We all know that Hunter x Hunter is easily one of the most popular anime series we have today. But another thing that fans often forget is the fact that the series had an original run back in 1999, and that series never really took off after that due to the lack of progress on the part of the manga. That is why we have the current 2011 series, which is set to see a continuation in the future, depending on the progress of the animation. But what are the differences between the 1999 and the 2011 series, and which one is better?
The major difference between the two series is that the 1999 version ends during the Yorknew City arc and has a slower pacing compared to the 2011 version. On top of that, the 2011 series seems to be more faithful to the manga and has a better pacing, and that’s what makes it the better series.
Despite the fact that the 1999 version seems to be quite the favorite among anime fans, especially those who grew up during the 90s, the 2011 version is still better. With that said, the fact that the 1999 version seems to be dated has not hurt its quality because it still is a pretty good series to watch. In that regard, let’s look at the major differences between the 1999 and 2011 versions of Hunter x Hunter.
What Are The Differences Between Hunter x Hunter 1999 And 2011?
Despite the fact that it has been over a decade since it was initially released, Hunter x Hunter has become one of the most popular anime series in recent years due to the fact that it seems to have a storyline that is capable of catching the attention of different audience members. In that regard, a lot of anime fans love Hunter x Hunter because of its overall atmosphere and relatable storyline. But we are talking about the 2011 version here.
A lot of people forget about the fact that an original version of Hunter x Hunter was released back in 1999. This was a series that 90s fans were invested in due to the fact that it was one of the newer and more captivating shonen anime at that time. But because there were delays in the manga, the series didn’t last too long and was forced to stop. It was only in 2011 that the entire series was rebooted so that the storyline could get a continuation.
Now that we know that there are two versions of the Hunter x Hunter anime, what are the major differences between the 1999 and the 2011 versions of this anime?
Of course, due to the fact that it was released in 1999, the original Hunter x Hunter anime has a more dated animation. The graphics are mediocre even when you look at the fact that it was released during the end of the 90s. While it might be true that long shonen anime don’t have the best animation and graphics due to the workload of the staff, the 1999 Hunter x Hunter still doesn’t impress as far as 90s anime are concerned. But you watch Hunter x Hunter not for the animation but for the storyline.
In contrast, the 2011 version of Hunter x Hunter has the better animation and graphics of the two series because of the fact that it was able to take advantage of better animation technology. Still, the graphics of the 2011 version doesn’t seem to be as impressive as the other shonen anime of the early 2010s. It might be due to the possibility that the director was going for a more classic appeal that was closer to the 1999 anime’s retro and nostalgic feels.
The 1999 Hunter x Hunter seems to have a slower pacing due to the fact that the director was probably concerned about the fact that the manga was quite slow in terms of the chapters that were released. As such, the series was quite slow as the entire Hunter Exam took 31 episodes to conclude. It takes its sweet time in terms of how long the series progresses, and that might not sound good to those who never saw the original Hunter x Hunter.
Meanwhile, the 2011 version of Hunter x Hunter seems to be faster. It combined the Hunter Exam and the Zoldyck Family arc into one single arc that only took 26 episodes. The series was also able to focus on all of the other arcs that needed emphasis in terms of their storylines and the character development involved. Of course, the entire Chimera Ant arc is 61 episodes long due to how important it is to the story of the entire anime, but that doesn’t take away the fact that it is properly paced and seems to develop faster than the 1999 version.
The 1999 version tends to add a lot more things that aren’t in the manga because one of the goals of the direction was for it to stretch the arcs to make sure that they would have enough material from the manga. But because the manga wasn’t quite developed at that time, the series was cut short in the middle of the Yorknew City/Phantom Troupe arc. However, it was able to deliver the Yorknew City arc better due to the darker and more mafia-styled atmosphere that the series was able to capture so beautifully.
Meanwhile, the 2011 version finished the entire Phantom Troupe arc and went on ahead with the Greed Island, Chimera Ant, and Election arcs. The series was not cut right in the middle of an ongoing arc and even had a good ending when Gon and Killua parted ways after the Election arc. It also has a storyline that was able to faithfully reproduce the events of the manga almost perfectly well compared to the 1999 version, which has a slower pacing and a few added content that you cannot find in the manga.
Which Between 1999 And 2011 Is The Better Hunter x Hunter Series?
Aside from their animation and pacing, there aren’t a lot of differences between the 1999 and 2011 versions of Hunter x Hunter. In fact, the storyline isn’t even too different but is just stretched in the 1999 version due to the slow progress of the manga.
In that regard, it really doesn’t matter which one is better because they are both good. However, because it is the newer and better-paced series, you may want to watch the 2011 version instead of the 1999 release so that you will get a better feel of what the newer series is all about. Despite the fact that the Chimera Ant arc is pretty long, the entire series is paced well enough and will allow you to invest yourself in the storyline and the characters involved.
As such, it should be better if you start with the 2011 series before watching the original release. That way, you would be able to see the subtle differences between the two versions, especially when it comes to the Phantom Troupe arc, which seems to be darker in the 1999 version. The only problem is that the 1999 version is cut right in the middle of the Phantom Troupe arc, right after Zeno and Silva defeat Chrollo.