TRIGUN STAMPEDE — FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Hello and welcome. Today we have a remake at hand that understandably received mixed initial reactions after the announcement. But that’s always the case with anime fandom. Takes less than a second for them to pen a 3k-word-long essay on how a show will suck after a glimpse of the studio’s teaser image. We pay no mind to them and get back to our work. 

Trigun is the three-volume manga of Yasuhiro Nightow, which was serialized between 95-97. Then in 1998, the MADHOUSE-produced original TV series was aired. The 2023 remake is handled by Orange, a studio well-known for its 3D anime. I talked a bit more about them in my review and added a video on a breakdown of their work, especially on Beastars. Soooo, let’s go!

I can and WILL cry on the spot.

Did I know this series beforehand? Bet I do! Back when I was in high school the internet was still in the dial-up stage and a close friend of mine downloaded Trigun for me. And ever since, I occasionally rewatch the original TV series, especially the first episode whenever I felt like seeing Vash’s dumb and kissable face. That, and it’s also one of the best first episodes ever (in my opinion, of course).

What is it about? The planet has to rely on biological generators called “plants” that provide water and energy. Now, a town either has to pay a fortune or steal from another one if something is to happen to their plant because it’s not possible to build them anymore. 

Meryl Stryfe has just become a reporter and is on her way to partner with a veteran to investigate the infamous Humanoid Typhoon with a $$6.000.000 bounty on his head. The “typhoon” these two have met doesn’t seem to fit the rumors surrounding the one with the bounty. He’s more of a hot mess than a mass murderer, but now that their paths have crossed, they’ll seem to continue their journey together. 

What to look out for? Blood, violence. 

What do I think? I want to start by saying that remakes of beloved series that hold a lot of nostalgia are bound to cause a stir, and I think the idea of the remake itself is a bit ambitious. Not because it’s a sin or anything, but because it’s a work that everyone, be it a positive or negative one, has an emotional attachment to and personal history with.

After hearing that Orange was behind the remake, I felt conflicted. On one hand, I know how capable they are. I mean, Beastars or Land of the Lustrous needs no introduction. On the other, I guess I wasn’t ready to see Vash in 3D. In the end, I decided that it would be better if I treated the remake as something completely new and try to see it as unbiased as I could manage. 

Please give this 2-part video a watch when you have time!

And you know what, Orange was a big help. Because TRIGUN STAMPEDE was something entirely different. Everyone say thank you Orange!

Okay okay. I’m serious now. I did feel off because this first episode felt like… coming home to my family where everyone has the same name and wears the same clothes, and they respond to me when I call out to them. Except, the ones in those clothes are different people altogether. But after getting used to that difference, I genuinely liked my new family! I mean, the new Trigun!!

The voice acting was on point and fit the characters to a t. The part where Vash was asking for bullets from people frantically running away? Stellar. His artificial arm that uses lost technology? A cultural reset. The art director and the concept artist credited on ANN are Yuuji Kaneko and Kouji Tajima. Oh boy, I drooled over the world that was created. The expansive backgrounds, the town itself that felt alive, the whole experience was immersive. The dream-like scapes alone will be details that I look forward to every week. 

Kenji Mutou is the director of TRIGUN STAMPEDE.

One detail that fell a bit flat for me was that we immediately knew who the Humanoid Typhoon was and this young man was the one with the bounty on his head. But we also immediately learn that even though he’s rumored to be a murderer, he’s a very good guy. Then, we also get to learn who the last boss will be. All in one episode. I know I said I was going to treat this as a new thing but the reason why the OG Trigun‘s first episode is stellar is there are 3 different people who claim the other to be Vash. The rumor itself has evolved into something so vague that two of these people somehow fit into the description while the real Vash is tied up in some corner, screaming and begging not to be killed. And throughout the season, we get to know him little by little but he never ceases to be a mess of a person. That vagueness really suits the world they live in, considering the backdrop of Trigun is reminiscent of Wild West and they don’t have any means for fast and accurate communication. Overall, I guess TRIGUN STAMPEDE wanted to lay its cards on the table at the very beginning so it can focus on what it sets out to do. 

By the way, was it only me who got extremely uncomfortable when the military police used violence on Vash? Normally, the violence is very comedic and brief in anime but it went on for quite a long time, both on and off the screen. Vash was still smiling when he got up but… it was good that the scene was discomforting. 

Will I continue watching? I definitely will. It’s full of action and cool camera angles. Vash himself still needs a bit of getting used to in my case because he kind of looks like the original’s American, teenage cousin. Still, I think there’s a lot to like in this remake, and I urge everyone to give it a chance. For the sake of this gif, if nothing else:

What are your thoughts on the remake? Is this your first time meeting Vash and the crew, or were you already a fan of Trigun like me? Hit me up with your takes below and see you tomorrow with another Friday BL that I still haven’t decided what to write on!

King of calculating the conservation of momentum and elastic collision on the spot!
This comment has resonated with my soul.

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6 Replies to “TRIGUN STAMPEDE — FIRST IMPRESSIONS”

  1. Honestly, I haven’t watched it (I’m ashamed to say that I haven’t seen the original either), and I was generally intrigued by the remake but sadly CGI is a huge turnoff for me…and since it’s like full full CGI >.<

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I share your sentiment on CGI, I usually skip such series but Orange’s works I mentioned were exceptionally well done, and loving the original I gave Stampede a chance. You can try and see which you like more! I’m sure Vash will captivate your heart 🤣💞

      Like

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