'Blade Runner: Black Lotus' Is An Intriguing Prequel To '2049'
By Sal LoCicero | February 6, 2022
‘Blade Runner: Black Lotus’ is a new series from both Adult Swim and Crunchyroll Productions, and is the latest entry in the Blade Runner universe. In 2017, Warner Bros released ‘Blade Runner 2049’; the long awaited sequel to 1982’s cult classic sci-fi noir. Directed By Denis Villeneuve, the sequel introduced new characters, as well as the old, in a more updated, futuristic depiction of Los Angeles. In this series, the story rewinds itself 17 years before the events in 2049.
A young female replicant named Elle, has no recollection of who she is or her past life. Once she meets a man, who owns a spare parts junkyard, she begins searching for clues that lead her into a dark journey.
From the look of the show, you get a sense that it came with a short production budget. Any news that announced more info on ‘Black Lotus’ was, for the most part, hidden from the public. There was barely any marketing for the show, to the point where it seemed the show got canceled. But, given that Adult Swim and Crunchyroll were behind on the project, it made sense - AS only advertises its content to limited networks.
As far as expectations go, ‘Black Lotus’ has the same exact pacing as the two films that inspired it. Each episode takes its time to tell the story, but eventually it leads itself into certain aspects presented in ‘Blade Runner 2049’. The writers do so without losing the interest of their viewers. Almost every episode ends off with a cliffhanger that keeps you invested for more.
If you compare this series to the ‘Blade Runner’ movies, then you may find yourself disappointed with the outcome. The show isn’t as profound as the movies - although it took years for the original movie to get to where it is now - but it most certainly stands out above many other animated shows that are currently on television. The animation is cheap, and the characters' mouth movements are unmatchable to the dialogue.
Ridley Scott is not attached to the show, his name makes no appearance in the credits, nor Denis Villeneuve. Philip K. Dick, author of the short novel ‘Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?’ inspired by ‘Blade Runner', is the only person who’s given any form of credit to this series. This fact solves the animation development issue. After all, ‘Black Lotus’ is an anime that is co-distributed by an anime company.
The entire show keeps you invested till the end. It’s unclear if there are any plans to renew it for another season, but due to such limited news regarding this series, it seems unlikely - for now. ‘Blade Runner: Black Lotus’ is thoroughly enjoyable, and it should be able to please fans of the source material.