Ghost in the Shell Arise’s new trailer joins news that not only will the OVA be getting entirely new character designs, but also an entirely new voice cast, in what is proving an exceptionally controversial new direction for the series.

The preview:

The new character designs:


As or more controversial than the new character designs is the fact that Motoko will now be voiced by Maaya Sakamoto, who perhaps not coincidentally also voiced child Makoto in SAC and Deunan in Appleseed XIII, rather than Atsuko Tanaka, who voiced her all the other Ghost in the Shell anime.

Along with Motoko, Aramaki (now voiced by Ikyu Juku), Togusa (Tarusuke Shingaki), Batou (Kenichiro Matsuda) and every other member of the cast also sees a new voice actor, for what is clearly intended to be a clean break with the previous incarnations of the franchise.

A new 2027 setting and storyline (yet again involving viruses) round out what has been described as a Motoko “origins” style story with her still with army intelligence prior to her Section 9 career.

Aside from the new character designs and seiyuu changes, plenty of other information about the new project has just emerged – it will be comprised of 4 50 minute parts, with the first – “Ghost Pain” – to see limited theatrical release and then an OVA BD/DVD release in June and July.

A manga edition of the new production is also due to begin serialisation in March, in the pages of Monthly Young Magazine.


Masamune Shirow himself has acknowledged the new iteration of the series takes things in a new direction:

2029AD. Togusa would be 29, so in the world of Ghost in the Shell, today in 2013 he would be in middle school. What would he be doing now, and would he already have resolved to become a detective?

[In the 24 years since the original manga’s debut] the world has changed a lot – especially computers and networks, with many people now carrying and using high powered mobile terminals at all times.

The original manga is now quite old, and I think it must be quite challenging to adapt, but I’m really looking forward to seeing viewers enjoy whatever new Ghost in the Shell Kise and the new staff produce.

And please, afterwards don’t start saying “this was all a fake memory and none of the anime adaptations were real,” OK?

Shirow Masamune

His concern over what fans will make of all this is perhaps understandable – the fan response so far has been distinctly negative:


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    Avatar of Pres
    Comment by Pres
    08:26 13/02/2013 # ! Quality (+0.9)

    At least they don't look moe like every anime this year.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:21 13/02/2013 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    oh god imagine that moe batou hahahaha

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:55 13/02/2013 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Batou is already moe.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:15 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    like Speedwagon. The most moe character to ever come around.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:22 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    also a tsundere

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:22 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    MOTOKO'S HAIR IS UGLY AS FUCK, HOLY FUCKING SHIT. One of the greatest things of the character and they fucked it up.

    I'd rather watch moe series than ugly Motoko.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:42 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    instead they look childish :\

    Avatar of Kaarme
    Comment by Kaarme
    08:43 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'd say Motoko looks considerably more moe compared to the old, but the rest certainly don't.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:47 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Those eyeballs. Theyre 10 frigging times bigger than males'.

    Avatar of Dan Hibiki
    Comment by Dan Hibiki
    10:03 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    So she also has less facial lines. What's the big deal?

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:35 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Blunette != Brunette

    Imo it sucks, sadly.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:51 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Looks as bad a The Unlimited.
    I hope it's as good as The Unlimited (although the cast was almost the same in that one)

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:59 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, the studio changed, just like Seizon LV2 and I do like the old designs better but sadly I can't judge the faithfulness to original. Especially The Unlimited - switching antagonists and protagonists with each other is certainly refreshing but coupled with studio switch ZKC isn't very much karen or children, more like zettai idealistic teens and humanity hating geezers. Also Sakaki has gone from Bond style action doctor to something between gigolo and incompetent womanizer. And.. and I want my Minamoto-mama back! SynergySP`s Minamoto was like the ideal 21st century man and his tag team with Sakaki was so much awesome that the gay factor got completely dwarfed.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:28 13/02/2013 # ! Drivel (-0.8)


    08:59 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    Well that's one good thing at least they're not moe.
    Moe and GITS simply does not compute.

    Avatar of yuriphoria
    Comment by yuriphoria
    09:43 13/02/2013 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Except for the tachikoma.

    10:13 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Yes except for the tachikoma they're very moe.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    09:07 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I dunno, we still haven't seen Togusa's little girl in this one yet.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:06 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    She may not even be born in this timeline or AU. Togusa may not even be married either, its all speculation.

    Comment by WEL
    08:54 13/02/2013 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    poor Aramaki, they butchered his design. Now he looks like an ugly old monkey... The other ones are not too bad but the ones from the old series look so much better is sad.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:53 15/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Must be a joke they had on he older series about Aramaki being an Old Monkey...XD

    Now I knew why...

    Avatar of Satanischer
    Comment by Satanischer

    Aramaki-san always looked ugly for me xD

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:32 13/02/2013 # ! Good (+0.8)

    Pazu, Boma, Batou, and Togusa look just about the same as they did in Stand Alone Complex. I don't mind the Major's new look, but the look of Aramaki and Saito are just...what the hell happened? If they were trying to make Aramaki look more ape-like, as he does in the manga they pulled it off incorrectly and made his face look extremely awkward. Saito really needs some love with a new hairstyle or something because it looks like he's got a really tiny toupee on trying to distract from the fact that the rest of his hair has gone poof. If you're gonna make the dude bald at least do it in a way that doesn't look like he has a mouse burrowing into his skull.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    09:16 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I think Saito's black spot isn't actually hair. It seems more like something attributed to his satellite up-link, since this is supposed to be earlier in the timeline and tech wouldn't be as advanced it might show like that.

    Aramaki with color in his hair is just plain wrong. It actually wouldn't look as bad if they made him salt & pepper haired.

