My Thoughts On Cyberpunk: Edgerunners

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I’m sure some people are sick of hearing about this show now given how heavily it’s promoted on social media. So let’s make this fast.

  • Yes I’m in the camp that thinks this show is amazing pretty good. Like the Cyberpunk video game (I’m not familiar with the original table top game), it’s not as original or revolutionary as the hype would lead you to believe. But there’s something to be said about great execution, which this show has in spades.
  • Animation is mostly beautiful and the action is sick, although it has that usual Trigger issue in that in-between the intense scenes, there are some noticeable still/repeated frames. I mostly notice it when background characters aren’t moving, but I think it works well in the montages.
  • David and Lucy are the classic doomed couple consisting of scrappy underdog who gets swole and beautiful badass who is soft inside so hope you’re not tired of that cliche. Especially since they’re the only characters that get decent focus in this show. The side characters and antagonists mainly serve as tools for the main duo’s development. Maine is pretty much the doomed mentor whose death triggers David to follow his path.

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  • Rebecca is a very fun character with a very fun voice, but unfortunately she does not get much story importance beyond being David’s wingwoman. And that only really happens in the final act, as she stays in her home for the majority of the show. Love the numerous fan art of her though. And trust me when I say there’s a ton of it you can find if you search “rebecca” or “edgerunners” on Twitter.
  • Antagonists are good for what they are. Night City is well-established to be a place where you have to be corrupt in order to live a good life, so them not having much motivation beyond being power hungry works fine for this kind of show. Faraday was fun to hate and Tanaka was a devious son of a bitch.
  • The twist that Lucy indirectly killed her crew trying to protect David was a pretty decent example of how the road to hell is paved with good intentions while establishing just how corrupt a place Night City is beyond the obvious. It was also a unique way to show how miscommunication can lead to relationships breaking apart without coming across as stupid, even if most miscommunications don’t lead to your lover getting killed by Adam Smasher.
  • I haven’t gotten too far into the Cyberpunk 2077 game as of this time of writing, but I have seen the memes at how utterly incompetent Adam Smasher is as a final boss. In the anime though, he definitely steals the show in the five minutes of screen time he gets, utterly massacring the rest of the cast with his years of experience and intimidating voice.

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  • Seen some comparisons to Akame ga Kill for this show, but given how there’s no equivalent to Esdeath in Edgerunners, I consider said comparisons invalid. All cyberpunk stories have a lot of deaths (Akudama Drive being one of the most recent examples) and downer endings. It’s kind of a staple of the genre itself.
  • None of the deaths aside from the ones in the finale did much for me beyond “wow that’s fucked up” because they all happened to side characters we didn’t know very well. And the one that had some character, Maine, I didn’t like very much. Someone who kills his body to the point that he randomly attacks his comrades is just a stupid individual.
  • Lucy seems to prefer wearing clothes when she’s getting a decent amount of screentime. When her screentime fades, her desire to show her nipples increase.
  • David looks fucking stupid after he takes over as leader of the mercenary group. His numerous implants and increased muscle makes his head way too small for his body and kind of killed the charm of his character for 1-2 episodes.

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  • Is the moon really a nice place to live? Obviously it’s far away from crime, and I’m not expecting it to look like Elysium from that Neill Blomklamp movie, but it doesn’t seem like there’s much in the way of luxuries there.
  • What exactly was the issue when David mentioned that tickets to the moon were cheap but Lucy pointed out that it’d be a one-way trip so they shouldn’t go yet? Was it because they feared being pursued by Arasaka, Militech, and such if they left then, turning the moon into another war zone (edit: Lucy knew David was being pursued but not David himself. So was it to protect everyone else? His own reasoning for how he’s protecting Lucy through these jobs is a bit unclear to me)?
  • Obviously Lucy goes to the moon when she’s no longer being pursued, as everyone who would want her ended up dying and the knowledge she had was not worth chasing her for given the cyberskeleton was destroyed, but they didn’t do a great job making it clear that the bad guys could have gone to their dream home if they wanted to (they obviously have the money and resources to do so, but I mean the show should have made it clear why going to the moon right away wasn’t an option).
  • Some people have complained that the show would have been better if it had been released weekly. You do realize if it had been, it would have eventually aired in the same season as Chainsaw Man and all those other big shonen, which would have caused it to become forgotten instantly except by its hardcore fanbase akin to what Made in Abyss is currently going through? It would had to have aired at the start of the summer season where none of the big shows get more than cult attention (with maybe the exception of Lycoris Recoil in Japan) for that model to work, but the date was set for the middle of September so that’s when we get it.

  • Apparently it was the NSFW trailer that caused the show to get a lot of exposure prior to release. Why am I not surprised?
  • The biggest indication I enjoyed this show is when an episode ends and I think to myself that it felt like only ten minutes passed. It was only during the final three episodes when I started to feel the 22-minute length.
  • Give me time to get into the songs beyond the opening and ending themes. I know people like “I Really Want To Stay At Your House” and such, but it was hard to hear the lyrics over all the explosions.
  • There’s a short conversation from the video game that a lot of people reference in regards to this show for good reason. I’ll list it here:

V : Guess I meant, I dunno… a happier ending… for everyone involved.

Johnny : Here, for folks like us? Wrong city, wrong people.

  • Really love the English dub for this show. Everyone nailed their roles, including the returning voice actors from the game. Especially Gus from Breaking Bad voicing Faraday and Matthew Mercer voicing Falco.

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  • I’ll have a separate review for the Cyberpunk 2077 video game sometime in the future. Started playing it in response to the anime’s release like a lot of people did.

3 responses to “My Thoughts On Cyberpunk: Edgerunners

  1. Pingback: Anime and Manga Blog Posts That Caught My Eye This Week (September 23, 2022) – Lesley's Anime and Manga Corner

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