Live-action “Cowboy Bebop” cannot compare to the anime original

While the new series tries hard to modernize, it loses everything that made the original so beloved.


The live action “Cowboy Bebop” stars John Cho, Mustafa Shakir, and Daniella Pineda.

A question got stuck in my mind while watching Netflix’s new live action adaptation of the anime series “Cowboy Bebop.” Is the anime better than the live action? 

For the uninitiated: “Cowboy Bebop” is a science-fiction western set in the year 2071 about two partners, Spike Spiegel and Jet Black, who are bounty hunters working on behalf a space police force to track down criminals and turn them in alive. The show has achieved both critical and commercial success, making it just the sort of thing a studio would want to remake as a live action series.

The story line in the live action series stays relatively the same, but rather than following it exactly, the adaptation starts a little after the beginning of the story line and ends in a different place.

Although I would recommend the live action series, the anime series is an incomparable classic.

The biggest problem with the live action “Cowboy Bebop” is the showrunners tried to take a classic and make it “new and improved.” This made the story a bit hard to follow due to skips in time. It felt like by making it more futuristic, they thought it would make the show better. 

The anime was released in 1998. Advances in technology have made the things that once amazed us seem more basic now, so the live action adaptation tried to make it more appealing to the audience by making things more modern. A great idea with horrible execution. 

They kept the spaceships true to the original, but weapons were different, like the “disruptor.” They tried to make it look more realistic, but kept its abilities pretty much the same as the anime. 

As I said before they are a little different but actually some parts in the 3rd episode of the original are actually in the first episode of the live-action show. Overall, though, the live action “Cowboy Bebop,” even with some of its better features, is mostly a letdown.