It’s Been 84 Years but I Still Need To Fangirl About Last Week’s Anime Announcements
We're being well fed in 2021
Listen. I know I’m later than an anime girl with toast in her mouth with this news, but please understand that I hadn’t started this gig yet. Rest assured, I still took notes on my trusty Google doc to prepare y’all for this write-up.
First things first. Please follow My Favorite Anime Auntie because she constantly has updates and will fangirl with you. Now that that’s out of the way, here’s FOUR 2021 anime announcements that I’ve been eager to discuss.
The Way of the Househusband
One thing I will always and forever love about anime is how it takes the most mundane premise and makes it the most engaging thing you’ve ever seen. As the title suggests, The Way of the Househusband is about a stay-at-home-husband … who just so happens to be a retired yakuza boss because ANIME. What I expected when I read a couple manga chapters was a man unsatisfied with his lot in life, someone who looked down on cooking and cleaning and who desperately wanted to return to his old life.
Instead, the “Immortal Dragon” Tatsu takes great pride in being a house husband and even reflects on how difficult it is to make that perfect meal and nab that last sale item. Of course, his old crew is convinced that there’s some kind of catch, and his appearance makes everyone suspicious (no sign of wayward white women armed with cell phones, though), but Tatsu’s all about that discount cabbage life.
Tokyo Babylon 2021
Tokyo Babylon was PEAK supernatural, tragic, Clamp boys love storytelling back in the day … if you read the manga. The 90s OVA is only two episodes, barely scratches the surface of the overall story, and ends on a happy note. This would be fine—if the characters didn’t appear in X/1999 discussing major plot twists that never made it into the OVA. I will never forget my absolute shock when I went from “cheerful OVA Subaru” to “smoking away the depression Subaru” and not knowing what the heck happened in between since the manga hadn’t been released in the U.S. yet.
YEARS later, the manga was licensed, ending its run here 15 years ago. Ever since then I’d hoped for an anime series that properly showed the pure anguish that is Subaru Sumeragi, his character development, his deceptively sweet but actually problematic relationship with Seishirou Sakurazuka—the man with shoulders for days (but from the new trailer they’ve been toned down).
I also want a series that illustrates how badass Subaru is when he performs exorcisms, and furthermore, I want a series that gives more screen time to absolute queen Hokuto Sumeragi. Hokuto, bold fashionista twin to Subaru, deserves to be properly portrayed in an anime series. The girl uses her lipstick to cast spells, a mere two episodes of this is a CRIME, I want it all!
Given the Movie
Before I binge-watched Given last year, I saw a clip floating around Twitter where fans praised the series for having two male characters in an encouraging conversation about sexuality. After a trip down the rabbit hole, I found myself sobbing on the couch. If you’re a fan of such things you immediately recognize the “boy likes boy, what do?” trope, but Given is so much more than that. It’s an honest look at processing grief and opening yourself to love again.
Oh, and it’s cute as heck, I relate to Ritsuka’s gay panic and his comical reaction to Mafuyu returning his feelings.
While the series covers Ritsuka and Mafuyu’s story, the movie will venture into Akihiko and Haruki, the older members of the band. Haruki obviously has feelings for Akihiko, while Akihiko continues to be a disaster bi or pan (he doesn’t say which, but he is intimate with men and women) Akihiko has an ex named Ugetsu, who he lives with, and who he’s clearly still intimate with. As an adorably neat Japanese woman once said: I love mess!
You might remember hearing the name Yasuke last year. That’s because Chadwick Boseman was set to portray the African Samurai in an upcoming film. While there’s no word on what’s happening with that project (nor should we expect one for a while, rest in peace king), Netflix recently announced an anime based on the historical figure. Yes, I said historical. Yasuke was very much a real person. Not only was he the first African Samurai, he was the first foreign-born samurai PERIOD.
The anime series is set to star Lakeith Stanfield, who will voice the titular character. According to Netflix, the series will feature a world full of “magic and mechs” as Yasuke attempts to live a life of peace and—LOL sorry, it’s anime, no warrior is allowed to have peace at the START of the series. Next, you’ll tell me that the dude who’s two days from retirement actually makes it to retirement.
There’s not much information beyond hints of a “mysterious child” Yasuke has to protect from “dark forces,” but the sketches and the names behind the project are cause for excitement. Created by LeSean Thomas (The Boondocks, Legend of Korra, Cannon Busters), character designs by Takeshi Koike (Lupin the Third), and animation by MAPPA (Jujutsu Kaisen, Attack on Titan: The Final Season)? Yeah, this is gonna be fire.
What 2021 anime announcements are you excited about? I only covered stuff from last week, anything else that I may have missed? Tell me what to add to my queue (note: My Hero Academia season 5 is already there, but please, feel free to scream about it with me).
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