Can we talk about Dororo for a bit? I thought this could be really good after two episodes, but I would have never guessed it could be this good.
Deviating from the source material is totally the right call, because I went through the original manga over the weekend, and let me tell ya, while it's pretty heavy on storytelling details, it is still thin overall by today's standards. The anime staff clearly respects Tezuka's work since there is an unmistakably Buddhist overtone to the whole thing and the general structure is reminiscent of late-era Tezuka. Hyakkimaru's journey is essentially the Buddhist practice of genzoku, a process by which a dedicated Buddhist practitioner returns to lay status, but the irony here is Hyakkimaru, who by definition is born a Buddhist saint due to the lack of any and all worldly desires, involuntarily attains the status through his father's personal greed motivated deal with demons. This is a fairly interesting take since Hyakkimaru would not be making a return journey to the world of desire but a reversed one from sainthood to a layperson. If handled well, the story has the potential to be very impactful. Other instances of similar dynamic reversals exist throughout the few episodes aired so far where Buddhist concepts are juxtaposed against the cruel realities of the story's setting, many of which are meaningfully thought provoking and rewardingly contemplative. The mini story arc presented in episode 5 and 6 is a great example of the anime's capable execution so far.
If this doesn't fumble down the line, I can see it making my 2019 top five, easily.