FEATURE: Anime Academy Teaches the History of Studio TRIGGER

In honor of Studio TRIGGER's birthday, let's watch Crunchyroll's educational YouTube series examining a group of animators known for their unbounded creativity

Luluco transforms into Trigger-chan, one of the mascots of Studio TRIGGER, in a scene from the 2016 TV anime SPACE PATROL LULUCO.


If you asked modern anime fans to name a studio that produces works that are either instant classics or extremely polarizing, they would probably draw a bull's eye on Studio TRIGGER — a Tokyo-based animation studio that has produced both big, splashy hits and quirky, oddball titles that don't always hit their mark.


Fans who want to know more about the history of TRIGGER are in luck because an episode from Season 2 of Anime Academy — an educational YouTube series produced by Crunchyroll — has an installment focusing on exactly that subject.



In the video (above), Victoria Holden guides fans through the meteoric rise of TRIGGER, beginning with the studio's founding in 2011 by ex-Gainax employees and Gurren Lagann alumni Hiroyuki Imaishi and Masahiko Ōtsuka. Anime Academy also explores TRIGGER taking on additional artists (such as Yoh Yoshinari and Akira Amemiya), the studio's fiercely creative approach to art, the formation of the Ultra Super Pictures holding company (with Sanzigen, Ordet, and Liden Films) and the creation of the Ultra Super Anime Time programming block, and TRIGGER's unique accessibility to fans all over the world via convention appearances and social media.


Inferno Cop prepares to unleash some fiery justice in a scene from the 2012 Inferno Cop original web anime.


Anime Academy also examines a cross-section of TRIGGER's most famous works, such as: Kill la Kill, KIZNAIVER, When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace, and SPACE PATROL LULUCO, all of which are currently available via streaming on Crunchyroll; and Little Witch Academia, which is available via streaming on Netflix. More recently, TRIGGER has published its first feature-length theatrical anime film, PROMARE (distributed on U.S. home video by GKIDS), and the furry-themed BNA: Brand New Animal (available on Netflix).


Mako Mankanshoku dons a 2-Star Uniform and poses like a delinquent in a scene from the 2013 Kill la Kill TV anime.


If you'd like to know more about Japanese animation studios such as Studio TRIGGER, you can also check out the entire Anime Academy Season 2 playlist on YouTube, and additional seasons covering other anime-related topics are also available. Anime Academy Season 3 delves into the nitty-gritty details of how anime is created, while the first season of Anime Academy breaks down popular anime terms and tropes.


What's your favorite Studio TRIGGER creation, and why is it Inferno Cop? Which series is more controversial: When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace or Ninja Slayer: From Animation? Got a hot take on PROMARE? Let us know in the comment section below!


Hime poses for a Crunchyroll ad banner.



Paul Chapman is the host of The Greatest Movie EVER! Podcast and GME! Anime Fun Time.

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