(I even made it prettier than mine by adding more pictures. Yay!)
Check out the dood’s previous contributions here:
- Kannazuki no Miko “Reborn” Fanmade Script
- Kannazuki no Miko “Reborn” Fanmade Script Part 2: Villains
You know, I see people talking about Yuri Kuma Arashi, Yuru Yuri, Nanoha, and the like and while they seem to be nice shows and I know people love them, there is one show to me that I think needs a better understanding in order to appreciate it for what it is.
Kannazuki no Miko.
The reason I’m doing a 2nd review of this is because I feel like this show is getting picked on for ALL the wrong reasons, and I find that sad and pathetic.
Now, do I think its THE GREATEST anime ever made in history. Absolutely not. BUT, at the same time I do consider this to be a flagship yuri classic that needs to be better appreciated and to do that, let me delve deep into this.
But first things first, let me get small briefing on the story.
Himeko is a shy girl who attends the same school as her friends, including her potential love interest and childhood friend, Soma.
Himeko also reveres the lovely Chikane Himemiya who is a crown jewel in her school.
On their birthday, an ancient evil awakens and threatens to destroy the Earth, unless Himeko and Chikane fulfill their duty to awaken Ame no Murakumo. Himeko and Chikane are also the reincarnations of the Solar and Lunar Priestesses who stopped Orochi long ago and the Orochi is an evil entity that manifests its “necks” in the form of mecha. Soma, who was supposed to destroy Himeko and Chikane, must help destroy the Orochi.
Now, let me get straight to the so called “flaws” this show has, or the one that people has the MOST problem with.
The mechas, the friggin MECHAS.
I’m always amused by the notion that just because this show has mechas, it must be bad. Oh, and other complaints seem amusing such as “Soma sucks, he’s annoying” and “Himeko is the dumbest blonde ever” and Chikane is “evil bitch who should never be with Himeko” and then there’s the “Oh, there’s a pop idol, catgirl, manga artist, WTF????” and I never bought ANY of it.
Let me focus on the mechas.
First of all, how does this show attempt to appeal to EVERYONE out there?
So, a yuri anime with mecha and fantasy elements constitute a show that has EVERY thing you’ve seen in an anime wrapped in one? Like really?
Lemme show two shows that I believe follow an example similar to KnM. Gasraki and Eureka Seven
Gasaraki mixes mecha with ancient Japanese culture. Any problems here?
Or Eureka Seven where it combined Mecha, hetero romance, and adventure in one. So…where’s the outrage there?
I guess, if it has lesbians in it, its yuri and yuri is a genre of itself.
And when you put thousands of polar opposite genres together(Yuri, Mecha, Fantasy), its a complete trainwreck.
To me, I think the mechas bring some originality to not just mecha in particular, but also yuri in itself.
I can’t think of any other show, where mecha is portrayed in the supernatural sense, rather than a political or scf fi sense.
The mecha designs where done by Goro Murata, who did mecha design for Blue Seed, Legend of Black Heaven, and Tench Muyo GXP.
The mecha designs are well made and give me a sense of nostalgia. Reminding me of G Gundam, and the fights themselves are pretty fun and epic to watch.
Animation wise, like many more famous classics before it, its not gonna look BEAUTIFUL for today’s standards but back then it looked really nice with vibrant colors and pretty BGs that help the setting.
The character designs were done by Maki Fuji who did Strawberry Eggs, UFO Ultramaiden Valkyrie, and recently Bladedance of Elementalers.
She did a really good job on designing not only the characters themselves, but the uniforms themselves. They look cute enough to be appealing to the eyes and I wouldn’t mind trying out those the ones Soma was.
Voice acting is a mixed bag, when it comes to comparison.
While the Japanese original is FLAWLESS, the english dub just isn’t as good. Don’t get me wrong, Stephanie Steh and Michelle Ruff played their parts decently enough, but their performance compared to the original takes some of the magic away. Everyone else did okay, but I recommend you listen to it subbed.
The soundtrack is one of the BEST things about this series.
It was done by Mina Kubota, who also worked on the Aria series, Kaleido Star, A Letter to Momo, Shattered Angels, and Tamayura.
Its one of the best OSTs I’ve heard in anime, as it has BEAUTIFUL piano work, combing with some classical style elements, including a Japanese pipe to add the icing on the cake. Not only do we some cool battle music, but we have some well done heavy hearted scores to compliment the scenes, appropriately. Just fantastic! Job well done, Ms. Kubota.
Did I mention the OP and ED are some of the greatest OP and ED songs ever including the insert?
The story is, while not the greatest ever, is one of the most heartbreaking ones I’ve seen in anime.
The idea that you are forced by fate to kill someone you love then having to say goodbye that person who loves you back is pretty tear jerking.
I think what Chikane had to do can be up for question but you CAN’T deny the pain she and Himeko had to go through.
Himeko is also a good character, who did show some backbone later in the series by finishing the ritual by herself, injuring herself. That takes some guts, especially for her.
Not to mention the fact, that she would be able to love Chikane even after for all the terrible things she did, makes me give her mad respect.
I also like Souma’s hot bloodedness. And here, I thought he was gonna be more like a wimpy harem protagonist than a badass who just wants to protect someone he loves, especially when you consider what he had to go through himself.
I also like Mako, Otoha, Kazuki and the rest of the cast.
Though, I’ve had a bit of a personal interest in both Nekoko and Reiko.
Nekoko has a rather dark past which she seemed to be a medical experiment. and her constant destruction might be a good indicator despite her cheerfulness. Reiko, who wrote rather dark manga seemed to be struggling with her own success and I personally would have liked to see a little more what was going in her head.
Pacing is good, and while it might start out sort of slow for some, you gotta press on when we get to the later episodes, when it gets REALLY dark.
Then the show becomes exciting again.
Now, if you want me to complain about ONE thing in the series.
Well…for one thing. I personally wish this was LONGER.
I would have SO many more yuri scenes with Chikane and Himeko if it did.
So all in all, Kannazuki no Miko is a show that’s definitely not for everyone but it doesn’t have to be.
At the same time, it shouldn’t be considered anything more than a beautiful story about love and the tragedy behind it with mecha.
I feel if people delve deep into its premise before actually going in, you’d might have a better grasp of what you’re seeing.
I think the problem here is that its too weird for most mainstream anime viewers. And that’s the thing, you can’t be different in the anime world, you have to be all fanservicey and what not, not that fanservice is a BAD thing. I think this series is brilliant and what happens, you get crucified for being too different and hopefully this show will one day be properly recognized for being so good.
One of the best and most underrated anime out there.