Black Clover succeeded Naruto, Bleach and One Piece
Since February 2015, black clover has since gone on to become one of the biggest anime/manga franchises, with millions of fans worldwide. A lot of that likely stems from how it reminds viewers of older shows they loved too, while still managing to stand out as an original concept. Among the oldest series, the main ones are the “Big Three”, namely, naruto, Bleach and A piece.
Although some similarities to these shows have led viewers to see them as purely derivative of what came before them, this interpretation seemingly ignores all the ways in which black clover separated from its iconic predecessors. Inspiration from older shows can be pretty obvious, but thankfully it never crosses the line by constantly taking the story and characters in different directions. It was this mix of familiar and new ideas and twists on old ones that hooked viewers and made black clover a worthy successor to the Big Three as a whole.
Starting from the most obvious inspiration, it is not difficult to see the resemblance between black clover and naruto. Both feature a rowdy young protagonist with a black-haired rival brimming with talent. There’s even a monster that dwells within the main character that starts out evil but befriends him in the end.
First and foremost, the rivalry between Asta and Yuno is infinitely healthier than the rather toxic one found between Naruto and Sasuke. Unlike this last series, there is no hatred or animosity between Asta and Yuno, only love and respect. The two characters actively build each other up and act as an inspiration as opposed to the insecurity-laden rivalry between Naruto and Sasuke.
Another thing to highlight is the female cast of black clover. Not only are many of the characters featured in the show female, but they are generally portrayed as strong and powerful characters. This is especially true with Noelle Silva, who acts as the series’ main female protagonist, much like Sakura Haruno did in naruto. However, unlike Sakura, Noelle develops into a truly powerful and interesting character. Even at first, when she’s portrayed as relatively weak, it’s only because she doesn’t yet know how to control her massive, overwhelming magic. In reality, black clover arguably subverts the common trope by having the protagonist have absolutely no magical powers while her female counterpart has more than she can control.
Get away from naruto, Bleach would likely be the next closest member of the Big Three to compare black clover for. While throwing crazy twists with his villains is straight out of Bleach, Asta’s relationship with his devil Liebe is also reminiscent of Ichigo’s relationship with his Zanpakuto. Not only do they each empower their respective protagonists with swords that can emit dark power, but even their early dynamics are similar.
Early versions of Zangetsu and Liebe are somewhat antagonistic, threatening Ichigo and Asta respectively with an attempt to take over their bodies. Although the threats are real either way, they still choose to support and empower the protagonists and ultimately befriend them after Ichigo and Asta suffer a crushing defeat and gain insight into their origins and of their powers. The process is pretty much the same for both, but because that’s where most of the similarities lie, black clover successfully avoids being spin-off and instead offers a different take on its predecessor.
If there’s one thing that black clover integrity of A piece, it’s the amazing supporting cast. From the beginning, the Straw Hat Pirates have been considered by many to be the ultimate anime/manga team. It’s not necessarily down to strength, but rather the quality of each character and their dynamic with each other, which makes them feel like a real family. Each character has a story and develops as the story itself progresses, which makes them important to the overall story, which is exactly what black clover managed to do with the Black Bulls.
The Black Bulls also feel like family. This is a magical guild made up of outcasts who would lay down their lives for each other. Many story arcs are dedicated or feature moments that push not only Asta but also the rest of the Black Bulls forward. It’s not like in Bleach, where only the main character gets stronger. In black cloverall Black Bulls matter, just like in A piece. While there’s a pretty big similarity between the two, that’s largely where the similarities end – which is definitely for the best, because by just incorporating family dynamics, black cloverThe characters and the plot remain totally original.
It is true that black clover shares a lot with the Big Three, but it’s important to see how different he is from them as well. Although there are many ways to black clover can be considered derived, it is only at a superficial glance. Audiences watching closely are treated to a wonderful series with a great plot, awesome fights, and lovable characters. black clover takes the best of what came before it and manages to incorporate it into a largely original package that just keeps getting better as the story progresses.
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