No Guns Life is a sci-fi, action/adventure manga that has recently gotten its own anime. First released in August of 2014, No Guns Life is currently an ongoing manga by Tasuku Karasuma that has about 28 chapters under its belt. Although not a series with a large volume count, an anime television series adaptation animated by Madhouse Inc. was first aired on October 10th, 2019. The anime series is directed by Naoyuki Itō, with Masanori Shino designing the characters, Yukie Sugawara handling series composition, and Kenji Kawai composing music.
The first episode, “Renegade Extended”, introduces the world of No Guns Life. During a recent war, the mega-corporation Berühren created the Extended, people who have been bodily modified and transformed into weapons of destruction. However, with the end of the war, the Extended have been discharged from duty. With no war to fight, many of the Extended are having a hard time incorporating into society.
Juuzo Inui is one of these Extended whose head has been replaced with a giant gun. However, the memory of his previous life has been erased. With no memory of who he was or who modified him, he now scratches out a meager living as a Resolver—someone who investigates and deals with conflicts that crop up between the Extended and the unaltered populace.
In “Renegade Extended,” a fellow Extended breaks into Inui’s office while on the run from the Security Bureau. The Bureau is hounding him because he kidnapped—or rescued, as he sees it—an abused child. Now, with the child in tow, he asks for Inui’s help. The child needs to go somewhere safe, away from the Bureau and the other shadowy figures that are also after the Extended. Conflicted, Inui ultimately agrees to help his fellow Extended. But keeping the child safe won’t be easy. For some unknown reason, Berühren is also after the child and has sent a special agent to retrieve him.
This is a very good start to the series. “Renegade Extended” sets up the world of No Guns Life well, explaining what the Extended are and the history behind them without being excessively descriptive. The first episode explains the world rather organically, answering questions through the self-rumination of the main character and the events that occur. The characters introduced are memorable, and, although some of the women are overtly sexualized, as is usual with Japanese anime, they aren’t the helpless sort.
“Renegade Extended” follows the first chapter of the manga very closely. As someone who has read the manga and loved it, this was a pleasant realization. However, at the same time, I could see how this fact may result in others who have read the manga finding the content boring. The art style is also very similar to the manga, and doesn’t really change any of the characters’ appearances.
I’m also happy to say that the animators even kept true to the flustered chibi faces that Inui makes in the manga. Whenever Inui gets embarrassed or overwhelmed, Karasuma would always draw his face in chibi style. This allows a character that is usually strong and intimidating to be funny and cute when the situation is right for it. Inui is also a character that may be hard to emote due to his rather static face, so switching to chibi faces here and there allows his personality and emotions to shine through easier.
This anime falls into the Seinen genre. If you don’t know much about this genre, it’s one that specifically targets male viewers between the ages of 18 and 40. As such, the animes and mangas that fall into this genre tend to be more mature, with content that is usually on the more explicit side when it comes to gore, sex, and/or violence. Another very popular anime/manga that falls into this category is Berserk. Given this, this anime may not be for everyone. Although not as dark or explicit, if you enjoyed Berserk, you’ll probably enjoy this series.
Overall, this is a really good start to this series and I’m excited to see more.
The first episode is available now on Hulu.
No Guns Life Episode 1 - Renegade Extended
“Renegade Extended” follows the first chapter of the manga very closely. As someone who has read the manga and loved it, this was a pleasant realization. However, at the same time, I could see how this fact may result in others who have read the manga finding the content boring… Overall, this is a really good start to this series and I’m excited to see more.