Naruto Vs. Cowboy Bebop: Blatant Plagiarism?

cowboy bebop vs naruto.gif

I saw this on krunk4ever and had to share it. I dunno if this is a recent thing or what, but this gif shows what appears to be Naruto heavily lifting some animation cues from a scene in Cowboy Bebop. Looks pretty incriminating to me. Perhaps the animation guys who did Cowboy Bebop were also on the Naruto team and this is just coincidence…

For more fun with plagiarism, check out the Slam Dunk incident that happened a while back.

37 replies on “Naruto Vs. Cowboy Bebop: Blatant Plagiarism?”

Whoa… I never saw that…

My guess: Heck yeah, it was intentional. Plagiarism? Not so much that, as much as it’s a scene that gives a tip of the hat to CB. Well, that’s what I’d hope, anyways~

intentional my ass. in what way is this a reference? a reference would
be clear, this is flat out lifting and copying the scene.

you all have proved that naruto fans are baffoons. who advocating stealing and lying. You have ownt yourselves.

Upper slide looks like the Cowboy Bebop movie, done by Bones. Don’t know about Naruto, but it sure aint bones

The plagarism incidents were well covered a while back. In fact, a lot of mangaka have actually been accused of it. Those of note are DGrayman’s mangaka and Inoue Takehiko. Cant remember the rest but there sure are a lot more.

So Spike knows Jyuuken? Why didn’t he use Kaiten in the last episode to save his own ass lol?

Morph: There’s a fine line between homage and plagiarism. I think this one crosses that line.

jpmeyer: Whoa, that totally went over my head. What are you talking about about?

Eleutheria: That was just my guess that they had the same director. Otherwise there’d be no justification at all for the blatant copying.

tjhan: Do you mean this particular incident was well covered? I’m interested in finding out if anything happened as a result of this gif. So far I haven’t had any luck, though.

From my understanding the Cowboy Bebop fight exceution itself isn’t unique but is rather a reference/homage to Bruce Lee since both Lee and Spike use Jeet Kun Do (I’v got no clue if I’ve got that spelled right). So it’s not so much that Naruto is coping Bebop but rather they are both doing homages to the work of the great, late Bruce Lee. That’s my understanding if the situation at least.

If they are actually following cues from their respective manga, some instances of the fights may be very similar but not exact, but when animated, appear exactly alike.

After all they put the “Good Guy” and the “Bad Guy” in opposite places.

Personally I’d like to see less of the DBZ motion blur used in the Naruto scene.

I like Naruto but please God end the filler. Untill then I may be forcing many “friends” to their deaths on anime such as Princess Princess.

if youre gonna copy. copy from the best. naruto and cowboy is waaaaay different. this is just a scene. maybe same makers. who knows? anyone know ?

No. Just no. Stop trying to defend Naruto up there, you jackanapes! It isn’t working!

I didn’t think I could dislike it any more than I already did. But this… my disrespect for the series’ unoriginality and inaccuracy has heightened.

Wow Arale… Touch a nerve? And no one was defending the show.

Anyway, that episode was financed and guidanced by Gainax who had something to do with the animation direction of Cowboy Bebop the movie. There, problem solved.

And even if thats not the case, Naruto was never that amazing of a series, but its fune and enjoyable nonetheless, and I don’t see why this should change anything seeing as those few frames of animation have nothing to do with the mangaka or even the main storyline.

lol, I meant “fun” 😛

But meh, Gainax probably did it as a homage or repeat some frames for the sake of it. Disney did it alot, the ending of Beauty and the Beast where the prince and belle dance are repeated frames from Cinderella but redrawn. Its very common in animes and occurs alot within the same company, I don’t see why this should be any different.

I’ve seen this previously, my guess initially was that they were both referencing a particular scene in a Martial Arts movie. Chances are it’s a Bruce Lee one, due to the overt references to Bruce Lee in both series.

It is because the guy who did the key animation for the train scene in the Cowboy Bebop movie,Toshiyuki Tsuru, is the same guy who did the storyboarding for that episode of naruto. He reused his old work.



