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Friday, July 12, 2019

Anime Expo 2019: Promare Premiere

By Jonathan Bilski

Ahha-ha-ha. Oh's Gurren Lagann. It's Gurren Lagann. I shouted in my head and the crew declared after the show. It may be about racism towards fire people (not stolen from Fire Force), but for anyone whose watched Gurren Lagann, you might go...wait, this is like the same thing. And it's a good thing, because the animation, ridiculous story and epic fighting that occurs is something you shouldn't miss. The North America Premiere of Promare took place at AX's Main event Hall on Friday, July 5th.

New film, Promare is about a young hot-shot firefighter fighting the Burnish, those with the power to control fire and supposedly wreak havoc. He and his fire rescue team take them on. And thus begins a ridiculous story that steals plot points from a number of TV shows and movies including Gurren, yet it's so well animated and fast-paced you'll want to see where it's going. And it's going pretty far. It becomes a story about two leads, both Galo Thymos, the hot shot and the leader of the Burnish, Lio Fotia, who I thought was a chick by just looking at the movie poster. There's some fan service for the ladies too towards the end so enjoy. And then it becomes even more epic with the fate of the Earth in the balance.

For some background info, the people behind the film, Trigger, used to work for Gainax and when the did they made Gurren Laggann. So, you have a film very much like the dystopian robot anime that spanned the universe. It has a lot of references to the past anime, nothing directly, but dang close.

Trigger's Hiroyuki Imaishi, the director of the film, creative director, Hiromi Wakabayashi, and character designer, Shigeto Koyama,were all in attendance. They flat out said the film was a starting point for anyone to check out their earlier work of Gurren Laggann and wondered about the differences between the Japanese and American audiences. Apparently, we're very different, but mind you the crowd was rowdy Anime Expo folk where you act out more. Japanese are a little more subtle. We yell here.

Trigger coming back and showing the film was, I believe, fulfilling their promise for when the first broke news of the film at AX two years ago. It was worth the wait.

The recent 2nd big earthquake that wobbled California should have occurred during the epic finale as it would have only increased the scale and insanity of the battle. Instead, it made Trigger a little nervous they would have to cut their panel short. They didn't.

Can't wait to see their future stuff, which looks like a rip on Zootopia, but with basketball and Neo-noir detective drama. Look for the anime BNA in the future.

Promare will be shown this year in theaters with two special screenings.

That's not a girl on the left
Check here for local listings, tickets available now.
  • Tuesday, September 17 at 7:00 p.m. local time (English-language dubbed)
  • Thursday, September 19 at 7:00 p.m. local time (English-language subtitled)