When it comes to long running Japanese manga sagas, which later become animes, one of two things happen. The anime contains exactly the same content as the manga (as is the case with contemporary examples like Gunslinger Girl), down to precisely replicating scenes, or to stimulate new interest or a different age group, the content varies. Both Appleseed and GITS are like this, with each series differing significantly from the mangas that inspired them. So complicated are the differences between Appleseed as a book and motion picture, another chart is needed, just to summarize a few.

Compare the differences:[]

The Manga The Anime
Era depicted: 2124-2129, canon [1] 2131-2137, non canon [1]
Post World War III and IV? Yes World War III only [2]
Olympus Regular Army exists: No Yes [3]
The Seven Elders are: Bioroid, protagonist Human, antagonist
The Seven Elders die? No Yes, in 2131
Other organized countries exist? Yes, many None in 2131, some in 2137
Bioroid genocide is attempted? Indirectly, Book Two Directly, in 2131
Briareos' original ethnicity is: Afro-American Hispanic
Deunan immigrates to Olympus: With Briareos Alone
Deunan joins ESWAT: Following a promotion Immediately
Athena knew Deunan in the past: Never Since Deunan's childhood
Carl Knute's DNA is present in: Some Bioroids All Bioroids
Gilliam Knute [4] is murdered by: Black supremacists Olympus Regular Army
Bioroids cannot reproduce? Unclear No in 2131, yes by 2137


[1] The events of the manga are canon (e.g., in sequence). The animes produced in 2004 and 2007, although beginning in a later timeframe than the manga, are not canon, and cover topics and stories already covered in the books, as a reinterpretation.

[2] The 2004 movie episode (set in 2131) depicts World War III to be in the early 2120s. The 2007 sequel Ex Machina (2137 timeframe, canon), declares in writing that a large earth conflict began in 2133, after the events of the first episode. Whether this is supposed to have been World War IV isn't known, because no name is given to the conflict.

[3] The ORA was featured in the 2004 episodes to tie together many unrelated plot elements used from all four manga volumes. When a trilogy was announced after the success of this movie, the ORA was dropped and brand new plots adopted, and fewer throwbacks used.

[4] In the manga, Gilliam is not depicted or named, and is simply referred to as a motherly figure.