Wakanim, it’s over: where to watch your favorite Japanese anime in France?

Wakanim merges with Crunchyroll. This meeting of the two main anime broadcasters, led by Sony, aims to counter Netflix. ADN also remains a leading player in this sector. The point to enjoy the best of Japanese animation.

This is good news for the wallet. Absorbed by Sony, Wakanim and Crunchyroll, the two major broadcasters of Japanese animated series in France, will bring together their catalogs and the contents of the first will gradually migrate to the second. What are the consequences of this merger, and where to stay to watch anime in France?

Until now, the distribution of Japanese animation was spread over three main sites, all benefiting from “simulcasts”: each episode of an anime is available, translated almost immediately after its TV broadcast in Japan. At the rate of one episode per week, the works follow a literal logic of seasons: each group cycle of episodes starts again around the beginning of April, July, October and January. These are “courses”, and if many series are only 12 episodes, some last all year with 50. A logic sometimes a little independent of the notion of “season” well anchored with us. These sites generally have exclusivity on the latest episodes of certain major licenses: you can watch the majority of The attack of the Titans on Netflix, but the unreleased ones were then published on Wakanim. All these sites have the same model: to have the entire catalog and without advertising, a subscription is necessary.

What are the strengths of each platform?

Until there, wakanim was the alpha site of the simulcast in France: news and fund catalog were of high quality. The work of translating the subtitles there was proverbial.

Crunchyroll, the site that remains after this merger, was already a site known for its completeness. Quantity before quality was its hidden mantra, a few unmissable blockbusters and series rub shoulders with some of the most improbable niche anime. His flaw? Less intuitive applications and site.

What will be found on the merged version of these sites? Attack on Titan, Jujutsu Kaisen, My Hero Academia, Spy×Family, Ranking of Kings, Fire Force…

At last, DNA is the third network to consider. Half-owned by Sony, its fate is not yet openly known. Its catalog, where we find some latest nuggets, is famous for the presence of older anime, typical of those that were broadcast on television in the 90s and before. In short, anime from your childhood is on DNA.

What will we find on DNA? Digimon, Naruto and Boruto, Detective Conan, Goldorak, Ken the Survivor, The Age of Crystals…

Does the subscription price change?

Sony decided to converge everything on its strongest brand, Crunchyroll. The catalogs merge and the novelties of the spring season are now published there.

Three scenarios stand out in terms of subscriptions. If you are not used to either of the two sites, there is no longer any point in turning to Wakanim, and you can cancel your tax there if you were a customer of both. In contrast, Crunchyroll promises Wakanim subscribers will get a 60-day trial offer to create an account with them. The Crunchyroll subscription is 5 euros per month, it goes up to 6.50 euros to be able to use four screens simultaneously on the same account.

What is the role of Netflix and other platforms?

This merger aims to create a super catalog that will rival Netflix. For several years now, the famous VOD site has been investing in the production and distribution of anime, and has built up a substantial fund, films and series, while recovering some prestigious exclusives from time to time. The most addicted will always have to pay two subscriptions to enjoy the best of the news.

On Netflix, everything is a little different: licenses are volatile, and some stars like cowboy bebop disappear and reappear regularly. Also, Netflix has a habit of favoring its dubbing in French, but systematically offering lower quality subtitles. Finally, Prime Video also has some interesting titles, sometimes also suffering from lack of care on the translation; and the Disney+ network is starting to put some marbles in this industry, as evidenced, for example, by the anthology Star Wars Visions, series of pellets ordered from various prestigious Japanese animation studios. We will have to continue to make choices, but Crunchyroll is becoming the benchmark in this area.

What can you watch on Netflix? For example the last season of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, but also Great Pretender, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Little Witch Academia, Carole and Tuesday, Devilman Crybaby…