Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress is an amazing new anime, but watching it on Netflix spoils the entire show.
Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress (Kōtetsujō no Kabaneri) is a stunning anime with a gripping story line. Made by the same creators as Attack on Titan, Wit Studio once again blows it out of the water with epic sword and gun fights, piercing light visuals and strong, tormented characters. It’s too bad Netflix ruins the entire series.
For those who had never heard of the 2016 anime before the trailer premiered on Netflix, there was understandably no reason to doubt or question the fact that there are only three episodes in the Netflix series. Or, viewers might not have even bothered to look to see that there are only a few episodes to captivate a pretty epic trailer.
The story, as it’s featured on Netflix, takes place right smack dab in the middle of an all-out battle between humans and zombies, called Kabane (“corpses”). It takes only a few minutes for the first episode to establish who the main characters are–Ikoma and Mumei–and takes just as little time to reveal that they are pretty obviously in love amid this post-apocalyptic battle.
More from Netflix
- Bridgerton season 3: All the details to know about Penelope and Colin’s love story
- It’s a slow week on Netflix with only three new releases (Nov. 20)
- Exploding Kittens: From card game to Netflix animated series starring Tom Ellis
- The Crown and more Netflix shows and movies to stream this week (November 13)
- Escaping Twin Flames and more harrowing love-centered documentaries to watch on Netflix
If it seemed like the show was moving at an unreasonable pace–unable to answer questions like, “Why are these people living only on trains?” “Where did the Kabaneri come from?” and “Why is Ikoma’s hair drastically different in flashback scenes?”–that’s because this isn’t the first season of the show.
That’s right, the three insanely action-packed episodes of Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress is not the first season of this anime. On Amazon Prime, the original 12 episodes of Kabaneri can be found and the show starts off on a much less jarring note. Not to mention gives the whole back story as to how the world fell to pieces at the hands of walking corpses and why these characters have decided to utilize trains for homes.
Netflix’s three very misleading episodes cover one battle–The Battle of Unato–in a three-part movie. While we’re all for Netflix featuring more amazing anime, it would have definitely made more sense to feature the whole show, rather than three episodes that will spoil many things for those who haven’t seen the original 12 episodes, like vital developments in Ikoma and Mumei’s relationship that we would have liked to keep a surprise.
The other downside to Netflix’s decision to release the film without any explanation as to the fact that it was a continuation of the original, doesn’t do much for a note-worthy anime’s popularity. Attack on Titan is still revered today as one of the most masterful anime every created. Kabaneri has potential as well, but Netflix isn’t doing the show any favors by making it out to be a rushed (yet beautiful) short series.
To be fair, comicbook.com did announce the release of Netflix’s 2019 Kabaneri film–which takes place well after the events in the first season–but it’s not knowledge that the average viewer would have otherwise been privy to. Nevermind that nowhere in the Netflix description does it state that the three episodes are a movie and not the original show.
Then, of course, there was also this press release that Netflix was bringing “season 1” of Kabaneri to Netflix. Wires were crossed, assumptions were made, and there were things that would have been nice to know.
Still, it’s a show that’s highly recommended and that’s certainly worth a watch–just not on Netflix for those who have yet to see the real first season. As of last year, there’s hope for a full second season, but nothing has been confirmed as of yet.
Want to watch Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress properly? Stream the anime on Amazon Prime.