Do You Need to Watch Trigun Before Trigun Stampede? Explained!
Trigun is a Japanese manga by Yasuhiro Nightow from 1995. Initially collected in three tankōbon volumes by Tokuma Shoten, published between 1996 and 1999. In 1997, Shonen Captain, the magazine in which Trigun was serialized, was closed, making the manga incomplete. In 1998 Trigun Maximum was published, a continuation of the first series, starting in January 1998 and ending on March 30, 2007. In 1998 it was made into an anime television series created by the Madhouse studio, consisting of 26 episodes and broadcast at home by the Tokyo TV network. An anime film, Trigun: Badlands Rumble was produced. In 2022, a new anime adaptation titled Trigun Stampede was announced and premiered in January 2023. With a new anime coming out, people always wonder whether they have to watch the old ones, and in this article, we are going to give you that answer.
You do not have to watch the original Trigun anime before Trigun Stampede. Trigun Stampede is a modernized reboot adaptation of the original manga and will, thus, start from scratch and explain everything you need to know, so if you don’t want to, you don’t have to watch the original Trigun anime, which is – in the first place – a very loose adaptation of the original manga. Still, we recommend you do, because it’s great.
The rest of this article is simply going to elaborate on the above-given answer. You’re going to find out several production details related to Trigun and Trigun stampede, as well as some plot-related details for both shows. There will be some spoilers in this article, so if you want to experience the whole thing yourself, be careful how you approach certain parts of this article.
Do you need to watch Trigun before Trigun Stampede?
Trigun was Yasuhiro Nightow’s first major work. From April 1995 the chapters were published in regular intervals with a total of 20 chapters, which were also summarized in three tankōbon editions. After Shōnen Captain was established in January 1997, Nightow was promoted by Shōnen Gahōsha to Young King Ours magazine. He was supposed to start a new story but wanted to finish Trigun first. Therefore, the series reappeared in 1997 under the title Trigun Maximum. The addition to the name had become necessary due to the change of magazine. The story became more serious also because it switched from a shōnen to a seinen magazine. By the end of the series, 102 more chapters had appeared in the Young King Ours magazine with 14 tankōbon volumes.
As you can see, the manga was completed with Trigun Maximum, but the original anime series never did the manga justice as far as the plot is concerned. The original Trigun anime series was produced by Studio Madhouse in 1998 and directed by Satoshi Nishimura. Responsible producers were Masao Morosawa and Shigeru Kitayama. Yōsuke Kuroda wrote the concept and script, Takahiro Yoshimatsu designed the characters, and Hidetoshi Kaneko was the artistic director. Noriyuki Jinguji was responsible for the mechanical design.
The plot initially sticks to the manga template and covers the story of Trigun and Trigun Maximum, but only in general, as there are numerous filler episodes. Yasuhiro Nightow was included in the production for the inclusion of elements from the parts of Maximum that were only released later. However, the story is shortened in some places. Violent scenes were not included or only partially included.
The anime, unlike the manga, begins with a glimpse into Vash’s daily life. In addition, the anime contains some small peculiarities. A short excerpt of the current episode was built into the opening credits, which otherwise remain the same. Furthermore, a black cat appears for a short time in each episode, but without having any relation to the plot or specific protagonists. The anime ended after 26 episodes, and a follow-up film was released in 2010. This was all we had related to Trigun before 2023.
Namely, in 2023, the premiere of Trigun Stampede took place. Trigun Stampede was labeled and marketed as a reboot of the Trigun series. Nightow once again participated in the production, but everything else – including the animation studio – changed. Trigun Stampede featured fresh new visuals that also changed what some well-known characters looked like. Some characters ended up being removed, and some were added, but the story – despite all of the changes – was said to be a (more) faithful (although seemingly liberal) adaptation of the original manga.
