Netflix has revealed its first images of the upcoming live-action Cowboy Bebop series. This is our first look at Spike Spiegel (John Cho), Jet Black (Mustafa Shakir), and Faye Valentine (Daniella Pineda) in Cowboy Bebop (2021).
Costume-wise, Spike’s and Jet’s outfits are pretty accurate to their original anime portrayals. Netizens have said the 49-year-old John Cho is a little too old to play the 27-year-old Spike but I personally don’t think it’s that big of a deal. With Spike’s dark and tumultuous past, I can buy him being a bit older.
Faye’s wardrobe is certainly not as revealing as the originals, but you can still see the inspiration. We haven’t seen the fourth main character Ed yet but they’ve confirmed she’ll appear in the series.
Ein the dog, who they better take of that leash at some point, is being played by a trained Welsh Corgi. Perhaps the most character-accurate casting in all western anime adaptations.
From what we can see the Netflix Cowboy Bebop has also recreated the interior of the Bebop ship as well as the shootout that took place in the church in episode 5. Once again, it looks fairly accurate to the original anime.
Anime adaptations, particularly western anime adaptations, tend to have a very negative reputation among fans of the medium. The major complaint being that they stray too far from the source material in order to appeal to a western audience despite the fact that most western fans (like most fans) would rather they just be faithful to the source material, or not make an adaptation at all.
If there’s anything to take away from these images is that the show certainly wants to appear as faithful. From these pictures alone, I can at least recognize these characters as the Bebop crew. That’s more than can be said for many anime adaptations.
Whether that translates to the show being faithful and well-executed is another area that we’ll see when the show premiers.
The original 1998 classic anime Cowboy Bebop, a sci-fi series about four bounty hunters making a living throughout the galaxy is a masterclass in animation, character writing, and music. It’s also one of the few anime where the English dub is considered better than the Japanese version. It’s currently available to watch and we would highly recommend it.
Here are some more details about the upcoming Cowboy Bebop series, like the fact that the original composer for the series, Yoko Kanno will return to do the soundtrack for this one.
Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop series will premier on November 19th, 2021.
Till then, See You, Space Cowboy!