While the Marvel Cinematic Universe has continued to rage, growing more and more popular over time with the recently released Spider-Man: Far From Home, one of the Marvel mediums wasn't as lucky. At Anime Expo 2019, several producers and creative minds spoke at a panel called "Adopting Japanese Properties for a Global Audience". One of which, the Vice President of International Productions for Sony Pictures, mentioned the often forgotten anime properties based on Marvel characters and why they weren't able to be as successful as their movie franchises.
Twitter User Deb Aoki broke down the quotes from Tony Ishizuka that explained why he thought the Marvel anime properties didn't ultimately succeed:
“The Marvel anime adaptations were failures. The anime fans didn’t want them, and neither did the superhero fans. You have to think about what your audience wants too.” - Tony Ishizuka #ProjectAnime19 pic.twitter.com/cTrMN1BiCu— Deb Aoki (@debaoki) July 2, 2019
Though the anime series featured television shows for Iron Man, X-Men, Wolverine and Blade, its interesting that in trying to unite the two mediums, the VP claims that neither group of fans were ultimately able to get what they wanted. The original four anime series from Marvel were created by Madhouse Entertainment in 2010, the studio was also responsible for some of the biggest anime series of today with One-Punch Man and Overlord being two examples. Regardless of their pedigree, they just couldn't find the best way for these shows to connect with audiences.
Each of the Marvel anime series managed to tell new stories while using familiar characters from the Marvel universe. Though they only lasted for a handful of episodes each, they did manage to air on US airwaves through the now defunct video game cable channel of G4. While these series weren't able to ultimately succeed, there couldn't possibly be a better time to revive the idea of Marvel anime after the colossal success of Avengers: Endgame.
Also, though not one of these four original anime series that was released from Madhouse, the anime series Marvel Future Avengers was another crack at the anime formula that didn't manage to find a sense of longevity. With the series being released with an English dub, this could be another way for fans to warm up to the idea of Marvel characters in an anime setting. Future Avengers was originally released in 2017, running for two seasons.
What did you think of the original Marvel anime series? Which of the four shows was your favorite? Why do you think they ultimately failed? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics and anime!