For fans of Gintama, the newest movie will be the last leg of production for the entire Gintama franchise. The manga and anime have finished, and this movie brings the series to a close and commemorates the fifteen years since Ginama first aired! Though it will premiere both the sub and the English dub showings at the New York Comic Con on Saturday, October 9th of 2021, Honey’s Anime got an early peek at the anime, and we’re here to share with you just how fun a ride it will be for Gintama fans! Without further delay, here are our thoughts on Gintama: THE VERY FINAL!
The Ridiculous, Vulgar, Sentimental, and Conclusive Finale
All of Your Favorite Gags Are Present
One of the best things about Gintama is the humor. Fans will be thoroughly pleased to learn that this has not been left out of the upcoming movie. In fact, the first long segment of the introduction/backstory is done in the style of Dragon Ball Z! All of the needed information to know where the story is at is done with Gintoki-Goku. It is only after complaints from other characters that the story continues in proper Gintama animation. You will see short spoofs of Gintama characters playing your other favorite anime as well, so keep an eye out for the Gintoki who wants to be king of the pirates!
Our favorite parts of the DBZ intro were the Sinsingumi-Genyu Force and how nobody wants to be Yamcha, but everyone likes Vegeta. Gintoki does not shy away in explaining how the animators are at full power for this movie! “The anime staff have finally gotten serious,” now that the series is not beholden to the TV or manga release schedule. And it shows! They even added a small clip of the animators with their super-Sayan powers on full alert. From the opening spoof of other popular anime to the continued segment title “Nobody with Naturally Wavy Hair Can Be Trusted,” the writers have not missed the essence of all the silliness that is Gintama.
The Story and Setting
Though Goku-Gintoki will be great at explaining when you watch it, the story begins two years after the crew at Odd Jobs splits up. After going on his own journey, Gintama finds himself with the child-reincarnation of his teacher, who is kidnapped by the alien race that has taken over the planet for all of Gintama. The story is the journey to get back his sensei, and it is a battle royale! Immediately after the long introduction, the story cuts to an ending battle that includes all of the characters we know and love from the long-running series. The Very Final remained very true to character.
Similar to One Piece or the Simpsons, Gintama has a massive cast of characters that have become familiar throughout the many seasons, and they all seem to make it to the last battle! Our favorite trio, the Shinsengumi, and locals of the nearby districts come together to get back Utsuro and oust the aliens who don’t want to give him back. Though Tokyo has remained somewhat peaceful under the oppression of the alien race, in this movie, the fighting takes place right in the middle of town.
A Trip Down Memory Lane for Gintoki Sakata
Gintoki is not a sentimental guy. He is not one for sharing his own story, nor honestly, does he care about yours. In Gintama: THE VERY FINAL, we follow Gintoki and the fellow students of his sensei, Takasugi, and Katsura. Together, they are the backbone of the group that storms the alien headquarters to rescue Usturo. In this movie, there is a flashback to Gin’s childhood and training with his comrades under his sensei. His childhood is marked by his samurai training in the days before that profession became illegal. When we flashback to the present, everyone is still raising hell.
Action and Animation
Next to the comedy and quick pace of Gintama, one of the other most appreciated things about the series are the shounen elements. One aspect where the movie does not disappoint is with the fight scenes. Gintoki Sakata is rarely serious, but when it comes time for him to fight, he takes his wooden sword and wields it in a way that constantly changes the game. As is the case with many anime movie adaptations, there have been improvements in the animation. Unlike many other movies, though, this is not a distracting thing and only adds to the excellence of the fight scenes!
And with the mention of fight scenes, we should probably let you in on the fact that most of this movie is a fight as well! THE VERY FINAL is in three parts, and the first two contain almost only fight scenes. Luckily, the inhabitants of Gintoki’s hometown are rough and tough enough to be up for the task. From the Shinsengumi to the two-years-older Kubei (who is looking EXTRA adorable in her commander’s uniform) to our favorite Odd Jobs trio, everyone came ready to kick some ass and get Utsuro back!
“Quit Trying To Force The Ending Where Everyone Dies!”
In Gintama, the premise of the series is similar to the westernization of Japan, an age where the sword is no longer allowed in public and ronin for hire (like Gintoki) find themselves out of their usual abilities to support themselves. In Gintama, Japan has been invaded by an alien race, who impose themselves upon Earth. Of course, in real life, Japan goes through the hardship of westernization and becomes one of the most technologically advanced societies in the world. In Gintama, though, the team throws off their alien oppressors while they continue to knock some skulls.
Though Gintama is a shounen comedy about the Odd Jobs crew, it kept that theme that somewhat mirrored Japan’s history of westernization, and fans of the show found themselves in the perspective of understanding the current times to be changing and unable to be stopped. In this way, Gintama: THE VERY FINAL was a satisfying end to the series that spanned hundreds of episodes and even more than that number in gag jokes.
Can I Watch It If….?
Though you do need to know who the main characters of Gintama are to enjoy it, a series binge before checking this movie out would be delightful but unnecessary. While the plot of the story does bring to an end the alien invasion that is the catalyst of the entire series, the only knowledge you need to have before watching it is that Gintama is a crazy ride from start to finish and that this movie is no exception. If you loved all of the wit and silliness in Gintama, you would enjoy the comedy-action series ender that THE VERY FINAL is.
If you decide to binge yourself some quality Gintama between now and the release date, you will want to watch season three, which contains episodes 266-316. The cast members from this series of episodes are the ones you will see the most of in the movie!
Music and Sound
Gintama: THE VERY FINAL was on point with its characteristic humor, and the fight scenes were everything we loved about Gintoki getting serious in the main series. An animation update worked to great success and didn’t distract from where the viewer’s attention was. To add to this, we also enjoyed the rock soundtrack and attention to detail in the choices made for sound. Breakdown by DOES was our favorite fight song!
In the most climactic fight of the movie, Gintoki fights against Takasugi, who is immortal and housing the immortality of his and their master. (Strong premise, but anime, you know?) In this fight that Gintoki knows will end in the death of friends who would otherwise live forever, there is a beautiful and suspenseful use of silence in these intense battles. This is not the first time silence has been used to significant effect in a fight, but they did such a great job with this that it is worth mentioning!
This movie was exactly the ridiculous ride that a series like Gintama deserves. It is a self-aware anime that knows this is the last production, and as we get closer to the end, the characters seem to become aware that this movie is their last shot at some screen time. It is long, silly, heartfelt, and it didn’t pretend to be more sentimental than before, just because it was ending.
If you were looking for something that has a more detailed story arc, then you clearly have not been watching the rest of Gintama. If you appreciate just how silly, crude, and touching the main series is, then get yourself in a position to watch this last update! After who knows how many jokes about not being canceled yet, and somehow being on the air, this movie wraps up all of the crazy we love into one finale filled with delightful irrationality. We saw it, we loved it, and you will too if you’re a Gintama fan.