As much as I REALLY liked the concept and story of this anime, and even some of thecharacters(Particularly Ren who was just adorable) there were certain things that I just couldn't get past.
1) I'm not much for foolish love stuff messing with an actiony anime
2) I'm pretty sure the main love interests are COUSINS and therefore I was really disapproving
3) Ayano, despite her improving slowly, was obnoxious and Kazuma never really changed. Each had good points, but this issue was that other than Ren, who matures during some of his screentime, there wasn't a lot of change. Ayano is still a ridiculously overpowered, over emotional, jealous, and annoying teenage girl. Kazuma is a jerk for messing with her and doing so CONSTANTLY, REALLY ridiculously overpowered, and kind of flat emotionally which, as refreshign as it is from Ayano's over the top-ness, was boring.
If it had just been about a family of magic users and their battles in the magical world, I probably would have really liked it, it was still GOOD, but, the romantic aspects and lack of change in character I saw really put me off, and I don't really know if I want to continue it.
Kaze no Stigma (Stigma of the Wind)
Plot: "Years after having been exiled from the Kannagi household for being unable to utilize their fire magic, Kazuma returns to Japan, only to discover that the Kannagi family's very existence is threatened. Unknown to them, during his absence, he had become a Contractor and thus acquired a vast strength in wind magic. Not showing any remaining contempt for them, he offers to help solve the Kannagi household’s problems in return for large sums of money. Together with his younger brother Ren and the feisty heir to the Kannagi household, Ayano, he fights to protect those he cares about... for a price!" (site synopsis)
Story: After watching a show like Shakugan no Shana i kinda started to like the whole concept of girls wielding fire swords and their main power consisted of fire element. Same like in Shakugan no Shana where the sword was named Nietono no Shana (like the name of the main protagonist) in this case the swords name is Enraiha and the sword is bestowed on the heir of the Kannagi clan. The story is centered on Yagami Kazuma an apparently weird, mysterious character who can control wind element powers. Long ago he was a member of the Kannagi family but because of his inability to use fire powers he got exiled by his own father and the ties which connected him with the clan had been thorn apart. Until the day he returns to Japan he had become a Contractor thus he acquired a vast power and the ability to use wind magic a power which could compete with the most skilled fire user in the Kannagi clan, his own father. Hearing about the events that he took part of by coincidence he managed to get involved with, the Kannagi family concidered him a traitor and a dangerous person to approach since in the Kannagi family, switching from fire users to another element was concidered a huge treachery. When he returned back to Japan he heard that the Kannagi family is threatened by unknown enemies which indirectly they interacted with Kazuma as well. Beeing invited to the Kannagi mansion after he defeated his own father in battle he receives a task from the head of the family but of course in return for a huge sum of money. His job was to discover who is behind the assassination atempts and the attacks and to anihilate the atacker as well. But who said that he will act alone, he will be accompanied by his younger brother Ren and a energetic, weird and feisty girl who happens to be the heir of the Kannagi family, Ayano a girl which possesses skills that are still unpolished but a prodigy of the Kannagi family. In my opinion this anime in terms of story is very well thinked and nicely developed. The question that still remained is what actualy happened to Kazuma after he has been sent to exile and since he couldn't control fire powers why and for whom he swtiched to wind element and go so far as making a contract with the wind spirits? Well this can only be answered by watching this show entirely. Unfortunately this is a lost cause, like many shows that end on a clifhanger, this one witnessed the death of its own author and at the moment its on indefinite hiatus and it also seems that other authors are not willing to continue despite its popularity and its good ratings. Maybe in the future there will be someone who wishes to continue it and provide us with more material since it would be ashame for such a good show to remain unfinished.
Animation: In terms of animation this anime is somewhere around average. I liked the character design expecialy Ayano and her pink hair, which makes her pretty distinctive. I also liked the flames around her sword which kinda reminds me of Nietono no Shana (Shakugan no Shana). The sound is not that bad also.The opening and ending songs are quite nice, listenable at least, it doesnt inflict ear trauma (apparently) so in other words above average.And also the background sounds are decent, they fit with the environment from this anime.
Characters: Well in terms of characters this anime doesnt exceed.It is around average since the main protagonists are described, developed in detail but we cannot speak of a proper character development here since few characters apear in this anime and most of them if not all dissapear before the ending of this anime. Other than the main protagonists and few side characters there isnt anymore influent or interesting character which kinda dissapoints me.
Overall: Watchable, sometimes funny and enjoyable, also with serious battles (and sometimes not) but in other words worth watching. This anime isnt so unique, there is nothing new related to it, nothing that captivates my atention.However it was enjoyable the battles were realy nice and some funny moments were also present in this anime.
~Enjoy and cya around~
Kaze no Stigma is an epic.
If you needed me to sum the show up in a sentence, that's how I would do it. However, I would have to give the story an immensely mediocre rating, simply because the plot just feels so clichéd. The regular team, the regular hot springs episode, the regular tsundere heroine... it's really overused.
As much as I dislike the simplicity, though, there is a reason why the epic title still stands. I won't give anything away, but the plot twist at the end just came right out of the blue. You have this fun, playful occasionally monster-of-the-day routine, and then - BAM. You have this dark, serious, and gripping plot point that's incredibly difficult to tear away from. It almost seems somewhat out of place for a show of it's caliber.
The animation is simply very shiny -- to be expected from a late 2006 production. The smoothness of most small actions involving two characters interacting is choppy and forced -- disappointing from a show of this time. I really don't get it. If they can make the magical powers of Ayano, Kazuma, and Ren look so convincing, then why would they choose to disregard simple movement?
