crunchyroll. The manga is available in English from VIZ Media.

Sources: YouTube, Reddit


Dragon Ball: The Breakers Season 4 Game Trailer Teases Fresh Content Ahead of Release

Ahead of its first anniversary, Dragon Ball: The Breakers will feature the Legendary Super Saiyan Broly and more for its Season 4 update.

According to ComicBook.com, Season 4 of Dragon Ball: The Breakers will feature content related to the 2018 anime movie Dragon Ball Super: Broly. Headlining the new content release is, of course, Broly the legendary Super Saiyan. This interpretation of the character is different from the one that appeared in the Dragon Ball Z film trilogy from the '90s known as The Broly Saga. Taking place after the end of the Dragon Ball Super TV series, the 2018 movie reintroduces Broly as a chaotic force of destruction that Frieza manipulates into fighting against Goku and Vegeta.

In addition to Broly as a Raider character, Dragon Ball: The Breakers will also feature survivor skins of Cheelai and Lemo from Dragon Ball Super: Broly. Survivor skins of Bulma in her snow gear and Mr. Satan (also known as Hercule) will also be available. Goku and Vegeta in their Super Saiyan God forms will appear as new Transphere Warriors for the game. A new map called Dangerous Ground will also be available as a free update. To celebrate the one-year release of Dragon Ball: The Breakers, the anime game will feature a variety of first anniversary items and more. Below is the complete rundown of upcoming content for the game:

New Transpheres (Available via Spirit Siphon)

New Map (Available via free update)

1st Anniversary Items

New Customizable Items (Available via in-game shop)

Dragon Ball: The Breakers is an online multiplayer asymmetrical action game by Bandai Namco and developer Dimps. In the game, a team of seven ordinary humans try to escape from the terrible wrath of the Raider, depicted as a classic Dragon Ball Z villain such as Cell, Frieza and Majin Buu. The 2022 title takes place within the same universe as the Dragon Ball Xenoverse video games.

Although small details have been shared since its announcement in March, Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 4 is in active development. A new Dragon Ball anime series called Dragon Ball Daima is also set for a 2024 release.

Source: YouTube, ComicBook


Attack on Titan Final Season Debuts Last-Ever (Probably) Trailer

Attack on Titan: The Final Chapters Special 2 has aired its final trailer, bringing an end to the iconic, and at times highly controversial anime series.

Pony Canyon debuted the official final trailer, seen below, for the upcoming Attack on Titan finale on YouTube. The TV special will air on Nov. 4, 2023, at midnight in Japan and was previously announced to be a whopping 85 minutes long. The main cast is all set to return, with Yuki Kaji, Yui Ishikawa and Marina Inoue reprising their roles as Eren Yeager, Mikasa Ackerman and Armin Arlert, respectively. It was also announced that Linked Horizon, the band who performed "Guren no Yumiya" -- according to many fans, one of the greatest anime opening themes of all time -- will be returning to perform the theme song. Ai Higuchi will perform the ending song, "Itterasshai." Higuchi also performed Attack on Titan's Season 4 ending song for Part 2.

Aside from the special visuals that Attack on Titan released in the countdown to the finale's premiere, the franchise has announced another clothing line with Uniqlo and a new art book with 18 pages from author Hajime Isayama's new work, Akudo. The series also released a recent feature with Japanese state broadcaster NHK, where they sat down for a bombshell interview with Eren himself.

The Attack on Titan anime brings its 10-year tenure to a close, having debuted in April 2013 to critical acclaim. The series' exploration of humanity and often inhumanity has put it at the center of philosophical debate, as well as seeing bans in countries like China for its themes. Studio MAPPA will animate the final episode to Attack on Titan, as directed by Yuichiro Hayashi, Ryota Aikei and Tokio Igarashi. Anime music mainstays in Hiroyuki Sawano and Kohta Yamamoto return as composers.

Crunchyroll streams all seasons of Attack on Titan, including the upcoming Attack on Titan: The Final Chapters Special 2. It describes the series as follows: "Known in Japan as Shingeki no Kyojin, many years ago, the last remnants of humanity were forced to retreat behind the towering walls of a fortified city to escape the massive, man-eating Titans that roamed the land outside their fortress. Only the heroic members of the Scouting Legion dared to stray beyond the safety of the walls – but even those brave warriors seldom returned alive. Those within the city clung to the illusion of a peaceful existence until the day that dream was shattered, and their slim chance at survival was reduced to one horrifying choice: kill – or be devoured!"

Source: YouTube


Saturday, October 28, 2023

Toei Animation Sends Off One Piece Wano Arc With Hype Office Party

Toei Animation recently held an unforgettable in-office party to celebrate One Piece's 25th anime anniversary and the completion of the famous "Wano Country" story arc.

Henry Thurlow, an American staff member at Toei Animation, wrote about the celebration on his X (formerly Twitter) page. "I had the honor of being able to attend One Piece's 25th year celebration/ Wano-Kuni-completion party this weekend," Thurlow commented. "I met Oda-sensei, saw live performances of opening themes, and met artists and directors I hadn't before." Thurlow also showcased images of large-scale statues of iconic characters from the series, including Roronoa Zoro, Sanji and Jinbe.

Henry Thurlow has the distinction of being the first American-born animator to ever direct a One Piece episode. Thurlow's episode, titled "Here Comes the Main Act: Powerful Techniques of Fallout and Magnetism," chronicles an important "Wano" arc fight that occurs between Eustass Kid, Trafalgar Law and Big Mom. Thurlow's debut work on One Piece is featured in Episode #903, in which he animates the fight scene between Monkey D. Luffy and Urashima.

"Wano Country" ranks as the longest-running arc of Eiichiro Oda's One Piece manga. In the anime, the arc ran from Episode 890 to 1076, the latter of which covered the epic finale of Luffy's highly-anticipated battle with Emperor Kaido. The latter part of this arc also features Luffy's famous Gear 5 transformation, which grants him otherworldly strength and the power to bend reality to his will. Following its appearance in the anime, Toei has celebrated Gear 5 with numerous merch collaborations, including Crunchyroll's Gear 5 "Battle Record" Collectible Figure and Seiko's upcoming "Monkey D. Luffy Gear 5 Edition" watch.

Toei Animation's One Piece anime premiered in October 1999, just two years after the launch of Eiichiro Oda's acclaimed manga. While Oda has consistently supported Toei's adaptation of his beloved series, he particularly lauded the anime's handling of "Wano Country," stating that it repeatedly moved him to tears as he watched it. 2023 has proven to be a special year for One Piece fans, as it not only marks Toei's wrap-up of "Wano" but also features the world debut of One Piece's first live-action series adaptation, which launched on Netflix in August. Oda is currently working on One Piece's final major arc, although he assured fans earlier this year that he would not be concluding the series anytime soon.

The One Piece anime is available to stream on Netflix, Hulu and Crunchyroll. The manga is available in English from VIZ Media.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Dragon Ball is one of the most popular shonen series of all time, and as such, there's a ton of merchandise available for its many colorful characters. Popular choices include accessories worn by the characters or replicas of the Dragon Balls themselves, but there are also a ton of figures and statues taken in and out of production all the time. There are both beautiful, highly-detailed scale figures that are more expensive and action figures that are still high quality, but typically cheaper and packaged with accessories to use with their various unique poses.

S.H. Figuarts is the most common brand when looking through currently-available Dragon Ball action figures, though Bandai Spirits also produces some gorgeous posable figures for the series. These figures are relatively affordable, too, typically only raging from $20–150 dollars.

10 Dragon Ball Z S.H. Figuarts Krillin (Earth's Strongest Man)

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Krillin is a character who's both deceptively powerful and often used as a source of comedic relief, and both traits are displayed in this S.H. Figuarts figure, alternatively titled Earth's Strongest Man. This figure retails for about $55 and comes with five pairs of hands, along with three expressive faceplates.

This Krillin figure also comes with his trademark Destructo Disk, which is holdable by Krillin and almost as big as him. The shading on this S.H Figuarts Krillin is well-done, with lots of detail being put into his outfit.

9 Dragon Ball Z Figure-Rise Standard Super Saiyan 3 Goku

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

The many different Super Saiyan forms of Dragon Ball Z are iconic, with Goku's Super Saiyan 3 form recreated in this Figure-Rise action figure. The model kit is currently available for just under $35, with Goku standing at 7" tall.

Alongside the standard Goku model, this action figure also comes with two alternative fists and facial expressions, as well as an accessory and the hands necessary for Goku to perform the Kamehameha. Every part of this Goku figure is highly detailed, with special care being put into his hair.

8 Dragon Ball S.H. Figuarts King Piccolo

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

King Piccolo is a cold, ruthless villain whose arrogance and desire for chaos are captured well in this S.H. Figuarts action figure. Available for about $68, King Piccolo stands at 7 1/2" tall while coming with a plethora of extras to justify the price.