Unlike the original Trigun anime, which only loosely adapted the manga and stuck only to its general concepts, Trigun Stampede will seemingly be faithful to the original story in many aspects. So, does that mean that you can skip the original Trigun anime? Well, all of that depends on how you actually want to approach the story. If you don’t want to see the origins and the original take on Trigun, you can skip the original anime. Trigun Stampede works as a proper reboot so as far as it is concerned, the original series never existed. It gives you an introduction to the plot and it does not keep you in the dark when any plot element is concerned. It does well to explain everything, actually, which is why it is truly not necessary for you to watch the original 1998 anime. You won’t have issues with the current iteration.
But, the thing is… the original Trigun anime is a cult classic. It is considered to be one of the best 1990s anime in its category and while it is not a faithful adaptation of the manga, it is nevertheless an amazing story with great animation. Trigun is certainly something that should be seen. It is very similar to Cowboy Bebop, and we all know that Cowboy Bebop is undoubtedly one of the best series ever produced (not just when anime is concerned), which says a lot about Trigun as well. We know that you do not have to watch it, but it would be a true shame if you actually did skip it because it is truly great.
What is Trigun about?
The desert planet of Gunsmoke was settled by humans, mostly living in small, scattered settlements, similar to America’s Wild West. The settlements have formed around the remains of old technologies and factories that are still used but no longer understood. Vash the Stampede, also known as Humanoid Typhoon, has a $$60 billion bounty on its head. He is blamed for the destruction of the city of July. Wherever he appears, he causes unrest and chaos, but this is also due to the bounty on his head.
Because his pursuers and their defense usually do the damage. When the government classifies it as a natural disaster, two insurance agents, Millie Thompson and Meryl Stryfe, are sent to prevent further claims. When they finally find him, however, Vash turns out to be a clumsy but tough guy. While he’s an insanely good shooter, he firmly claims he’s never killed a human and intends to continue to do so. Although he vehemently protests against it, Vash is now joined by the two women, who want to prevent further damage.
Her journey is repeatedly interrupted by bounty hunters sent to hunt Vash, or by criminal gangs who, despite Vash’s best efforts, wreak havoc again. They then meet Nicolas D. Wolfwood, an itinerant priest who is also a good marksman and possesses a large arsenal of weapons in the form of a giant cross. Even if they don’t always travel together, they always meet and Wolfwood becomes Vash’s comrade-in-arms on several occasions. He now becomes the target of the Gung-Ho Guns, a group of assassins led by Legato Bluesummers.
During these fights, Vash’s weapon arm, which was used to destroy July, is used against his will. Another city was destroyed. The Gung-Ho Guns were unleashed by Knives on Vash, an old rival of Vash. Their past together is related to the colonization of the planet, which is now being revealed. Twins Vash and Knives grew up on a spaceship that was part of a fleet of ships tasked with bringing settlers from Earth to a new habitat. The two grew up amazingly quickly, which scared some of those around them.
However, a young woman named Rem raised the two and raised them as humanistic, peace-loving individuals. However, Knives refused and eventually kills the crew and crashes the fleet on the desert planet. He wants to wipe out all people who are lower beings to him. Rem, who is loved by Vash, is able to prevent all the people in the fleet from dying before she dies so that the planet can still be settled.
After the crash, Vash seeks revenge but doesn’t want to betray Rem’s pacifist upbringing. The attacks of the gung-ho guns always draw in the people around Vash, especially Meryl and Millie, and Wolfwood. Vash would rather travel on alone, but the two women don’t want to leave him alone either. At the showdown, Wolfwood turns out to be part of the Gung-Ho Guns, but he doesn’t want to betray Vash and dies in the process.
After defeating the others, Legato confronts Vash. He takes Meryl and Millie hostage, forcing Vash to shoot him. This outcome of events, planned by Knives, is intended to cause Vash the greatest possible torment since he broke his promise to Rem and killed a human being. Finally, the siblings meet and a fight ensues, in which the respective weapons arms are also used. Vash is able to use his weapon’s effect to negate Knives’ attack and defeat him, but does not kill him.