Rumiko Takahashi is one of the most famous and wealthy female mangaka in Japan, authoring such classic and well-known series (even to those in the west) such as Inuyasha, Ranma1/2, Urusei Yatsura, and Maison Ikkoku. These animes were a part of my childhood on Animax. So I would have continued watching this regardless. This woman is the master of romcom- pentagons, so you will be laughing if you like this formula.
In this season, we continue to have many conflicts with Rokudo and Mamiya, as those around them shake up their everyday lives. Hunting spirits, fighting demons, other exorcists getting romantic problems.
KnR may even be worse off than a series like Rumiko’s other series because it’s entirely focused on comedy slice of life. There’s not really a plot or endgame here to drive the characters forward or develop the world. We had the age-gap relationship in Maison Ikkoku, the fight for Soul Jewel in Inuyasha, the arranged marriage in Ramma 1/2 and the mistake engagement in Urusei Yatsura.
Well, the annoyance/antagonist, we have Rinnie’s father and his organisation and other soul-reapers. Rumiko has the deadbeat dad down to a T. We got a new shinegama, who is in love with his father, but also lives next to Rinne and is poor like him, Shima, Renge. The uptight, white-collar Kain and demon Masato, who is Rinne strongest foe.
As long as one understands the format, and understands that the show should probably be watched in moderation given that is was designed as a weekly gag comic, unless you really love Rumic humour such as myself; then in that case you are in for a treat. It has a nice balance between 1 main story and having many small side stories. The main story is Rinnie’s spirit business trying to solve his debt, but in my opinion, he will never be able to at his charging rate. The other stories we deal with this season is Rinnie mother being reborn, the reason for his dad being such a bastard, and Sakura’s emerging memories.
The characters are what drive Rumiko Takahashi’s manga; they feature a certain type of character design philosophy where you can probably predict their reactions in the variety of situations they are placed in, Rumiko is great at creating archetypes, so the strength of this is that it allows the situation to define the comedy, and the viewer not to be alienated if they had missed something over the long periods her shows/manga stay in publication.
Rinne is poor,cheap and has a weakness for money but is ultimately a good guy who deeply cares for his friends and particularly Sakura. Sabato is a scumbag, Tamako is best oneesan, Sakura is unfazed, Jumonji throws holy ash, Riko and Miho run away scared, etc. The characters are predictable so that they can be placed in situations and you know where they are going.
Takahashi’s art style shines through, and is honestly a blast from the past which really shows up in how the bangs pop out on the side. She was always ahead of her time however so it feels like a great mix of new and old. Her work is widely influential on the “Anime” aesthetic and it really allows her work to easily move into more modern decades than many of her contemporaries. The animation is mostly on point with some drops here or there, but don’t expect any sakuga here. The show overall looks refreshing and the colour choices really pop, even if the animation is limited.
If you enjoy slice-of-life anime, a bit of comedy and romance, then this is a more than suitable anime for you to watch. You can just sit back and enjoy the laugh and episode nature of this series without having to thinking too hard .