    Overall though, the biggest issue I'm having is how close together each character's eyes are. I think that's the biggest thing that's throwing their looks off. Batou, Motoko, and Ishikawa all look decent enough (except Batou's hair), but the rest need some work.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:44 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Batou's hair looks like it does in the movie. I don't get the big deal.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    17:37 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    In the movie it was square cut at the sides and the front stuck out forward instead of up.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:16 15/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    After actually seeing the preview and seeing Aramaki in motion, he actually does look more accurate. The still shot for him is still kinda horrible though, so whenever he's not moving they need to improve his face or my earlier remark about his face essentially remains the same.

    09:01 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yah I wonder what they were thinking too on Saito and Aramaki.

    Avatar of Pyrolight
    Comment by Pyrolight
    09:10 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Not a fan of the hair cut on Saito and Aramaki feels a little like how they always drew the "fat cats" in GITS

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:05 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Guess I really don't see what the big deal is. sure they're a little different but its not like they are unrecognizable. they're all a bit younger and if it takes place in a time before Motoko joins section 9 then it would be before her full body conversion so she's bound to look different, but stick her in a lineup and I think most people (that have seen any GITS) would say she was Motoko.

    Avatar of rozza
    Comment by rozza
    21:14 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    didn't she have her conversion very early on in life eg the plain crash thats mentioned in gits 2nd gig the young girl and boy story

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:11 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    That only took place in the SAC universe. But yeah, it's implicit in the manga and the movies too she went full-cyborg very early in her life.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:50 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yeah, and now explain why togusa looks older; why batou ate a tachikoma.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:58 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    They look much closer to how they did in the Manga, actually.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:37 13/02/2013 # ! Good (+0.6)

    "...the fact that Motoko will now be voiced by Maaya Sakamoto..."

    I have no complaint at all

    Comment by Anonymous

    Spoken like a true nub of the series...

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:23 14/02/2013 # ! Good (+0.8)

    Spoken like a true fantart with its head up its ass.

    I've loved GitS ever since I read the manga (which was before I saw the movies or SAC) and truth be told, Atsuko Tanaka did a magnificent job portraying Motoko's character. But you obviously don't know your seiyuu or you'd know that Maaya Sakamoto is more than up to the challenge; especially considering that this Motoko is several years younger than in any of the media so far.

    They could've went with countless worse choices, and not many better.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:04 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    Think people should realize that this show's setting is suppose to be sent when Motoko Kusanagi is much younger, probably an origin story perhaps for Section 9 beyond what has been done thus far.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:57 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Yeah, but if you watch SAC (I think 2nd Gig) they already have flashback segments from when they were getting started/recruiting and they didn't look anything like these disgusting new "designs".

    Comment by Anonymous

    As far as I know androids don't get older.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:02 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    yeah whatever.

    I want to know if they're going to keep the personalities intact, of if they're going to lobotomize them like Oshii did.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:56 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Ummmm...the characters overall look closer to the manga (except the Major maybe). Look at the manga, the art wasn't phenomenal to begin with and there is definitely room for creative interpretation. The GITS anime character design was a marked departure from the manga to begin with (not necessarily a bad thing).

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:05 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I agree, and let's not forget about the modularity of the ghost that justifies a different voice. The man-machine interface manga dabbled a lot in there I hope this will go the same direction.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:25 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I'm ok with them trying something new but I really hope they don't fuck this up in any way example bad plot, voices didn't fit the character, poor animation, and worst of all over use of censors.

    Avatar of pantsu
    Comment by pantsu
    13:28 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    If Ghost in the Shell can survive Togusa's 1980's Miami Vice look in the original and Motoko walking around in a one piece bathing suit in SAC, then baring further fashion crimes the series could be worth watching.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:03 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I've been wondering for some time about something: How much news on this site is factual, and how much of reported news is bullshit?

    If you don't like the pictures for Arise, don't watch it. Go back to your FPS games in yer parents' basement.

    Avatar of Bear
    Comment by Bear
    23:29 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Most of them looks pretty much the same aside from kusanagi and the chief (Whats his name again? lol). Well... Perhaps there's a good chance the she changed her body and the chief decided to finally dyed his hair.... Now he looks a lot more like heihachi mishima.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:14 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wow this article is beyond retarded. They've shown in the trailer that the new art direction looks good animated and the character designs are pretty similar to the manga's save for Motoko's. Fuck, Aramaki even looks exactly like he did in the first chapter of the manga, which we see part of animated at the end of the trailer.

    And Sakamoto Maaya voices the child Motoko in the first movie, not in SAC. Seriously, it's fucking sad when people who pretend to be giving news can't even get the tiniest fact right.

    Avatar of Lee Kun
    Comment by Lee Kun
    11:10 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Oh god, they've butchered GITS. Dammit, what the fuck was so hard about keeping the animation and character styles plus voice actors from 2ndGIG. Dumbasses. I pray they keep the same voice actors from the English dub but they may just fuck us over on that one too.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:28 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Chief Aramaki! What have they done to you?!

    Avatar of Satanischer
    Comment by Satanischer
    09:16 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Come on people, give it a chance.

    It looks good for me, the old design was better but i think this one is acceptable.

    Somehow this reminds to Dante of DMC, a lot of of people hate the new Dante but the game is great.

    The same happens with Ghost In The Shell, we have to wait, watch it and then judge it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:15 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    You can't really compare this to DMC as GiTS had may changes to Motoko from the movies, to the anime, and now this.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:33 14/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    End up with big franchises like Mass effect and Dead space, why not with anime?
    For anyone who is a fan of scifi, just one disappointment after another.
    What matter is massifying product to cut costs and appeal to people who might go play or watch, even if it is spitting in the face of the fans!

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:07 13/02/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    DMC: DMC could have been stopped
    it's everyone's fault that abomination came to exist

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