Not only is this Piccolo figure highly detailed and articulated, but it comes with six total extra hands, three heads, the giant egg that King Piccolo spits out and a rice cooker. He also comes with a one-star Dragon Ball that can be held in one of the extra hands as a nice touch.

7 Dragon Ball Z Figure-Rise Standard Perfect Cell

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Another cold villian in the Dragon Ball universe, Perfect Cell is calculating and intelligent, only becoming more arrogant after obtaining great power. This Standard Perfect Cell action figure by Figure-Eise captures his imposing and self-important nature well, and the model kit is available for only $35.

In addition to the base figure, the Figure-Rise Cell also comes with an angry alternate expression, two other pairs of hands, and a stand for the release form of the Kamehameha as well as a charging effect. This Cell can be posed in several other ways not pictured, and stands at just over 7 1/2" tall.

6 S.H. Figuarts Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Broly

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

The Dragon Ball Super: SUPER HERO line of figures isn't as cheap as other action figures, but they're well worth the price for the detailing. This Broly figure by S.H. Figuarts might only stand at 7 1/2" tall like many others, but it's still bigger because of how big and imposing Broly is as a character.

Every inch of Broly's muscles and clothing are highly-detailed, with special detail given to the pelt around his waist. He comes with multiple expressions including a more lighthearted crying face, several interchangeable hands and an alternate hair part. He's available for $120.

5 Dragon Ball GT S.H. Figuarts Kid Goku (GT Version)

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Goku's back to the start as a kid in Dragon Ball GT, and his adorably-recaptured S.H. Figuarts action figure stands at half the height of many other Dragon Ball action figures at just over three inches tall. He's $54, but is highly detailed and comes with more extras than many other action figures.

The S.H. Figuarts version of Kid Goku comes with three alternate faces, five pairs of hands, alternate hairpieces, an entire alternate uniform, and a holdable Kamehameha. Kid Goku's main expression is cheerful and happy-go-lucky, but the others showcase his serious side and willingness to defend what he holds dear.

4 Dragon Ball Z S.H. Figuarts Cell (First Form)

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Cell's perfect form isn't the only one to get an S.H. Figuarts action figure, as his first form is also perfectly recreated in this $75 figure. First form Cell stands at just over 6 1/2" tall, and can strike many different poses with his high range of articulation.

This Cell figure comes with four alternate pairs of hands, and three alternate facial expressions including one that depicts him as a playful trickster. The S.H. Figuarts version of first form Cell also includes an alternate head and optional tail parts.

3 Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero S.H. Figuarts Goku

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

In addition to Broly, the Dragon Ball Super: SUPER HERO movie also gave fans gorgeous figures like this Super Hero movie version of Goku by S.H. Figuarts. Available for just $35, this Goku figure stands at 5 1/2" tall.

Goku is highly articulated and able to make several emotive faces, like shocked, confident and preparing for a fight. He comes with seven alternate hands in total, allowing for a wide variety of expressions. The coloring and overall detail on this Goku's outfit stands out as a highlight.

2 Dragon Ball Z S.H. Figuarts Porunga And Dende Luminous Dragon Ball Set

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Gathering all seven of the Dragon Balls together and using them to summon forth a gigantic wish-granting dragon is one of the most iconic things about Dragon Ball. Dende summoning Porunga is a monumentous scene in the series, recreated in this S.H. Figuarts figure for a whopping $300.

Porunga and Dende can be combined to stand together as one giant figure, or they can shine on their own, and having both options as valid display methods is a nice touch. Porunga comes with three additional hands, while Dende comes with an additional set of hands and an alternate face.

1 Dragon Ball Z S.H. Figuarts Shenron Event Exclusive

10 Best Dragon Ball Action Figures, Ranked

Shenron is Dragon Ball's original mythical, wish-granting dragon, and this event-exclusive S.H. Figuarts figure captures him in all his towering glory. This Shenron is available at a reasonable price point given its 11" size, selling for $160.

Being an exclusive event figure, this Shenron isn't being sold in large quantities nor is it likely to return later, increasing its overall value. While Shenron doesn't come with any alternate faces or accessories, his body is surprisingly flexible, allowing for a decent range of poses, and comes with a dragon ball effect for the base of his stand.


Attack on Titan Reveals Feature-Length Runtime for Series Finale

Attack on Titan's anime series finale is set to release next month, and according to the anime's official X (Twitter) account, it will boast a massive, feature-length runtime compared to the length of usual episodes.

The account made a post revealing the release of The Final Season: Final Part on Nov. 4, which will conclude the long-running anime series' fourth and final season with the second half of its two-part finale. Not only is the release date one week away, but the account also confirmed an 85-minute runtime for the premiere -- the longest release in the series' history -- which is set to air on the Japanese NHK General channel online.

Attack on Titan is a massively popular post-apocalyptic anime series about the last members of humanity fighting for survival against giant man-eating monsters that seek to wipe them out. Adapted from Hajime Isayama's manga series of the same name, the anime celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, having first premiered in 2013. It is now entering its final arc, which will serve as the conclusion to four seasons' worth of content.

Finally arriving in early November, The Final Season will adapt the manga's last few chapters, which saw the remaining members of the Scout Regiment fighting to stop the apocalyptic Rumbling that would see the majority of the surviving members of the Eldian race wiped out completely. The manga's original ending was highly controversial upon release, with many fans calling for a follow-up chapter or even for Isayama to rerelease and change the final chapter. Although an extended version of the final volume is set to release along with an upcoming art book, the ending of the manga remains the same.

Despite its massive popularity, Attack on Titan has been plagued by production issues and delays throughout its four-season run. The original animation studio behind the series, Wit Studio, eventually left due to budget issues, with MAPPA taking over for its fourth and final season. However, this did not stop the production's many issues, as MAPPA animators began reporting that the studio was overworking them for unfair pay in order to meet deadlines, which led them to split the season into multiple parts for a gradual release across two years.

Attack on Titan: The Final Season Final Part airs on Nov. 4 via the NHK General channel in Japan. Fans can tune into the premiere on the anime's official website or catch up on the series on Hulu, where new episodes release after they air in Japan.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


Demon Slayer Anime Voice Actor Announces Hiatus Due to Hearing Loss

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba voice actor Daisuke Hirakawa has announced that he will be going on a brief hiatus after being hospitalized for sudden hearing loss.

Hirakawa released the news via X, stating that the hearing loss appeared unexpectedly a few days ago. The voice actor announced that he will be taking a leave of absence to receive in-patient treatment per his doctor’s recommendation.

Daisuke Hirakawa's Anime Voice Acting Career

Hirakawa has worked as a voice actor primarily in anime for over 25 years, taking on notable roles such as Laito Sakamaki in Diabolik Lovers and Enmu, the leading antagonist, in Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba - The Movie: Mugen Train. The latter was the highest grossing film internationally of 2020, as well as the highest grossing anime and Japanese film of all time. Holding a lead role in the film helped Hirakawa grow his platform as a freelance voice actor. He has upcoming features as Demon Lord Leons in The Demon Sword Master of Excalibur Academy, Mikaros in Helck and Ran Di Rhodes Stein Neubauten in BASTARD!! -Heavy Metal, Dark Fantasy-: Hell's Requiem.

In his statement, Hirakawa apologized to fans and colleagues for his abrupt departure and inability to attend an upcoming fan event for the Japanese comedy video series Super Stylish Doctors Story. The series' official Twitter account announced Toshihiko Seki, another Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba voice actor who portrays central antagonist Muzan Kibutsuji, will be attending in Hirakawa’s place. The event is scheduled to take place on Oct. 29 with no further changes expected.

Hirakawa has released a few follow-up announcements on X since his initial announcement, giving heartfelt thanks for the support he’s received on social media and assuring fans that his hospital treatment will not be long-term. He most recently stated that he’s planning to start making public appearances again in November and December and is working hard in the hospital to recover.

At present, there have been no further event cancelations or production delays due to Hirakawa’s condition. For further updates on his health, fans should check Hirakawa’s official X account. His voice acting in Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba - The Movie: Mugen Train can be seen on Hulu, Netflix, and Crunchyroll.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


Jujutsu Kaisen Animator "Really Sorry" for Latest Anime Episode, Fans Blame MAPPA

After receiving complaints from Jujutsu Kaisen fans on X, MAPPA studio animator Hokuto Sadamoto posted an apology for the quality of the latest episode -- but many fans have taken to defending him and blaming the problems on MAPPA's working conditions.

Originally, Sadamoto had hoped to stay under the radar by not being credited as an animator on Season 2, Episode 14. However, a leak revealed his involvement and consequently led to fans criticizing his work on the episode. Sadamoto tweeted his apology on X (formerly Twitter) soon after the episode released on Thursday. The translated tweet reads, "I've done a job that no one would appreciate, and I'm sure I'll continue to do so. Sorry. I got mad at the leak, but I was just a coward in the first place because I tried to run away by pretending to be a non-credit. I am sorry."

