If you’re a fan of the Shaman King anime, then you’ve been eating well for the last couple of years. In 2021, there was a hit reboot of the original Shaman King series that came out back in 2001. That reboot ended just last year, but fans don’t have to wait another 20 years for a follow-up: this trailer for the sequel series Shaman King: Flowers looks to bring fans more of what they love while giving a brand new look to the original cast of colorful characters.
The Shaman King reboot was well-received by fans of the anime classic, but Shaman King: Flowers will push the series forward when it arrives early next year.
Fans of the 2021 Shaman King anime shouldn’t worry that Flowers will be all that different. For one thing, much of the core voice cast is returning. That includes Takumu Miyazono as Ponchi, Nana Mizuki as Tamao Tamamura, Masahiko Tanaka as Ryūnosuke Umemiya, Noriaki Kanze as Konchi, and Wataru Takagi as Tokagerō. On top of that, the same anime studio, Bridge, will be handling the sequel series, and Takeshi Furuta will serve again as director while Shoji Yonemura once more handles the music.
While these similarities to the 2021 reboot are reassuring to fans, Shaman King: Flowers does have one big difference from the earlier show: Mayuko Yamamoto is replacing Satohiko Sano as character designer. This has already led to some big changes, including Tamao Tamamura looking much older and sporting much longer hair. Some character changes are less dramatic, including Ponchi, a Stimpy-like character that looks mostly similar (although, for our money, the new design looks a tad less deranged).
Shaman King: Flowers does have one big difference from the earlier show: Mayuko Yamamoto is replacing Satohiko Sano as character designer.
One of the most dramatic redesigns in Shaman King: Flowers is of Ryūnosuke Umemiya’s character. In the 2021 show, he looked a bit like what would happen if Elvis Presley became a big fan of Shaggy from Scooby-Doo. The sequel series retains some of this design aesthetic, but the character’s facial hair seems more prominent now, and this seems to dramatically change the lines of the character’s angular face.
In Shaman King: Flowers, the character of Konchi, like Ponchi before him, has had his design mostly tweaked rather than changed altogether. The character’s basic aesthetic remains unchanged, which means we still get that creepy bib/diaper combo. But the new design makes the character look more actively mischievous, whereas the old design makes the character seem as if he looked constantly tired and even exasperated at the actions of those around him.
Out of all the new designs in Shaman King: Flowers (designs which have really divided the fan community, incidentally), perhaps the most dramatic has been the change to Tokagerō. In the 2021 reboot, the character looked like a cross between Venture Bros. villain The Monarch and the original designs for the Marvel character Shatterstar. The new design makes the character look much more like a traditional warrior: the armor has been replaced by a robe, and the headpiece is (mercifully) no longer around.
Shaman King: Flowers fans are divided on the new character designs, most seem to enjoy them, while others believe they stray too far from the originals.
Ultimately, these new Shaman King: Flowers designs are something of an acquired taste, but we think the sequel series will be as good as its predecessor despite changes to the design. After all, much of the talent that made the reboot has returned, and they have a fair shot of striking gold once more. In the meantime, this is the perfect time to watch the 2021 show on Netflix and discover what the hype is all about.