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Fuuto PI - What We Know So Far

"Kamen Rider" fans rejoice, because the classic Totsukaku franchise is bridging the border between live-action, manga, and animation with its upcoming anime, "Fuuto PI," courtesy of Studio Kai. For those unaware of what "Kamen Rider" is, think of it as the big brother to "Power Rangers" (which is actually called "Super Sentai" in Japan, but that's another story). Together, the two are some of the most influential franchises in the Tokusatsu genre, a style of filmmaking that specializes in practical effects to tell stories about superheroes, giant monsters, or other such over-the-top subjects. Regardless, the most important thing about "Kamen Rider" is that it has grown far beyond its humble origins as a Saturday morning action series in 1971 to a full blown multimedia franchise.

Since those humble days, several different "Kamen Rider" series have been released to varying degrees of popularity. When it comes to "Fuuto PI," however, we are only concerned with the 2009 show "Kamen Rider W" (pronounced "Kamen Rider Double") and its spinoff manga, "Futo Tantei." As an anime adaptation of "Futo Tantei," "Fuuto PI" will introduce many to the wide and wacky world of "Kamen Rider." Here is what we know so far about this upcoming show's release date, cast, and plot.

What is the release date for Fuuto PI?

News on the "Fuuto PI" anime first broke in March 2021, when the company that owns "Kamen Rider," Toei, announced the series in honor of the franchise's 50th anniversary. Funimation announced that it would be streaming the series upon its release. Toei also announced that the series would debut in Summer 2022.

Putting aside the rather broad release window, this is a truly historic moment for "Kamen Rider" as a franchise. The series has had its brief affairs with the world of animation before, but has never received a full anime of its own until now — which is why it's a shame that Toei hasn't been more specific with the release date for "Fuuto PI." Thankfully, broader release windows are fairly common in the world of anime, so fans can rest assured that "Fuuto PI" will release on time come next year.

Who are the characters in Fuuto PI?

The original "Kamen Rider W" focused on the adventures of two people: the private investigator Shotaro Hidari and a boy named Phillip, who can combine into the hero Kamen Rider W. In the original live action show, these two were Renn Kiriyama and Masaki Suda, respectively (via Anime News Network). However, it is likely that these roles will be recast as the world of "Kamen Rider" transitions from live action to animation. The only problem is that neither Toei nor Studio Kai have let on who will replace the original actors, nor has the studio let on who is going to play any of the new roles in "Fuuto PI," such as the duo's new female companion, Tokime.

In fact, no casting announcements have been made at all thus far. The companies have only gone so far as to reveal much of the anime's staff. According to Anime News Network, "Fuuto PI" will be directed by Tousuke Kabashima, with the assistant director being Ayataka Tanemura. Hidekazu Ebina and Sei Komatsubara are handling animation direction.

What is the Plot of Fuuto PI?

Continuing the adventures of Shotaro and Phillip as Kamen Rider W, "Fuuto PI" delves further into the duo's lives as they work to protect Fuuto from harm. One day, the pair encounters a pink-haired girl under attack by criminals in the form of Dopants, a type of monster that people can transform into through the use of USB-like devices called "Gaia Memories." After saving the girl, whose name is Tokime, Shotaro and Phillip hire her at their detective agency.

From then on, along with the help of police and fellow Kamen Rider Accel, the duo known as Kamen Rider W continue combating the Dopant menace that still remains in the city (via Myanimelist). Though the original show ended with the halting of Gaia distribution, Dopants still pose a major threat to the city. Thankfully, the hero Kamen Rider W is still on the case.