MAPPA's Working Conditions in the Anime Industry

Sadamoto revealed on X that he had only two weeks to do 250 animation cuts for the episode -- a huge undertaking for anyone, even a professional animator. This incident is the latest in a long list of mistreatment of employees in the animation industry, and MAPPA is no exception. The studio has also faced similar allegations in the past around the working conditions of animators working on Attack on Titan. While the initial backlash hit Sadamoto directly, many on X have taken to defending the animator and the rest of the JJK animation team, while seeking to hold MAPPA accountable for the massive workload given to its employees.

Jujutsu Kaisen is one of MAPPA's biggest hits along with the wildly popular Attack on Titan. The first season of the series, adapted from Gege Akutami's manga, was released from Oct. 3, 2020 to March 27, 2021. It follows the story of Yuji Itadori, a normal high school student who becomes a Jujutsu Sorcerer after a series of events lead him to become the host of the dangerous cursed spirit, Ryomen Sukuna.

The anime became an instant favorite among the anime community, and its popularity only increased with the release of Jujutsu Kaisen 0, a movie that predates the events of Season 1 and follows the story of Yuta Okkotsu, a boy haunted by the cursed spirit of his childhood friend, Rika Orimoto, who died in a tragic car accident. The second season of the main Jujutsu Kaisen anime series premiered on Aug. 31, 2023, and continues to release new episodes every Thursday.

Jujutsu Kaisen is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

Sources: X (formerly Twitter), IGN India


Jujutsu Kaisen: The Death Painting Wombs and Their Relation to Kenjaku, Explained

Since its debut in 2018, Jujutsu Kaisen has quickly grown into one of the most successful shonen franchises of all time. As the second season of the series' anime adaptation continues to wow audiences, its manga approaches what seems to be its final saga, wrapping up many of the plotlines involving its most popular characters. However, one group of individuals that continue to play a major role in the series are the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings, whose connection with Yuji Itadori has been teased since all the way back in the Death Painting Arc.

Jujutsu Kaisen almost never thoroughly explores the backstories of its characters, so many of the details involving the creation of the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings are still unknown. That said, the series has revealed enough about them to foreshadow their relevance to the story, and with each passing arc, they become more and more important to world of jujutsu sorcery.

Updated on October 27, 2023 by Kennedy King: Jujutsu Kaisen's narrative is heating up at an exponential rate, and with the creator of the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings, Kenjaku, poised to overthrow the jujutsu world, his machinations are more relevant than ever. Only time will tell what the Death Paintings' ultimate role in the story will be, but if there's one thing that's certain, it's that these beings represent the true intersection of human life and cursed energy.

What Are the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings?

To understand the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings, one must first appreciate the circumstances of their creation. At the beginning of Japan's Meiji Era (roughly the middle of the 19th-century), an unknown woman mysteriously became pregnant with a half-human, half-curse child, leading her to be ostracized from her family. After fleeing from her home, the woman arrived a temple where jujutsu sorcery was practiced — it was at this point that she first met Noritoshi Kamo, arguably the most evil jujutsu sorcerer of all-time. Under Kamo's guidance, the mother of the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings was impregnated nine times, and each time, the heinous jujutsu sorcerer aborted her unborn children, keeping their fetuses for future experimentation.

At some point over the next century-and-a-half, Tokyo Jujutsu High would come into possession of the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings, which the school hides deep within the confines of Tengen's barrier technique. Like most objects hidden within this barrier, these half-human, half-curse fetuses were safely sealed for decades; however, when Mahito infiltrates Tengen's barrier during the Goodwill Exchange Event, the special-grade curse is able to steal three of them. Similar to other cursed objects like Sukuna's fingers, these Death Paintings are effectively harmless until they're ingested by a human. Upon being consumed, they completely take over the body of their host, and in the process, they fully manifest as independent creatures capable of acting with their own self-awareness and agency.

The Cursed Womb: Death Paintings And Their Connection To Yuji and Kenjaku

The Cursed Womb: Death Paintings make their first appearance in Jujutsu Kaisen shortly after the Goodwill Exchange Event. As Megumi Fushiguro battles a cursed spirit bearing one of Sukuna's fingers, Nobara Kugisaki and Yuji Itadori battle against two of the Death Paintings brought to life by Mahito. Despite the grotesque appearance of these two characters (named Eso and Kechizu), they demonstrate a unique trait for cursed spirits: a willingness to sacrifice their own safety or the sake of another's well-being. The pair truly seem to think of each other as brothers, so it's only natural that their surviving sibling, Choso, is emotionally distraught when he finds out about their loss. However, he eventually finds companionship in the most unlikely of places — Yuji Itadori.

All Known Cursed Womb: Death Paintings

The fallout surrounding the Shibuya Incident leads to the shocking reveal that Noritoshi Kamo, the individual who created the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings, was controlled by the same being that occupies Suguru Geto's body during the events of Jujutsu Kaisen. This ancient sorcerer goes by Kenjaku, and among many other deeds, he also played an undetermined role in the birth of Yuji Itadori. As shown in a strange flashback following the Shibuya Incident, Kenjaku once controlled the body of Yuji's mother, strongly hinting that the antagonist gave birth to the series' protagonist. Upon learning this, Choso immediately recognizes that he and Yuji were wronged by the same figure, which prompts the Cursed Womb: Death Painting to take up arms with Jujutsu Kaisen's heroes. Since Kenjaku utilized his blood in the creation of the Death Paintings, there's a strong chance that Choso and Yuji actually share a non-negligible amount of DNA, creating one of the strangest relationships in shonen history.

Jujutsu Kaisen's tendency to reject conventionality makes it difficult to predict where its narrative is heading, but as Ryomen Sukuna and Kenjaku continue to threaten the stability of the jujutsu world, the potential of the Cursed Womb: Death Paintings and Yuji Itadori have never been more important. Kenjaku has left a trail of discarded experiments in his wake, and while the odds are still stacked against Jujutsu Kaisen's protagonists, it finally seems as though Kenjaku's sick sense of curiosity is coming back to bite him.

Choso’s relationship to the other Cursed Womb: Death Paintings is arguably the most sincere bond in Jujutsu Kaisen, which feels especially meaningful given his status as a half-human, half-curse. If he and Yuji Itadori can capitalize upon their position at the intersection between cursed spirits and jujutsu sorcerers, then they may actually be able to devise a plan to defeat the world's most twisted sorcerer and the King of Curses himself. Only time will tell what their ultimate role in the story is, but considering how long Choso and Yuji's powers and backstory have been teased, it's all but guaranteed to factor in sooner rather than later.

Jujutsu Kaisen: The Death Painting Wombs and Their Relation to Kenjaku, Explained

Friday, October 27, 2023

Spy x Family Announces Temporary Replacement Voice Actor for Anya Forger

Bryn Apprill is temporarily taking over the role of Anya Forger in Spy x Family Season 2's English dub.

On Oct. 26, Spy x Family's official English dub X account announced that Bryn Apprill would step in to take on the role while Anya's English-language voice actor, Megan Shipman, in on maternity leave. Shipman, who also uses the X handle @18moptop, retweeted the original message while thanking Apprill and the other members of the English VA staff, writing, "Everyone on the @Spyfamily_en team has been awesome in helping me organize my temporary maternity leave and I'm so grateful to Bryn for stepping up while I take some time to enjoy motherhood!"

Bryn Apprill has portrayed characters in several iconic anime series. In Attack on Titan, she plays the role of Christa Renz/Historia Reiss in the series' English dub. She also portrays Nagisa Kashiwagi from A-1 Pictures' popular romantic-comedy Kaguya sama: Love Is War and Ibara Shiozaki from My Hero Academia. In addition to her role as Anya Forger, Shipman is also well-known for portraying Norea Du Noc from Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch From Mercury and Mare Bella Fiore from Overlord.

Spy x Family's highly-anticipated second season premiered on Oct. 7, taking viewers back into the bizarrely endearing world of the Forger family. Based on Tatsuya Endo's hit manga, Spy x Family revolves around Secret Agent Twilight, who concocts an intricate scheme to infiltrate the Elite Eden Academy and get closer to Donovan Desmond, the elusive prime minister of Westalis' border nation, in order to preserve world peace. As part of his cover, he takes a wife named Yor Forger and adopts a little girl named Anya, enrolling the latter into the prestigious school. Unbeknownst to Twilight, Yor happens to be an elite assassin, while Anya is an empath who can read his every thought. Despite frequent misunderstandings and complications, the unusual trio form a genuine familial bond.

While Season 2 will only have half as many episodes as its previous installment, Spy x Family has two other major projects on the horizon. The franchise's first animated film, Spy x Family: Code White, will cover an original side-story where the Forger Family embarks on a quest to obtain a special dessert for Anya's headmaster. In the process, Anya sets off a chain of events that could potentially reignite the conflict between Westalis and Ostania. This film is scheduled to premiere in Japan on Dec. 22. Spy x Family also has an upcoming video game installment called SPY X ANYA: Operation Memories -- a life-simulator where players assume the role of Anya and participate in various activities both at home and school. Outside Japan, the game is set for release in 2024.

