The Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 release date has already been confirmed by production company Pierrot and it’s way sooner than most anime fans would have expected. It turns out Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 will be coming out later in 2018, although the real question fans are asking is whether Tokyo Ghoul Season 5 is possible based on the pacing of the anime adaptation.
The Tokyo Ghoul manga and anime series was one of the top-selling media franchises in Japan in 2017, beating popular series like My Hero Academia and Sword Art Online. Although the anime industry is operating at peak capacity thanks to a shortage in manpower, video streaming companies like Netflix, Crunchyroll, Hulu, and Amazon have provided a glut of streaming revenue and producing anime sequels is all the rage. Even Studio Madhouse is producing sequels nowadays.
In June 2018, Weekly Young Jump announced the ending of the Tokyo Ghoul: re manga series, which has been serialized in the magazine since 2014. That means the story will end with Tokyo Ghoul: re Chapter 178, but already fans believe creator Sui Ishida is setting up the conditions necessary for launching a Part 3 to the manga series. It’s also possible that Ishida has been using symbolism related to tarot cards to foreshadow the third act of the manga (for more details, please read this article.)
The manga series has been published in hardcover tankobon format. Tokyo Ghoul: re Volume 16 is scheduled to release in Japan on July 19, 2018 (the same day Tokyo Ghoul: re Episode 12 airs). Assuming that a Part 3 is indeed planned, an announcement is likely to take place in the final volume since that’s how the Tokyo Ghoul: re manga was launched when the first part ended.
VIZ Media has licensed the English translation of the Tokyo Ghoul: re manga. The book publisher will only be up to Volume 5 as of June 19, 2018, but VIZ Media plans on releasing a new volume every two months through 2019.
- Tokyo Ghoul: re Volume 6: August 21, 2018
- Tokyo Ghoul: re Volume 7: October 16, 2018
- Tokyo Ghoul: re Volume 8: December 18, 2018
All four seasons of the anime adaptation are being produced by Studio Pierrot. Writer Chuji Mikasano produced the scripts for the first three seasons and also the OVA Tokyo Ghoul: Jack (but not Tokyo Ghoul: PINTO). Director Odahiro Watanabe (previously best known for Super Lovers and Soul Buster) replaced Shuehei Morita, who directed the first two seasons. Character designer Kazuhiro Miwa was replaced by Atsuko Nakajima. The staff for producing Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 has not been announced, but it’s possible they will remain the same.
This article provides everything that is known about Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news and rumors. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.
Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 Officially Labeled As Tokyo Ghoul Season 2
When Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 was first unofficially announced by Yonkou Productions back in April 2018 it was initially believed that the continuation of Tokyo Ghoul: re would be considered a split-cour anime. That’s when a single season of an anime takes a break from broadcasting for a single three-month unit of time and then resumes during the next anime season. As an example, the fourth season of Food Wars! was officially labeled as being the second part of the third season despite taking a seasonal break.
Although Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 fits the definition of a split-cour anime when the key visual was released the new season was officially labeled as Tokyo Ghoul re Season 2.
Tokyo Ghoul:re Season 2 Key Visual. pic.twitter.com/5VY3f84S1S
— YonkouProductions (@YonkouProd) June 11, 2018
It’s quite notable that Touka is being shown next to Haise Sasaki in the key visual. Anime-only fans of the series will be pleased to know that Touka shows up a whole lot more in the second half of the Tokyo Ghoul: re story. It’s even possible that Chapter 125 will be adapted in all its explicit detail (please see the end of the spoilers section for more details).
Tokyo Ghoul: re Manga Compared To The Anime Adaptation
Any discussion of the manga compared to the anime has to begin with the first two seasons. Studio Pierrot cut a few plot points with Season 1, but Season 2 was largely non-canon. Many details related to plot developments in Tokyo Ghoul: re were left out entirely, but the biggest change in the anime version was that Ken Kaneki joined Aogiri Tree rather than protecting his friends by forming his own ghoul organization. In the manga’s story, this group attacked the Aogiri Tree, the Ghoul Restaurant, and the CCG, which meant about 90 percent of Season 2’s episodes were anime original content.
The search for Professor Akihiro Kanou was erased and that’s important because he merged Kaneki and the body of the ghoul Rize Kamishiro as a prototype for artificially creating ghouls. This experimentation plays a critical role later in the plot of the Tokyo Ghoul: re manga and Kanou considers Kaneki his ultimate creation.
Both versions of the story concluded with the CCG raid on Anteiku, but even the fight between Kaneki and Arima was different. In fact, one animator felt compelled to recreate this final fight since the official anime left so much out.
