Fans were shocked when Toonami expanded past midnight. Fans couldn’t believe that Toonami then started earlier (at 11 p.m.). Fans went nuts after Toonami began at 10 p.m. Now I don’t know what fans will do to control their excitement. Toonami will expand to 9 p.m. on Sep. 29. What is going on here?! I never believed that Toonami would ever air during primetime hours, but here we are. The executives must feel they have the necessary tools and shows to keep fans rocking all night long. But this isn’t the only change that Toonami will bring to their lineup as there will be a major shakeup with the block’s schedule.
Holy shit MAJOR CHANGES coming Toonami’s way! Look at the schedule changes starting Sep. 29th. DBZ Kai is back, Toonami starts at 9, and they are airing Shippuden a lot earlier now before Boruto airs. This is wild! pic.twitter.com/Q28LHKO7Va
— CJ Maffris (@SeaJayMaffris) September 11, 2018
The most significant change is that Toonami will bring back DBZ Kai to kick off the block at 9 p.m. I do wonder what lead to this decision since I’d believe that if anything would lead the block, it’d be Dragon Ball Super or My Hero Academia. Those two shows are the most popular ones going for the block, and I just assumed that Toonami would continue to air them earlier and earlier. Instead, Toonami will begin with a rerun of DBZ Kai, potentially to help grab casual viewers. Since casual fans tend to stick around to watch anything Dragon Ball, it is a logical move for them to make.
The next colossal shakeup coming Toonami’s way is what’s going on in the 10 o’clock hour. Naruto Shippuden will air at 10 p.m. when the changes take effect. Moving from 2 a.m. all the way to 10 p.m. is such a drastic move. However, the Naruto fan base is loyal and has always shown up when it airs on Toonami. Airing earlier is an excellent reward for the fan base and makes sense with what will air directly after it. Sep. 29 is when Boruto will debut on the block and will air at 10:30 p.m. I find this to be a great move because having both series air back-to-back makes more sense than having both so far apart. We will now get a full hour of the Naruto franchise, which is reminiscent to the Dragon Ball hour that Toonami had before.
After those significant changes, there were a few other small adjustments scattered around (with Pop Team Epic finishing its run). Dragon Ball Super will fall back half an hour and air at 11 p.m. Attack on Titan Season Three will air an hour later at midnight. However, Black Clover will now air at 1 a.m. before Hunter x Hunter, which feels odd. I tend to think that the Toonami community enjoys Hunter x Hunter more than Black Clover. But I’m starting to get the feeling that Hunter x Hunter hasn’t gained more casual fans while Black Clover might have done so. It’s puzzling considering how much Hunter x Hunter has become a favorite among hardcore Toonami fans. Something seems fishy and should be monitored for the future. Finally, the block will end with Samurai Jack at 3:30 a.m bumping up One-Punch Man, Lupin the Third Part IV, and Cowboy Bebop a half an hour earlier.
All of these changes will take effect Sep 29th so there is still some time to review all the moves Toonami will be making (cause there will be a ton). I recommend checking Toonami’s Facebook page or going to Toonami fansites regularly to stay informed. The latest expansion news is one of the best things we could report. Starting at 9 p.m. is a fantastic accomplishment that the people of Toonami have to be smiling proudly. Soon Toonami will begin with DBZ Kai and will be bringing an hour of the Naruto franchise starting at 10 p.m. It goes to show that Toonami seems to be doing well and that the higher-ups feel comfortable putting resources into Toonami to have it air earlier. This will become a momentous day and one that I hope many will get to enjoy!
In September of 2008, Toonami was relegated to Saturday’s for just two hours from 9pm-11pm. Now it will be 9pm-4am. 7 hours. Happy 10th anniversary to the cancellation to CN’s cancellation of Toonami.
— SuperElite BusDriver (@Sketch1984) September 11, 2018
C.J Maffris is an editorial writer for Toonamifaithful.com. Feel free to follow C.J on Twitter @SeaJayMaffris