Life continues as normal for Natsume - he still lives with the friendly Fujiwaras, walks home with his school friends, and spends his free time adventuring with spirits! However, as his encounters soon reveal, the relationship between spirits and humans is a delicate one and not always friendly either. As Natsume slowly uncovers the mystery of his grandmother Reiko as well as his own unique purpose, can he use the Book of Friends to reconcile the needs of spirits and humans?
It isn't unusual for a person to feel that the world around them is strange and has unexpected secrets lying just beyond their sight. However, for most people this is just an occasional sensation that greets them upon awakening or chases them into sleep. For the mushi researcher Ginko, it isn't a feeling at all; it is a knowledge which guides his travels and motivates his life. Found in the cracks between what is conceivable and what is not, are the varied life forms collectively known as mushi. They surround us and affect us, but their intensely different nature makes them unrecognizable to most. Ginko brings these life forms into perspective for the lives of those most affected and most in need of an explanation.
Like Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, Mushishi involves the key character interacting with spirits and eploring their relationships with humans. Mushishi feels far more profound, evinces more gravity, and has a richness in animation that Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou lacks. At the same time, Mushishi's central character Ginko is not so interesting, as he takes a more objective role than Natsume. Still, that same gentle pace and focus on heart-melting tragedy present in Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou can be found in Mushishi.
The Natsume Yuujinchou series and Mushishi share some very critical attributes. Both are extremely intelligently written and respect their audience. Both are supremely Japanese in outlook. Both deal with a Shinto or psuedo-Shinto (in the case of Mushishi) mythology for their main plot drivers. And both are episodic in nature, concerned less with developing storylines than revealing their characters.
While they're very different in tone, I think both are equally charming for the difference. Where Mushishi is cool and deeply imbued with a wistful sadness and even horror, Natsume Yuujinchou is unapologetically warm towards its characters and doesn't shy away from emotion. If I were to describe NY it would be something like a cross between Mushishi and Winnie the Pooh - in a good way. If you like one, I can't imagine you won't like the other.
If you liked the supernatural and slow paced nature of Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, then you may enjoy Mushishi. Though Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou has more comedic content than Mushishi, both have a similar vibe.
if you liked This show, then mushishi/zoku natsume yuujinchou will without a doubt fit your taste.
Mystery, the paranormal these themes is the dominting in each one of these, and still they have much deeper stories both of them.
The only difference might be the episodic vs. connected, but even as there's this difference, then you wont be dissapointed with these.
The main character helps to solve mysterious problems over and over again. The mysterious things can be a little bit scary, but generally they made me more curious than afraid.
Both animes are setted in the countryside, forests and other natural sceneries as surrounding.
Both main characters have a really positive attitude towards the supernatural beings they meet. It's like a trust and a belief in a greater good.
Both series give me a kind, warm feeling, and I don't want them to end.
both are episodic, both deal with supernatural and mystical beings, both are slow paced mature anime, mushishi has the advantage in artwork
Both of these animes are slow-paced and fairly episodic, with a mature look at mythology and the spiritual realm. Both Ginko and Natsume are generally loner characters who balance between the world of humans the world of spirits.
Both series have a similar feel about them due to the main character being able to see "creatures" that others for the most part can not. Both are episodic shows so some stories might be more interesting than others but overall you should enjoy the slow paced story telling with a supernatural touch. If you enjoyed one, you should enjoy the other.
Both of these shows have a similar peaceful atmosphere, and a slow pace of storytelling. Both main characters see spirits, and try to help humans/spirits for the sake of harmony between the two.
Chihiro and her family are on their way to their new home, when they discover an abandoned amusement park. After Chihiro's family mysteriously turn into pigs, she is thrown into a surreal world of magic and fantasy. Join her as she struggles to survive in the bathhouse of the gods, ruled by an evil witch who has stolen not only her name, but her way back to the real world.
If you enjoyed Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, then you might want to check out Spirited Away. Both are heavily influenced by Shinto and focus on the rocky relationships between humans and spirits. Both also have gorgeous visuals, a touch of comedy and a certain feelgood factor.
Both of these anime involve a lot of shinto mythology. Both have a fairly young protagonist dealing with the supernatural world and learning about the bridges between humanity and the spiritual realm. With lovely artistry and a mixture of comedy and adventure, these two animes definitely go together.
With similar supernatural content and a focus on human weaknesses/strengths, Spirited Away is a natural recommendation for Nastume Yuujinchou. They have a similar quiet pace and good storytelling.
Kimihiro Watanuki is cursed with the ability to see evil spirits known as Youkai. Due to this power, the Youkai are attracted to him like a magnet, and each time he is close to being devoured. One day, fate drew him to a strange store and there, he met Yuuko, who was dressed in a very exquisite fashion. As destiny would have it, Yuuko has the ability to save Kimihiro from seeing the Youkai, but for a price: Kimihiro must work for Yuuko by performing chores around the store and other odd tasks, until she deems fit. With his "friend" Doumeki, and his secret crush Himawari, they will discover that the world they live in is nowhere close to ordinary!
If you liked the supernatural and comedic asects of Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, then you may well enjoy xxxHolic. Though Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou is more slow paced than xxxHolic, both share a similar sort of content.
Both of these anime have a young male who can see spirits as the main lead. Both Watanuki and Natsume could be considered "outcast" characters for how little they interact with the cast outside a small group of close friends. They both have a "Yoda" character who guides them through the mythology of their world, and who is usually asking for some sake.
Both anime are fairly episodic and deal with how the main character interacts with the spirits and people around them.
xxxHolic and Natsume Yuujinchou are both about humans who can see spirits & resolve trouble caused by the spirits. Yuuko and Nyanko-sensei are similar guide-type characters, and threads of light comedy run throughout both shows. Similar content makes xxxHolic a good rec for Natsume.
Since long ago, the wolf goddess Holo has honored a contract to bless the rural village of Pasloe with fertile harvests; and in return she has been celebrated and worshipped by the villagers. But as mankind advances, the people have begun to take command of nature for themselves and have made their own god to worship. Holo finds that she is paid little more than lip service, if not outright mocked; and considering the contract annulled, she takes human form and enlists the aid of a passing merchant, Kraft Lawrence, to return to her home in the snowy forests to the north. As they journey together, Kraft finds that he has plenty to learn from this capricious god, and she from him as well.
Here we have two shows with one very big common theme. In each show, there is a character showing someone around a world which they aren't fully accustomed to. In Natsume, the character being shown around is Natsume himself while the world he's being shown around in is that of the spirit world by Nyanko-sensei, a spiritual cat. In Spice and Wolf, the role is reversed with Horo, a spiritual god of sorts, being shown around the human world by Lawrence, a traveling merchant. These two shows both have an air of seriousness mixed with light comedy that's just enough to make you laugh when needed and smile at the end of the episode.
With spirit beings, an even, episodic pace, and simple but atmospheric animation, Spice and Wolf feels quite similar to Natsume Yuujinchou. The key difference is that Spice and Wolf isn't as gentle, nor as subtle, and has a strong focus on its world setting. However, if you want to be mesmerised rather than blown away, then Spice and Wolf is a good bet.
If you enjoyed seeing Natsume interacting with youkai while trying to solve his problems (usually brought on by the youkai), you should check out A Letter to Momo. Both share a similar somber yet gentle atmosphere. Natsume and Momo also share the same experiences of loss and loneliness. A fan of Natsume Yuujinchou could probably appreciate the story of Momo, her youkai friends, and the troubles they bring to her.