Spriggan is an original net animation (ONA) series adaptation based on the manga of a similar name written by Hiroshi Takashige, done by Netflix, and produced by David Production [ Inu x Boku SS, Jojo’s Bizzare Adventure: The Animation, Cells At Work! ]. Belonging to the action, science fiction, and thriller genre, this series consists of 6 episodes, with each episode being about 45 minutes long. The show is directed by Hiroshi Kobayashi, known for his works in A Town Where You Live: Tasogare Kousaten and Kiznaiver. Hiroshi Seko handled the series composition [Attack On Titan, Jujutsu Kaisen, Mob Psycho 100], with Taisei Iwasaki as the music director [Belle, Love Strikes!].
–Spriggan Review does not contain spoilers –
Spriggan Review – The Plot
A long time ago before the arrival of prehistoric humankind, the earth was inhabited by an advanced species. They were too advanced for their own good, eventually leading to their untimely demise due to their negligent actions. Predicting the future where another species might inhabit the planet and to prevent them from making the same mistake, they left behind an indestructible tablet, of unknown composition, warning them against any of the remaining technologies these future civilizations might uncover. This exciting world is the basic premise of Spriggan.
” PROTECT OUR HERITAGE FROM THE WICKED. “
The Ancient Plate
The general public is not aware of the existence of any such ancient civilizations, but the power-hungry organizations and even countries are in a race to get their hands on the ancient technologies. These technologies seem to hold miraculous powers, but in the wrong hands, these powers could spell disaster. Keeping this warning in mind, the ARCAM Corporation and their special paramilitary unit – Spriggan – work tirelessly to seal these powerful relics away.
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This simple plot of Spriggan seems super cool. I mean, what is there not to like about superpower battle suits, crystal skulls, Noah’s Ark, and the over-the-top Shonen action! Every episode has a new relic and a new team trying to steal it away with our main protagonist Yu Ominae putting a stop to their evil plans. Spriggan does not give many contexts at the start of the show, directly jumping into the storyline. As we progress, many things begin to make sense, such as why a high-school student is a part of Spriggan and is fighting elite government forces or some context of the minor characters.
The clever writing style ensures that the storyline unfolds exactly as needed by the show. We can jump into any episode, and since every episode is sort of like an arc of its own, not much of the context is missed. With Yu going around putting a stop to whatever government force is trying to get their hands on this relic from ages ago that will change the face of humanity, the story involves super-advanced, futuristic civilizations with technologies that are even influencing the present, accompanied by some supernatural elements.
In this way, we are greeted with a mish-mash of great action and supernatural modes, with Yu powered by an exoskeleton kind-of suit, with a constant air of anxiety about whether he and his allies will survive the battle or not. Because even though they are an elite group, their enemies are also equipped with abilities that are just as strong, or even stronger than the Spriggans. With the fast-paced, detailed plot, we can go on this incredible journey in this new world, where real events like Hitler and World War 2 are incorporated cleverly into the story. Even the post-credit scene was just as open-ended as the beginning of the series, leaving a way for season 2.
Spriggan – The Characters
With a simplistic plot executed flawlessly, with added layers of details with every proceeding episode, Spriggan is not so strong when it comes to its characters. On one hand, our main protagonist Yu is an extremely well-written character. With every single of his actions being extremely nuanced, his character is explored in depth throughout the 6 episodes. From showcasing his activities as a Spriggan to some parts of his high school life, we can put together his character traits – emotional stability, extreme confidence in himself, ruthless achiever accompanied with a sliver of kindness in his actions.
On the other hand, the minor characters are just in the episode for the plot. Don’t get me wrong, their purpose is fulfilled flawlessly in the show. But it would have been nice to get a moment or two of their time just in their own minor arc, doing things that do not bear any context to helping/fighting with the main protagonist. These side characters seem to hold a lot of potentials and with some of these even being other Spriggan agents, we would definitely to get more insights into them and their journey.
A big plus, about the characters, would be their unique variety. With the unique plot in every episode and a unique relic accompanying it, the enemies in Spriggan all have their own unique set of personalities and unique powers and abilities. These distinctive, individual traits keep each episode engaging, as otherwise, all the episodes could have been summed up similarly wherein a bad guy is trying to steal a powerful technology and the main protagonist stops him.
Spriggan – The Art And The Music
One of the biggest factors contributing to the anticipation of the series Spriggan is its combination of 2D and CGI animation, and thankfully, it did not disappoint at all! With the action-packed animation sequences, there are a lot of fast frenetic movements, but none of the action is missed, and everything is on the screen to get engrossed in.
The art is also super detailed, with each of the relic pieces in the series so far being depicted as unique as is the story associated with it – from crystal skulls to supernatural trees to Noah’s Ark. The level of detail and inimitable artwork is not just limited to the relics but also expands to the characters and the location where the episode is taking place. From islands to mountains, from military bases to deserts to schools, all are covered quite well. The character designs, their costumes, armors, tools, and their powers all are also rendered in great detail.
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Many fight scenes in Spriggan are accompanied by music, adding an extra layer of dimension to the already unfolding event. The grim events have grim background music, the happier events have a chipper one. The opening and closing theme songs of Spriggan gel in very well keeping in mind the art style and the general plotline of the show. The opening theme song is similar to a Gospel song, and the ending theme song is of 90’s style, keeping in touch with the actual beginning of the show’s story in the manga. These musical works of art make this show an even more unforgettable watch!
Spriggan brings it all to the plate- the story, the characters, the visuals, and the soundtracks. With action-filled scenes showcasing real-life events connected to a fictional world written in an absurdly good way, this show is a must-watch!
Spriggan is streaming on Netflix.
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