Is Knights of the Zodiac the new Dragon Ball Evolution?

Knights of the Zodiac - Seiya

Live-Action Curse was assumed to have been broken with the recent One Piece 2023, but Saint Seiya has always managed to surprise us. Knights of the Zodiac is Saint Seiya’s attempt at a live-action adaptation, and it hasn’t been what was expected of it. In this article, I will tell you what was wrong with the live-action and why the community considers it an appropriate adaptation to dethrone Dragon Ball Evolution, the worst of live-action adaptation.

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Knights of the Zodiac

Saint Seiya: The Becoming is the Japanese title of the live-action and Knights of the Zodiac is what it is popularly known as in the US. It is adapted from the 2019 Saint Seiya CGI series, which has been considered the worst out of all the franchise’s adaptations. Yeah, we reach the point real quick why it should replace Evolution. However, we are not done yet.

Knights of the Zodiac
Knights of the Zodiac | Courtesy of Toei Company

The story is about a group of individuals called Saints who have to protect the reincarnation of the Greek Goddess, Athena. Seiya is one of those skilled individuals who is able to utilize the power within him, called Cosmos, through a garment that is presented to him by the followers of the goddess. When Guraad tries to kill Sienna, who is the reincarnate of the Goddess, Seiya has no choice but to take his responsibilities on.

If you think the explanation was done very poorly, you must understand that this is better than how the live-action did it. Let’s not make you wait any further and delve right into why this is such a bad adaptation.

Why is it so bad?

Seiya and Guraad
Seiya and Guraad | Courtesy of Toei Company

The anime had a slow pace but it added to the mystery. Viewers had to watch and piece everything together making it an engaging store where each episode had one little hint towards the bigger picture. It was a delight to sit down and watch the show as it slowly developed its characters and story. The characters were also well-grounded and their interactions meant a lot.

  • Coming to the live-action we can scrap all of that and throw it out the window. The 2019 adaptation from where it was adapted gave away half the story in an episode that would have taken the anime at least 20-30 episodes to show.
  • If that wasn’t enough, this adaptation isn’t the original story but instead a retelling of the story. The original story is quite different. This made this adaptation feel almost like a fan-fiction with its half-baked execution. Ironically, fan fiction tends to be better.
  • The characters and their involvement in the story were heavily downplayed and altered. Details about them were changed to the point that it was just one detail away becoming a different character altogether.
  • The directors were itchy to add a bit of color to a story of magic knights. Seiya’s iconic Pegasus armor was Blue and Red, but what we received was faded gray emo armor. Truly the dread is showing.
  • The dialogues were also to a point so cringy that Asta‘s screaming sounded better for a moment. The dialogues were the perfect examples for out of character.
  • The live-action, unlike the 2019 adaptation, did not keep the “Pegasus Fantasy” heavy-metal opening. This is one thing that separates the CGI adaptation from the live-action, making the former a tad bit better.
  • They also forgot that it takes tremendous power to damage a Saint’s armor and equally tremendous blood to fix it. The amount of times the Saint armor got damaged really made me feel that I was one step closer to ICU.
Seiya in his Pegasus Armor
Seiya in his Pegasus Armor | Courtesy of Toei Company

These changes were not all bad. Guraad and Kido really felt like their characters. The only issue here is that they did not receive as much screen time as they should. Maybe that could have saved the adaptation. The changes to Seiya’s character were right for the movie, with how the plot moved, these changes actually kept the character at its source. However, this could be only appreciated by long-time fans as such changes are only noticeable to them.

Why would it replace Dragon Ball Evolution?

Dragon Ball Evolution is the lowest tier in the anime live-action hierarchy. Nothing could be worse than this adaptation. To be said to replace this adaptation would actually be impressive, considering how bad the replacement has to be. DB Evolution was terrible, mostly because of its casting choices and the CGI. It also did not follow the storyline and had its original take on the franchise. A very wrong move when it is the first live-action a popular franchise is receiving. It is better to follow the story.

Athena | Courtesy of Toei Animation

Knights of the Zodiac has hit off every criterion to replace DB Evolution. Besides casting Famke Janssen and Mckenyu, everything else it did was a mistake. The movie felt like a Hollywood Action movie with a Mythological Storyline instead of a live-action adaptation of a popular anime. In short, it was an enjoyable movie but a disaster of an adaptation. It has clearly earned the right to sit on the throne of the worst live-action adaptation.


It was considered impossible to surpass DB Evolution in being the worst live-action out there, but Saint Seiya’s adaptation has exceeded our expectations. This just goes to show that you are never too old to witness old records being broken. What a year! Two gems get the green light to reach out to more audiences, while one touches the sky, another crashes into the dumps.

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