PA Works has a trailer for a new original anime in Appare-Ranman. The series takes place at the tail end of the 19th century, and sees Apare Sorano and Kosame Isshiki making their way from Japan to America. Apare is a genius engineer but bad with people, while Kosame is a careful samurai. With no money, they both wind up competing to win the million dollar prize for the Trans-America Wild Race using a steam-powered car. They start out in Los Angeles and have to deal with all the other competitors on their way through the West to finally make it to New York.
Masakazu Hashimoto (Shin-Chan, Soul Eater NOT!) will be doing double duty by handling both directing and series composition, while the character design is in the hands of Ahndongshik, creator of the Love Story Desperado manga.
Somehow this manages to feel both original and like a mishmash of a lot of different series. The character designs (for everyone except Kosame at least) are unique enough, so now it becomes a matter of if they’ll actually stand out in this world. It also matters just how far they’re willing to go to establish the uniqueness of this world. Despite being set in the Wild West and having a car that looks like it’s made of wood for the main characters, the promotional art features muscle cars and old 1920’s designs for some of the other racers. If they go full on Weird West with it, it’ll become an easy favorite, whatever season it launches in.
Appare-Ranman currently has no release date.