I have to applaud Toonami for how they broke the news that they would be airing the (currently red-hot) Attack on Titan. Until the first teaser aired, they patched all the leaks, kept FUNimation from announcing it at a convention, and never spoke a word about the series joining the block. So despite many Toonami viewers expecting the show to air this year, seeing the teaser for the first time still gave me chills. The 30 second spot offered just enough narration and visuals to give viewers a taste of things to come without spoiling the initial episodes. The two things on my mind were “they actually did it” and “this is going to be amazing”.
Beware the Batman will return to television this May at the very “Batman-y hour” of 3AM. Toonami has once again given a second chance to an action cartoon that Cartoon Network kicked to the curb. Beware the Batman has received criticism for the CGI style, the decision to not use iconic Batman villains and the decision to make Katana Batman’s first partner instead of Robin. All these choices were made to set Beware apart from previous animated Batman incarnations. We already have many memorable animated stories featuring The Joker, Mr. Freeze, The Penguin, Cat Woman, etc. It was well past time some of the more obscure members of Batman’s expansive rouges’ gallery got a chance to be animated. The series is surprisingly dark for this era of Cartoon Network. It did not fit the image they were going for with the rest of the network. CN barely promoted the series and I honestly doubt many kids were aware the show was on. I was not too keen on the visual style myself, as I feel it is a downgrade from the better character models and vibrant scenery of Green Lantern but I am willing to see past that to enjoy the stories. I am glad Toonami is giving it second chance but the victory is bittersweet for anyone hoping this show would exceed the usual order of 26 episodes.
Sword Art Online ended over a month ago, and I’m feeling the itch for another series on Toonami where players are trapped in an MMORPG and have to make it through the game in order to survive. Log Horizon certainly shows promise – it even looks to be a better series than SAO, since its main character isn’t a Gary Stu. However, the series is licensed by Sentai Filmworks, so chances of it coming to Toonami are slim. That leaves us with another franchise that only (tragically) aired for a few episodes on Toonami. FUNimation rescued the license from Bandai last year, so I think the .hack franchise should deserve another chance.