The last time there was a Scott Pilgrim-themed project was in 2010, and it instantly became a cult classic. “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” was released with a very unique cast. Michael Cera portrayed the socially awkward protagonist, Scott, on a quest for love with the strong, guarded Ramona Flowers (played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead). The story unfolds as Scott attempts to capture Ramona’s heart but faces the challenge of defeating her seven exes beforehand.
The Netflix animated show has its own unique vibe. But what’s interesting about it is that they bought back all the cast from the movie — the same cast, the same creator, even the same director. So, it’s a reunion of sorts. But what is it that sets “Scott Pilgrim Takes Off” apart from the movie? Let’s find out. P.S. There will be spoilers ahead.
Scott Dies in the First Showdown
The pilot of the animated series is pretty straightforward. It follows the story of the movie almost identically. Scott develops feelings for Ramona, and in order to pursue a relationship, has to defeat her exes. However, the episode takes a dramatic turn towards the end.
“Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” is very faithful to the comics. Scott Pilgrim’s first showdown in the film is against Matthew Patel, who he defeats.
However, the show shoots off in a completely different direction. Scott not only loses to Matthew Patel but is supposedly killed in the face-off. This changes the plot of the show completely. In fact, after this, it becomes more Ramona Flower-centric. It gives her more screen time which in turn gives her depth and substance as opposed to simply being a love interest.
Gideon isn’t as Strong in the Show
Mathew Patel emerging victorious in the showdown against Scott creates a sort of butterfly effect. In the original movie (true to the comic) Gideon Graves was a character that had everything going on for him. He was a successful businessman and the leader of the League of Evil.
The show shakes things from up here. While he initially retains all these attributes, he eventually gets overthrown by none other than Mathew Patel. Matthew takes control of Gideon’s operation and becomes a force to be reckoned with unlike the previous takes on his character. Consequently, this gives Gideon an origin story. A once invincible character is now weak and vulnerable. The show gave Gideon’s character more depth than the movie was able to.
There’s Time Travel
Remember when Scott died in his showdown against Matthew? Turns out he doesn’t exactly die. He gets taken away from the fight by a version of him from the future. The reason? Apparently, in the future, Scott and Ramona go through a bitter divorce which prompts the older Scott to prevent his younger version from meeting Ramona altogether. So the final ex in “Scott Pilgrim Takes Off” isn’t Gideon Graves, it’s Scott Pilgrim himself.
The show takes another odd turn as Scott joins forces with all of Ramona’s exes to defeat his future self, so he can pursue his romance with Ramona regardless of the outcome.
The animated series has a unique take on the original story, and despite going off in many directions, it ultimately does justice to the legacy of Scott Pilgrim.
“Scott Pilgrim Takes Off” was released in the U.S. on Netflix on November 17, 2023.
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