Series Premiere: Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls Ep. 1 Review

1718974_Latvian_ShowDetailHeaderDesktop_85a55e93-28e4-e711-8175-020165574d09Let’s get this out of the way; the full title of this show is a bit of a mouthful to write over and over again so from now on, in this and in and future reviews, I’m calling the show Basilisk II. Good for you? Alright, moving on.

Basilisk II is a sequel to the 2005 anime Basilisk, based off the manga of the same name by Massaki Segawa. Do you need to watch Basilisk to watch this sequel? Not really.

basilisk orginal series
Basilisk (2005)

Basilisk II takes place ten years after the events of Basilisk, allowing for a pretty clean slate for new viewers. The original Basilisk was basically Romeo & Juliet with super powered ninjas set in feudal Japan. Overall, I enjoyed the original Basilisk but was surprised to learn it was getting a sequel this year. It’s a good show, but it’s not fondly remembered, and the original series had a definitive ending. This new show is being animated by Seven Arcs Pictures, which has been a support studio for many notable shows including Attack on Titan and GATE.
Throughout the episode, I was a bit lost – the show kept going back and forth between characters and I didn’t get a good sense of who anyone was. The only character who got significant screen time was Tadanga, the young lord racing to EDO Castle to see his dying mother. Hachirou and Hibiki, the bloodlines of the Iga and Kouga clans, were given the info-dump treatment.information dump

I am intrigued by the plot twist that the Iga and Kouga clans are trying to get Hachirou and Hibiki together to continue the Ninja bloodline, even though they are brother and sister. It will be interesting to see if the Iga and Kouga stick with this plan, even though I don’t think they will – how else will I get awesome fight scenes?

Basilisk-Ouka-Ninpou-Chou-post

The fight scene between the children of the Iga and Kouga was a great preview of the action to come. I enjoyed the ninja powers on display from ‘confusion breath’, to illusions, to ‘bullet time’ straight out of a Max Payne game. I hope the animation quality for the fight scenes are fast, fluid, and don’t rely too much on shortcuts. If this episode is a good indicator of what’s to come, and if the show tightens up the pacing and continues to provide high quality fight scenes, I think Basilisk II can be a hit this season.

Some random thoughts so far:
-If the original series’ Shakespeare theme was Romeo and Juliet, I guess this one will be Hamlet?
-Onmyou-Za and Nana Mizuki, who performed the OP and ED songs for the first Basilisk came back for this series. Cool, but the new songs are forgettable for me.
-I hope we get more ties to the original show, but I’m doubtful with since the narration handled it in the beginning.
-The subtitle “The Ouka Ninja Scrolls might people think this show is connected to Ninja Scroll. It’s not.
-This show is going to be 26 episodes…. well that’s a rarity.


Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls streams on Crunchyroll and VRV on Mondays.

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