Summer 2020’s Gibiate is a fetid pile of month-old fish skeletons and rotten eggs, as anyone who sacrificed even a moment of their life watching it already knows painfully well. It’s the lowest ranked full length anime series on MyAnimeList.net with a whopping 3.94 out of 10 at time of writing, which is especially heinous because the minds behind this project consisted of such luminaries as Yuzo Koshiro (composer for the Streets of Rage series, among others), the Yoshida Brothers (world-renowned shamisen players), and even Yoshitaka Amano (character designer/illustrator for the Final Fantasy series). Unfortunately, the creator/producer Ryo Aoki picked two studios with practically no experience and apparently mishandled the whole operation, so what Crunchyroll and Gibiate’s own official YouTube channel hyped up as a masterpiece turned out to be a poorly acted slideshow with Unity asset store level CGI and only a smattering of surprisingly good music to wash it down.
But if you were genuinely excited for a post-apocalyptic anime about samurai, yakuza, and modern soldiers mowing down monsters in a ruined world, we have three anime that will scratch that itch and help you forget about the colossal dumpster fire that was Gibiate. Let’s get started!
1. Devilman: Crybaby
Demons are lurking under the surface of normal society, only able to possess humans at hedonistic underground parties. But the mysterious genius Ryo is determined to stop them, so he gets his innocent friend Akira possessed by the most powerful demon of all, creating the demonic hero Devilman. Akira does his best to protect his friends and family from the growing threat, but the situation quickly gets out of hand and soon the whole world is in chaos as everyone suspects everyone else of secretly being a demon. This 2018 anime is a modernized retelling of Go Nagai’s landmark 1972 manga Devilman, directed by Masaaki Yuasa and featuring his signature loose, expressive art style. It’s a thought-provoking take on how xenophobia and obsession can turn ordinary people into monsters – much more intriguing than whatever Gibiate was attempting to say.
What’s particularly odd about Gibiate is that pretty much its exact premise has already been done before... and pretty well, in fact. Drifters is an adaptation of the manga of the same name by Kouta Hirano, creator of Hellsing, and tells the story of a samurai who suddenly finds himself in a war-torn fantasy world just as he’s about to die on the battlefield. A group of elves conscripts him to fight with and against other historical figures from all across time, forming the strangest battle royale anyone has ever seen. And even when the anime isn’t focusing on its ridiculously awesome action scenes, it’s still fascinating to learn more about the history of this world and why the war is happening in the first place. Were the creators of Gibiate aware of Drifters, or is this just a bizarre coincidence?
3. Owari no Seraph (Seraph of the End: Vampire Reign)
A mysterious virus wipes out all humans above the age of 13, leaving the rest to be hunted down by monsters or enslaved by vampires. Yuuichirou and Mikaela live in a vampire-operated orphanage where the children are used as blood bags, and when they organize an escape attempt, only Yuuichirou survives. He joins the Japanese Imperial Demon Army to fight against the people who made his life a living hell, only to find out that Mikaela is somehow still alive... but much different than he was before. The worldbuilding here is fantastic, but the meat of the story is the changing relationship between the two boys as their lives take them in opposite directions. For a version of Gibiate’s basic plotline with actual character development and thought put into its world, check out Seraph of the End!
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind and Attack on Titan are also great post-apocalyptic anime whose creators actually cared about what they were making. But what do you think? Did you have fun watching Gibiate, or are you as emotionally scarred as we are from the experience? Let us know in the comments, and thanks so much for reading!