Is the upcoming Blue Exorcist Anime a reboot or a sequel? Explained

Is the upcoming Blue Exorcist Anime a reboot or a sequel? Explained

The supernatural action manga Blue Exorcist has returned to screens with a new anime adaptation, over a decade after its first animated series aired. But with this latest Blue Exorcist anime now out, the question on every fan’s mind is – is this a reboot or a sequel?

Blue Exorcist originally hit TVs back in 2011, with studio A-1 Pictures producing a popular 25 episode season and an OVA. The dark fantasy shonen about a teenager who is the son of Satan became a huge over-night success. And in 2023, a third anime was announced and has now been released, but some fans remain confused whether this would be a fresh take on the Blue Exorcist story and characters, or a direct continuation from the 2011 anime.

Is Blue Exorcist Season 3 a reboot or a sequel?

Is Blue Exorcist Season 3 a reboot or a sequel
Blue Exorcist | Image Courtesy of Kazue Kato

Given the long gap since the previous adaptations, a reboot would have made practical sense. However, now that the new series has premiered, it is clear that this latest Blue Exorcist anime is indeed a direct sequel rather than reboot.

  • Titled Blue Exorcist: Shimane Illuminati Saga, the third installment of the anime series is set to adapt volumes 10 through 15 of Kazue Kato’s supernatural manga. With the returning voice cast from previous seasons and films, it is clear this new Blue Exorcist is a direct sequel rather than reboot.
  • The second season of the Blue Exorcist anime ended on an anime original arc, meaning the events of the Shimane Illuminati Saga might surprise fans who haven’t read the manga. This arc is actually the sixth major story from the manga, taking place after the Kyoto Impure King arc and spanning Chapters 50 to 64.

 

So, while the previous anime took some liberties, this new saga will get back on track with the Blue Exorcist manga’s continuity. It serves as a much-anticipated continuation of Rin Okumura’s journey as he trains as an exorcist and handles his demonic origins.

For those wanting to dive right into the story of this new anime season without confusion, reading the manga’s Shimane Illuminati chapters and beyond in Viz Media’s Shonen Jump library is advised. But ultimately, with its returning cast and place in the manga narrative, the Blue Exorcist: Shimane Illuminati Saga is decidedly a sequel series rather than franchise reboot.

When and where to watch Blue Exorcist anime: Shimane Illuminati Saga?

When does Blue Exorcist 3 take place
Blue Exorcist | Image Courtesy of Kazue Kato
  • The Blue Exorcist: Shimane Illuminati Saga will have 12 episodes premiering weekly and exclusively on Crunchyroll this winter anime season, starting January 6th.
  • Both previous seasons of the Blue Exorcist anime are also available to stream on Crunchyroll for those new to the series who want to catch up. But as mentioned, the second season deviates from the manga’s storyline.

So, for viewers wanting to jump straight into this new saga without confusion, reading the Shimane Illuminati arc and beyond in Viz Media’s digital Shonen Jump library is recommended. This will provide the background directly from the manga before the full anime adaptation premieres.

Conclusion:

Overall, Blue Exorcist is making its awaited return to anime this winter with 12 new episodes continuing the story and characters fans know and love. Catch them on Crunchyroll weekly or get a head start by reading the corresponding manga chapters this sequel will cover.

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