Netflix skillfully adapts ‘Blame!’ into a dark sci-fi anime

In its attempt to corner the market on original content, Netflix has left no genre unconsidered, and that includes anime. Its new original movie Blame! isn’t even the first anime out its doors.

Loyal fans of Blame! creator Tsutomu Nihei will recognized one of the film’s main characters: Killy, a quiet gun-slinging renegade. He made a brief appearance in Netflix original anime Knights of Sidonia, but left enough of an impact for Nihei and Netflix to adapt one of Nihei’s most iconic mangas.

Blame!, which is available now on Netflix, started as a manga that debuted over 20 years ago. After the positive response to Killy’s appearance in Knights of Sidonia, director Hiroyuki Seshita decided it was time to finally bring Nihei’s beloved manga to life. For those wondering how faithful the adaptation is, Seshita maintains the work itself has evolved over the years—and the anime follows suit. “It’s a body of work that [Nihei] restructured and redesigned and reconceptualized,” Seshita said.

Screengrab via Netflix Asia/YouTube

Blame! is a dark science-fiction tale that takes place in the distant future. In this future, humanity struggles to survive in a dilapidated city where dangerous machines called “Safeguards” aim to wipe out what’s left of the human race. As a result of constantly getting hunted, humanity has resorted to surviving in small, isolated groups. Killy is like a retro-futuristic version of The Gunslinger from Stephen King’s Dark Tower. He doesn’t say much, but he’s an imposing figure with an ridiculously large gun that proves to be highly effective against the Safeguards.

Killy travels through the derelict city structure to find a human that possesses a rare gene that would save humanity from the Safeguards. As the story begins, he stumbles across a group of small children who have stolen survival suits and gone wandering. The story itself focuses on these small children, an older…

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