The Spy x Family anime is available to stream on Hulu and Crunchyroll. The manga is available in English from VIZ Media.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


Who Is Power In Chainsaw Man?

Chainsaw Man is a wild, bloody, and subversive shonen anime series that earned its place in the "dark trio" thanks to its brutal action sequences and twisted characters, including the heroes. In Chainsaw Man, the line between hero and villain is blurred and subjective, as characters like Makima and Power make abundantly clear. In another anime, Power would be a villain, but in Chainsaw Man's topsy-turvy world, she is a hero, if only barely.

Power made a strong first impression when she first appeared, just like her new boss Makima, but they are very different people on the inside and outside. Makima was introduced as a sinister, mysterious kuudere who's not what she seems to be, while Power is a refreshingly blunt shonen heroine who will gladly show Denji and Chainsaw Man anime fans what she is all about -- and fans love it.

What Are Power's Abilities & Origins?

Who Is Power In Chainsaw Man?

Several of Chainsaw Man's best characters had a rough upbringing or grew up in obscurity, such as Denji growing up in poverty with Pochita the chainsaw dog and Kobeni's family using her to fund her brother's college tuition. Power the fiend was much the same, being a lone wanderer with no friends, no purpose, and no clothes. Power's backstory began with her life as a fiend, or a devil that was reborn in a dead human's body while retaining some of their devilish powers. Nothing is known about the teenage girl body whose body Power eventually possessed, nor do Chainsaw Man anime fans know much about Power's original life as a proper devil, but what matters most is that after becoming a horned fiend, Power gradually began her own redemption, even without Denji and Makima around.

Power lived on pure instinct like a wild animal, almost acting like a more unsavory Inosuke Hashibira from Demon Slayer. She wandered about, killing and eating just for survival's sake, but something good awakened in her when she met an ordinary cat. Power saw a bit of herself in that lonely animal, and even if Power promised herself to eat that cat after fattening it up, she couldn't bring herself to harm it. The cat, dubbed Meowy, became Power's pet and first friend, the anime's first hint that Power can care about another creature besides herself. That eventually put Power in a position to be trusted as a devil hunter in Makima's employ, where she met her new partner Denji.

Power wields the power of blood manipulation, not unlike My Hero Academia's hero Vlad King, which suggests she was once a blood devil, a creature born of hemophobia. In Chainsaw Man's main story, Power can reshape her own body's blood to form weapons, most often oversized hammers to crush lesser devils with one hit. She can also form bladed weapons to stab or slash devils either up close or from a moderate distance, making her more flexible in combat. If need be, Power can even transfer her blood to another person to heal them, such as Chainsaw Man, who is healed after consuming blood. Power can even make devil contracts with other parties, though she is hardly ever seen using that particular ability.

What Does Power Mean to Denji & Makima?

Who Is Power In Chainsaw Man?

Power is clearly portrayed as a selfish, juvenile, and short-sighted person who only acts to satisfy her own desires and whims, not unlike Denji himself, but Power has still built up some intriguing relationships in Chainsaw Man's anime by this point. Power isn't a lone wolf any longer -- she is now a team player, if only barely, and will cooperate with Denji on missions to hunt devils and Makima's other enemies. On a more personal level, Power and Denji are almost like a twisted found family with their senior Aki Hayakawa, proving that wholesome found families like the Forgers in Spy x Family aren't always the rule. Even dysfunctional people like Denji and Power can be like a family, especially since they were at their lowest point when they met one another. They needed one another, and after they resolved Power's betrayal in the bat devil arc, they settled down as a proper anime squad.

Anime fans love to ship characters who spend quality time together, but Chainsaw Man made it clear that a Denji/Power romance is not meant to be. Denji longs for a girlfriend, but it won't be Power, and not just because she is a crude, punkish fiend who once sold him out. Power and Denji are like foster brother and sister in their found family, having some mutual trust and respect while also teasing and annoying one another in their everyday lives. They irritate each other, but they still have an understanding, and they know they're not enemies even if they argue and gross each other out. They're the only family they're ever going to have, so they cherish it, juvenile antics and all. It's also a great example of male/female friendships that aren't pressured to become romantic, setting a good example for more uplifting and innocent shonen series like Demon Slayer and My Hero Academia. Friendships like that are underrated and underused.

Power's relationship with Makima is a little less clear, and more suspenseful. On the outside, they're boss and employee, but Power doesn't seem to view Makima as a mother figure the way Denji does. Power and Makima don't often speak to one another, and when they do, it's mostly as professionals. There's no sign Power has any real respect for Makima and clearly doesn't want to be her friend, and given Makima's strength and Power's vulnerable backstory, Power might even fear Makima, hence their chilly distance from one another. If Makima ever does anything to threaten Chainsaw Man's heroes, Power will probably be the first to defy her and rally her co-workers against that threat.

What Does Power Mean to Chainsaw Man Fans?

Who Is Power In Chainsaw Man?

Unusual anime characters like Chainsaw Man's Power tend to stand out, and they often prove a point while doing so. Chainsaw Man is one of several subversive anime series to gain popularity recently, and these series and their characters tend to break the rules to comment on unusual themes or deconstruct their genres or character archetypes. Just the way Ai Hoshino tore apart the lovable lies of pop idols, Power deconstructs what shonen anime girls "should" be, even more so than Nobara Kugisaki in Jujutsu Kaisen. Shonen anime girls are often same-y, being formulaic Best Girl or waifu candidates to contrast with the male lead, while the boys are more varied in their personalities and worldview. Power defies the norm and is far more than a token girl like Sakura Haruno and Orihime Inoue once were.

Instead, Chainsaw Man's Power is a crude, obnoxious, highly unfeminine person not just because she's a fiend, but because Chainsaw Man is subverting the rules about what shonen action heroes should be, token girls included. Power is free to be her own person, flaws and all, and she does not physically or mentally behave herself or doll herself up to be Best Girl material in the conventional sense. As a girl who's true to herself, Power lets her freak flag fly, and that means she goes full circle from an outrageously unfeminine girl to Best Girl after all. Paradoxically, Power is Best Girl because she's so aggressively written to be unlike most female shonen heroes, and fans love her for it. She's unusual, authentic, and memorable as the gross girl who misbehaves and won't ever be anyone's dream girlfriend -- not even Denji's.


Iconic My Hero Academia Voice Actor to Join Jujutsu Kaisen Cast

The world of Jujutsu Kaisen is about to get a crossover of sorts with My Hero Academia, as the Japanese voice actor behind one of the latter's most iconic characters has been cast as JJK's new villain.

The voice actor is Kenta Miyake, who has voiced characters in numerous anime series over the years but is arguably most famous for his role as the former No.1 Pro Hero, All Might, in My Hero Academia. However, in the world of Jujutsu Kaisen, he'll be playing a much different role, as he's been announced as the voice of the villain Dagon in the show -- one of many cursed spirits that the world's sorcerers have to deal with.

Dagon Will Show All His Might in Jujutsu Kaisen

Specifically, Dagon is a special-grade cursed spirit born out of people's fears of water-based natural disasters such as floods and tidal waves. In the Jujutsu Kaisen manga, he's an ally to both Jogo and Hanami and, for a time, is defined as a rather docile cursed spirit. Initially, he only kills people when asked to by others and simply maintains their domain while the other two "work." However, after the death of Hanami, Dagon grows into a more violent and powerful form.

In his new form, which many say resembles Cthulhu, Dagon has incredible control over water and can also generate it, so he's never without it. He becomes so strong that he kills many non-sorcerers in the Jujutsu Kaisen world and even impresses characters like Maki with his abilities. Furthermore, his domain expansion technique guarantees a hit on foes no matter who they are, making him incredibly difficult to defeat.

While Jujutsu Kaisen fans will be excited to see Dagon's arrival in the anime, those who have been paying attention to the manga know that things are getting very intense. For example, a recent chapter highlighted the shocking death of Satoru Gojo during his fight with Sukuna. Gojo was hailed as the strongest in the world, and so "broken" in his techniques that it seemed no one could stop him, not even Sukuna. However, with the strongest now out of the fight, others like Itadori must step up to save the world.

Jujutsu Kaisen Season 2 is airing now on Crunchyroll.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


Figurama Unveils Spy x Family Forger Statue Set

Figurama announced a pre-order date for its Spy x Family Forgers Elite FigumiZ Bundle figure set.

Figurama unveiled its Forger family statue set with a post to its official website, which included a closer look into its upcoming 1/8 scale Spy x Family PVC figures of the series' beloved fake family, Loid Forger, Yor Forger and Anya Forger. While devout fans can preorder all three figures as a set for $750, Figurama additionally included the option of purchasing each item individually, with Loid and Yor's figures both priced at $275. Anya lovers can similarly grab a statue of the fan-favorite telepath for $200. Interested fans can wishlist their desired Forger statue on Figurama's online store, with preorders set to open on Oct. 28. They can expect to receive their purchase sometime in Quarter 4 2024.

