Warner Brothers has confirmed that it has a mixed medium, animated/live action, series in development with the Japanese pop-metal band, Babymetal. The band’s creator and producer, Key Kobayashi, will also be working with the production team. Created in 2010 as Kobayashi’s singular musical vision, Babymetal combines a contrast of crushing metal rhythms with J-Pop vocal melodies. It appears the show is slotted for digital release through Blue Ribbon Content at WB but has not yet been purchased by a distributor.
With stage performances and videos more reminiscent of anime or Final Fantasy RPG’s, Babymetal seems a natural fit for the adaption into an animated series. The band incorporates traditional Japanese folklore and myth into their narrative image, something that has a long tradition in western rock and metal genres. Specifically, they have used the fox spirit, Kitsune, as a prominent figure in their concerts and art. The kitsune have similarities to the coyote in native cultural spirits from the Americas in that they represent messengers and mediators between humanity and the gods. Associated with the Shinto Inari, they often take human form and are tricksters. Kitsune, Babymetal’s spirit/god, is expected to be a central figure in the series.
A cartoon featuring a magical heavy metal world, Japanese spirits and demons, and three kick-ass female protagonists? Count us in.