Iwájú

Iwájú

TV-PG

Disney explores a futuristic Lagos in this charming though predictable animated sci-fi flick

7.0

TV Show

Canada, United Kingdom
English
Animation, Comedy, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
2024
Dayo Okeniyi, Femi Branch, Siji Soetan

TLDR

Disney, please continue to make these collaborations instead of acquiring nearly every other studio under the sun.

What it's about

Tola, daughter to a wealthy tech executive, and her self-taught best friend Kole, set out on an adventure to a futuristic mainland Lagos, where they discover secrets about their respective worlds.

The take

White creators handling African stories rarely turn out well, so thankfully, Disney decided to collaborate with pan-African Kugali Studio for their newest series Iwájú. This collaboration, instead of working alone, proves to be fruitful, as Iwájú dreams up of a futuristic world that is distinctly Nigerian, that still captures the real inequalities but also unique art styles and some genuine heart through its relatable characters. The series still does go through its recycled formula, with the familiar precocious pre-teen protagonist and their cute animal sidekick, but to Disney’s credit, it’s great to see them collaborate with, rather than shut down, smaller international studios, even ones that once wanted to “kick Disney’s arse” (Kugali’s words, not mine).

What stands out

Disney using the usual animal sidekick to make the idea of artificial intelligence seem cute feels a smidge sinister, especially considering their latest forays in using the technology.

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