@Crocodile: Yes, Spike practices a form of martial arts called Jeet Kune Do, which was created and made popular by the great Bruce Lee. However, the Cowboy Bebop scene itself, while employing the style of Jeet Kune Do, is original in camera angles and sequence. The Naruto scene is a blatant rip-off of the CB scene, as it is obvious the same shots and sequencies are copied.

@SB: I’m pretty sure Yutaka Nakamura was in charge of the art direction, choreography, and possible key animator of that train fight scene. I also don’t think he has had his hand in Naruto either.

lol. face it. even if the same art guy from CB had a part in making Naruto its still copying in a sense. the guy cant just put some of his old work into an old series (which is brilliant and amazing by the way) and put it into naruto, which i dislike.

Cowboy Bebop is MUCH better than Naruto. both the series and movie are amazing. oh, and yeah stop defending naruto. its really obvious your making stupid excuses like ‘homages’ just to think that your precious naruto isn’t bad. :p

I agree with Taellie!! Cowboy BeBop is a great series and Naruto isn’t. I don’t belive it’s the same person who does both shows. It’s plagiarism no matter how you look at it and it has only deepened my total direspect of Naruto anime. It doesn’t matter if its the same style or not. Bruce Lee is not the problem here it’s Naruto trying not to do there own work hoping no one will notice!! Well we did!! Thank you so much for letting us see this.

ok, Naruto and CB are two totaly different shows. differnt time frames different everything you can t compare the two with wich one is better or worse, but i do think that naruto copied CB with that scene but who cares its just a t.v. show right….. anyway they did i nice job of doingit exactly though. wow.. : )

Franco was mentioning that the two were made by the same studio/production company, no the plot or genre, Roxer. And in truth, if they were made by the same studio then there would be no problem. However Franco doesnt no what he is talking about. Cowboy Bebop is an original anime, meaning there was no manga before the anime.

Back to what i was talking about, if they were the same studios, then they would be no confrontation because legally, the studio has the copyright. Generally, studios make their employies sign a waver so that any work they do for them is the studios property. So even if the director and the rest of the entire staff were the same, it would not make a difference because the studio has the rights to the cowboy bebop film.

However, you guys(especially you naruto haters) are pushing it out of perportion. The scene is 10secs, probably less. If the entire episode was full of rips from the movie, yeah the studio who made CB could sue. But its just 10 seconds or less. Another reason that they both have different audiences. One is a film targeting a more mature audience, the other is a weekly show with most of its viewers starting at high elementary to early highschool.

Like someone said before, its an homage. Movies and shows do it all the time.

Meh, Naruto is pretty derivative and unoriginal as a whole. Lifting that fight scence (and unless there’s some refrence to Cowboy Bebop in the credits after that particular episode, it stealing, not an homage) doesn’t really suprise me. They’re not specifically targeting CB though, there’s another .gif with Sasuke that mirrors Bruce Lee exactly from one of his movies. Also, the CB fight scene is original as far as I know, I’ve seen just about all of Bruce Lee’s movies (I’m a fan of Kung-Fu movies) and there is no scene like that in any of his movies I’ve seen, though I can’t be 100% sure on that.

The clips not really Bruce’s style though. Think of the Bruce Lee movies you’ve seen: The fights are surgical, clean. Bruce strikes quicly and confidently, it really never looks like there’s a chance he’ll lose (except in climactic ‘boss’ battles). This fight is more brutal and knock down-drag-out than a typical BL fight. Spike is grabbing Vincent and sluggin him, more like a streetfight than the styalized duals you’d expect from Bruce. If you have the movie and see the whole scene, you’ll know what I’m talking about. I’m pretty confident this is an entirely original scene from the makers of CB.

To kill this homage argument: Naruto is made for ‘tweens and teens. I’m 23 and watch it because it’s mindless fun from time to time, but the character developement, plot, and general tone of the series isn’t made for a mature audience. Cowboy Bebop, however, isn’t targeted at that demographic at all, it deals with tragedy, death, love, revenge, etc. Themes kids aren’t neccessarily drawn too. An homage is typically used in a way so that the audience will catch the refrence and enjoy it as a kind of ‘inside joke’. You’d have a hard time convincing me a typical Naruto fan would have appreciated CB enough to have bought the Movie (that scene isn’t from the series) and seen that part of the film to be able to recognize the reference, which is how an homage works. I won’t go so far as to call it stealing, because it IS just a couple of seconds, but you can’t really call it an homage either.

