Anime,  Television

Review: BNA: BRAND NEW ANIMAL Season 1

A human-turned-tanuki named Michiru runs away to Anima City. There she hopes to get protection and answers. When she meets Shirou, a beastkin who can turn into a wolf, the answer might not lie so far away.

Like A Whisker Away, I found this randomly on Netflix. It looked like it could be a lot of fun, pressed play, and here we are. Twelve episodes later, and BNA: Brand New Animal has ended up as one of my new favorite series in a long time.

When a story wants to incorporate an important subject matter, the writer always takes a big risk. Insert it amateurishly and it can become jarring. That is not an issue for Brand New Animal though. They use the subject matter as a skeleton to create an interesting world with colorful characters around the board. Is there an argument about cliche characters and story? Sure, but I feel that they do well enough that it truly has an identity of its own.

Michiru’s and Shirou’s interactions reminded me of a lot of Legolas and Gimli. Both being stubborn, with different points of view, but learn and understand each other throughout the series. Her fear of change and his stubborn view of the world flow works well is perfect for this type of story. The animation for this show is stylistic and gorgeous. Imagine if the original Teen Titans and Dead Leaves had a child.

Like A Whisker Away, I only got the chance of watching it through the English dub. Ironically enough, Cherami Leigh does the role of Michiru, and she brings her A-game as usual. Benjamin Diskin also brings his best with his role as the stoic and stern Shirou. No one in this dub is bad, but looking at the cast list, that is no surprise.

The only issue I have with this series/season (no news on a second season as of this writing) is that it would have been more beneficial with some more episodes. Have it be 15 instead of 12 to give us a little more of the world; that would have been the cherry on top. Brand New Animal is something I highly recommend. It is currently 12 episodes, with each episode being around 20 minutes long. You won’t regret it.

Co-host of the Amateur Otaku Podcast. A writer of many things. Loves everything nerdy from anime/manga to comics and video games. Fire Emblem is the greatest of all time.

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