Natsume Yuujinchou San – 02 Review
Here I thought I was going to be writing a short post but… I could not help myself.
Episode 2 (28)
Ahhh, at this rate I will be starting all my reviews with a happy nostalgic sigh. Afterall, Natusume Yuujinchou just has this ability to make you all warm and fuzzy and make you want to reminisce after each episode.
So this episode focuses on the dynamics of Natusme and Tanuma’s friendship and gives us an insight into how they both handle open themselves up to one another. Also, we get to see more of Reiko’s past, and honestly, I am starting to really like her a lot, I really loved the flashback scene in this episode. You can’t help but feel that she was just a very isolated girl who used what she got to try and become friends with the yokai’s in her own odd way.
The episode starts off with Natsume wearing a really really ugly shirt. Honestly, what is up with that shirt? This was the look on my face when I saw it -> (o_O!).
So Natsume and Nyanko Sensei are walking through the forest near Tanuma’s home and that is when we learn about the Yokai of the Episode (feels like its the flavour of the week) – Kanawa, from the some of the show’s regular Yokai’s that roam the forest. Kanawa gives off a miasma that will make the weaker Yokai’s ill and humans sick too. The impression that we are given of Kanawa is a bleak and gloomy one that sets him out to be a evil yokai.
Because of the reappearance of the Kanawa, the yokai’s suspeected that Tanuma’s dad may have kicked the bucket and died. This got Natsume worried. The next day, on Natsume’s way to school, he meets Yokai no. 2 – Sagume. During the first meeting she asks for her name back from Natsume but Natsume brushes her away telling her that he has to head to school and will do it later. In school, Natsume sees Tanuma and we see the inner struggle that Natsume goes through as he tries and open up to his friend and reach out to help his friend and show his worry, of course he fails to do so thinking it was not his place to meddle.
On his way back from school Sagume stops Natsume again to get her name back. We see Sagume reaching out for the Book of Friends while Natsume searches for her name, but right before she could touch it, Nyanko sensei appears. On the third meeting, Natsume realises that Sagume’s name is not in the book and this is when Sagume goes on to tell Natsume the story of how her brother and her left their village of spirits called Ukihara Village and she was just trying to find her brother so that they could return. However, she then attacks Natsume and before she could do more harm, Misuzu appears telling Natsume and Nyanko Sensei that weaker yokai’s in his territory have recently been devoured by someone.
At school, Natsume finally manages to ask about Tanuma’s dad and we find out he was just out of town.
The following day, upon hearing that Tanuma had collapsed Natsume runs to the temple looking for Tanuma where he meets Kanawa and we learn about how he is actually not an evil yokai. Sagume also reappears and is defeated by Kanawa and Kanawa returns to his village. It then flashes back to the past where Kanawa and Reiko had first met and the episode ends with Natsume and Tanuma becoming closer friends and learning to open themselves up to one another.
I found it really intersting how we get to see Tanuma as he struggles to protect Natsume and Natsume as he struggles to put himself out there, both so uncertain about their friendship. This episode really placed a huge emphasis on their bond. And I found this simple issue of the lack of interaction between them to be something that people can connect with so easily. I mean, how many times have you wanted to say something to a friend but held back because you were unsure whether it was stepping over the invisible line of friendship to say it.
Sometimes, silence tells us more than words ever could.
Nyanko Sensei was hilarious as always and it is always a good thing to see the reappearance of Misuzu and the other yokais from the previous seasons.
The story this episode was nice but Kanawa did not move me the same way that the teacup yokai in the last episode did. I felt for Kanawa and really liked the story though. He is like a lost knight who left on an adventure that turned into a nightmare and simply wants to return to his kingdom to rest in peace. The way the story telling in Natsume Yuujinchou manages to make Yokai’s seem more humane than the human characters is so magical and I think that that is why I love this show so much.
What really touched me and got me feeling all warm and fuzzy this episode was the flashback scene of the “fight” between Reiko and Kanawa. It made Reiko seem so endearing like a little lost kid and it was so nice of Kanawa to invite her to his village.
The animation was slightly weird at times, I still can’t get over how odd Natsume’s face looks whenever he returns a name. The drawing in this episode though not obvious was also a bit sloppy at times, I only realised this when I was doing the image captures. Other than the small issues, the show generally maintains its quality.
Overall, it was a good episode with a nice storyline and despite the show’s episodic style, the development between the relationships of the characters, however subtle, makes it more than just a ‘miss one episode and it won’t matter’ sort of show.
So folks, what is this show to you? Because to me, it is my weekly medicine to a hectic life.
If you like Natsume Yuujinchou, you might want to check this out.
Posted on July 13, 2011, in Anime, Natsume Yuujinchou San and tagged Comedy, episode 2, episode 28, Natsume Yuujinchou San, Natsume Yuujinchou San Review, Slice of Life, Supernatural. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.