Season 2 also killed off Hideyoshi Nagachika (Hide), which did not happen in the manga. Pierrot apparently decided to retcon that change in the Tokyo Ghoul: re anime adaptation because the ramifications to the story would have been too great. In Episode 1 of Season 3, Hide is declared to be a missing person on a poster rather than dead. (If you’re having trouble keeping track of the characters, here’s a guide for anime-only audiences.)
To this day, many fans believe Pierrot purposefully rewrote the script provided by mangaka Ishida. However, in a 2018 Reddit AMA, Root A director Shuehei Morita claimed that Ishida himself was instrumental in making the plot changes to the anime adaptation. Shuehei says that he “already knew that Season 2 was going to happen when [he] started Season 1” so they decided to make a transition point out of the scene where Kaneki was tortured by Yamori of the Aogiri Tree.
“Ishida-san had suggested for the first season to be focused on black hair Kaneki, where the second season would be focused on white hair Kaneki,” Shuhei explained. “So we needed that traumatic experience to connect the two seasons and develop the character.”
Shuehei claims that Ishida “specifically wanted us to create something original for the second season, which is why it moves in a different direction,” although he admitted that he believes anime to be a “completely different medium” so he tries to “not just copy the manga.” For example, “Tokyo Ghoul √A‘s aim of Kaneki joining Aogiri” required making major changes.
Shuehei claims Ishida “urged” the director to “change stuff and go a different route” since Ishida had not finished writing the manga’s ending at the time.
“Root A is completely original based on Ishida-san’s original idea. We first started working three months after Season 1 was completed, so we had lots of discussion about the storyline,” Shuhei wrote. “In the case of Tokyo Ghoul: re, Ishida-san had lots of ideas and did share some of them with me. Interesting story: at the time the comic wasn’t finished, he had to consider the final episode before everything started development. I asked Ishida how he would like to end season one, and he gave me the idea that he wanted to see, and then I started working. But Ishida prefers to work on a weekly basis with his manga, so the development was a bit different since he wasn’t entirely sure what direction things were going to move when creating the manga at the time.”
But the director also seems to claim that he was pressured by others in the anime production committee to make even more major changes.
“We had a massive bubble of ideas, but as to not affect the lore of the original manga, it constantly felt like those ideas were being chipped away at by those above me,” he wrote. “I tried my best, and I honestly don’t have any regrets given the movement space I was allowed.”
Thankfully, Season 3 cuts some corners, but the Tokyo Ghoul: re anime otherwise retains all the major plot points from the manga. The ordering of some of the earlier scenes from the manga was rearranged in order to jump straight into the action, but the biggest omission was backstory details relevant to developing the characters.
For example, Episode 1 zipped through six chapters yet skipped a flashback scene from Chapter 5 that showed why eyepatched Tooru Mutsuki wanted “to live as a male.” This was important because it was related to the Quinx Squad member’s mixed feelings about going undercover as a woman for the club scene and why the ghoul Torso reacted in a certain way. The manga spent a lot of time detailing how Mutsuki was overcoming the fear of failure. Even the backstory for uber-otaku Saiko was skipped entirely and those scenes showed her parents and her motivations for receiving Quinx surgery.
The anime completely neglect to properly introduce the concept of RC (Red Child) Cells, a fictional cell type that ghouls use as nutrients. In this fictional world, every human has RC Cells, but a high number of RC Cells determines whether a person is a regular human or ghoul. Eating humans increases RC cells to produce the predatory kagune. Regular humans can only eat normal food because their RC Cell level is below 1,000. The Quinx Squad controls the RC Cells through a surgery that installs a special system of five frames, but these ideas were only briefly covered because Kuki Urie desired more power by receiving frame surgery.
And these changes were not done in order to give more screen time to developing Haise Sasaki’s character further. The pacing slowed significantly with episodes 2 and 3, but an adult Touka was only briefly shown. The anime dropped entire sequences where Haise spent time with Touka at the “re” coffee shop. Anything reminding Haise of his former life is important, but in the manga, Haise also spent a lot of time agonizing over his lost memories.
All in all, the anime adaptation has averaged slightly under a 5-to-1 manga chapter to anime episode ratio. Tokyo Ghoul: re Episode 11 ended with the events of Chapter 52 and fans have already written about the manga/anime differences. Based on this pacing, Tokyo Ghoul: re episode 12 is very likely to end with Chapter 58, which is in the middle of Volume 6. Ending with this story arc is probably the best stopping point since Sasaki recovers his memories and there is also a six-month time gap between the aftermath of the Rosewald/Tsukiyama Group investigation and the events of Chapter 59.
