Scott Pilgrim is back after 13 years. New movie adaptation of the graphic novel with the title Scott Pilgrim vs The World was released again. This time, Netflix adapted the story into an anime, called Scott Pilgrim Takes Off. This anime was released on November 17, 2023 and it is good news for a long time fan, especially those who already follow from the original graphic novel, Scott Pilgrim Precious Little Life.
More exciting news is that all actors from the movie, like Michael Cera and Mary Elizabeth Winstead, represent their roles in this anime series. This anime, which was written by Bryan Lee O’Malley, the original writer of the graphic novel, is serving as a sequel and remake for the original graphic novel.
The story of the graphic novel and movie adaptation is about Scott Pilgrim who needs to beat 7 evil exes of Ramona Flowers to gain her love. But, the anime has a different story. Instead of fighting 7 evil exes, this time, Scott is lost and presumably dead by the first ex named Matthew Petal. The story now centers on Ramona who is now looking for Scott, because she believes he is still alive.
The story starts normally like in the graphic novel. In Toronto, Canada, inside the Wallace Wells apartment, where Scott wakes up after seeing a girl in his dream. After some chit-chat, and Wallace attempts to kick Scott out of his apartment, Scott goes outside to practice with his band, Sex Bob-Omb. After meeting with Ramona in Julie’s party and gaining information that Ramona works as Netflix delivery, he then orders a movie to see Ramona.
Scott and Ramona then go on a date together. On that date, Scott and Ramona start to fall in love with each other, to the point where they almost have sex in Ramona’s house. In the morning, Scott woke up in Ramona bed. He told her to come to his band concert.
At night in the middle of Sex Bob-Omb performance, Matthew Petal then appeared and challenged Scott in the fight. Scott agrees and they start the fight. Unlike the original story, Scott is the one who got lost and gone from the scene. Everyone thought he was dead, and the story of the anime began.
Other than the new story, this anime also has some great music. The opening, with the title Bloom, is performed by a Japanese band called Necry Talkie, that is famous for their distinctive style, combining the ferocity and rawness of rock music with earworm pop melodies and hooks.
Studio that handles the animation is Science SARU, who are famous for their simple yet detailed and beautiful art style. The anime they have worked on before include Devilman Crybaby, Lu over The Wall, Keep Your Hand off Eizouken!, and many others.
In my opinion, this anime has a fresh idea, taking the story to the perspective of “what if” instead of adapting the same story again and again. But for some long-time fans, this adaptation might not meet their expectations, because of how the story is changed, and instead of focusing on Scott, it focuses more on Ramona.
For me, this anime is fun to watch. The jokes can get a little bit uncanny, like most Scott Pilgrim adaptations, but can be enjoyable at least. The great thing about every adaptation of Scott Pilgrim is that they always use video games reference, especially the arcade one. There are always video games on the menu screen in the beginning of every episode, and everytime people die, they always become coins.
One thing I always appreciate from every Scott Pilgrim is the art style. The mix between anime and western cartoons make Scott Pilgrim Takes Off stand out. And seeing it animated for the first time feels really good. The more refined artwork also makes this anime look pleasant.
The downside is how little Scott Pilgrim appears in this anime despite his name on the title. This anime shouldn’t be called Scott Pilgrim Takes Off because of that. They should name it after Ramona Flowers instead. This series, also unlike the movie version, lacks the edginess nature of Scott Pilgrim, kinda making it less exciting.
I won’t say this anime is exciting to watch nor a boring series. This anime can be enjoyable for some people or old fans that are looking for a new story and want more Scott Pilgrim in their life. But, it can also trigger some fans that just want a pure adaptation of the graphic novel.
Our Score (8/10)
Title: Scott Pilgrim Takes Off
Director: Abel Góngora
Production: Science SARU/Netflix
Fidellis Cesare Castro