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The Wolf’s Rain Anime Is Much Better Than the Manga – Here’s Why

Set in an apocalyptic world awaiting destruction Wolf’s Rain is a lucky find. Here’s why the anime is better than the manga.

The following contains spoilers for both the anime and manga endings of Wolf’s Rain, created by Keiko Nobumoto.

Wolf’s Rain is a seinen anime focusing on a city that is on the brink of ruin. There are nobles, poverty, and animals just fighting to survive, but what makes Wolf’s Rain so great is that although they share the same story, the anime and manga differ heavily from one another.

This series is a hidden gem among anime. New and long-time fans can appreciate the quality and care that went into the story’s creation, along with falling in love with its amazing characters. Many fans don’t know there is a manga based on the Wolf’s Rain anime. The manga is worth reading in its own right, but the anime is much better — and here’s why.

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In the Wolf’s Rain universe, there’s an old legend that says when the world ends, a haven called “Paradise” will appear. But, only wolves will know how to find Paradise. At the beginning of the series, wolves are believed to have gone extinct, as one hasn’t been seen in nearly 200 years. What humans don’t know is wolves have evolved in a way that allows them to disguise themselves as humans, so they can walk amongst them unnoticed. The show starts in the north, in a fictional place called Freeze City where many people face numerous hardships like poverty.

The story follows Kiba, an injured white wolf with no pack or family to call his own — and that’s just fine with him. Kiba isn’t the only wolf in the city, with each character on a personal quest while following the scent of the Lunar Flower. Tsume, Hige and Toboe are all unique wolves with very distinct personalities, but, soon, they come to recognize — begrudgingly in Tsume’s case — Kiba as their pack leader. Along their journey, the wolves meet many foes, but there’s only one thing that matters; finding the Lunar Flower and reaching Paradise.

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The general premise and plot are virtually the same throughout the Wolf’s Rain anime and manga. However, there are still many differences. For example, Lady Jaguara, a wealthy noblewoman, is completely omitted from the manga. This is a strange omission. While Lady Jaguara is not the main villain of the series, she still holds a significant role. Jaguara adds conflict to the series because she is in love with Lord Darcia III, and she brainwashes Hige at one point in the story.

In the anime, she uses Hige as an alpha dog for her own wolf pack, using him to eliminate any remaining wolves he comes across. Jaguara dislikes wolves because she deems them as a threat to the nobles reaching Paradise. Although Jaguara is not in the manga, her forces are one of the man obstacles opposing the protagonists. This seems redundant — if the manga was going to use Lady Jaguara’s army then it doesn’t make sense to remove Jaguara herself.

Other changes from the anime to the manga include dialogue and changes in event sequences. Some events don’t happen in the same order as they do in the anime. The second volume of the manga does not follow the anime very closely — Lord Darcia recruits a wolf, Blue, to help him open the gate to Paradise using her own blood. Blue also does not pursue a romantic relationship with Hige in the manga. She and Hige don’t even meet each other. As expected since she is working with Lord Darcia, Blue also does not join Kiba’s pack as she does in the anime.

Another change between the manga and the anime includes how Kiba’s pack rescues the Lunar Flower, Cheza. They have to go to Lord Darcia’s keep instead of Lady Jaguara’s. This also excludes Kiba from appearing at the very end of the scene, finally rescuing the flower maiden.

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The story’s finale is almost completely different in the manga compared to the anime. At the end of the anime, the wolves die, signaling the end of the world, finally entering Paradise. The series ends with Kiba drowning in a lake after collapsing from exhaustion, then being enveloped in a scene of white before the city reemerges. The very end shows Kiba’s pack, all in human form, milling around a seemingly recreated Freeze City. Wolf’s Rain finally ends with human-Kiba walking down a city street before shifting into a sprint, all while the camera snaps between shots of the dreary city and a blooming Lunar Flower.

The manga ruins one of the best bittersweet endings by changing it entirely. The ending poses Cheza and the wolf pack onto a collection of large boulders, clouds breaking to allow beams of sunlight to pass through. The world is no longer in ruin and the world is at peace once more. The manga’s ending is slightly more confusing than the anime, but some fans assume Paradise was found at the end of the manga.

Wolf’s Rain is highly acclaimed for its intricate plot and amazing characters. Wolf’s Rain may not be the most popular series, but it definitely deserves much more praise than it currently receives. The series has thirty episodes, with each expanding upon the plot or the world Kiba and the others live in. Whether the episode focuses on the complicated relationship between the pack members or starts off with an action-packed chase scene, Wolf’s Rain still finds a way to tug at many people’s heartstrings.

Some fans may feel unhappy with the way the anime ended, the final episode and scene leave more of a bittersweet taste rather than a sour one. Although both the anime and the manga have an open ending for the series, the anime has a more comprehensive storyline and includes important characters who are integral to the plot and add necessary conflict.

The Plot of Wolf’s Rain

Differences Between the Wolf’s Rain Anime and Manga

Is Wolf’s Rain Worth Watching?

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