Image: Tokyo MX

It was announced that Ronja the Robber’s Daughter would not return for a Second season

#RRD Ended, No Season Two :(

If you want to make an anime for the US market, then Studio Ghibli is your best bet in terms of creation studios. For some reason, the fairly unique animation style and slow, quiet pace of the studio’s productions often manage to push through the mainstream adult market in the US in a way that no other has been able to match. The average Tomatometer rating on Rotten Tomatoes for Ghibli’s animated feature films lies well above 80%, making it the most critically successful anime series internationally.        While its films may not have the Spartan action that makes Pokémon and Sailor Moon a widespread financial success or the hard-hitting action and social commentary that garners Cowboy Bebop lifelong otaku adherents outside of Japan today, they do have a quiet charm to them. They also tend to take place in imaginative fantasy worlds with all manner of completely original or chimerically re-imagined creatures. These qualities, along with a tendency to use more expensive (if less stylistically interesting) animation techniques than most of the cheaply-made and hastily-produced video anima constantly coming on the market is what causes many critics to nod their head in knowing approval whenever a new production is screened at a film festival.

In 2014, the Japanese studio released Ronja the Robber’s Daughter in the land of the rising sun. The art style falls in line closely with other releases by the studio, with Ronja looking hardly distinguishable from Princess Mononoke or Satsuki from My Neighbor Totoro if one were to simply imagine her with a different costume and hair style. Anime has recently moved in the direction of using CGI to animate productions. This saps the beauty of hand-drawn artistry away from the works. Ronja’s show looks markedly different from Spirited Away, for example – lifeless and generic, as tends to happen with CGI animation. Yet in terms of direction and creative beauty, the high quality of the 26-episode series can’t be denied. Perhaps, in a way, the move to CGI was better for the evolution of the genre – the lowered cost may lead to longer and more substantive productions in the future.

RRD was already released in 2015 in Japan, but it doesn’t have much attention yet from the broader US audience before its forthcoming Amazon Prime release. IMBD is the only review website to have an entry for it, where it holds a 7.3 out of 10. While this may seem like a respectable grade for an animated children’s program, its pallor is apparent when compared to other popular Studio Ghibli productions, which netizen fanboys furiously rate up in a reflexive campaign to increase the profile on anime in the Anglosphere. The source of the rejection of this new entry into the Ghibli catalogue appears to be the CGI animation style. Other than the maligned animation, the work is still considered strong. It won an international Emmy award for children’s animation.

Old-time fans of anime will grumble about the noticeably different aesthetic of this and other recent anime series’. However, since the cost is much lower with such technological aids, it’s probable that the Japanese studios are all preparing to let computer-generated graphics seep into a lot more of their work in the future. As happened with cheap CGI, the current generation will probably get used to it and some point and the next will see these graphical changes as the new normal. The fantastical spirit of the work is still very much in tact, though, so the popularity is unlike to be much affected.

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We are not likely to see a season 2 of #RRD simply due to the nature of anime series’. Much like telenovelas, studios tend to produce a story from beginning to end and then release it. At most, if the series proves popular enough, one or more movies might be made. None of this is certain, though, and strong popularity might spur Amazon to press Ghibli for more. We will have to wait and see.

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Are you anticipating the release of #RonjaRobberDaughter? Do you prefer your anime dubbed or subtitled? If you have seen the trailer for the Japanese version, what do you think of the new cel-shaded animation style? Give us your comments and opinions down below.

English version narrated by Gillian Anderson is set to premiere on Prime Video on January 27 in the US and UK!

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1 Comment on "Ronja the Robber’s Daughter"


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Jordan Farb
Jordan Farb
9 days 13 hours ago

It says be the first to comment either you guys are using a gimmick to make it so you get more comments or Ronja is just not that popular.

Which sad to say makes me think that there won’t ever be a second season. I just stumbled across this series, because my nieces watches it. And I loved it! It was great!

I would say I support a second season, but it doesn’t seem like that would do much now. It’s too bad I didn’t know about the series when it first came out I would have, definitely been rooting for it and supporting it for a second season.
Although I feel like that might have been a fault on Amazon, I didn’t see any advertisement for Ronja. And if I did, I don’t remember. I think the best way to have advertised it would have to make a video for it and put it an advertisement on YouTube.
I mean I’m no expert at advertisements, but I know how Google ads work and they could have easily gotten their target audience.
Maybe I just know that, because I’m part of that audience.
Anyway if nothing else I hope that there will be more series like Ronja.