We haven’t seen the actual show yet. It could still suck! But if we’re going to be superficial, it sure looks like Netflix is getting the look of its Cowboy Bebop adaptation sorta, well, right.
The Twitter for the live-action Cowboy Bebop dropped screens for the new series, showing a promising look. The sets and costumes on point, carefully adhering to the source material.
The adaptation stars John Cho as Spike Spiegel, Daniella Pineda as Faye Valentine, and Mustafa Shakir as Jet Black. Not only do they look terrific, but Ein, the corgi, looks fantastic.
Shinichiro Watanabe’s futuristic noir-thriller anime debuted in 1998 and followed a group of bounty hunters. All these years later, there is still so much to love about the show.
Because of that, fans were nervous when the live-action adaptation was announced. That’s understandable, because live-action anime versions don’t exactly have a stellar track record. Cowboy Bebop fans don’t want another clunker of an anime adaptation (see Death Note). Any skepticism is inevitable and deserved.
The live-action version also seems to nail the music, just by the simple fact that Yoko Kanno has come aboard as the composer. Understanding just how important Kanno’s score was to the original show should give fans a semblance of hope that the folks making the show have a vague idea of what they’re doing.
But these are just stills. In the last few years, I’ve seen promising images—trailers, too—for a number of anime adaptations that turn out to be awful.
The story, the writing, the acting, and the directing will, like any show, make or break this attempt. Otherwise, this is merely anime-inspired dress up.
The show was originally slated for 2020, but between the pandemic and Cho getting hurt during filming, it was pushed to 2021.
Cowboy Bebop will premiere on Netflix this fall.