Each figure comes with a certificate of authenticity and an exclusive A3 art print, along with a customizable base and several magnetic photo frames to display the many iconic Forger family moments from the anime adaptation. Users who wishlist and buy the complete Forgers Elite FigumiZ Bundle figure set from Figurama will additionally receive bonus items, which include a set of enamel character pins and a Bond Forger accessory that can be added to Anya's statue.

Spy x Family Releases Anime Art Book

Spy x Family anime fans might also be interested in the series' upcoming art book. The Spy x Family Animation Art Book is set for release on Dec. 8 and offers a thorough look into the production of Wit Studio's anime adaptation, with 200 full-color pages detailing how the studio brought each character to life. The book also includes artboards, concept art and costume settings for its beloved characters, along with the complete storyboard of the Season 2 opening and ending, which were created by animators Tetsuro Araki and Takayuki Hirao, respectively.

Based on Tatsuya Endo's massively popular manga of the same name, Spy x Family is an action-comedy anime series following the secret lives of the Forger family. A synopsis for the show reads, "World peace is at stake and secret agent Twilight (aka Loid Forger) must undergo his most difficult mission yet--pretend to be a family man. Posing as a loving husband and father, he'll infiltrate an elite school to get close to a high-profile politician. He has the perfect cover, except his wife's a deadly assassin and neither knows each other's identity. But someone does, his adopted daughter who's a telepath."

Spy x Family is available to stream on Crunchyroll

Source: Figurama


Thursday, October 26, 2023

Naruto's Team 7 and Freudian Trios: Exploring Complex Character Traits in Shonen Anime

Good things come in threes. The number three has a lot of good connotations in many cultures, in fact, and there is something oddly satisfying about how perfectly events tend to work in that structure. Since this is a phenomenon that is colloquially reported on in real life, it makes sense that the rule of three would find its way into popular culture. Anime is no exception to this fact and this foundational idea is most readily found in the core protagonists of shonen anime.

From Naruto to Demon Slayer to My Hero Academia and more, there is a pattern to be seen that crosses secondary genre and subject matter. There is the fact that at the core of many of these lauded series live some iconic anime trios that fans can name in their sleep. There is always a certain balance to them as well; usually someone hot-headed, someone more level, and someone more cool and detached. This specific dynamic can trace its roots all the way back to the father of psychoanalysis, Freud himself. Understanding a little bit more about how this dynamic was first established can go a long way in helping lovers of anime dissect and better understand their favorite trios.

What Is The Freudian Trio, And How Does it Function?

Naruto's Team 7 and Freudian Trios: Exploring Complex Character Traits in Shonen Anime

The Freudian Trio is a dynamic that can be seen cross-culturally and in all forms of media. The concept comes from Freud's structural model of the psyche and is defined by the Id, the Ego, and the Super-Ego. These three act as constructs for the basic structure of mental life and the layers of the human psyche. These three concepts work in concert and in opposition to each other as a way to create a balanced human being when controlled. The id is the arbiter of the most instinctual, primal parts of the mind and acts on a disorganized passion for the sake of immediate gratification. The super-ego acts as the critical analyst, often acting devoid of emotional consideration and in the interest of perfection. The ego is the balance between these two and often has a more realistic outlook that helps in mediating the influence of the id and the super-ego to come to a more actionable thought process. Freud made the claim that the ego, the person, is basically always trying to stay astride a horse. It is up to the rider to take its raw power and turn it into something controlled and useful in the grander scheme of things. Freud codified the model in 1923, inadvertently changing the landscape of media going forward.

These concepts should already sound particularly familiar to consumers of media in general. One of the most famous versions of this trio is seen in the original Star Trek with McCoy (Id), Kirk (Ego), and Spock (Super-ego). The idea behind these trios is to have two foils and a balance. The balance, the character playing the role of the ego, is usually the leader of their trio and has to keep the peace and rely on their partners in order to find the best ways to proceed. The two foils often have a way of generating conflict in the group, and it is their more rigid character traits that can work to make a situation worse or better. As the story progresses, there is often a shift that redistributes the dynamic in the group and creates a new tension for the main characters to overcome as they all find their way to reaching their own sort of internal balance.

The existence of this trio in storytelling has a major impact on how stories are told. There is the question of how character development works for characters that have such well-defined roles within their group. Changes to the dynamic itself can have huge narrative impacts that shift the nature of the stories in which they appear. Having a writing tool like the Freudian Trio creates a natural tension in the core characters of a cast that can keep things incredibly interesting. Having push and pull in a narrative is a way for writers to keep the audience engaged. These tropes have worked so well for so many years that it makes total sense that these trios would become more and more common in anime, especially shonen anime.

Anime Has Used This Trope To Great Effect

If there is a good trope to be explored, anime will often find unique and fun ways to explore it. The Freudian Trio is no exception to that and there are more than a few examples of the trope across anime. Shonen anime in particular has a love for the trope and there are plenty of amazing trios to point to. But there are a few trios so iconic that it is impossible not to talk about them.

Lupin III (1967)

Naruto's Team 7 and Freudian Trios: Exploring Complex Character Traits in Shonen Anime

One of the earlier examples of this trope, Lupin III is one of the few examples where the ego is not the leader of the group. Lupin himself is the Id, hedonistic, and mainly motivated by his love of money and women. The ego role actually falls on Jigen, the gunman who is often in charge of cleaning up after Lupin. The super-ego is Goemon, the incredibly traditional swordsman who is always cool under pressure. There are a lot of times throughout the long-running series when the three of them are split up, and it often leads to them getting into situations that are made harder because of someone's absence.

Though more episodic, the trio is one of the more straightforward examples of the trope. There isn't a lot of shift in their characters over the years as they each have their hidden depths, but their balance is one of the easiest ones to achieve. While most Freudian Trios find a way to work together, these three are already consummate professionals with each other in most Lupin III stories and this established balance needs to be thrown off as a source of tension, making them unique among their fellows.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaba (2016)

Naruto's Team 7 and Freudian Trios: Exploring Complex Character Traits in Shonen Anime

The Freudian Trio in Demon Slayer is probably one of the better examples of the extremes of this trope. Tanjiro, the ego, is the de facto leader of the three of them. As an older brother and a determined young man, he is often the most level-headed in any situation, not just those that involve the other members of his group. Inosuke is one of the more extreme representations of the id, literally channeling instinct and his sense of touch as he was raised by a boar. He is violent and aggressive with nothing to stand in his way. Zenitsu is a genius despite his cowardice and, as the super-ego, has the most intense fears and rationalizations for his behavior throughout the series.

This trio's main impact is in how they shift and change within their roles. They tend to be a bit more fluid in their representations, but they also always snap back to their status quo eventually, even as they change and grow. There are moments where Tanjiro gives into his own baser instincts and where Inosuke comes out as the voice of reason. Their balance and connection work to create something of a codependency on each other as their situation grows more and more dire.

Naruto (1999)

Naruto's Team 7 and Freudian Trios: Exploring Complex Character Traits in Shonen Anime

Naruto is perhaps one of the more interesting examples as almost all the school-age characters are separated out into their own Freudian Trios. The rule of three is in full effect in Naruto, and it persists all the way through. Even more interesting is that the main trio of Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura is one of the more fluid and changing examples. Naruto begins the manga as the Id of his group but develops into the ego. Sasuke starts as the super-ego and devolves into the Id before reclaiming his place later on. Sakura starts as the ego and moves through all three roles as the story requires with her own id having a very loud presence at the beginning of the series.

Naruto was particularly foundational for the use of the Freudian Trio in modern anime, with the trope now completely ubiquitous. My Hero Academia, Chainsaw Man, Jujustsu Kaisen, and more really draw on Naruto as the progenitor of the trios they lean on. They have taken the fluid energy of Team 7 and adjusted it as needed for their own characters. The Freudian Trio has become as familiar in anime as power creep and end credits having the protagonists running next to a river.


Attack on Titan Counts Down to Finale With Ominous Artwork

Attack on Titan has released striking new artwork promoting the anime's upcoming conclusion.

The visual, which was featured on AoT's official X (formerly Twitter) page, depicts Eren Jaeger standing alongside Ymir Fritz, the human who first took on Titan powers. In the series, she is also known as "The Founding Titan," from which the core nine titans were born. Kenta Ueda, a member of the production team for Attack on Titan: The Final Season, created the illustration to highlight the 10-day countdown to the anime's finale, which is scheduled to debut at midnight on Nov. 4 (JST).

After nearly a decade since its 2013 debut, the Attack on Titan anime is finally approaching its long-awaited climax. Based on Hajime Isayama's hit manga, the series chronicles humanity's desperate efforts to survive in a world dominated by bloodthirsty giants called Titans. Part 1 detailed the tragic fallout of The Rumbling, a cataclysmic event triggered by series' main Eren Jaeger in order to end humanity's cyclic wars. Now, Armin, Mikasa and their fellow Survey Corps members must confront Eren, who has taken on a terrifying new form, in order to end the conflict once and for all. In September, Attack on Titan: The Final Season released a new trailer for the episode, which showcases part of the thrilling final showdown.

