I've said it once, and I'll say it again, but Netflix has an amazing anime selection. Whether it's their own titles, like the quasi-anime Castlevania (see our ranking of the 10 best episodes here), or actual anime (meaning, from Japan), like Demon Slayer and other great anime currently streaming on the platform, Netflix, for the most part, is straight fire when it comes to that medium. And this is why I'm over the moon excited for the recently announced Tekken: Bloodline, which is expected to come out later this year.
Here's what we know so far from the brief clip that Netflix recently released: The story concerns Jin Kazama and will take place between the events of Tekken 2 and Tekken 3. We've already seen some familiar faces in the trailer, including Ogre, Heihachi (Jin's grandfather), Jun (his mother), Kazuya (his father), Paul Phoenix, Ganryu, and King, and they all fit snugly into the Tekken 2/Tekken 3 timeline. But, we also surprisingly see Leroy Smith, who debuted in the most recent Tekken 7. And this means that any character in the series can possibly show up in the anime. Any at all.
That said, in keeping with the Tekken 2/Tekken 3 timeline, here are 10 Tekken characters from that specific era that I really hope make it into Tekken: Bloodline, and also what role it would be cool that they could possibly play in the upcoming Netflix series.
Are you a fan of Bruce Lee movies? If you answered: HELL YES! Then Enter Forest Law. The son of Marshall Law (Because yes, Tekken is a very silly series), Forest Law trains in a dojo all day, and even screams like Bruce Lee when he administers his deadly kicks and punches.
I'm picking Forest Law over his father, Marshall, since Forest debuted in Tekken 3, and is also best friends with Paul Phoenix, who gets him to enter the King of the Iron Fist Tournament. It would be cool to see the two of them training in the anime, before Marshall comes out of his restaurant and berates Paul for getting his son involved in the tournament. And yes, all of this is canon.
Nina Williams is like the Chun-Li of the series, and by that, I mean she's the tough as nails female protagonist who is probably most associated with the franchise. That said, I should probably compare her more to Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow since she's also a take-no-prisoners assassin, who even tried to kill Jin Kazama, which would fit nicely into the anime's narrative, which is focusing on Jin.
During the events of the second game, she also had her ovum removed, which eventually produced the boxer, Steve Fox, in Tekken 4. While I'm not in love with this whole ovum-hijacking subplot, I do like the cryogenic sleep aspect of her story, and it would be cool if she woke up in the Netflix series right alongside her sister. Speaking of whom…
Nina and Anna Williams are sisters who HATE each other. So much so that Nina even assassinated Anna's fiance on her wedding day. Now, that's cold. But, not as cold as the cryogenic sleep that both Anna and Nina underwent between the events of Tekken 2 and 3.
I would love to see this sibling rivalry play out in Tekken: Bloodline, kind of like that cool scene between Common and Keanu Reeves in John Wick: Chapter 2 where they're both trying to silently snipe each other unnoticed. Anna is also Kazuya's bodyguard, so she would definitely fit into this narrative.
Remember that cryogenic sleep I mentioned earlier? Well, it was all administered by none other than Dr. Bosconovitch. He also helped create Prototype Jack (more on him in a few). The nigh-impossible to control doctor (HE KEPT FALLING!), isn't playable in most of the games, but his presence is felt throughout the entire series as a background character.
In a lot of ways, Dr. Bosconovitch is like the Nick Fury (who we last saw in Avengers: Endgame) of the Tekken universe, since he connects so many different narrative threads. I'd love to see him creating Prototype Jack to go after Jin. How cool would that be?
There are a lot of different variations of Jack throughout the entire series. There's just regular Jack in the first game. Then there's Jack-2 in the second game, then Prototype Jack, followed by Gun Jack, then Jack-4, then 5, then 6, then X, then 7, and gee golly whiz, is this an Android or an iPhone, because all of these upgrades seem more like the latter rather than the former.
But seriously, Jack is just a big clumsy robot that clangs when it gets hit. I want to hear that clang in the anime, since I'm a simple man who enjoys simple things.
Yoshimitsu, like Nina, is one of the only characters who has appeared in every single Tekken game. He also appeared in Soulcalibur, but that's neither here nor there. Yoshimitsu is from the Manji clan, and I always thought of him as a sort of cyborg ninja. He carries a sword and has a prosthetic arm that he got from (wait for it) Dr. Bosconovitch.
In fact, Yoshimitsu and Dr. Bosconovitch are friends. So much so that Yoshimitsu enters the third tournament just to save the good doctor's life. It's complicated, and I'd rather the anime spell it out for you than myself since I don't have all day.
Debuting in Tekken 3, Ling Xiaoyu is a fan favorite, and a possible love interest of Jin Kazama, so it would only be fitting if she made it into the series. Xiaoyu is a 16-year-old Chinese martial artist who just wants her own amusement park, and she thinks Heihachi is the one who can build it for her.
And guess what, Heihachi says he'll do it if she wins the tournament! Now, I don't know how silly this anime is going to be, but if it's going to go full-Tekken, then of course I also have to mention…
Ling Xiaoyu's pet is literally a panda named Panda. Mostly using Jack's move set, Panda is also Xiaoyu's bodyguard. Yes. You read that right.
Not only that, but Panda is also the love interest of a big, brown bear named Kuma, who even tried to give Panda flowers one time. Honestly, out of all the characters that I potentially want in this series, Panda is number one.
If Law is Tekken's Bruce Lee, then Lei Wulong is its Jackie Chan. Utilizing multiple styles in his combat repertoire, Lei is a police officer who's trying to shut Heihachi down, and he's entered the King of the Iron Fist Tournament to do so.
Lei Wulong could provide a nice look into the external affairs outside of the whole Mishima corporation since he is a police officer. Because even though Lei Wulong is directly connected to Heihachi, he could also be a nice segue into the world outside of Heihachi’s organization as well, which would be appreciated in this new series.
A button-mashers dream, if you've played Tekken 3, then you KNOW Eddy Gordo, for better or worse. This Brazilian Capoeira master doesn't really have much of a story until about Tekken 4, when he meets up with Christie Monteiro.
Even so, I still want to see him in the Netflix series, if even just for a brief cameo. Because it's pretty hard to even think of Tekken 3 without also thinking about Eddy Gordo. The two pretty much go hand-in-hand.
And that's it. Tekken is one of my favorite franchises ever, and I hope Bloodline is better than the Netflix Godzilla: Singular Point anime, which I felt both worked and also didn't. Fingers crossed! For more news on Tekken or any other video game franchises, make sure to swing by here often.
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Rich is a Jersey boy, through and through. He graduated from Rutgers University (Go, R.U.!), and thinks the Garden State is the best state in the country. That said, he’ll take Chicago Deep Dish pizza over a New York slice any day of the week. Don’t hate. When he’s not watching his two kids, he’s usually working on a novel, watching vintage movies, or reading some obscure book.