‘Yona of the Dawn‘ is a 2015 fantasy anime series created by the Japanese animation studio Pierrot which produced twenty-four episodes plus three OVAs directed by Kazuhiro Yoneda. It was based on a manga by Mizuho Kusanagi and dubbed into English by Funimation.
In the nation of Kouka, Princess Yona (Monica Rial) is living peacefully with her pacifist father as the ruler. Her first love Soo-won (Micah Solusod) arrives at the castle. His carelessness irks Yona’s bodyguard and former general Son Hak (Christopher R. Sabat), a fierce warrior called the “Lightning Beast.” However, Soo-won kills the king and stages a coup, forcing Yona and Hak to go on the run. They meet the clumsy priest Ik-soo (Jerry Jewell) tells her she must unite the four dragon warriors. Sending his assistant Yoon (Clifford Chapin) with them, Yona and Hak dodge Soo-won’s soldiers while searching. It proves difficult as the white dragon Kija (Ian Sinclair), blue dragon Shin-ah (Eric Vale), green dragon Jae-ha (Joel McDonald), and the Zeno (Josh Grelle) are scattered with the red dragon nowhere to be found. Meanwhile, some clan leaders grow suspicious of Soo-won and his motives.
Pierrot is next level when it comes to animation. They do epic character designs, choreograph fight scenes well, and know-how to bring a world to life. This show is no different. Each main character is given a very specific design that brings out how unique they are and shows off their personality.
The English voice cast also did a good job too. They really were able to show off their talent, even though Eric Vale’s character had fewer lines, he was still able to show him off. Honestly, though Micah Solusod as Soo-won was perfect casting. He showed off his seductive and cruel side simultaneously, showing the layers of the character.
It is a shame that the anime ended on a cliffhanger because it had such a compelling story. The world-building is brilliant and I loved seeing Yona grow from a naive princess to a woman warrior trying to save her kingdom. The OVAs do try to wrap up the ending, but I would have liked to see where the show went had they been given more than one season.
Check out the trailer below:
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Some violence, Inappropriate humor, Minor foul language,
This review is based on the dub.
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