Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou (Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls) Review – Closer to Fanfiction than a Proper Sequel

Closer to Fanfiction than a Proper Sequel

  • Episodes : 24
  • Genre : Action, Drama, Historical, Martial Arts
  • Airing Date : January 2018 to June 2018
  • Producers : Seven Arcs Pictures

Contains Spoilers

Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou (Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls) Introduction and Story

Sequels are a tricky business. Should the studio ape the structure and tone of the prequel? Or would it be better to take the franchise in a new direction? The best sequels tend to do a bit of both, while the more divisive ones focus too heavily on one or the other. Set ten years after the end of Basilisk: Kouga Ninpou Chou, Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou focuses on the remnants of the Iga and Kouga clans, as five members from each group try to overcome a new enemy known as the Joujinshuu. Led by the brother and sister duo of Hachirou Kouga and Hibiki Iga, the former rivals need to put aside their differences to stop Joujin and his powerful henchmen from reviving Oda Kazusanosuke Nobunaga.

Why You Should Watch Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou (Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls)

1. The Thrill Of Battle

Putting aside the plot and atmosphere, Basilisk: Kouga Ninpou Chou's main selling point was its glorious battles and eagerness to ax characters at a moment's notice. With death lurking around every corner, nobody's safety was ever assured, making each encounter feel genuinely exhilarating and intense. Unsurprisingly, Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou follows the same approach, although most of the battles are restricted to the last stretch of episodes. Both series came alive when focusing on the action, and Seven Arcs Animation limits its smoothest animation for these particular scenes.

2. New And Old

The best praise that can be leveled at Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou is the fact that it avoids retreading the same plot points explored by its predecessor. For all intents and purposes, this is a totally fresh adventure and newcomers should not be any more lost than veterans of the series. While the sequel took things in a new direction, Seven Arcs Pictures kept the heavy sense of foreboding that defined the 2005 anime, and there is more than enough gore to satisfy older fans.

Why You Should Skip Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou (Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls)

1. A Poor Imitation

For anyone who is a massive supporter of the original series, Seven Arcs Pictures’ sequel may leave you screaming at the heavens in anger. While the fights are not terrible, they are few and far between, and even the best battles pale in comparison to any encounter from its predecessor. Basilisk: Kouga Ninpou Chou's plot could be summarized in a single sentence, while Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou requires a dissertation to comprehend. Sadly, the latter amounts to less than the former.

2. A Mediocre Filling Sandwiched by Putrid Crap

Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou leaves an astonishingly lousy first and last impression. Dedicated solely to the boring Joujinshuu and their bland plan to overthrow the government, the first five episodes amount to nearly nothing but a constant exposition dump. Besides being absolutely exhausting to sit through, these scenes dedicate barely any time to Hibiki, Hachirou, or any of their clan members. Without any heroes to back, there is little reason to fear the antagonists. Thankfully, the anime improves after the sixth episode and fleshes out some of the characters. Unfortunately, any positives are dashed by an absurd plot twist that drags the final two episodes into parody territory.

3. Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride

Attempting to ape the doomed romance between Oboro Iga and Gennosuke Kouga, Hibiki and Hachirou are clearly pushed as the protagonists. Unfortunately, both characters have about as much personality as a stone with a frowny face drawn upon it. Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou seems to be aware of this fact, as the sibling lovers are relegated to the sidelines for the majority of the story. If this was an ensemble cast, then focusing on the other clan members would have been understandable; however, none of the supporting characters feel like anything more than expendable soldiers who exist merely to raise the anime's final body count. As a consequence, Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou comes across as an anime that consists of nothing but secondary characters.

Final Thoughts

There is no point in beating around the bush: Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou is a depressing sequel to Basilisk: Kouga Ninpou Chou. Actually, disappointing might be an understatement, as Seven Arcs Pictures' anime barely reaches the lofty heights of mediocrity on its own merits. The boring plot is pointlessly complicated, while the characters range from shallow to instantly forgettable. Seriously, just rewatch the original!

Did you agree with our review? Is Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou a decent sequel? Please let us know in the comments below!

Basilisk-Ouka-Ninpo-Cho-dvd-404x500 Basilisk: Ouka Ninpouchou (Basilisk: The Ouka Ninja Scrolls) Review – Closer to Fanfiction than a Proper Sequel


Author: Mark Sammut

Born and raised on a small island in the Mediterranean, my life goal is to experience as many different ways of life as possible. Since time and money are in short supply, anime and film provide the best opportunity to experience far away cultures and worlds. When I'm not watching the latest episode of Gintama, or wondering what series to watch next, you can find me in the corner of the closest coffee shop; writing away on my aging laptop.

Previous Articles

Top 5 Anime by Mark Sammut