Japan Sinks: 2020 was one of 2020’s breakout hits. This ONA (original net animation) generated lots of excitement and word-of-mouth buzz when it landed on Netflix in July 2020. Since then, fans have been keen to learn if the show will get a second series or some form of sequel or spin-off.
Japan Sinks: 2020 was set after the 2020 Tokyo Olympic games. However, when a massive earthquake hits Japan, chaos quickly ensues as buildings and whole cities are reduced to rubble. On top of this, the entire Japanese archipelago starts to sink, making the disorder even worse and escaping even harder. The series follows Ayumu, and Gou Mutou, two young siblings trapped in the middle of events as they try to survive and rescue their family and friends.
An utterly harrowing and worryingly realistic depiction of the aftermath of a disaster, Japan Sinks: 2020 is based on the novel Nippon Chinbotsu by famous Japanese science fiction writer Sakyo Komatsu which was first published in 1973. This isn’t the first time the book has been adapted for the screen. In 1973 it was turned into the film Tidal Wave, and TBS and Toho worked on a television drama version in 1974. In 2006, a rebooted version of Tidal Wave was made, entitled Sinking Of Japan, showing that the book has remained relevant for a long time, suggesting that more can be done with the concept.
The book did get a sequel titled Nihon chinbotsu dai ni bu, roughly translating to Japan Sinks: Chapter 2. While it is less known than the original, it could work as the basis for a second season of the animation. Of course, Netflix could get a new writer to put their own spin on the concept. This concept could totally deviate from both the original book and its sequel. History has shown that disaster movies are eternally popular and have lots of material to work with.
However, it must be asked if a sequel will be as effective as the original. Japan Sinks: 2020 worked so well because it was unexpected and stood alone. A second massive disaster hitting both Japan and the Mutou siblings might feel a little silly and cheesy. However, there is room for an anthology series that moves the disaster to a different country or focuses on another family during season 1’s disaster.
Currently, Netflix has said nothing about a second season, nor has it said the show is canceled. So it will simply be a matter of waiting for an announcement. However, the success of Japan Sinks: 2020 will likely make Netflix consider future disaster movies, so even if Japan Sinks: 2020 doesn’t continue, we’ll probably see many more earth-shattering events hit Netflix in the future.