Sunday Streams — COWBOY BEBOP

If you’ve finished The Mandalorian on Disney+ and still have a hankering for a Western/Sci-Fi mashup, then you needn’t wait for the new chapters coming this November: Cowboy Bebop is streaming on Hulu.

Concocted by the minds of Sunrise animation, Cowboy Bebop ran 26 half-hour episodes in 1998. Written by Keiko Nobumoto and directed by Shinichirō Watanabe, Cowboy Bebop seamless blends American Westerns, film noir, science-fiction, the philosophy of Jeet Kune Do with 2D and computer generated animation in a series of fables — some comic, some deadly serious — with Yoko Kanno’s banging blend of jazz and pop. (The opening credits song, “Tank!” might be one of the best in history of the medium.)

The story revolves around Spike and Jet, two bounty hunters brought together by necessity. As the series progresses, they share their ship with Ed (a notorious hacker), Faye Valentine —who vacillates between femme fatale and damsel in distress with the greatest of ease — and a corgi named Ein.

Everybody’s out for something, and everybody’s got a code. Sometimes they align, sometimes they don’t. Either way or both, Cowboy Bebop comes across like a dream. A finger-snapping, toe-tapping thrill that has yet to be bested.