Netflix has revealed a lengthy, atmospheric “sneak peek” trailer for its Pluto anime, based on the phenomenal manga illustrated by Naoki Urasawa and written by Urasawa and Takashi Nagasaki. The Pluto manga is itself a more realistic, grounded adaptation of one of the most famous Astro Boy stories, “The Greatest Robot on Earth,” created by the “God of Manga” himself, Osamu Tezuka. And what an adaptation it is, being a soulful crime noir involving androids and international politics.
The story follows Gesicht, an android detective who works for Europol and is trying to solve a case of global serial killing — and the culprit seems to be another robot. Most of the Pluto anime sneak peek trailer focuses on Gesicht, though the trailer consciously forgoes voice acting and sound effects in favor of just presenting a vibe. The series is supervised by Macoto Tezka, Tezuka’s son (no typo — “Tezka” is the chosen romanization), in cooperation with Tezuka Productions. The series is being produced by Genco and animated by Studio M2.
Personally, I haven’t read a lot of manga besides some of the classics, and I watch even less anime. But the odds are good I’ll come out of anime retirement to watch Pluto, because I’m already feeling a strong urge to reread the entire manga after seeing this trailer. The line in the manga where Gesicht asks, “Does the hatred you feel ever disappear?” has stuck with me ever since I first read it.
Pluto will premiere on Netflix sometime in 2023, and Shinshu Fuji, Yoko Hikasa, and Minori Suzuki are attached to the Japanese dub as Gesicht, Atom (Astro Boy), and Uran respectively.
Update: The creators have provided some comments about the series, included below.
Naoki Urasawa said, “I applaud the courage of everyone that has taken on the challenge of making an anime based on Pluto. I am excited about the birth of this new series to win over people’s hearts. I hope that now more than ever, Osamu Tezuka’s message reaches the world.”
Takashi Nagasaki added, “Pluto inherits the philosophy of Tezuka and does not merely convey a message of anti-war, but reminds us that there is suffering on both sides… but still, the only remaining answer is peace.”
Macoto Tezka offered, “The animated Pluto is the real deal, and in addition to this being Urasawa’s latest work, this is also a new Tezuka anime. I can hardly wait to see how this new generation of anime turns out.”