There are many anime that offer a metal-like fantasy appeal through their action and world building – but few come as close to embodying heavy metal like that of Bastard!! -Heavy Metal, Dark Fantasy–. With the manga debuting in Shonen Jump back in 1988, written and illustrated by Kazushi Hagiwara, Bastard!! got its first anime adaption in 1992; now 30 years later, the story is returning, this time with a fresh coat of paint and appearing on Netflix in 2022!
Bastard!! takes place in a fantasy world where the Kingdom of Metallicana is attacked by the Four Lords of Havoc. In order to save the kingdom, a high priest requests his daughter to awaken Dark Schneider, a powerful wizard. Bastard!! is heavily inspired by metal (as well as Dungeons & Dragons); Hagiwara has been very vocal about his love for both metal and D&D, and has thus built the world of Bastard!! to reflect those passions.
Several characters throughout the story are named after bands or musicians. There’s the knight Von Jobina, whose name is a pun on Bon Jovi; there’s Lars/Rarz, named after Lars Ulrich of Metallica, and many more. Bastard!! is a bloody world filled with magic and chaos – just the sort of epic fantasy violence that is perfect for metalheads.
This reboot of Bastard!! is set to release worldwide sometime in 2022 on Netflix. Anime is a lot more metal than some people might expect; just look at the theme song for that of Attack On Titan’s final season – it just topped the US Billboard Hot Hard Rock Songs chart (as reported by Crunchyroll). And while it isn’t anime, we want to shout out The Spine Of Night, an incredible work of animation that metalheads will surely appreciate.
If you want to check out the trailer for 2022’s Bastard!!, you headbanging Otakus can find that below:
Words by: Michael Pementel