First Impression – One Punch Man


Meet the Caped Baldy

I have been quite hyped for this adaptation! I remember checking out the manga because I love Murata’s art and let me tell you, I just couldn’t put it down. I marathoned all released chapters within two days. So, if you are missing this one this season, I am sad for you. This is too brilliant to pass up and following are the reasons, why you should give this a three episode test.

Breaking Boundaries

The story breaks many norms and stereotypes of the superhero genre. There are time that you think, alright, I have figured the trend out but then NOPE. All the credit goes to ONE, who started this project as a webcomic for the story, while Yusuke Murata (of Eyeshield21 fame), for the amazing art. It’s beeeautifulll! In webcomic form, the art is almost comical (like a childish scrawl), but the story is another matter altogether. No wonder, it became a cult hit with crowds, gathering to a frenzy once the project became a hit in the online version of Weekly Young Jump. You have to read it to find out but aren’t you lucky that Madhouse is animating this? From their track record, they would be very faithful to the original material so lie down and relax, this would be a very entertaining ride.

Wan-Pan Man (I assume a pun hidden here with it sounding so similar to Anpanman), is a superhero comedy that doesn’t take itself seriously AT ALL. So, if the first episode had you thinking, ehhh, I have seen this before. Wait a bit and give it at least three episodes because there is a lot more here than meets the eye. Yes, there are still monster of the week (well, not always), but you will find this story breaking all probable superhero tropes, be it shounen, tokusatsu themes or even western superhero stereotypes. After breaking norm, it adds brilliant comedy, puts up a very nice show, shakes it on its head and presents a different angle than you ever expected.

What to Expect

I mean, where else you would see a briefs-wearing crab-monster, adding blub-blub to all his dialogues as if he was super serious? And that ass-chin kid… I mean, that is no-way just a cleft-chin man, that’s way over the fence… Not to mention, the hyper brothers, who were both obliterated, one by the other, while the remaining with a punch just because he was being a baby about getting extra strength. You would expect the hero to have a hard time in dealing with such monsters but nope, Saitama has a one solution to all problems. Expect a lot of seen and unforeseen monsters to join this plot-line.


Backstory-wise, Saitma was not always bald… He had nice shiny hair once, when he was the main protagonist of a Korean indie-game: Don’t Get Fired, living the life of a starving salaryman. His life changed when he faced-off against a ridiculously blubbering monster. He trained so hard to become a hero and pushed his body through so many constraints that he became bald in the process. This however rewarded him with superhuman strength, so much so that he can defeat any enemy with a single punch. However, being undefeated has its downside of being bored out of one’s mind due to lack of challenge. No wonder, he sports a ridiculous deadpan expression most of the time. Being Saitama is suffering and you better know it.

So, you would ask, Kyo, is this how this thing will continue on? Nope, there are exciting times ahead when more interesting/twisted/weird characters will be introduced with a much needed world building. There will be a lot of monsters and brilliant action (didn’t you just love the whole punch ’em up sequence of the Subterranean people?), so enjoy the almost palpable action of adrenaline rush with this one. Look forward to it!


Meet Genos, the cyborg.


The Boss lady of Metanorn, who makes it all happen. An animanga enthusiast, who watches/reads almost anything that strikes her fancy. Just beware of her Death Perception and always keep her happy. Regularly found at @KyokaiTM & #[email protected].
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14 Responses to “First Impression – One Punch Man”

  1. sonicsenryaku says:

    favorite line of the first ep is when vaccine man looks at saitama with an unimpressed look on his face and says: “What kind of half-assed backstory is that?” before he then proceeds to dramatically deliver his backstory. That definitely has to become a meme (the unimpressed look included)

    • Kyokai says:

      The episode was full of such golden lines. It’s almost funny how one characters delivers something and in an instant another just destroys it. So, you think you have a cheesy story? My cheesy story is even cheesier than you. Aaah I love this.

  2. zztop says:

    The original webmanga that started it all!

    Like Kyokai said, very crude art. Although ONE’s other serialized manga, Mob Psycho 100, is much better to look at (but still not as nice as Murata Yuusuke’s.)

    • Hoshi says:

      ~Yeah, with Mob Psycho 100 you can actually see ONE’s art getting better and better. Though I think the art is what makes it even funnier to read lol.

      • Kyokai says:

        I thought the art was intentional for the webcomic… It’s just so ridiculous and I’ll agree with hoshi on the same.

  3. Joojoobees says:

    That was a great first episode. The fights had interesting choreography, and the artwork was varied and imaginative. Looking forward to seeing more.

    • Kyokai says:

      For a manga reader, the fight scenes were literally eyegasmic (somewhat surreal like Space Dandy). Props to Madhouse for giving their all in bringing this to life. Let’s hope they can keep it up with time.

  4. Hoshi says:

    ~ For anyone who’s interested, here’s a mini behind-the-scenes video that Viz actually released~

    I was grinning throughout the entire episode; I was so happy ;; The animation is INSANE and I wonder how long they’ll be able to keep it up (not that I’d blame them if it slacked, I can’t even imagine how difficult/time consuming it must be to do this). I can’t wait to see Genos and the rest of the heroes (*´▽`*)

    • Kyokai says:

      Aww man, it’s Japan restricted… Oh well, VPN! xD

      The first episode was such a nice ride. My expression was pretty similar to you and I was in awe at how much Madhouse had amped up the action. Sure, Murata has done amazing work on the original already but this was Space Dandy quality. I hope they can keep up with some slack off time during plot progress. 😉

  5. skylion says:

    I’m going to disagree with you Kyo. You ready??!!

    No, it’s not that I hate this show. Quite the contrary, I really love it. But I disagree that they “aren’t taking anything seriously”. Nope. They are taking it very seriously. They are playing it all straight. I love it for that!

    There isn’t a hint of post-modern deconstruction anywhere in this thing. It’s just the sheer love of these often cliched tropes, dusted off, and kept away from any modern and cliched form of using them.

    I mean, I could go on and on in how looking back the 90s comic book landscape in the States nearly ruined super-heroes in an attempt to “grow up”, “be mature”, or “go dark”. But I won’t. Just to say that this show just does what it wants to do and enjoys itself for that.

  6. BlackBriar says:

    An alright first entry, I guess. So much ridiculous looking monsters to go up against they were more laughingstocks than threats. I couldn’t take them seriously despite the eye opening destruction. Saitama’s boredom is understandable. The kind you get playing a video game you’ve beaten and reached the highest level possible only to be left with small fry that can’t give a good challenge because you’re too strong.

    • Kyokai says:

      Don’t take this seriously and enjoy the ride is all I can say right now. ^^

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