To commemorate the anime's historic conclusion, animation studio MAPPA is hosting a worldwide after-party event directly after the premiere. This celebratory livestream will feature appearances from several key staff members, including Wit Studio director Tetsuro Araki, MAPPA studio director Yuichiro Hayashi and music composer Hiroyuki Sawano, among others. There will also be interviews with AoT voice actors such as Yuki Kaji (Eren Jaeger), Yui Ishikawa (Mikasa Ackermann) and Marina Inoue (Armin Arlert), who will share experiences they've had while working on the iconic dark shonen title.

While Attack on Titan fans will undoubtedly mourn the anime's ending, Attack on Titan creator Hajime Isayama is releasing brand-new manga content for the series. An upcoming made-to-order art book, titled Attack on Titan: Art Book FLY, will include all of Isayama's full-color illustrations for AoT, in addition to a special bonus chapter of Attack on Titan produced specifically for the book. Those who wish to receive a copy are required to reserve it ahead of the book's official release date, which is scheduled for Nov. 30 in Japan.

Attack on Titan: The Final Season - The Final Chapters Part 2 will debut on Nov. 4. The entire series, including The Final Chapters - Part 1, is available on Hulu and Crunchyroll.

Source: X (formerly Twitter)


One Piece Partners With Seiko to Release Upcoming Gear 5 Watch

As the anime ticks to its 25th year anniversary in 2024, One Piece has announced a new partnership with the popular watchmaker Seiko.

The "Seiko x ONE PIECE Monkey D. Luffy Gear 5 edition" watch by Seiko features three auxiliary dials on the watch face. One teases Luffy's devil fruit, the Gomu Gomu no Mi (Gum Gum Fruit), and another has the symbol "D." alluding to Luffy's association with the Will of D. -- something he shares with other iconic characters like Marshall D. Teach (Blackbeard), Gol D. Roger, Trafalgar D. Water Law, and more. The minutes dial also has the iconic Nika reference, when Luffy first underwent the Gear Fifth transformation. Made in Japan from stainless steel, the watch is water-resistant up to 10 bars of pressure and has a bold "GEAR 5" printed on the back, along with chromatic finish on the packaging box.

The Seiko x One Piece watch ships in Japan in mid-February 2024 from the Premico online store for around US$300 and comes in three sizes: S (16.5cm), M (17.5cm) and L (19.5cm). The site adds that the quartz watch movement is expected to shift somewhere between ±15 seconds every month. It's currently not known if international shipping will be available given that the site currently only has domestic options.

Premico is a regular collaborator with One Piece. Past offerings include a One Piece wallet inspired by Luffy, Zoro, Sanji and Ace, and the company's "Seiko x One Piece watch" is only its latest, following the "One Piece Strong Three", "Seiko x One Piece 1000th episode commemoration", "One Piece Sea Encounters", "Bond of Three Brothers" watches and many more.

The watch joins a number of celebrations due to take place in 2024. As part of the One Piece anime's 25th anniversary celebrations, Anytime One Piece was recently announced. This will be a live stream active on the official One Piece YouTube Channel, making all episodes available 24/7, 365 days a year. It should be noted that the totality of the One Piece anime, movies and specials comes up to over 20 days' worth of content. While this has currently been announced for Japanese fans, the official North American account for Toei has also teased celebrations for international watchers.

Source: Premico store


10 Most Rewatchable One Piece Episodes, Ranked

At over 1,000 episodes and growing, One Piece is the longest-running shonen anime in history, and with each passing year, it continues to reach more and more people around the world. While there is plenty of content for fans of the franchise to sink their teeth into, some of One Piece's best episodes are so good that they completely justify a second viewing.

Whether they heavily feature combat, character development, or world-building, there is a long list of rewatchable One Piece episodes that are sure to reminds viewers of why the series has become such an international phenomenon. As the series heads into its final saga, it's the perfect time to reexamine some of its high points.

10 Roronoa Zoro Stands Against Bartholomew Kuma To Save Luffy

Episode 377 "My Crewmate's Pain Is My Pain, Zoro Fights Prepared To Die"

Roronoa Zoro isn't the main character of One Piece, but his struggle to become the World's Strongest Swordsman is more synonymous with the shonen journey than even Monkey D. Luffy. The swordsman's growth stems solely from his overwhelming willpower — a trait that is never on display more than his encounter with Bartholomew Kuma.

After the Straw Hat Pirates emerge victorious from their encounter with Gecko Moria on Thriller Bark, they are completely exhausted and unable to defend themselves from Kuma when he arrives. In a scene guaranteed to give fans goosebumps no matter how many times they rewatch it, Zoro volunteers to save his captain's life by absorbing all of Luffy's pain and suffering, only to then brush off the act by stating that nothing happened.

9 The Straw Hat Pirates' Reunion Puts A Bow On The Best Timeskip In Anime History

Episode 522 "Everyone Is Gathered — Luffy Sets Sail To The New World"

The Straw Hat Pirates' defeat in the Sabaody Archipelago arc is one of the most devastating moments in One Piece, which is why their reunion two years later is such a joyous occasion. During this sequence, each member of Luffy's crew debuts their new design, giving fans a glimpse of the progress they each made while training throughout the timeskip.

Watching One Piece's protagonists evade the Marines never gets old, and it's especially enjoyable during moments like their return to Sabaody Archipelago. As far as post-timeskip episodes of the series go, few are more rewatchable than Episode 522.

8 Luffy's Battle With Charlotte Katakuri Draws To A Close

Episode 870 "A Fist Of Divine Speed — Another Gear 4 Application Activated!"

When Monkey D. Luffy travels to Whole Cake Island, he's fresh off the heels of victories against Hordy Jones, Casesar Clown, and Donquixote Doflamingo. Because of this recent success, Luffy sets his sights on his biggest target yet: an Emperor of the Sea. However, when the plan to take down Charlotte Linlin goes awry, the Straw Hat Captain is forced to take on her strongest subordinate, Charlotte Katakuri, in a one-on-one fight.

Katakuri isn't as strong as his mother, but he's more than capable of pushing Luffy to his limit. The pair's battle easily ranks as one of the best in One Piece, and thanks to the dazzling display put on by Katakuri and Luffy's respective Devil Fruits, the final moments of the fight are a blast to watch every time. Episode 870 ends as each pirate lands one final punch, but even more importantly, it also provides a memorable debut for Luffy's Snakeman transformation.

7 Whitebeard's Retaliation For Ace's Death Demonstrates The True Strength Of An Emperor

Episode 484 "The Navy Headquarters Falls! Whitebeard's Unspeakable Wrath!"

For over four hundred episodes, One Piece teases the power of legendary figures like Monkey D. Garp, Shanks, and Whitebeard, yet it isn't until the events of the Marineford Arc that their abilities are ultimately revealed. Thankfully, when Whitebeard finally initiates the Summit War by unleashing his wrath, it completely changes the series forever.

Whitebeard' Tremor-Tremor Fruit is said to be the strongest Paramecia-type Devil Fruit, and given its earth-shattering display in Episode 484, that seems to be completely true. Even 12 years after initially airing, this sequence still perfectly captures the power of an Emperor of the Sea, which is why it's potentially the most rewatchable pre-timeskip fight in One Piece.

6 Luffy's Red Roc Attack Is A Beautiful Reminder Of His Biggest Goal

Episode 1015 "Straw Hat Luffy! The Man Who Will Become King Of The Pirates!"

The Raid on Onigashima is the largest pirate-on-pirate conflict in One Piece, and it sets the stage for Monkey D. Luffy to finally claim is rightful spot as an Emperor of the Sea. However, as evidenced by the title of Episode 1015, the Straw Hat Captain's biggest goal is much larger than this.

As Luffy, Trafalgar D. Law, and Eustass Kid prepare to challenge Kaido and Big Mom, One Piece's protagonist once again proclaims that he will become the next King of the Pirates. This scene alone is enough to justify rewatching Episode 1015, but Luffy's spectacular Red Roc attack, which asserts that he is finally powerful enough to go toe-to-toe with Kaido, pushes this sequence to another level.

5 The Gear 5 Transformation Is The Most Memorable In Recent History

Episode 1071 "Luffy's Peak — Attained! Gear 5"

There are quite a few transformations scattered throughout One Piece, but none were nearly as anticipated as Monkey D. Luffy's Gear 5 debut. After awakening his Devil Fruit during his fight with Kaido, Luffy gains access to a host of reality-altering powers, resulting in what may be the most unique transformation in shonen history.

Given the high-quality animation seen in the Raid on Onigashima, most of the episodes in One Piece's Wano Country Arc are easy to justify rewatching. However, Luffy's eye-popping transformation is simply a cut above, and because of 1071's dense action sequences, it's easy to find something new in every viewing.

