The day has arrived for Netflix fans and anime fans with the arrival of the streaming platform's adaptation of Cowboy Bebop. The classic anime has been translated into a live-action series on Netflix, but the reception isn't all roses.
Instead, it would seem the series is leaving some fans feeling cold and bored, while others are feeling the opposite side of the negative with anger over the attempt. John Cho stars as Spike Spiegel, the bounty hunting "cowboy" that teams with Jet Black on the Bebop. Over the course of the series, they pick up Faye Valentine and Radical Edward, plus a corgi that is more important than it seems.
While there was much buzz about the series and past adaptations of anime series fresh in fans' minds, the results are apparently kind of lukewarm. The series isn't receiving horrible reviews, but it isn't dazzling anybody. It also doesn't lend itself to success, with the original series appearing on the streamer simultaneously. It might be an unfair kickoff.
But as BGR notes, some of the response has pegged the adaptation as a prime example of "Netflix bloat" that looks "worse than CW quality." It is also one of the few entries on Rotten Tomatoes that has critics and fans in agreement with 50 percent and 53 percent scores, respectively. The outlet quotes The Daily Beast review of the Netflix offering in the end.
"Unfortunately, the show's only connection (to the source material) is aesthetic. It looks like the world and even sometimes – when the energy is high, bullets are flying, or new characters are introduced – can feel like it too," the review reads. "But as a whole, the new Cowboy Bebop is just so ploddingly inefficient and misguided, the idea that it could share the same DNA as its original is farcical. When it comes to stakes, the original is simply in another weight class."
Hopefully when Netflix decides to adapt another anime series they already stream, it won't be something that stands so high above in quality. Neon Genesis is sitting right there just hoping they'll try it.