[Update: Adult Swim's press release states that Toonami will develop "new original anime programming." IGPX 2 and Big O season 3, anyone?]
After Adult Swim's 2012 April Fool's Day joke, there was a massive surge of support for a revival of Toonami, Cartoon Network's OG anime and action cartoon block. Steven Blum, veteran anime voice actor and the voice of Toonami's host T.O.M., led a campaign with the hashtag #BringBackToonami to try and show support for the fondly-remembered block, and by God, it appears to have actually worked.
Adult Swim just tweeted this: "Attention Toonami Faithful: We heard you. On 5.26.12 #ToonamisBackBitches" with a link to the header image. Now, that's not to say that Adult Swim wasn't planning this anyway and that the April Fool's Day joke was just a good way to test the waters. But without knowing what was going on inside the heads of Adult Swim, this is a good moment for fans to pat themselves on the back.
Of course, there's currently no additional information about what form Toonami will take. Is T.O.M. getting reverted to his beefed-up circa 2003 look? Will Sara and the Absolution be returning? Is this simply a way to rebrand reruns, or will Toonami start showing new anime?
Perhaps there's a hint in the day it's returning, which is a Saturday. When Adult Swim launched, it aired new content on Sunday night with reruns on Thursday for maybe half a year before ditching Thursday night and replacing it with Adult Swim Action on Saturday nights. Initially it was just some less censored Toonami shows (or shows once intended for Toonami) plus Cowboy Bebop, but eventually it started getting plenty of new content. I'd imagine that new episodes of Bleach would continue airing, since they'd be a great fit, and we'll see some reruns of classic content, but now uncut.
I do share the concerns of community members like The-Excel, as noted in my original post, and getting excited could be premature, since there are plenty of wrong decisions that could be made. Hell, maybe people were just happy experiencing classic Toonami one more time and don't need it to make a full comeback. It's too early to say. But still, for now, I'm happy to see it return.
Here's hoping for more classy quips from T.O.M., more game reviews, more awesome AMVs, and the opportunity to not only look back at our childhood memories, but also be exposed to great new series.
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