I’ll be reviewing my recent favourite manga/anime called Kamisama Hajimemashita by Suzuki Julietta. The genres of this manga/anime are comedy, fantasy, romance, school life, shoujo, supernatural.
The anime of Kamisama Hajimemashita is only 13 episodes long but it’s really funny and entertaining to watch. I especially like to watch the anime version when the story itself is full of action so I get to see the characters in action. Some examples of anime versions being better than their manga versions because you get to see the action in motion in my opinion, are Vampire Knight and Chihayafuru.
That being said, that doesn’t mean that the mangas aren’t good because the mangas are the ones that bring the stories to a whole new level as the animes only stop halfway.
I started watching Kamisama Hajimemashita during my 2-week break because I was really bored with no new material to watch. I then remembered one of my friends recommending me its manga, saying it was really good and funny. I wasn’t too keen on it but I decided to give it a try and just watch one episode to see if it was worth continuing.
And the first episode blew me away. By the end of the first episode, I found myself laughing at the humourous ways the characters interacted with each other and I felt quite drawn to the characters too. I continued to watch the rest of the episodes and the 13 episodes were pretty satisfying, except that some parts of the story are different and messed up when compared to the manga.
‘Supernatural’ is generally not my favourite manga genre so I was sceptical about this manga/anime. My type of genres are usually ‘school life’, ‘shoujo’, ‘mature’, ‘romance’, ‘comedy’, ‘slice of life’ and ‘drama’. I’m quite picky when it comes to ‘supernatural’ genre, choosing to read only Vampire Knight and Black Bird from this genre but this story has earned my readership completely.
The story starts off as the following:
Momozono Nanami gets thrown out of her house after her father accumulated a huge debt due to gambling. With nowhere to go, Nanami sits at a park bench and chases a dog away from a man who shouts for help as he is afraid of dogs. In thanks to her, the man decides to give Nanami his home after hearing her story. Nanami follows a hand-drawn map by the man and ends up at a shrine.
To her shock, the shrine has two shrine spirits and a fox demon named Tomoe. Tomoe is less than welcoming while the shrine spirits welcome her as the new Land God. Nanami realises that the kiss that the man gave her on her forehead earlier on was the mark of a Land God.
After some difficulties, including a close shave with a witch in the Netherworld, Nanami manages to make Tomoe her familiar, binding him to her as her helper and servant. And thus starts the beginning of their life together, filled with twists and turns and surprises. The result of making Tomoe her familiar was too hilarious for words. His reaction is just priceless ^^
The manga is better than the anime in the sense that it is more detailed and I feel that the characters have more depth here. The only difference is that when I watch the anime and I hear the characters speaking and see their expressions at the same time, my heart melts/aches for them. You don’t get that while reading manga unless the art of their expressions is detailed and beautifully drawn.
I love this story because Nanami is a heroine who faces her problems head-on. She is very forthright, however that has led to her improper behaviour that she displays most of the time. She also stands for what she believes in and won’t anyone sway that belief. Nanami also has a tendency to attempt to bite off more than she can chew. However, that has earned her the respect of many other demons and gods alike, who are amazed and impressed by the way she does things and through her actions, she can change the way others see things to match her own.
Tomoe is a great character too. He is what I would think of as our hesitant and stubborn nature. Hesitant to love and stubborn to give in to his feelings. I’m pretty sure we all know what wins out in the end. But when he does eventually realise his feelings and gives in to them, he suffers the consequences for it and now we are just waiting for new releases to know the rest of the story. Tomoe treats Nanami with a mixture of kindness and protectiveness though he does have an entertaining mean streak to him and he can also treat her coldly at times. But above all, Tomoe treasures Nanami dearly and places her above everything else.
The other characters are wonderfully entertaining too and I like it because it brings colour to the story and shows us a comical side to them. Especially the shrine spirits Onikiri and Kotetsu, Mizuki, a snake demon who will become Nanami’s familiar halfway through the story and Kurama, a Tengu who likes to tease Nanami and get close to her.
Here’s a funny scene in the anime between Kurama, Nanami and Tomoe:
If you asked me what struck me in the anime and the manga, it was the use of this phrase that was repeated quite a few times:
‘Let’s go home’
It basically shows us the importance and emphasis of home that this story showed us from the very beginning. The shrine is Nanami, Tomoe, Onikiri, Kotetsu and Mizuki’s home and because it is their home, they would always return there. And the amazing thing is, Nanami is the one saying this phrase almost all the time. See the emphasis placed on home and the fact that Nanami is the one saying it shows that she treasures the idea of a home very much.
Art: 10/10 (The characters are wonderfully drawn and the way they’re drawn suit their personalities)
Story: 10/10 (This story is highly enjoyable to read and watch ^^)
Chapter length: 8/10 (Quite reasonable I would say. Some are short (30+) some are long (40+)