Cowboy Bebop fans have been waiting for the live-action Netflix adaptation to reveal the fourth member of the Bebop crew (well, fifth if you count Ein the Data Dog). It took until today, the day Cowboy Bebop premieres on Netflix, for the streamer to do so, but it has finally announced newcomer Eden Perkins has nabbed the role of the ship’s hacker, Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivruski IV.
The NetflixGeeked Twitter account gave us the first tiny snippet footage of Perkins, who uses they/them pronouns, as Ed:
to everyone who’s been asking “Where’s Ed?” — you don’t have to wait any longer
introducing newcomer Eden Perkins (they/them), who plays the role of Radical Ed in Netflix’s COWBOY BEBOP, now streaming pic.twitter.com/ttnL7xdTVb
— Netflix Geeked (@NetflixGeeked) November 19, 2021
Although the clip is all of six seconds long, Perkins’ skipping, theatrical walk is very reminiscent of the Ed from the anime, as is the outfit and extremely red hair. Also, while Ed is explicitly labelled as a female in the anime, she’s portrayed as extremely gender-neutral, so it’s very cool that Netflix cast a gender-neutral actor in the role. There’s more to know, but first:
We can confirm that Ed appears at the end of the final episode of Cowboy Bebop, which means that Netflix has very likely commissioned a second season of the series. Whether that’s good news depends on your reaction to the series, which our own Charles Pulliam-Moore said, “vacillates between modes so sharply, and often multiple times within the same episode, it has a way of feeling like it’s always just a few beats out of sync with both its own plot and Yoko Kanno’s sumptuous soundtrack.” Having seen Ed’s scene, we can unfortunately confirm that they look so anime-accurate their appearance is awkward and distracting, much as John Cho’s Spike Spiegel and Mustafa Shakir’s Jet Black outfits. However, Perkins has Ed’s loony personality and manner of speech down perfectly, so that’s cool.
Also on the plus side is, the finale also “set up the potential for more promising installments down the line,” so there’s hope for next season, whever it appears. For now, both the live-action Cowboy Bebop and the original anime are currently streaming on Netflix.