Onyx Equinox is not a typical Crunchyroll anime. The platform launched the series’ first episode today and presented a world with blood while drawing inspiration from various Mesoamerican mythology and cultures. In this fantasy world, a young boy named Izel is chosen as humanity’s champion to save the human race.
Right off the bat, the show does not shy away from gruesome and blood-soaked moments. It draws the viewer into the action and keeps them on edge. However, the animation has some issues. There are moments where a character’s movements are awkward and weird. Some of the transition scenes also feel rushed, which makes it difficult to appreciate the beautiful Mesoamerican architecture. That being said, these issues don’t detract from the story too much.
With pigments and colorants a key aspect in ancient Mesoamerican civilization, Onyx Equinox pays tribute to the culture in many ways. The show does not shy away from using bright colors in the background art, landscape, and architecture.
In Mesoamerican history, blood sacrifices were a common way to appease the gods. Even with minimal understanding of this ritual and its practice, one can appreciate how blood is a substantial part of the world. The show also does a fantastic job of bringing life to the gods such as Mictlantecuhtli, Quetzalcoatl, and Tezcatlipoca while driving and establishing the narrative.
With the recent launch of Blood of Zeus on Netflix, Onyx Equinox is showing promise for similar fans while tackling a culture that’s rarely presented in media.
Crunchyroll is now streaming Onyx Equinox every Saturday at 1:00 PM PT.