Note: This article will be updated once Tokyo Ghoul: re Episode 12 is released by Funimation.
Tokyo Ghoul Season 5: Anime Sequel To Finish The Story With Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 3 In 2019?
Studio Pierrot may be continuing the story sooner than expected, but it is currently unknown what the number of episodes will be for Tokyo Ghoul Season 4. The first two seasons were 24 episodes combined and adapted 143 chapters of the manga series. The first season cut some corners to wedge in 60 chapters of content, but the second season, Tokyo Ghoul: Root A, was largely non-canon anime original content despite having 83 chapters to draw on.
Since the manga is ending with Chapter 178, that means there are only around 120 chapters left to adapt into anime. Therefore, it is possible Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 could be 24 episodes long and cover the ending of the manga series, which would mean the second cour would air during the winter 2019 anime season. The only other option is that there is another seasonal break and the series ends with Tokyo Ghoul Season 5/Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 3.
The only issue is the availability of Studio Pierrot since anime projects take years to develop. They have not announced any of their projects for 2019, although it is possible Black Clover Season 2 could be renewed. Let’s just hope the studio doesn’t leave fans hanging for years.
Tokyo Ghoul: re Blu-Ray Release Dates Coming Up In 2018
Season 3 (or the first season of Tokyo Ghoul: re) is being distributed over six Blu-ray and DVD volumes. Volume 1 includes the first two episodes and it releases on June 27, 2018. The box set comes with bonus picture labels, hand-written messages by cast members, a video of the AnimeJapan 2018 event stage, and a picture gallery. Volume 2 will be released on July 25, 2018.
Purchasers of Volume 1 will be entered into a lottery for a special event attended by Hanae Natsuki, Kaito Ishikawa, Yuma Uchida, Natsumi Fujiwara, and Ayane Sakura. The event is taking place in Tokyo’s Japan Education Center on September 9, 2018.
Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 Release Date Set For The 2018 Fall Anime Season
As of the last update, Pierrot or any company related to the production of the anime has only officially confirmed that the Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 release date will be during the 2018 fall anime season. That means October, but the exact Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 premiere date has not yet been announced.
Tokyo Ghoul:re colorspread announcing ending in 3 chapters and season 2 premiere in October 2018. pic.twitter.com/NAj5yuqLU5
— YonkouProductions (@YonkouProd) June 11, 2018
As previously mentioned, it’s possible that Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 could be 24 episodes or a split-anime season that finishes the entire story. Once the exact premiere date and the number of episodes are officially confirmed this article will be updated with the relevant information.
Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 Spoilers
Six months have passed since the Rosewald Extermination Operation that ended Season 3. The CCG is focused on exterminating the Aogiri Tree organization and finding and eliminating the One-Eyed Owl. Most of Aogiri’s hideouts in the 23rd Ward have been crushed and the ghouls are retreating into strongholds.
Kuki Urie is now the leader of the Quinx Squad now that Haise Sasaki voluntarily stepped down as the mentor for the Quinx Squad. Audiences will be introduced to a new Quinx Squad member named Shinsanpei Aura. While initially shy, respectful, and formal, the teenager becomes filled with rage when his aunt, Kiyoko Aura, is injured by a defecting CCG investigator. Aura becomes focused on vengeance to the point that he will go to any lengths and begins to develop a cruel streak.
Among the ghouls, Sasaki is now nicknamed the Black Reaper. Sasaki was promoted after fighting the One-Eyed Owl and now he’s targeting specific members of Aogiri Tree. He believes that the CCG should find the One Eyed-King, whose identity is unknown although it’s assumed this person must be socially influential. Therefore, Sasaki encourages the CCG to launch a strike against a suspected Aogiri stronghold in order to find the One-Eyed King.
Mutsuki is now a Rank-1 investigator as part of the Hachikawa Squad. They are sent to investigate an island in the Tokyo Bay called Rushima, which the CCG believes to be a secret Aogiri Tree base of operations. There, the squad overhears Eto Yoshimura giving a speech during an assembly of ghouls.
Eto announces that she is the One-Eyed Owl and that she has been publishing books under the penname Sen Takatsuki. She claims that the CCG is not what it seems and that the true goal of the Aogiri Tree is to eliminate the secret guiding hand behind the creation of the CCG. The squad also overhears Eto talking about the identity of the One-Eyed King only to be forced to flee when Owl discovers them listening.
The Hachikawa squad is ambushed in a cave by Torso and Mutsuki is captured by Torso. Another squad member manages to escape the island, leading to the Rushima Landing Operation. Their goal is to destroy Aogiri Tree while also rescuing Mutsuki.
