Pacific Rim: The Black (パシフィック・リム: 暗黒の大陸, Pashifikku Rimu Ankoku no Tairiku[note 1]) is an animated series produced and distributed by Legendary Television Studios and Polygon Pictures in association with Netflix. Pacific Rim: The Black follows siblings Hayley and Taylor, who learn to pilot an abandoned Jaeger in a post-apocalyptic Australia overwhelmed by the Kaiju. Originally set for a 2020 release, before it was pushed back to 2021. The series was greenlit for two seasons. The first season debuted March 4, 2021.
- "There was a time when Kaiju rose from the Pacific Rim only to encounter gigantic robots, Jaegers, built to fight them back. That time has passed. Now, Australia has been overrun by Kaiju, forcing the evacuation of an entire continent. Left behind, teenage siblings Taylor and Hayley embark on a desperate search for their missing parents, teaching themselves to pilot a battered, long-abandoned Jaeger to help in their quest and give them even the slightest hope of surviving."
- —Official Description
Kaiju have taken over the continent of Australia. The Pan Pacific Defense Corps have initiated Operation Blackout: The evacuation of civilians and personnel from Kaiju-compromised areas. All Jaegers and Shatterdomes have been destroyed or buried to avoid compromise. After rescuing civilians from a Kaiju attack, Rangers Brina and Ford Travis leave to find help in nearby evacuation cities. Five years later, their children, Hayley and Taylor, discover the buried PPDC base Shadow Basin, which houses the Mark-3 Jaeger, Atlas Destroyer. Atlas Destroyer is a decommissioned training Jaeger with no weapons, left behind during the PPDC's evacuation.
Activating Atlas Destroyer draws the attention of a Category IV Kaiju, Copperhead, who destroys their safe haven, and kills the survivors they lived with. With no options left, they use Atlas Destroyer to begin the search for their parents. The search is met with multiple setbacks. While searching for for a power cell, Taylor and Hayley meet a boy trapped in the basement of the PPDC Recruitment Center. Following a close call with a Kaiju-Jaeger Hybrid and several canine Kaiju, they meet Shane and Mei in Bogan. The siblings battle the Kaiju Copperhead throughout their journey. A showdown with the Kaiju-Jaeger Hybrid, Apex, reveals remnants of the Hybrids. "The Sisters" that were referenced by Shane, are revealed alongside the revelation of the Kaiju Messiah.
- To be Added
- Main article: List of Pacific Rim: The Black Episodes
Jaeger and Kaiju
|Voice (JPN)||Voice (ENG)||Character|
|Yui Shimodaya||Gideon Adlon||Hayley Travis|
|Yūsuke Kobayashi||Calum Worthy||Taylor Travis|
|TBA||Camryn Jones||Young Hayley Travis|
|Yuki Urushiyama||Cole Keriazakos||Young Taylor Travis|
|Iku Minase||Erica Lindbeck||Loa|
|TBA||Ben Diskin||Kaiju Boy|
|Jin Yamanoi||Andy McPhee||Shane|
|Ayaka Shimoyamada||Victoria Grace||Mei|
|TBA||Nolan North||Marshal Rask|
|Yuko Kaida||Allie MacDonald||Brina Travis|
|Yuya Uchida||Jason Spisak||Ford Travis|
|Daisuke Hirakawa||Leonardo Nam||Rickter|
|Rui Kato||Martin Klebba||Spyder|
|Tomoya Yano||Vincent Piazza||Joel Wyrick|
|Masato Niwa||Ryan Robinson||Demarcus|
Pacific Rim: The Black is an episodic series, building on the story of the original film and Pacific Rim Uprising. The series will follow a brother and his younger sister piloting an abandoned Jaeger across hostile territory in search of their parents.[note 2]
Following the departure of Guillermo del Toro from the production of the Pacific Rim sequel, affiliated projects planned for release, such as the animated series, and ongoing comic book series, were quietly cancelled or reworked into a miniseries. Legendary Entertainment reworked the sequel into Pacific Rim Uprising, directed and co-written by Steven S. DeKnight.
November 7, 2018, Legendary announced an animated series project was moving forward with Netfix. The series was among a hundred announced or returning original series produced by Netflix as their first "content showing" for Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and South Korea.
July 2019, during the Los Angeles Anime Expo, Legendary Entertainment announced the series would debut in 2020 with an initial plan for two seasons. The Tokyo-based animation company, Polygon Pictures, would co-produce the series. Elie Dekel, vice president of brand development and consumer products for Legendary Entertainment, cited that the production would be one of the most expensive for Netflix's original anime series.[note 3]
Production for the series officially begin in 2019.[note 4] Polygon Studios art director Yuki Moriyama sought to maintain the unrefined action of the films for the series, while acknowledging many elements about the universe's presentation would were necessary to change to better suit the animation format.
The tone of the series would be darker than the films. Supervising director Hiroyuki Hayashi was interested in focusing on a future wherein humanity has been exhausted by the war against the Kaiju. “We came up with the idea that the social gap between different groups would widen under these circumstances. Especially in the frontline areas left behind, people would only see advanced technology when it is necessary."
The Kaiju designs were created by concept artist Yuuki Morita, who worked with the animators to make the concept art's realistic designs meld with vibrant color tones that work in anime. The goal was to render the Kaiju without losing the detail present in Morita's work. Collaboration between Polygon Studios and Legendary Entertainment, according to Hayashi, gave the Kaiju designs an "international flavor" as a result of diverse artists bringing their own ideas to the concept of the Kaiju.
Jaegers Atlas Destroyer, and Hunter Vertigo were designed by Jūki Izumo, who consulted Pacific Rim concept artists Keith Thompson, Hugo Martin, Oscar Cicconi, Guy Davis, and Francisco Ruiz Velasco. Sculptor Yuji Katagiri designed the maquettes for the Jaegers, which were then rendered by Industrial Light and Magic. According to Izumo, they tried to follow the design philosophy of the first film, as well as Japanese plastic model designs. They also considered the setting and timeline of the universe, working with the animation directors and showrunners who had final say on the Jaeger designs.
As of March 2021, developing critical consensus of Pacific Rim: The Black is mixed to positive on review aggregate sites. The series earned a 73% (based on eleven critical reviews) fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and Metacritic currently counts three positive critical reviews.
- Like Netflix's other animated projects (The Dragon Prince, ), Pacific Rim: The Black was animated with Toon Boom Animation software.
- According to  , the first season of Pacific Rim: The Black is seven episodes long.
- Pacific Rim: The Black | Netflix Official Site
- Pacific Rim: The Black - Internet Movie Database
- Sci-fi Japan Publicity Page