Based on that headline alone, if you’re one of the many fans who vociferously rejected Netflix’s live-action Cowboy Bebop, then you’re probably already of the opinion that the crew member in question has failed before you even find out their identity.
Despite riding a wave of buzz and momentum as one of the platform’s most hotly-anticipated shows, the anime adaptation landed with a thud among critics and audiences, despite having remained in the Top 10 most-watched list ever since it first landed ten days ago.
A 48% Rotten Tomatoes score and a 53% user rating is much less than Netflix would have been expecting, while those familiar with the source material are in staunch disagreement of John Cho’s assessment that Cowboy Bebop is fan fiction writ large.
However, one area that’s come in for praise is the costume design, which is just as well when wardrobe designer Jane Holland revealed to Still Watching Netflix that she’d been warned by no less an authority than teenagers to get it right.
“You know, I have a couple of teenagers in my household who have anime-watching friends. When I first got the job, I sort of said, ‘Do any of you know Cowboy Bebop?’. And they were like, ‘What? Cowboy Bebop? Yeah, yeah.’ They knew the anime and I said, ‘No, no, no, we’re making a live-action.’ And they kind of went, ‘Oh what?’ and then they just went, ‘Don’t f*ck it up’. My thing that I really want is for those teenagers to kind of go, ‘No, you didn’t f*ck it up’.”
We’ll be very interested to see if Cowboy Bebop ends up getting a second season renewal, or if the general sense of malaise makes it Netflix’s latest high-profile casualty, but most folks would agree that Holland held up her end of the bargain.