In any case, Naruto really is a mediocre anime (though like i said, it’s good mindless fun from time to time, when it tried to get dramatic it tends to fall flat) and I suggest you guys look into better titles with more complex plots and a good sense of drama. Cowboy Bebop is actually a good place to start, since we’re talking about it so much.

Don’t be weebo guys, just because it’s from Japan and listed as ‘anime’ doesn’t mean it’s quality material. Look for the good stuff.

Woah, I wrote a book.

Wow ok.


When I watch anime I should not for a SECOND expect to see the exact same thing twice.

I don’t care that Gainax was behind both of them. It’s just ridiculous. Naruto has no case.

There was a line and they crossed. No argument they suck. The Naruto Anime is horrible. Manga is great though.

P.S. I miss high quality anime. They are getting so lazy with the digital age. You have to admit.

You are ALL morons.

That is NOT plagiarism. That scene was from a popular BRUCE LEE movie, BOTH scenes were referencing that.

So to conclusion neither scenes are original. NOW EVERYONE SHUT UP.

Yes, Crocodile got it right. This was covered waaaay back. The fight in Bebop is taken directly from good ol’ Bruce Lee, and my guess is that the Naruto animators did the same thing. That is – not copy Bebop, but copy Lee just as Bebop did before them.

…Something tells me that if this was just about any other anime besides Naruto, there wouldn’t be much fuss about it, and people wouldn’t be calling it plagiarism.

Honestly, I doubt the Naruto animation team copied from Cowboy Bebop. It’s much more likely that both teams of animators used the same reference live-action video of people fighting to rotoscope/choreograph the scene.

Whether or not anyone plagiarized has nothing to do with the quality of Naruto itself. “I don’t like this anime so therefore what they did was wrong” has to be the stupidest argument I’ve ever heard. If the same people who are saying that Naruto is low for plagiarizing saw something like this against an anime they liked, they would be the ones defending it and calling it an “homage” to something or other.
Having an opinion is one thing, but unless you’ve done your research there is no point ragging on either anime without knowing the truth.
Also; the Cowboy Bebop manga came after the anime, and the manga version of that scene in Naruto wouldn’t have been exactly the same as in the anime. So there’s no point in trying to blame the manga-kas either.

As for the several people who have referenced this Bruce Lee movie… anyone got a name to it? Maybe we could find a clip and settle this once and for all.

Even if both are referencing a particular scene in a Bruce Lee movie, it’s pretty obvious that that Naruto sequence is an exact copy of the Cowboy Bebop sequence, even down to the timing of the frames.

Hell, it looks like the Naruto animators just painted over the Bebop fight.

Well it’s a fight scene so 1.No one cares (or no one SHOULD), and 2.Being that Neji is using an actual fighting style (not sure about CB) they can reasonable argue that they just based it off the martial arts.

Ok, I have a luxury to be in all the cliques concerned here, as my interest in anime roots in CB (among other things), I use Naruto for entertainment purposes recently, AND I train Jeet Kune Do for a long time now, and with a diploma.

Here is what I know/think (some of this, some of this).

CB is one of the few quality anime that actually has quality martial arts included. I suppose someone in the staff is Bruce Lee’s fan, and I mean Bruce-martial artist’s fan rather than Bruce-actor’s fan… cause that makes a difference. Fights included in CB are original, they do not copy any martial arts film as-is, rather the Jeet Kune Do itself. That is just good and Kudos to the drawer for both skill AND knowledge on the subject he’s depicting.

Now Naruto… might have a good drawer, who has none or small knowledge on martial arts whatsoever. Knowing that the alternative would be lacking in realism, he instead copied from someone better oriented. Again, Kudos for Cowboy Bebop artist ;]

Overally, I don’t blame Naruto for taking the material from CB. It wasn’t a homage either, BUT…

…ultimately it IS a homage they didn’t intend to do. ;]


I know I’m late to the game here, but everyone seems to think this came from a Bruce Lee movie, just because everyone else says so. No one knows what movie, and I’ve seen zero evidence that it exists.
Way to win arguments without knowing what the hell you’re talking about.

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