The Spring season is upon us, and coming out of the corner swinging hard is Megalo Box! A spiritual successor to Ashita no Joe, it follows the journey of a boxer who goes by the name of “Junk Dog”. Boxing in this world isn’t simply a matter of sweat and blood: central to the sport of Megalo Boxing is technology known as “Gears”, which helps heighten a users speed and strength. The gears used in Megalo Boxing appear to be early prototypes, with higher-ranked professionals using more sophisticated models that look like skin.
Junk Dog makes his money by throwing fights for his partner/coach, but he yearns for real success and fame in the ring. This chance appears to be closer to reality after it’s announced that a Megalo Box tournament called “Megalonia” is set. Anyone is invited to enter, with an insane amount of prize money on the line.
His coach insists that the spotlight is no place for stray dogs like him, and after Junk Dog throws another fight, he’s in a furious state when he nearly runs over Shirato Yukiko – owner of the Megalo Box federation and the one orchestrating Megalonia.
He takes out his frustrations by dismissing her “charity”, thus setting himself at odds with her bodyguard/companion Yuri, who is also the current Megalo Box champion.
Before the two get a chance to trade blows, Yukiko stops the confrontation, but not before each of the boxers got a chance to size the other up. Both seem equally thrilled at the opportunity to fight someone with some real fire in their belly, and the tension is electric.
Following their meeting, Junk Dog and his coach are waiting for the next fight when he confides that he wants to stop throwing fights. Just as they’re arguing about it, Yuri makes his appearance in the underground ring, and the two are set to come to blows in a more official setting.
I am so hyped about this show. I’m a huge fan of Hajime no Ippo and boxing anime in general, so seeing a refreshed series that has some futuristic elements while still preserving a classic feel was fantastic.
The animation style is gritty, and classic. I was reminded of Cowboy Bebop at certain points, especially when you combine the music, which really helps put it over the top. While the story is familiar, Junk Dog and the other major players are all introduced quickly and effectively, and you begin to feel the connections and interpersonal drama between them almost immediately.
A fantastic start to a promising series. I will definitely be keeping up with this one. You can find it on Crunchyroll every Thursday!
The next episode has arrived, and so has my review!