Netflix adaptation of Cowboy Bebop stays true to storyline

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Photo from Wikipedia, property of Netflix.

Cowboy Bebop reimagines the well-known anime to live action storytelling.

Sayna Nassertorabi, Staff Writer

This review contains spoilers

During the past few weeks there have been some new releases on Netflix, among them is the live action version of the beloved anime Cowboy Bebop. If you are not familiar with the anime, Cowboy Bebop follows the life of three bounty hunters; Spike, Jet and Faye Valentine. 

The three bounty hunters dedicate their lives chasing down the most dangerous criminals in the solar system. In this live action adaptation,  John Cho stars as Spike, Mustafa Shakir as Jet and Daniella Pineda as Faye Valentine. The original Cowboy Bebop aired from 1998 to 2000 and consisted of 26 episodes. 

The Netflix adaptation, as of now,  is only one season and no information has been announced on plans for a second season. While there are notable differences in the Netflix adaptation compared to the original anime, the characters and storylines remain the same for the most part. 

The greatest part about the Netflix adaptation of Cowboy Bebop is John Cho’s incredible performance as Spike Spiegel. One of the main points of Spike’s character in the animated series is him not having any fear of death and  Cho does a great job at portraying this aspect of Spike’s character. 

For example, in the third episode of the Netflix adaptation there is an instance where Spike is about to fall off the roof but Jet rushes and holds on to his leg; any person would be scared to death if they were about to fall off a roof. But what Spike did at that moment was to casually light a cigarette and smoke it. 

After Jet asks what he is doing he casually responds, “waiting for you to pull me back up!”  This scene was brilliant because it perfectly captures  Spike’s nonchalant attitude and is not afraid of death. Even if you did not watch or only a few episodes of the animated version of Cowboy Bebop, viewers can easily grasp the storyline through the Netflix adaptation.   

Mustafa Shakir and Daniella Pineda also did a good job portraying their respective characters, Jet and Faye Valentine. The Netflix adaptation  of Cowboy Bebop has received some negative comments relating to the writing and the characters not being similar to the ones in the original. But viewers  need to keep in mind that it is difficult to bring anime characters to life and have real actors perform them. 

Overall, if you are a fan of  the animated version of Cowboy Bebop, then you’ll definitely enjoy the live-action adaptation on Netflix. All episodes of Cowboy Bebop are available to stream on Netflix. 

The Cougar Chronicle: The independent student news site of California State University, San Marcos