After I finished Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront) I had this urge to find something similar to it. Sadly, I ended up with but irrelevant anime that doesn’t even come close to it. So, after a few months, while I was surfing on what to watch, I stumbled across a collection of ongoing anime shows. One of them was Bungou Stray Dogs. At first, I thought it was going to be another average anime that involves high school student ( don’t blame me, the cover gave me those vibes). However, I was wrong, totally wrong. I ended up being in love with it, and here I’m, waiting for a new season. And Hopefully, it comes this year, because we f***ng need it.
For those of you who don’t know, Bungou Stray Dogs is a seinen anime series based on the manga of the same name which was produced by Bones studio. The latter is renowned for marvellous works such as Boku no Hero Academia, Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Soul Eater, and Mob Psycho. The first season aired back in 2016, and the last season aired in 2019. There’s nothing new about an upcoming season, but rumours state that it’s probably coming in 2022 or 2023.
If you ask me, the anime is similar to another show by Bones called Noragami. Both are a blend of mystery, comedy, and action. And yeah, there’s so much twist to be witnessed here.
The anime’s story revolves around Atsushi Nakajima. At the first minutes of the first episode, the viewer will get the impression of watching a show about a lost orphan or something like that. However, with each episode, the viewer will get to learn a bit more about his past and his ability, ‘Beast beneath the Moonlight’. Afterwards, he joins a the Armed Detective Agency upon meeting up with Dazai, a member from the Agency too. Atsushi ends up meeting with all the members of the Agency, and it is at that time where he would discover his own identity and put his special ability to use.
The Armed Detective Agency is tasked with solving cases and defending the city from all harm. However, their eternal enemy is Port Mafia. Just like the Armed Detective Agency, they’re also equipped with special abilities that aid them to do their criminal duties. However, despite the heavy emphasis on the ” crime ” theme, the show has plenty of entertaining comedy that will put a large smile on your face. In addition, there’s also an emphasis on the ” mystery ” theme which will nudge you to press ” Next episode ” whenever the episode ends.
The anime has 3 seasons, and each season has its own story and a new protagonist. Each season introduces a new character which plays a vital role.
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Art and Music
The moment we hear ” Bones “, we can hear a voice inside our minds telling us ” the animation has to be great “. Well, Bones, Madhouse, and Studio Wit have always been the pioneers of the best animation, and Bungou Stray Dogs is a victim of this. Bones has done a great job to the aforementioned. nicely executed with impressive action scenes: great fluidity and consistent high-quality animation. But what really fascinated me was the emphasis on the character’s style: their outfit, hair, eyes, expressions (the comic chibi effects when something funny occurs) were perfectly done.
On the one hand, the voice acting is something you will surely like about the series. There are a lot of known voice actors like Mamoru Miyano, Yoshimasa Hosoya, Hiroshi Kamiya, and Yu Shimamura. On the other hand, when it comes to the music, Bungou Stray Dog’s openings and endings are fabulous and heart-touching with amazing animation that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
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The anime received very well. Atomix listed it as the fifth best anime from 2016, praising its premise, designs and references to writers. In addition, In the Newtype Anime Awards 2016–2017 at the Machi Asobi Vol. 19 events, the anime series took the second place in “Best television series” behind Fate/Apocrypha. Additionally, Rebecca Silverman from Anime News Network listed the third season of the anime as one of her favourite anime from early 2019. Lastly, The home media releases of the series were also popular in Japan, achieving good sales.
Is it worth it?
Is Bungou Stray Dogs worth your time? Absolutely. While the first season has a slow beginning and may turn many off, I guarantee you that once you get past it, you’ll end up with a phenomenal anime that combines action, comedy, and mystery together in order to provide you with a unique show that simply cannot be cloned. It’s one of those anime that is simply hard to find something like it.