During these events, the mysterious Scarecrow is spotted paddling away from the island in a rowboat. Eto is captured and sent to an interrogation room. When Sasaki confronts Eto, their conversation ends with Eto asking him to fulfill her wish of killing the One-Eyed King, which only confuses Sasaki.
Meanwhile, the ghouls launch a rescue operation of their own on the Cochlea prison. Sasaki is attached to the squad of his mentor, Kishou Arima, in defense of the prison, but while patrolling the cells his mind is suddenly besieged with the memories of Ken Kaneki. He recalls his own imprisonment in Cochlea, time spent with Hide, and how Arima was instrumental in establishing his new identity as a CCG investigator.
Sasaki resolves to release young Hinami Fueguchi from the Cochlea prison, which only triggers an alarm. Although other ghouls, including Touka, come to the rescue, Sasaki finds himself facing Arima all alone. Sasaki is brutalized by Arima, but the fight triggers even more memories, especially since Arima directly calls him Ken Kaneki. The battle against Arima causes Kaneki to reemerge even more, increasing Sasaki/Kaneki’s strength.
Warning: Major spoilers are contained in the following paragraphs.
The end of this battle in Chapter 83 results in Arima slitting is own throat only to reveal shocking truths to Sasaki/Kaneki with his dying breath. Arima himself is not what he would seem on the surface since he’s a failed half-human hybrid. Due to this experimentation, Arima attained enhanced strength at the cost of accelerated aging and he was already dying, anyway.
Arima has been conspiring with others to lead a revolution against a secret organization called V, which seeks to control the balance between ghouls and humans. It turns out the Washuu Clan, the family which created the CCG in 1890, are actually all ghouls secretly operating within the CCG itself. The Washuu Clan has been working with V all along and they have rigged the RC cell scanners to allow them to pass as humans. Just before dying, Arima requests that Kaneki proclaim himself to be Arima’s killer to the CCG and that he’d soon understand why.
When escaping Cochlea in Chapter 86, Kaneki comes across Eto and she shocks even more with yet another stunning revelation. Eto says that Kaneki no longer needs to complete her earlier request since he’s already killed the One-Eyed King, who was Arima. In reality, the One-Eyed King was not a person but a title that was passed from person to person and Eto claims Arima was simply “keeping the seat warm” for the next King.
It’s these shocking revelations that cause Sasaki/Kaneki to defect from the CCG. Kaneki eventually declares himself to be the One-Eyed King when confronted by CCG members. A month passes and Kaneki is reunited with Touka while in hiding in the 24th Ward. As the new King, he forms a new organization called Goat, whose goal is to create a world where humans and ghouls live together peacefully. In order to accomplish this goal, Kaneki begins gathering surviving members from other organizations, including Aogiri tree and Anteiku.
The Washuu Clan and the CCG eventually realize that the Goat organization is a major threat, which causes the forces of V to emerge. Their goal is to kill Kaneki, whom they call the Nameless King.
A person who is both a CCG investigator and a secret major player in the ghoul world is revealed as being the main antagonist to the entire series. Without revealing this person’s identity, this enemy operates under multiple identities and as an agent of V has infiltrated organizations on both sides.
It turns out this person was responsible for many major events in the series, including the steel beam incident that killed Rize and resulted in Kaneki becoming a half-ghoul because of the enemy’s involvement in Professor Akihiro Kanou’s ghoulification experiments. Needless to say, Kaneki’s final confrontation with this enemy is the climax of the entire manga series, which means that this enemy will also play a crucial role in the plot of Tokyo Ghoul Season 5.
Assuming that the pacing for Tokyo Ghoul Season 4 remains the same as the third season, it will probably end somewhere around Chapter 126 because there is a major time gap at that point in the manga’s story. The ending will focus on a CCG raid on the 24th Ward where ghouls are being slaughtered in the streets and Goat bases are destroyed.
But that’s probably not what will make the ending memorable. It’s possible Studio Pierrot will finish the fourth season with the infamous Tokyo Ghoul: re Chapter 125, which features a steamy sex scene between Touka and Kaneki. While it’s not quite hentai, the scene is ecchi enough that it’s highly likely to be censored for Japanese TV broadcasting.
However, ending at that point would also split up a major story arc, so Tokyo Ghoul: re Season 2 could also find an ending somewhere around Chapter 116. That option seems more likely since the pacing has been less than five chapters per episode on average. If that happens, it means anime fans will have to impatiently wait until the Kaneki x Touka ship sails in Tokyo Ghoul Season 5. Stay tuned!