In the spirit of the great 80’s Saturday morning cartoon days, Toonami evolved many of our young pallets with the infusion of Anime into our entertainment consumption. While we were rapping about being the real slim shady, 1999 was a hugely impactful and eventful year. Geeks were looked to for hope during the scare of Y2K, tossed into the Matrix, heartbroken by the tragic Columbine Shooting, launched into the future with Napster’s file sharing network and David Bowie the Geek Pied Piper, became the first major artist to release an album available for download before physical copies were available.
1999 could be its own Geekstalgia post but with the good news from Crunchyroll, we want to focus on what Toonami was doing at the time. Already a largely successful television block full of great shows, Cartoon Network’s Toonami decided to drop another bomb. On Sept. 27, 1999, they began airing the Ronin Warriors.
The Japanese anime series and its later manga adaptation were created by Hajime Yatate. The anime aired in Japan in 1988. Fun fact, it actually first aired in the US in 95’ on the Sci Fi Channel. However, it was most popular for American audiences during its run on Toonami. It is also one of the few series to run on all the Toonami time blocks (Midnight Run, Rising Sun, and Toonami).
Why We Loved It
It incorporates many things we love about our superhero teams. Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac, The Ninja Turtles, Voltron, Gatchaman and Power Rangers all had similar themes involving teamwork, transformations, hoards of disposable grunt soldiers, and a final boss that was constantly trying to defeat them and take over the world.
We loved the over the top transformation/ armoring process, the unique look of each warrior and the intertwined bromance. We each had a favorite Ronin Warrior and those action figures should be commended for really being fully posable.
One of the things that set this series aside from others is that the heroes had to rely on the major female protagonist to assist them in defeating their enemies and understanding their armor and abilities. It also had a tiger– awesome!
Has to be when Ryo goes Inferno for the first time. But one of the most memorable things about the series was that Kento of Hardrock never said Dao Chi right… what’s up with that?
Now we can revisit the legendary Ronin Warriors because Crunchyroll has added the show to the roster. Will you be tuning in to help defeat Talpa?
What was your favorite thing about the Ronin Warriors?
Let us know, in the comments below…