Based solely on the first episode? Yes.
It’s always hard to transition something from one medium to another. In this case, Netflix’s new series Pacific Rim: The Black (if you’ve wandered into this article without prior knowledge) is part of the Pacific Rim film canon, which includes Pacific Rim (2013) and Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018).
Both the previous movies are on Netflix (in Canada, sorry USA!), so I recommend checking them out (or re-watching them) before trying the show.
I can definitely say that there is a lot to love about the show if you enjoyed the movies.
We have the Kaiju (the monsters). We have the Jaegers (the mecha, AKA giant robots). We have three battles in the first episode, which is a good amount for a show that runs less than half an hour a segment.
While quick-paced, the show conveys the main personality traits of the two main characters and explains their relationship. Taylor and Hayley make reasonable choices for their age and experience while also being relatable (Hayley approaches video game tutorials as I do: skip them and then curse myself later when I don’t know how to equip and throw a grenade).
The first episode of The Black manages to pull on your heartstrings at two separate instances (this surprised me) while also providing the kick-ass Kaiju vs. mecha action that fans know and love (not surprising).
There was some chatter when the first trailer launched about the anime style. While I wouldn’t call myself an anime super fan, I have watched most of the popular series, including Neon Genesis Evangelion (the debate still resounds over whether Pacific Rim is inspired or based on the 90s show). I personally find the style of this new show engaging. It’s a mix of more traditional anime (albeit with some extra-sparkly eyes) for the people and backgrounds and CGI animation for the Kaiju and Jaegers. This allows for some “big movie” effects, such as slow-motion and fancy perspectives.
For those who don’t like anime, this might be appeasement, and for those who do, it doesn’t stray too far.
Regarding the action scenes, there are some great ones in this first episode. At a few points, I even let out a “Woah!” much to my infant’s confusion (I’m starting her early on Kaiju).
At this point in the show, it’s not as post-apocalyptic as I would have hoped, but this just leaves me with something to look forward to.
The episode was darker in tone than I expected, but don’t expect any Attack on Titan-level violence. Much like the films, the show is acceptable for kids to watch in terms of gore.
I am a huge Pacific Rim/monster movie/Kaiju fan. As such, I’m a little biased, but from what I’ve seen from the first episode, Pacific Rim: The Black is worth continuing, and I’m sure I’ll binge it this weekend.