4 Donquixote Doflamingo's Defeat Ends The Dressrosa Arc In Spectacular Fashion

Episode 733 — "Attack On A Celestial — Luffy's King Kong Gun Of Anger"

As far as One Piece villains go, few are more memorable than the criminal mastermind and former Warlord of the Sea, Donquixote Doflamingo. His eccentric personality and flamboyant outfits help him stand out from the first time that he appears on-screen, making his battle with Monkey D. Luffy one of the most-anticipated in the series.

Until meeting Doflamingo, Luffy had gone largely untested in the New World, so it's refreshing to finally see him struggle against a powerful opponent. However, despite Doflamingo's Awakened Devil Fruit, he's still no match for Luffy's Gear 4 form, which ultimately deals the disgraced Celestial Dragon a devastating defeat.

3 Roronoa Zoro's Fight With King The Wildfire Is Arguably The Most Well-Animated In One Piece

Episode 1062 "The Three-Sword Style Of The Supreme King! Zoro Vs. King!"

Most major fights involving Roronoa Zoro tend to be enjoyable; however, even by these standards, his fight with King the Wildfire is an exceptionally well-crafted sequence. In what is arguably the most well-animated episode in One Piece, the pair of first mates square off, demonstrating exactly why they're the most trusted members of their respective crews.

King's Lunarian abilities and Ancient Zoan-type Devil Fruit powers add a unique spin to his fight with Zoro, who ultimately manages to overcome his opponent using his quickly-developing Conqueror's Haki. King's display is spectacular, and even though he proves to be no match for the master of the three-sword style, Episode 1062 will always exist as a testament to his iconic battle with Roronoa Zoro.

2 Nico Robin's Tearful Display Captures What Makes One Piece So Special

Episode 278 — "Say You Want To Live! We Are Friends!"

Although most rewatchable One Piece episodes revolve around moments of joy, victory, or celebration, some carry much more emotional weight. This is certainly the case for Episode 278, which follows the moment Nico Robin finally abandons her self-resentment in favor of her connection with the Straw Hat Pirates.

It's easy to take Robin's cheery, post-timeskip personality for granted, but until she met the Straw Hat Pirates, her life was incredibly difficult. Seeing her embrace her friendship with Luffy and his crew is a heart-warming display, regardless of the fact that her teary-eyed display occurs in the midst of being imprisoned by CP9.

1 Luffy's First Major Victory Completely Changes The Scope Of The Series

Episode 126 "I Will Surpass You! Rain Falls On Alabasta!"

The Alabasta Kingdom Saga opens up the world of One Piece by plunging the Straw Hat Pirates into their biggest conflict to-date — Baroque Works' manipulation of Alabasta Kingdom. The criminal organization's leader, Crocodile, has caused millions of citizens to suffer by manipulating Alabasta into a civil war, so when Luffy finally defeats the villain, it makes for one of the most rewatchable episodes in the series.

Crocodile nearly kills One Piece's protagonist on two separate occasions before he is finally defeated. This only makes Luffy's final Gum-Gum Gatling attack even more enjoyable to watch, especially considering the beautiful visual of the Warlord of the Sea flying through the Alabasta skyline that follows immediately afterward.

10 Most Rewatchable One Piece Episodes, Ranked

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

The long-running One Piece anime received a live-action adaptation late in the summer of 2023 on Netflix, and many fans now recognize it as one of the few truly great anime adaptations in live-action. Clearly, it would take a monumental effort to adapt One Piece's anime even halfway well, let alone that well, and many challenges were overcome to make all this possible.

The live-action One Piece series did many things right, and the producers smartly faced and solved all kinds of challenges and problems along the way. Those challenges were many and varied, from casting choices to pacing, costume design, dialogue, and even tone and mood. All this sets a new, higher standard for how producers can tackle the inherent challenges of adapting anime into live-action movies and TV series.

The One Piece Live Action Series Turned Out Incredibly Well

10 Maintaining Proper Pacing

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

The original One Piece anime series is a leisure adventure that took over 1,000 episodes to reach its current storyline. That means One Piece's anime has fairly slow and deliberate pacing, which leaves ample room for character development, worldbuilding, and far more, and anime fans are used to it.

However, that wouldn't work in live action, so Netflix's producers had to tighten up the pacing in several ways. One solution was to cut all filler episodes and arcs, and the producers even omitted filler-esque scenes and storylines such as going to Loguetown and showing Luffy fighting Don Krieg the pirate captain.

9 Accurately Casting the Main Characters

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

One Piece's Casting Was Simply Perfect

Some anime series such as One Piece, Naruto, and Hunter x Hunter take place in fictional worlds that don't have the real world's geopolitical maps, ethnicities, and so on. That makes it tough to decide who to cast for roles in such series when and if they become live-action, and there have been some misfires before.

One Piece's Netflix series referred to author Eiichiro Oda's ideas about where the characters would come from in real life. Roronoa Zoro would have been from Japan, so the Japanese actor Mackenyu got the role. Luffy was imagined as Latin American, so Mexican actor IƱaki Godoy was cast as the rubbery pirate captain himself. All that made for accurate and tasteful casting that felt like authentic One Piece.

8 Making the Villains Scary Rather Than Silly

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

Plenty of villains in One Piece are more cartoony than scary, even if they have powerful abilities and commit many heinous deeds, such as Foxy the Silver Fox, Buggy the Clown, and at times, even Captain Blackbeard. The challenge was to make the live-action versions of characters like Buggy accurate but also more than a source of comic relief.

Netflix's One Piece series solved this challenge by focusing on the villains' evil, subversive side while ignoring their comic relief qualities. Buggy, portrayed by actor Jeff Ward, played up the character's "monster clown" side and captured his arrogant vanity without making a joke of the character, and it worked.

7 Delivering Steady and Timely Worldbuilding

Anime Series of All Genres Need Strong Worldbuilding

The original One Piece manga/anime franchise is famed for its extensive worldbuilding – its geography, the many nations found on the world's islands, various political entities, history, and more. However, there was no way to cram all that into the live-action series. Conversely, it would be a shame to omit worldbuilding entirely.

The solution was an elegant middle ground where name-dropping became the norm. Various One Piece characters name-dropped certain organizations, characters, locations, and even historical events to quickly and cleanly build up the One Piece world while still focusing on the episode's main events. Alluding to Baroque Works and Gol. D Roger a few times, for example, did the trick.

6 Portraying Lengthy, Exciting Fight Scenes

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

As a shonen action anime series, One Piece features plenty of high-octane fight scenes, some of which are rather lengthy. Some battles unfolded over the course of 10+ or even 20+ episodes, such as Luffy's intense duel with Charlotte Katakuri in the Whole Cake saga. That wouldn't be feasible for live-action, so compromises were needed.

The solution was to condense each fight in the East Blue saga and deliver the same outcome with slightly different means. Those fights involved just enough blows to show what each side was capable of, without relying on battles of endurance or repeated use of the same techniques.

5 Ending Season 1 On a Satisfying Note

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

Anime Endings Must Be Handled Well to Leave a Lasting Impression

Netfllix's One Piece series had to end somehow without feeling like an abrupt, unsatisfying stopping point. The challenge was to make the ending feel like the end of one era and the dawn of another, and the producers found an ideal solution.

The ending skipped the Loguetown arc to maintain the momentum from the Arlong Park arc and end the season on a victorious, high note. The East Blue saga was clearly over as the Grand Line beckoned, creating a properly open-ended conclusion that wrapped up Season 1's arcs perfectly.

4 How to Use Humor Without Sounding Ridiculous

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

Plenty of shonen action series involve endless banter and even pratfalls among the main characters to make viewers laugh and ease the tension. The problem is that some anime series get carried away, wasting time with unnecessary banter or jokes or resorting to violent tsundere girls to humble the main character. Nami clobbering Luffy out of irritation is one example.

The live-action One Piece series overcame this challenge by completely rewriting the humor. Few of the original anime's jokes or comic relief moments remained. Instead, viewers were treated to more conventional one-liners and quips, not unlike the heroes of the MCU.

3 Making One Piece Accessible For New Fans

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

Many live-action anime adaptations are clearly made with established fans in mind, since they don't provide much context and just focus on a fast-paced, complex plot. Such movies don't have time to slow down for new fans, but Netflix's One Piece found a way to welcome all new fans.

The solution was to make One Piece a TV series that has room to explain everything for new fans, from the nature of Devil Fruits to basic worldbuilding and the characters' backstories via flashbacks. The series did include bonus treats for established fans, such as a cameo for Captain Smoker, but new fans didn't miss a thing.

2 Using Lengthy Flashbacks & Complex Character Backstories

One Piece Has a New Formula For Flashbacks

It's common for anime series to use lengthy flashbacks to fill in important gaps in the backstory or reveal a character's origins and experiences. The challenge is how to use such hefty flashbacks in a timely manner in an adaptation like One Piece. Some anime flashbacks take up half an episode or more, after all.

That challenge was neatly overcome with the clever use of flashbacks that were broken up into pieces in Netflix's One Piece. This even allowed the past and present in One Piece to mirror one another, with similar scenes in the flashback and present day appearing side by side.

