Screenwriter Gen Urobuchi has a strange way of explaining his script for Netflix’s new original anime feature bladder: “I thought of playing around with a typical mermaid story: instead of a girl ending up as bubbles after falling in love, why not a bubble falling in love and turning into a girl?”
That’s a bizarre premise for an anime feature, but the field has certainly produced stranger stories. (Just look up Pui Pui Molcar, a series about road adventures in a land of guinea pigs with wheels instead of feet.) More important than the premise, however, is the talent behind it bladder: Directed by Tetsurô Araki, a long-time confidante of attack on Titan Series, films and OVAs with character designs by Death report‘s Takeshi Obata and music by Promaris Hiroyuki Sawano. Urobuchi himself is the author and screenwriter of the award-winning Puella Magi Madoka Magica.
The first trailer for bladder reminds a bit of Weather with you in his vision of a sunny, flooded Tokyo overgrown with plants and reclaimed by nature, making it the perfect setting for an idealized love story. But its concept, where gravity-defying bubbles rain down on the city, young people climb buildings and navigate the world in three dimensions by hopping between floating bubbles, makes it look more like a wild platform game. Here’s Netflix’s round-up explaining the trailer’s final segment:
The story takes place in Tokyo after bubbles rained down on the world that broke the laws of gravity. Cut off from the outside world, Tokyo has become a playground for a group of young people who have lost their families, and serves as a battleground for parkour team fights as they leap from building to building. A young ace known for his dangerous style of play, Hibiki one day makes a reckless move and falls into the sea that bends gravity. His life is saved by Uta, a girl with mysterious powers who suddenly shows up. The couple then hear a unique tone that only they can hear. Why did Uta appear before Hibiki? Their encounter leads to a revelation that will change the world.
Bubble will debut on Netflix on April 28, 2022.