Jet’s past comes back to haunt him (RECAP)
[WARNING: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for Netflix‘s Cowboy Bebop Season 1 Episode 5, “Darkside Tango.”]
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Netflix Cowboy Bebop adaptation is at its best when it sticks to the original, which is why parts of “Darkside Tango” work quite well. Jet’s (Mustafa Shakir) story is almost a one-on-one adaptation of his “Black Dog Serenade” story, which saw him hunt down a criminal named Udai Taxim. In the past, his pursuit of Udai left him bleeding in an alleyway, and after that he left the police force.
This search, both in the live-action version and in the anime, leads Jet to reunite with his former partner, Fad, in the hopes of defeating the criminal (Udai escaped from a prison barge). There is, however, another layer added for the live action: Jet suspects that the officer his ex-wife is now with, Chalmers, was responsible for doubling him down the night he and Udai met for the last time. Someone blinded him so Udai could get away, and that left Jet accused of being a “dirty cop.” Given how involved Chalmers was in the investigation against him, Jet believes it was him.
And throughout the episode, it looks like it could be; the boyfriend follows them as they search, seeming not to want them to get too close to Udai. Things escalate and Jet and his former partner track Udai to a shipyard, where Jet manages to confront the villain. He asks the man who tricked him – and before Udai can respond, Jet’s partner shoots him. From there, it’s not hard to make the connection: it was actually Jet’s partner who brought him down. He went to the Syndicate for money, and he served as their “inside man” in the force. But Jet’s investigation of the corrupt cops got a little too close to him, and so he set up Jet to take the fall.
After explaining all of this, he tries to shoot Jet. Jet deflects the ball with his metal arm, then he fires back, hitting Fad in the chest. He dies, then Chalmers appears – he says he too suspected Fad of being dirty and was trying to build a case against him. Now this work is useless. And on top of that, Jet just killed the one person who could clear his name.
While all of this is happening, various B storylines are unfolding as well, none of which happened in the original. One works better than the other. On the ship, we spend some time with Spike (John Cho) and Faye (Daniella Pineda), who bicker and bond over what bounty to look for with Jet gone. They compare the scars and the stories, and although they never agree on a bounty to seek, they reluctantly develop a mutual respect.
This happens over time in the anime, as Spike and Faye were always at each other’s throats … but it was clear that they respected each other, and she came to his aid when he had problems. trouble. But nonetheless, in an adaptation that seems to run the entire series in its first season plus an additional subplot about Julia, there’s not a lot of time to devote to the nuances of the Spike-Faye relationship, so Getting their hostility out of the way early might be the right choice. If nothing else, it’s fun to watch even if there is little action; Cho and Pineda play well with each other.
On the other side of that coin, Julia-Vicious’s story remains slow and somewhat confusing. The meeting that Julia had arranged by Ana between Vicious and Mao materializes, but Mao will not accept anything unless Julia does not sing for her. Vicious is outraged, but Julia complies. So their next step is to meet Santiago / “L’Eunuque”, a man who has a reputation for chopping up pieces of people who cross him and eating them. “You will never know true power until you taste the testicles of the man who wronged you,” he said in a flashback. Uh, okay? And at the end of the episode, Julia finds out that “Fearless” is alive. So that will complicate things for the future.
Cowboy Bebop, All Episodes Streaming, Netflix