Yatterman Yoru

I’ve never watched the original Tatsunoko anime (my first introduction to them was the beautiful CGI series Karasu), but they seem to be creating fantastic remake/sequels – though much more mature and sorrowful in tone (eg Casshern Sins).

Yatterman Yoru is another one, and if you know the original anime it’s even more rewarding. Here we follow the descendants of the original villain-group Doronbo, trying to live well and discovering that the current Yatterman-run society is corrupt and tyrannical. The group consists of the little girl Leopard, the herculean Elephantus, and the technical whiz Voltkatze (also the pig Oda), and they pick up others along the way, including the kind-but-delusional Allouette and the apathetic Galina.

The moral reversal, the dystopian setting (featuring a brutal fascist government), and the difficulty the young protagonist Leopard has understanding what’s right and what’s wrong develop Yoru from its kids-show roots. Heck the opening scene features the destruction of Japan!

The character designs are very pretty and distinct, and the references to the original anime (particularly how things develop at the end) are really great. The characters all grow and mature (indeed that’s a theme of the series). My only criticism is the reused material in the last episode that mars the final battles, but I suspect that’s due to a time crunch more than anything else.

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