The backrounds actually bring a refreshing look to Tokyo. Again, hard to describe, but immaculately done as well.
The transformation sequence given to Ayano is over-the-top and unneeded, though particularly well done -- what I have to acknowledge what was great about it as its strength is that, surprisingly, they reanimate it almost every time they need it. Key word there is 'almost', though, as when they recycle the same animation, it gets tedious fast.
My favorite part about Kaze no Stigma is, by a landslide, the sound. The voice acting is excellent, especially for the male voices... however, it would seem that Ren is voiced by a woman. Not surprising really, as it fits his character like a glove. Kazuma's voice is smooth and subtle, which is absolutely perfect for his role. You'll regret not watching this in Japanese.
The opening and closing songs are perfectly formulated as such. If an episode in the second half of the series ends on a rather dark note, the ending from the first half of the series is used. (This song is my personal favorite, by the way.) If the episode ends in an upbeat way, they have a totally different song to accompany it. The dynamic could not be better utilized. The music they play during the scenes is, while forgettable, needed. It wouldn't be half as good a series without it. However, something a little more substantial would benefit it immensely.
The only problem that I have with the music is the terrible use of Engrish in the opening song. "Blast of wind in my eye?" I crack up every time I hear it. It's supposed to sound strong but ends up just making me shake my head and wonder if these singers even know what they're saying in English.
The character development wasn't great. It came down to Kazuma's past (in which he just sorta becomes withdrawn but eventually snaps out of it), and Ayane learning a new technique for her Enriha (her sword). Both of these happen in the same episode.
The other thing that bothered me and dragged down the pointage for the characters was the tiredness of Anane's personality. She's a shallow tsundere character who, for no real reason, will break down and cry. She's not the strongest character ever.
Ren, for being a somewhat secondary character, probably gets the best deal in the way of character. He's a young(ish) boy, torn between loyalties to his brother and his family, including Ayane. He also has a conflict during his mini-arc in the middle of the series, where his choices are doing what's right (what seems right to him) and wreaking the fury of Mt. Fuji's volcanic force upon his family. As a plus, he also has his comedic moments as well, but sadly seemed to be an afterthought in the latter half of the series.
To conclude, I restate my thesis: Kaze no Stigma is an epic. It may be slightly grating, obnoxious, and somewhat tired, but don't you dare let it throw you off -- it is an enjoyable ride the whole way through.
Netflix recommended this anime to me. Maybe they thought that since I loved Avatar: The Last Airbender, I would enjoy this action anime where there are fire-magic wielding fighters and wind-magic wielding fighters and oh, my, elements!
Well . . . I almost gave up after 4 episodes and decided it wasn't worth my time, but then for some reason I kept coming back to watch it until, lo and behold, I'd finished the whole damn thing.
The two main characters are Kazuma Yagami and Ayano Kannagi. The Kannagi family is a powerful family of fire-magic users. Kazuma used to be a Kannagi, but he got kicked out of the family and banished for sucking at fire magic and losing to Ayano in a fight. But he is now pretty much invincible as a wind magic user, thanks to his making a "contract" with a wind spirit. Or something like that. He's pretty cool, I suppose--cocky, arrogant, powerful, and cute. But all in all kind of flat as a character since he doesn't really grow at all--even his stint as an evil bastard at the end of the season wasn't all that exciting. As one review I read notes, the fact that he is 'The Contractor' and uber powerful makes the action scenes kind of . . . boring. He's so powerful that he can't lose, so it really takes the edge off all action scenes. I guess the scene where he kicks his dad's ass is pretty cool, but . . . meh, overall, just meh.
Ayano is the reason I almost stopped watching this show. Her character is incredibly, incredibly annoying, although at least she's not the simpering, wimpy crybaby type of weak woman that they usually have in anime. By contrast, she's fiery, hot-tempered, loud, and crazy. (And the annoying anime women trend continues.) Must they pick people with incredibly annoying voices to voice women? Always? Also kind of annoying is Kazuma's little brother, Ren Kannagi. I almost had to stop watching because their voices were so annoying.
But I guess Ayano had some good moments as a character. By the end Ayano kind of redeemed herself--her divine flame was pretty cool, although I wish they had made her grow more as a character instead of just being the impetuous hot-tempered hothead that screams all the time.
Well, I guess in spite of all the show's flaws, it was moderately entertaining or I wouldn't have bothered to finish it.
I mean, there were so many problems with the show, from the nonsensical plot to the lack of compelling characters to the not-that-great (but still somewhat decent) action scenes to the awful dialogue, but my main problem with it was that the so-called 'love' story between Kazuma and Ayano was just so a) forced and b) UH, HELLO, AREN'T THEY COUSINS!!!!? Why is Ayano's dad trying to set her up with HER COUSIN?!?
Well, I really should not have wasted all that time on this series, but it kind of roped me in with the whole elements thing. And a cute guy never hurts--Kazuma kind of reminds me of Seto Kaiba from Yu-Gi-Oh (which I only saw a few episodes of back in, what, middle school?).
Oh dear, I'm a fangirl. And I'm old. Please shoot me now.
Overall, I'd give this series a 'soso.' Decently entertaining, but nothing deep or meaningful, and very annoying at parts.
Overall I liked this story. I couldn't guess what was going to happen next, so that is good. I really liked the "wind" power. I can't ignore the fact that they borrow the fire, wind, and earth power concept from "Avatar the last air bender", but that's ok, because it is based in more present day and not so much in a different dimension.
For me, I like the cultural aspects of this show. You can see the proper manners so often represented by the Japanese, thickness of pride and the downfall that results from that, and the triumph of good over evil. Good one. Not the total best, but pretty good.