Here’s how Cowboy Bebop’s best character became a corgi dog

Cowboy Bebop is a legend amongst anime fans but one of the show's most iconic characters Ein wasn't always going to be a corgi dog

Here's how Cowboy Bebop's best character became a corgi dog

I’m someone whose knowledge of various anime series wouldn’t fill a postage stamp. Oh sure, I can tell Naruto characters and One Piece characters apart, but that’s basically as far as my expertise stretch, really, but even I’ve heard of Cowboy Bebop, and I’m well aware of the little corgi Ein.

What I didn’t know, however, was this bestest of boys wasn’t always a corgi, and it took the Cowboy Bebop staff a while to nail down the design of this genetically engineered super dog. According to Shinichiro Watanabe, the animated series‘ director, he wanted the anime character to be a dog from the start; he just didn’t know what type of dog.

Yatate would later tell IGN he struck on the idea to make Ein a corgi when someone working on the show expressed a fondness for the dogs. “I had a very strong request from the scenario writer that she really loved corgis, and we had to have a corgi,” he explained. “She told me there’s no way of doing any other type of dogs. It had to be a corgi.”

There was just one problem no one in the design department could nail the dog’s design, and he kept messing up his sketches. To solve the problem, the animation director, Toshiro Kawamoto, asked a friend if he could use their pet corgi as a reference, but they still couldn’t quite get Ein to work. So there was only one thing for it  Kawamoto would adopt his own Corgi and use them as a reference.

“I have a friend who owns a Welsh Corgi”, Kawamoto told Geek Bomb. “Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make actual contact with my friend’s dog so I was only sent photos and videos. I designed the character based on the photos and video I received – because of how I feel as an animator, I have to know how the dog moves and how the dog acts, and I couldn’t get complete information from just these photos and videos.”

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“So, to overcome this,” he continued,” I decided to have a Welsh Corgi of my own whilst working on Cowboy Bebop and named her Coline. As Ein is a male dog, and I was working on Ein with that in mind, the amount of time spent with my own Welsh Corgi ended up influencing the character so much that in the second half of the series of Cowboy Bebop Ein’s personality and movements became similar to my feminine version of the Welsh Corgi rather than the original male version.”

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