First Impressions: Nekogami Yaoyorozu

Since Nekogami Yaoyorozu is the only show that I had expectations for this season and met those (moderately high) expectations, I’m very excited about it. I came for a fake Touhou anime, and that’s what I got—lazy immortal gods grappling with poverty, awesome character designs, yuri hijinks, and a very “yukkuri shiteite ne” vibe of comedy—but also well thought-out classifications and fighting systems for the occasional lighthearted battle. This is exactly how I imagine a Touhou anime would be.

None of that is surprising because FLIPFLOPs was a popular Touhou doujin circle that went pro with this and a few other, shorter manga. The last time we got an anime adaption of a manga by a former Tohou doujin artist, it was Yumekui Merry by Ushiki Yoshitaka, which had some pretty obvious Touhou influences. However, this is a whole different ball game. Ushiki had done a couple of Touhou doujins, most popularly Advent Cirno, which is a parody action manga that combines Touhou with Final Fantasy: Advent Children; meanwhile, FLIPFLOPs has done an assload of Touhou doujins, including the fantastic Two Scarlet Sacraments Under the Starry Sky, which is a complete retelling (or even adaption) of The Embodiment of Scarlet Devil. While most of their doujins may have been more parody, it’s clear that FLIPFLOPs is really attached to Touhou mythos itself.

It only takes a glance at the character designs in Nekogami to determine that they look an awful lot like Touhou characters, and a mere plot description is enough to make it sound one step short of an outright adaption.

From Far East Hallucination

In any case, while reading Two Scarlet Sacraments had the most to do with psyching me for Nekogami, the Touhou background wasn’t the only thing that grabbed my interest.

Nekogami comes from a weird production background considering the tameness of the series’ content. This is a show wherein the characters wear a *lot* of clothes that don’t come off a whole lot, and fanservice moments are nearly nonexistent. It becomes surprising when you line it up with the other manga in its magazine, Champion Red (Seikon no Qwaser, Yomeiro Choice, Shigurui—yes, this is somehow a shounen magazine), and the other shows by its studio, AIC PLUS+ (Asobi ni Iku yo!, Nana to Kaoru, Quiz Magic Academy 2—yes, that’s porn).

Aside from that weirdness, though, the staff and cast are enough to get me to watch anything. Sakurai Hiroaki is an excellent comedy director, whether handling more straightforward comedies such as Cromartie High School and GA, or more plot-driven ones like Kodocha and Kaichou wa Maid-sama. More importantly, the cast is a laundry list of spectacular seiyuu; in the order listed on ANN, it includes (but is not limited to): Tomatsu Haruka, Horie Yui, Toyosaki Aki, Takagaki Ayahi, Taketatsu Ayana, Itou Kanae, Mizuhashi Kaori, Konishi Katsuyuki, MAKO, Tanaka Rie, Arai Satomi, and Sanpei Yuko. I mean, damn!

I doubt I’ll have enough to say about this show to warrant posting on it episodically or even semi-episodically, but it’s definitely the show I’m most enthused about watching this season.

18 thoughts on “First Impressions: Nekogami Yaoyorozu

  1. I’m more familiar with the circle than with the actual manga, but I found it funny how some of the traditional Touhou/Japanese mythological archetypes from previous shows managed to seep through. Yuzu, for example, seems to be a much nicer and well-adjusted Reimu (she has the ribbon and decorations on her long side-bangs too).

    Also, was I the only one who remembered Kamichu when the Poverty God came around (complete with a detector too!)?

  2. “This is exactly how I imagine a Touhou anime would be.”

    Touhou already had an anime, and it was kinda bad.
    Not to mention no one can explain to me what Touhou actually is. Probalby because nobody even knows what it is.

    • I’m not sure if this is just a troll or not. Since I’m bothering to reply to it, I’m assuming it’s the latter.

      Touhou is a franchise with its roots in a shooting game, which so happens to have lots and lots of girls as its main characters. It’s known for its difficulty and music. The fandom that’s sprung around it is, frankly, massive, and has grown past the games themselves for some people (some people I know got introduced to the franchise via the art of the endless remixes done on its music).

      As for Midsummer Night’s Dream, that was a fanmade OVA. It’s the closest we could get to a Touhou anime, as ZUN (the creator of the franchise) is adamantly against moving away from the franchise’s gaming roots.

  3. Personally, I hated the anime Cromartie. It failed to capture the ironic contrasts of the manga, which were really everything worth anything about it.

    It’s the appeal of these badass shonen dudes doing all these silly things that makes it so endearing, but the anime doesn’t have any of that. It’s just silly. And not in a good way. But I’m digressing here.

    This does look to have a moderate amount of potential. Not too familiar with the source but I am a big fan of FLIPFLOPS. Still, the other touhou anime homage, you know, the ufotable one, looks far more promising.

    Most enthused about watching this season? I thought you’d be more excited about Penguindrum.

    • re: Cromartie, I don’t know what you’re on about, but I don’t intend to read the manga anyway. But the anime *did* exist mostly to bring people to the manga. But half the worth of the show for me was NORIO WAKAMOTO.

      The ufotable one is actually Touhou so no shit it’s more promising as a Touhou adaption, but it’s also probably going to be like 10 minutes long and actually didn’t it already happen or something? What *is* the deal with that?

      Penguindrum is amazing so far, but I can see it being difficult for me to watch weekly. I tend to have an easier time keeping up with lighter shows that are still great, like Kami Nomi zo Shiru Sekai. Also, amazing as Penguindrum 1 was, it doesn’t necessarily appeal to me directly enough that I should expect it to always be my favorite thing on TV (though it probably will be).

  4. Ah, yes, Wakamoto scores a 10/10 any day in my book.

    The ufotable one, I’m not sure, actually lol. Whatever did happen to it?

    I get what you’re saying about PD; heavier shows should preferably be watched at a faster pace. Which is why I’m waiting until Steins;Gate is finished before watching it.

    • re UFOTable production: you mean the Anime Tenchou x Touhou OVA? If I remember right, it was supposed to be bundled with some of the stuff on sale in the Animate stores. This was before the Sendai Earthquake though, so who knows if anything has changed, distribution-wise.

  5. Pingback: Where I’m Reading About Each of the New Shows | My Sword Is Unbelievably Dull

  6. Ya know, I thought something about this series seemed familiar to me, and now I know what it is. It’s kind of cool to see a doujin circle up and making it big, relatively speaking. Nekogami’s first episode wasn’t anything spectacular for me, but it was fun. Kind of like Dog Days, though your mileage may vary on that front.

  7. Pingback: Anime Review: Nekogami Yaoyorozu Episode 1 | This Euphoria!

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