‘WIND BREAKER’ Episode 1 Review: Your New Favorite Delinquent Anime


The first episode of WIND BREAKER is out now, and whether you’re trying to heal the Tokyo Revengers-sized hole in your heart or just looking for your next delinquent anime binge, I can’t recommend this series enough.

Based on Satoru Nii’s ongoing manga series, which has been serialized on Kodansha’s Magazine Pocket manga website since 2021, WIND BREAKER follows the story of Haruka Sakura. New to town, when the fierce Haruka arrives, his goal is to fight his way to the top of the infamous Furin High School. However, he quickly learns that despite the fact that they may be a group of rowdy delinquents, Bofurin dedicates their strength to a greater cause — protecting their town.

Right off the bat, WIND BREAKER comes in strong with a fantastic intro that sets the tone for the series with a very fitting OP by Natori. This is one of those no-skip intros that you’ll find yourself watching each and every week. (And similarly, Young Kee’s ED is just as aptly placed in the credits.)

This first episode mainly focuses on Haruka, giving audiences a look into the struggles that he’s faced in life due to his unusual appearance (a delinquent with two-tone hair and heterochromia) — and the way those things have molded his personality today. At first glance, Haruka’s headstrong attitude and tsundere tendencies don’t quite fit into the classic box of a shonen lead, and that’s exactly what makes him so interesting. Haruka’s got layers beneath his hardened exterior, ones that peel back just a little to reveal the lonely boy beneath when he reluctantly finds himself compelled to help a girl who’s in trouble, despite the fact that he’s so used to only looking out for himself. I could go on and on about this guy, honestly, but that’s all to say that the show has already done an exceptional job bringing his personality to life and building intrigue around what’s still to come for him.

Though Haruka is at the forefront of the story’s events, WIND BREAKER features an ensemble cast of characters (if you’re a fan of shows with an entire roster of characters to love, look no further). Thus far, we’ve only briefly met a few in the latter half of this episode, but Toma Hiragi’s intimidating, impassioned intro alone has me on the edge of my seat with excitement for the arrival of the rest of the Furin gang (Hajime, I’m looking at you) and the other local crews (JO!!!!). I just know we’re in for a treat, and I can’t wait to see everyone else animated.

WIND BREAKER is directed by Toshifumi Akai and animated by CloverWorks, with character design by Taishi Kawakami. And hats off to this crew, because the anime does an incredible job at capturing the look, feel, and overall vibe of the manga, doing it justice far beyond my initial expectations. The fight scenes were a particular standout here — the animation and choreography is impressively immersive and dynamic (without compromising aesthetics, either).

We may only be one episode in, but I already know that I’m going to love Ryo Takahashi’s soundtrack for this show just as much as I loved what he did for SK8 the Infinity. Because there are great shows … and then there are great shows with equally great music.

Overall, there’s no question in my mind that WIND BREAKER‘s anime adaptation will be going above and beyond to do the manga justice, and I can only hope that this series gets the attention that it deserves from viewers in the coming months as the first season unfolds.

Watch the first episode of WIND BREAKER on Crunchyroll now.

Lindsey joined the Nerds and Beyond team in 2018. If she's not writing or out and about with her camera, she's probably watching anime, nerding out over Star Wars, reading manga, and definitely forgetting to water her plants. And waiting for the Genshin loading screen to pop up. Contact: lindsey@nerdsandbeyond.com

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