Monday, July 4, 2022

Anime Expo 2022: Trigger 10 Year Anniversary Panel


 By Jonathan Bilski

- We got to see the first episode of Cyberpunk: Edgerunners
Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt Season 2 Announced 
- Gridman and Dynazenon are getting a movie in Japan and will combine in the film, no US theatrical release plans

A gigantic crowd filled up the Main Events Hall for the Trigger 10 Year Anniversary Panel. Though fake money wasn't shot into the audience, nor did a certain cop that looks like Ghostrider started yelling crazy nonsense, the audience was easily wagging their tongues to the violence in the first episode of Cyberpunk:Edgerunners, coming to Netflix this September. This reporter had little hope in the series based on the game that had multiple problems upon release. Those worries were blown away just like the people on screen. As viscera and brains showered over the projectors the audience screamed in joy for more carnage and was in awe of everything seen.

Left Bartosz Sztybor, Middle Saya Elder, Right Hiromi Wakabayashi

Cyberpunk: Edgerunners
takes us fully into the game and Night City and the world created by CD Projekt Red. Two members of the team Saya Elder and Bartosz Sztybor, writer of the game were there and helped Trigger make the anime. They were sort of like a Mom and Dad team with Bartosz playing it cool and Saya toting the company line. Trigger impressed them both with how well the captured the game in the animated version. Places you go in the game are perfectly recreated in the anime.

This great attention detail comes not only because it's Trigger, but because Trigger was given an early build of the game to study as many recall it was delayed and had other problems. We were told the anime's director Hiroyuki Imaishi actually beat the game with a hammer as his main weapon, which is a bit insane as how often you're supposed to use powers and weapons.

The dub has Zach Aguilar in the lead role as David Martinez, an incredibly down-on-his-luck student whose life gets ever-so-much worse in the first episode. Overall everything fit into place with the episode...except for the music, more on that in a second, and maybe the use of Latino culture. I'm not sure if it's the localizers or Trigger, but hearing some of the accents were jarring and didn't seem to fit for someone whose lived in SoCal and here's Spanish quite often. It seemed trying. We'll have to see more episodes to judge.
What was really an odd choice from panel cool Dad, Bartosz Sztybor, was the opening theme from early 2000's band Franz Ferdinand. You can here Franz Ferdinand's "This Fffire", and see the opening below. Bartosz sad he came to that decision along the lines of it being both sad and having energy in it. It's a miss for me and a strange choice. You can always skip it.

Panel cool Dad, Bartosz also told the audience that first episode is good, but the coming episodes would be great and that's a bold promise.

As the panels Mom and Dad left the Trigger kids came out to play announcing the big news about somehow getting Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt Season 2 in the works with a short trailer with some new animation and a reformed Panty...who was cut up into tiny pieces by Stocking in the last episode. We got our angels giving us two middle fingers to signify a second season? No explanation was given how they got the rights back from Gainaix, where most of Trigger used to work or where or when it will come out. Panty & Stocking came out dubbed in the US in 2012 through Funimation. It was an insane, ridiculous anime about two angels having sex, eating sweets and killing demons. It's crazy to hear it coming back.

The crowd went wild upon seeing the trailer, a fantastic way to end a panel. Can't wait for Panty & Stocking cosplay to be back at AX and other cons.