The Reflection, a new animated superhero TV series masterminded by Stan Lee, will air on TV in a few short weeks. However don't look for The Reflection on US TV schedules yet, as this production is a major animated series made in partnership with a Japanese broadcasting company and will air on primetime in its home country.
After stepping back from publishing, Lee has never ceased to be involved in the comic and media business, and still remains a figure head and spokesperson for Marvel Comics. Aside from jokey cameos in nearly every Marvel film adaptation (including Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok this year alone), the legendary writer has also been heavily into producing and promoting new projects that exist outside of that comic-book universe. He will present a VR Experience at Comic-Con later this month, and drafted the original idea for the UK's drama Stan Lee's Lucky Man, which still bears his name in global distribution.
Now Variety reports that Lee's newest project is due to air on Japanese Television. The new animated superhero series is called The Reflection, and is executive produced by Lee. The show is set to debut on July 22 on the public broadcasting channel NHK, and scheduled to air late on Saturday nights thereafter. While the TV series will focus on an ongoing battle between superhero Xon and villain I-Guy, the whole concept revolves around a Earth-changing event known as (unsurprisingly) "The Reflection". After this happened, people in all parts of the world are discovered with super powers. Some have become heroes, and others villains, but the cause is still unknown as society starts to crumble into anarchy. The series has been a collaboration between Lee and his company Pow! Entertainment (Stan Lee's Superhumans), as well as Studio DEEN (Beyblade, Patlabor), and Japanese director Hiroshi Nagahama (Detroit Metal City).
Nagahama has a big fan base in the animation world and British music producer Trevor Horn is providing sound for the series. All characters are brand-new, with anime artist Yoshihiko Umakoshi working as the designer, and Studio Deen handling the animation production. It's not the very first time Lee has collaborated with an anime studio. He has also co-written a handful of anime TV series in the past, but in the case of The Reflection he is directly involved with the whole production of the series. It shouldn't be forgotten that several Marvel Comics have inspired manga and anime adaptations, and some of the more recent animated films and shows from the studio themselves have adopted the same visual style (with Marvel Future Avengers being the most recent example).
Whilst it might seem disappointing that the series is currently limited to one territory, there are indications that The Reflection will start to stream worldwide as soon as it begins to air in Japan. However, there are currently no specifics to offer, with respect to whether or not the series will eventually receive an English dubbing and/or further treatments for home media releases stateside.
We will continue to keep you updated with any further news regarding The Reflection.