More about Katanagatari

March 8th, 2013 by Author

I meant to entitle this post “Massive spoilers about Katanagatari”, but on second thought, it may be oblique enough. Or maybe not. Unfortunately, although I maintain that good anime cannot be spoiled, I think Katanagatari may. In particular, despite Don wrote that ending was “somber”, I just did not expect that it would go down like it did, and it hit pretty hard. So yeah. Reveal, not spoil.

Although the plot, setting, and detail all worked in concert, one particular thing I took away was how much I became fond of Togame as the story unfolded. Not in the “waifu” way. Just like To Heart‘s Shiho, Togame is not one I’d like to marry[1]. But she’s immensely likeable. I agree with the critique of our resident hater of all things good in anime that Togame’s debut was not very impressive. However, she comes into her own.

I liked Shichika, too. But it’s also remarkable how functional the relationship of the main duo is. Being the subservent pole, Shichika is being worked hard. He has to shoulder some of Togame juvenile tantrums good-naturely, too. But she does not really go into tsundere stereotype fully, and does not become primarily abusive (like Louise and Haruhi do; and it does not matter if Kyon likes it).

Just about everyone else in the show has redeeming qualities, too. I do not mean “good-by-design” characters like Zakki, primarily, but basically everyone with any kind of expanded characterization. For example, Princess Hitei is sort of like Kurumi to Togame’s Sawako, I think. Or in an interesting meta move, Shichika even had to touch upon Meisai’s personality in-show, and with a good reason.

There’s a specific exception to it: I was not a fan of Nanami. My local purveyor of nasty, Sage, was, and that probably explains it all.

On, and one last thing: I suddenly saw a lot of common theme in the inheritance, that was brought forth by AKB0048. Shichika is the 7th Kyotouryuu. Issou is the 12th, and she’s not blood related to the lineage. That is more of general zero-zero model: become the essense of the name you inherit and there you get the name. Some of sword owners address Shichika as “Kyotouryuu”, which is not his family name. So many animebloggers were creeped out by this mechanism in AKB0048, but if you realize the traditional underpinnings, it becomes much more manageable and even interesting.

[1] The top rated wife material in anime is generally rare. I can probably only name Mitsuki II of Dual and Kyoko of Sunred S1.