Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac Season 1 Part 1 Review - "Does Not Ignite The Cosmos"

Does Not Ignite The Cosmos

  • Episodes : 6
  • Genre : Action, Shounen, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci-Fi
  • Airing Date : July 19, 2019
  • Producers : Toei Animation

Contains Spoilers

Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac Season 1 Part 1 Introduction

Finally, the CG remake to the 1980’s cult classic has hit Netflix to low expectations no thanks to qualities that we’re going to get to. Like in the original series, 4 young men and 1 young lady (that lady was a man in the original) are selected to become Bronze Saints for Athena due to showing they have the power to use cosmo, the energy of the universe inside of them. These 5 teenagers with attitude (wait, wrong show) then spend six years training under hellish conditions in order to be worthy of their clothes (or amor in the dub), and become saints for Athena.

Why You Should Watch Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac Season 1 Part 1

1. It Utilizes Some Important Plot Elements from the Manga

Putting aside the obvious controversies, we do have to give credit where credit is due. It actually implements some elements from the original manga that were never featured in the 1986 anime. One significant example is Hyoga’s initial role in the manga (which we’ve covered in our Anime Vs Manga segment of Saint Seiya) which is actually utilized in this series, which is a nice touch. Another big scene featured in this series that is taken from the manga, and is never shown in the original anime, are the circumstances to when Ikki and Shaka first meet. Perhaps fans of the original manga can appreciate these inclusions.

2. The Designs and Presentations are Fundamentally Faithful

Say what you want about the CG (that’s an argument that has been done to death), but we also have to give credit as to how the designs remain faithful to the original source material. Granted the quality isn’t anywhere near lets say Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children or any of Pixar’s stuff, but at least the style is faithful to the original. If you’re familiar with Kuramada’s original art style in his manga, it’s a style that rather hard to adapt into 2D form. Not only that, the way the characters execute their attacks are still faithful to the original with the panning, framing, poses and movements.

3. The Characters’ Motivations Remain the Same

The characters and their motivations as to why they want to fight more or less line up with the original series. Seiya is in it to find his long lost sister. Though Hyoga is initially working as an agent of Sanctuary like in the original manga, he still cares deeply for his mother, who rests in a sunken ship in the cold Siberian sea. Shiryu fights out of a deep loyalty to his master. Shun wants to reunite with her brother, Ikki. And Ikki’s rage is partially fueled by his training under his brutal master.

Why You Should Skip Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac Season 1 Part 1

1. Unnecessary Changes

For starters, we STRONGLY recommend you don’t watch the English dub (Porra! Didn’t watch the Portuguese dub, so no comment on that). They pointlessly change the names and such changes do nothing more than insult the intelligence of fans, regardless of background. Changing Shun into a woman is one thing, but changing the character’s name to Shaun is another. Not only that, the dub changes Hyoga’s name to Magnus, Shiryu’s name to Ron, Ikki’s name to Nero, and Saori’s name to Sienna. Strangely enough, Seiya’s name is still Seiya (and for some reason, his sister’s name is Patricia).

If you can keep Seiya’s name, then you can damn sure keep the rest of the original names in the dub. Up until 1999, you could get away with that. But by this time, most people should be aware that anime is from Japan and should be comfortable with Japanese originated names. Thankfully, the original Japanese track keeps the original names (with a majority of the voice cast from the Hades OVAs), and has a superior script and performances.

2. Inconsistencies in the Dub

What also doesn’t make sense with the name changes as how in the English dub, when Seiya does his Pegasus Ryuuseiken, the actor says it in the original Japanese! Other attack names such as Shun’s Nebula Chain and Hyoga’s Diamond Dust are also retained. If the dub can still keep Seiya’s attack names in Japanese, they can damn sure keep the names of the rest of the cast!

3. Introduces a New Unnecessary Villain

In addition to fighting Ikki, the Bronze Saints first major baddie in this series is an original, Vander Guraad, a former friend and business parter of Saori’s grandfather. He wants to harness the power of the cosmos to give his private army more power. If you’ve seen the original Saint Seiya, there’s really nothing about this character that makes absolute sense and compared to the baddies that are to come, he’s just a waste of space.

Final Thoughts

If you watch it in Japanese, the series is minimally tolerable, but is still by no means the ultimate representation as to why it was a hit in Latin America and Western Europe. If anyone from Netflix is reading this, if you want to win over Saint Seiya fans, then help TMS animate the rest of Last Canvas. That kick ass anime ended on a cliffhanger, and the manga is long over. Nobody asked for this pointless remake so make something that the fans really want, and let the studio retain creative control to give us the best version of Saint Seiya possible.

010 Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac Season 1 Part 1 Review - "Does Not Ignite The Cosmos"


Author: Justin "ParaParaJMo" Moriarty

Hello, I am originally from the states and have lived in Japan since 2009. Though I watched Robotech and Voltron as a child, I officially became an anime fan in 1994 through Dragon Ball Z during a trip to the Philippines. In addition to anime, I also love tokusatsu, video games, music, and martial arts. よろしくお願いします

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