Lupin III (2015)

Lupin III (2015)

Lupin III (2015) anime series cover art
Lupin III (2015)

Series Overview

Lupin III (2015) is the fourth part of the Lupin III series. I’m just going to keep referring to it as Lupin III (2015) though because technically just Lupin III would refer to the first part of the series. Also, Lupin III is the romaji spelling of the Japanese ルパン三世, but I’m using it over the English Lupin the Third because the English title doesn’t include “(2015)” after it.

Hopefully that all made sense. Basically this review is on the 2015 entry in the Lupin III series.

This is the first entry in the main Lupin III series I’ve seen. Before this, I watched four of the movies and The Woman Called Fujiko Mine. So Lupin III (2015) was a bit different from anything I’ve previously seen. However, if you liked the movies, you’ll probably like the series, and the same is true in the other direction.

The main difference here is that the series is much more episodic than The Woman Called Fujiko Mine was. But, that doesn’t mean there’s not an overarching story at all. There were two main arcs from what I could tell: The San Marino arc and the Da Vinci arc. I’ll be discussing the differences between the two later on.

Regardless of the arc, the vast majority of this series takes place in Europe, specifically Italy and San Marino. There are a couple of episodes that take place in France, and even one that takes place in Japan, but overall this is an Italy-focused series.

I know that Lupin is supposed to be considered a worldwide thief, but I still generally associate him with Japan, so seeing him and the gang explore Italy and San Marino was cool. Also, I just think Italy and San Marino are interesting backdrops for the series.

New Supporting Characters

There were four new supporting characters introduced in this part of the series: Rebecca, Rob, Nix, and later on, Da Vinci. Rebecca and Rob are both allies of Lupin, while Nix and Da Vinci are primarily antagonists, though that isn’t always the case.

Rebecca Rossellini is my favorite of the new characters — and not just because she’s a cute girl. Though, if I’m being honest, that plays a significant role. I actually think Rebecca is cuter than Fujiko, which I’m sure a bunch of Fujiko fans will think is completely out of line.

Rebecca is just more fun and she has a better character design. That’s right, I said it.

But looks aren’t the only thing Rebecca has going for her. She’s also the heiress to some wealthy family (I forget exactly what they do). And in her free time, which is basically all the time, she does whatever she wants — including moonlighting as a thief.

Lupin and Rebecca getting married from the anime series Lupin III (2015)
Lupin and Rebecca getting married

Rob is Rebecca’s handler. He serves as her bodyguard, chauffeur, and general assistant. But arguably his most important job is to keep Rebecca out of trouble so that she doesn’t tarnish the Rossellini name by getting caught during one of her heists.

Nix is an agent working with the British Secret Intelligence Service known as MI6. He’s kind of like a more serious version of our old pal, Inspector Zenigata. Zenigata is still around, but Nix takes on the role of a more dangerous adversary.

I will say that the one thing I didn’t like about Nix is that when he was introduced he kept on giving near 100% chances of success for himself and then proceeded to fail every time. You’d think that after a few failures he’d learn that he doesn’t have a 100% chance of success.

Da Vinci is an antagonist in the second half of the series. He’s not literally Da Vinci, but rather an experiment that was being performed by MI6 gone wrong. The best way to think of his personality and abilities though is to think of Kars from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 2.

San Marino vs. Da Vinci

As previously mentioned, both halves of the series take place primarily in Italy and San Marino. However, the first half was much more focused on San Marino, so that’s what I’m referring to when I mention the San Marino Arc. And the second half, when Da Vinci is introduced, is the Da Vinci arc.

I think the San Marino arc of the story was the better of the two. It was much more grounded in reality, though there were still some less than realistic features such as Nix’s superhuman hearing. Once Da Vinci was introduced, it reminded me of the Lupin movies with the superhuman assassins, and I just don’t enjoy that quite as much.

Da Vinci from the anime series Lupin III (2015)
Da Vinci

Of course, Da Vinci isn’t one of those superhuman assassins, so it’s not entirely the same. But he’s still a recreation of a historical figure who has the ability to alter reality through the use of dreams. So again, it’s pretty unrealistic. And the final episode of the series (excluding the special episodes which I also watched) really went off the deep end.

By contrast, I believe the final episode of the San Marino arc (I could be mistaken) was the one in which Zenigata finally captures and imprisons Lupin.

I thought that was possibly the best episode of the entire season. Sure, there were other episodes with better action or story, including a few with some amazing animation. But I really liked how that episode delved into Zenigata’s character and how once he’s captured Lupin, he doesn’t really know what his purpose in life is anymore.

Conclusion

Lupin III (2015) is a good anime, so it gets a 7/10. I liked some of the movies and The Woman Called Fujiko Mine a bit more, but generally speaking, this series was almost on par with them. I think if the second half of the series was more like the first, I would have liked it more.

I also have to say that I really like both the OP and ED of this series. The OP had some cool visuals, and the ED had a great song. I’m not really sure which I prefer at the end of the day though.

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My review of the next part is available here.

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