'Darling in the FranXX' Shares Original Character Designs

Studio Trigger and A-1 Pictures' big collaborative effort Darling in the FranXX was one of the [...]

Studio Trigger and A-1 Pictures' big collaborative effort Darling in the FranXX was one of the most talked about anime of the Winter 2018 season, and now fans can see how the series began.

One of the strongest elements of Darling in the FranXX was its character design, and it seems that one of its lead characters, Zero Two, initially looked much different than her final design.

Initial Darling in the FranXX designs

These initial character designs so a much more subdued look for Zero Two, exchanging her bright pink locks for a dark-haired look with a far more contrasting red eyed glare. The uniforms initially could have looked different as well, with even the costume design for the Franxx pilot suits showing more skin initially in these sketches.

The other pilots almost had bright hair like Zero Two's as well, but closer examinations of these sketches reveal that its main character Hiro was pretty much nailed from the jump. There don't seem to be any major differences between this initial sketch and final design other than the small differences in their school uniforms.

If you want a better look at these characters, Darling in the FranXX is currently streaming on both Crunchyroll and Funimation. The series is described as such:

"The distant future: Humanity established the mobile fort city, Plantation, upon the ruined wasteland and civilization flourished. Within the city were pilot quarters called Mistilteinn, otherwise known as the "Birdcage." That is where the children live... Not knowing anything of the outside world, and unaware of the vast sky. Their only mission in life was the fight.

Their enemies are the mysterious giant organisms known as Kyoryu. The children operate robots known as FRANXX in order to face these still unseen enemies because they believe that is their purpose in life. Among them was a boy who was once called a child prodigy: Code number 016, Hiro. However, now he's a failure and considered unneeded. Those who cannot pilot FRANXX basically do not exist. One day, a mysterious girl called Zero Two appears in front of Hiro. From her face grew two alluring horns."

Developed by Studio Trigger and A-1 Pictures, Atsushi Nishigori (character designer for Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann) directed the series with Toshifumi Akai (animation director for Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic) as assistant director and Masayoshi Tanaka (anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day) as character designer. Shigeto Koyama (Michiko and Hatchin) provided mechanical designs, and Hiroyuki Imaishi (Gurren Lagann, Kill la Kill) served as action supervisor.

The series got both major positive and negative attention. Not only was the series banned from airing in China, fans once sent the staff death threats over particular events toward the end of the series, but the series got notable positive attention when media mogul Kim Kardashian once shared a picture of main character Zero Two on her Instagram page.