1 Taking New Fans By Surprise & Not Be Purely Rehash

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)

Live-action anime adaptations strive to closely emulate the animated series that came before, and fans expect a great deal of accuracy. The downside is that fans end up watching the same thing they've already seen before, just with live-action actors and props, which can take some of the fun out of it.

Netflix's One Piece overcame that challenge by having each story arc ending in the same way as the anime, but changing some details along the way. That preserved the series' plot and created the same payoffs, such as freeing Nami from Arlong and acquiring the Going Merryat Syrup Village. But if the process to reach those resolutions is changed a bit, veteran fans may be surprised in fun and refreshing ways, such as Captain Kuro's sequence as a horror movie villain and Buggy torturing Luffy for information like something out of a Saw movie.

10 Challenges The One Piece Live-Action Faced (& How They Were Handled)


Wednesday, October 25, 2023

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

In One Piece, it's not as simple as heroes vs. villains, one clear-cut side vs another. This means that some characters like Sabo are friendly to Luffy, but ultimately owe their allegiance to other leaders or groups. Sabo may help Luffy sometimes, but he's got his own mission, so he's not about to join the Straw Hats.

One Piece also depicts Sabo as a young man who restarted his entire life and made something of himself. He was a renegade noble in his homeland and was Ace and Luffy's brother, but unlike his brothers, Sabo nearly died at sea and lost his memory for a time, carving out a whole new path for himself afterward. One Piece fans can thus compare Sabo to similar characters in other anime franchises – that is, heroes who sometimes aid the protagonist but have their own path.

Sabo Developed a Fighting Style Called Ryusoken

10 Kurapika Kurta Helped Gon Fight the Phantom Troupe

Hunter x Hunter

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

When Hunter x Hunter launched with the Hunter Exam arc, there were four main heroes. Protagonist Gon Freecss had Killua, Kurapika, and Leorio by his side, but they wouldn't remain a permanent squad for long. They had their own goals and missions to pursue, and only Killua remained by Gon's side the entire time.

Kurapika Kurta was a circumstantial ally for Gon in the Yorknew City story arc, since Kurapika had a serious grudge with the Phantom Troupe organization. However, like Sabo in One Piece, Kurapika only aided the hero when it was convenient, since he had his own mission and never meant to join the hero's main squad. Kurapika is the hero of his own story, just the way Sabo is the hero of his own story after joining the Revolutionary Army to overthrow the World Government.

9 Uryu Ishida Sided With Ichigo to Save Rukia & Orihime


10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

Protagonist Ichigo Kurosaki became a substitute Soul Reaper in Bleach's first episode, and his Quincy classmate, Uryu Ishida, wanted to be his unfriendly rival. Uryu thought he was "supposed" to hate Soul Reapers like Ichigo, but he and Ichigo couldn't help becoming good friends anyway. They also shared goals when the time came to rescue Rukia and later, rescue Orihime Inoue as well.

It was the Thousand-Year Blood War arc that drove Uryu and Ichigo apart. Like Sabo in One Piece, Uryu Ishida owed his allegiance to a completely different group than the hero – in this case, the Wandenreich, the hidden Quincy empire. In fact, that led Uryu to evidently betraying Ichigo and fighting against him in the war.

8 Katsuki Bakugo Was Ready to Die For Deku

My Hero Academia

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

Katsuki Bakugo's Final Fate is Still Uncertain

Even if Katsuki Bakugo had a much nastier temper than most Sabo-like anime characters, he still fulfilled that role in My Hero Academia's story. Bakugo was Izuku's classmate at UA, where they constantly feuded as shonen rivals to see who would become the next #1 pro hero after All Might.

Izuku and Bakugo butted heads constantly, and of course, only one of them could be #1. Still, even if they were competing, they couldn't help but fight together against their true enemies, such as the League of Villains, making them proper allies when necessary. They even shared One For All in the first MHA movie, and Bakugo was eventually willing to take a blow for Izuku's sake.

7 Monkey D. Luffy Was Everyone's Sabo

One Piece

There can be more than one Sabo-type character in the same anime franchise. Just the way Sabo sometimes helped Luffy when their paths aligned, protagonist Monkey D. Luffy was always ready to support his new friends on various islands, even if their end goals differed.

An early major example was Princess Nefeltari Vivi, who aimed not to roam the seas, but help lead her kingdom. Luffy knew he and Vivi would soon part ways after Crocodile's defeat, but he still helped her, and he accepted reality when Vivi opted to not board the Going Merry to officially join him.

6 Mary Saotome Gambled With Her Rival, Yumeko


10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

Kakegurui is One of Many Great Gambling Anime Series

The gambling anime Kakegurui depicted a highly competitive, dog-eat-dog private school called Hyakkou Academy. Protagonist Yumeko Jabami was always happy to gamble with anyone regardless of rivalries or personal politics, and that included her new frenemy, Mary Saotome.

Mary aimed to become the student council president while Yumeko merely gambled for her own pleasure, and the two girls were only loosely united as allies. Still, Mary wasn't above gambling alongside Yumeko to take down their most fearsome rivals during the election tournament, and neither would have gotten very far without the other's aid. Luffy and Sabo were heroic wild cards in One Piece, defying the rigid world order, and Yumeko and Mary were like that in Hyakkou Academy.

5 Aoi Todo Took Down Hanami With Yuji

Jujutsu Kaisen

Jujutsu Kaisen introduced two rival sorcery schools, with one each in Tokyo and Kyoto. Those schools' students met up in a would-be tournament arc where the students were expected to fight curses, but instead, the students fought one another. Aoi Todo, a Kyoto student, personally battled protagonist Yuji Itadori in one such clash.

Aoi and Yuji soon set aside their differences to fight their common enemy, Hanami the curse. Yuji and Aoi became best friends based on their shared experience. Though their friendship was only surface deep and they have rather different life goals, they can still count on one another when things are dire, making Aoi Yuji's own Sabo. Their life paths diverged, but Aoi will make sure to have his comrades' backs when it’s convenient.

4 Rem Sometimes Aided Light To Protect Misa

Death Note


10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

Light Yagami Was Downright Evil in Death Note

The genius Light Yagami had few true friends or allies in Death Note. Instead, he tended to use people, from his lover Misa Amane to the Japanese police and even certain Shinigami. The most Sabo-like of these characters was the Shinigami named Rem, who was attached to Misa.

Rem was not Light's friend or protector, but she was connected to him via Misa, and Light took advantage of that a few times. Rem's goals were totally different than Light's, but she was willing to play her part in his plans all the same. Rem did that to protect Misa, but tragically, Light used Rem's protective feelings to kill her, L, and Watari in one fell swoop.

3 Jellal Fernandez Became a Loose Ally of the Fairy Tail Guild

Fairy Tail

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

At first, Jellal Fernandez the wizard was an antagonist in Fairy Tail, but he was later redeemed and got another chance at life. In fact, he was one of several villainous wizards who decided to form an antihero guild called Crime Sorciere, a small guild friendly to the Fairy Tail guild. Like Sabo in One Piece, Jellal was a childhood friend that resurfaced and joined the main heroic group.

Jellal usually wandered the continent Ishgar on his own mission with his two guildmates, but he would also aid Erza, Lucy, and the other Fairy Tail wizards if their paths ever crossed. It helped justify the heroes' habit of showing mercy to their defeated enemies, a good spin on Fairy Tail's reluctance to kill anyone at all.

2 Askeladd Trained the Boy Who Wanted to Kill Him

Vinland Saga

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

In a bizarre twist of fate, the vengeful protagonist Thorfinn Karlsefni became the unofficial foster son of his father's killer. Thorfinn hated Askeladd for killing Thors, but Thorfinn had nowhere else to turn, so he joined Askeladd's band and learned how to fight.

Askeladd played his role as a bizarre boss and foster father to Thorfinn, though Thorfinn still tried to kill him regularly in official duels. Still, the two of them had differing goals, with Thorfinn fixating on revenge while Askeladd was the opposite, striving to protect other people at any cost – in this case, the Welsh people. Sabo fought the World Government and its Five Elders to bring about freedom, and Askeladd did the same in medieval Europe against King Sweyn.

1 The Reborn Greed Teamed Up With Edward Despite Their Differences

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

10 Anime Characters Like Sabo In One Piece

The conniving villain Father had seven homunculus "children" modeled after the seven deadly sins, though not all were loyal to him. Greed defied Father and lived on his own until he was captured, melted down, and reborn in Ling Yao's body. The new Greed then broke away from Father a second time, determined to hoard treasure and fame once again.

The new Greed actually agreed to team up with Edward Elric despite their differing worldviews and goals. They both wanted Father taken down, albeit for totally different reasons. In the end, Greed died for the heroes' sake on the Promised Day, making him the noblest homunculus and a true Sabo hero at heart. And like Sabo, Greed fought to prevent a tyrant from taking over the world, protecting everyone's freedom in the process all over Amestris.