Following the brief teaser released for Cartoon Network’s Samurai Jack earlier this week, the series has come out with a new full length trailer for Season 5.
“50 years have passed, but I do not age. Time has lost its effect on me, yet, the suffering continues.”
It appears that the decade since the series air date has had an even bigger effect on Jack than previously expected, including a sort of existential crisis and an absolutely rad beard for the time displaced samurai. Creator Genndy Tartakovsky hinted that Jack would be a bit lost come Season 5, but the trailer reveals that it is more a result of his environment and mortal enemy Aku’s tinkering with time than any sense of internal conflict. Indeed, the noble warrior seems almost beaten down.
This defeated form of one of Cartoon Network’s most popular characters is not something fans are used to. Even against insurmountable odds Samurai Jack always portrayed its protagonist as capable of overcoming anything. Other scenes from the trailer that fans might find shocking, for better or worse, include Jack’s use of a high powered automatic firearm, a whole gaggle of explosives, and a group of well-trained assassins who seem to be dedicated only to his extermination. The factor of violence, with Samurai Jack now airing on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim block, has also been upped considerably. It might invoke images of Rambo, but there are certainly themes that remain apparent from earlier incarnations.
For one, dialogue is still fairly limited. Indeed, we only really see Jack speaking to himself in some sort of astral form that may be a mere caricature of the hero fans grew to love. Indeed, the voiceover from this new Jack seems to be more an homage to Aku’s monologue from the original series’ intro than anything else. Additionally, Jack’s blurred sense of time indicates that he has gotten no further in his quest to return to his original era and defeat Aku at his source. Perhaps, finally, the series will give our hero some closure but nothing is for certain.
If what Samurai Jack is selling in the trailer is true, then Aku may have too large a foothold in the timeline for Jack to prevail. What fans can count on, as always, is a journey more driven by action than any set storyline. Though some series, such as South Park, have started to rely on serialization more than standalone episodes that doesn’t mean Jack won’t find itself maintaining the same formula fans have come to love. If anything, the style of the series has only matured along with its core viewership.
Season 5 of Samurai Jack premieres March 11 at 11 p.m. Stay tuned with mxdwn for further information regarding the upcoming season.