TV (12 eps)
2007 - 2008
Winter 2008
3.165 out of 5 from 2,642 votes
Rank #13,395

After witnessing a rare summer snow with his friends, Kusaka Yuu begins to develop supernatural abilities. Years afterwards, he finds himself the target of powerful beings, and learns that his powers are due to the "ayakashi," parasitic organisms that grant special abilities in exchange for a portion of the host's life force. The conflict turns treacherous as Yuu’s friends’ lives also become threatened, and he learns the truth behind the loss of his dear friend, Izumi. Will Yuu free himself from the ayakashi, or will he succumb to the temptation of power?

my anime:

User Stats

8,618 users are tracking this. to see stats.

If you like this anime, you might like...



Elfen Lied meets Tokkou. That pretty much describes this series, just a chain of shocking scenes, unreasonable behaviors and convenient events. It’s about monsters empowering humans, while destroying them in the process and it’s done in the usual way where a bunch of kids will be able to level buildings with energy beams, without a penalty by the police or their parents.It has a lot of splatter, along with some psedo-serious aspects, all presented in a lukewarm way with dumb facial expressions and simple special effects. The battles feel “turn based” and without choreography, the monsters are static, and the splatter scenes lack details to even register as gruesome. The dialogues were also stupid and shallow, ranging from one-liners of seduction and threats, to endless monologues full of shallow motives.The anime is based on an eroge, thus the feeling of “all the females in the story act like dumb, squeaky voiced bimbos who want to screw the hapless leading male” is strong. Males on the other hand just talk like barbarians and simply want to hurt or kill the protagonist. It’s all done in a very dumb way since the anime tries to come off as edgy rather than mature. There is a scene where a villain cuts to pieces dozens of people. The protagonist looks and says “Hey, another Ayakashi user is near.” Get it? He didn’t say “Oh my God, he killed my friends!” Then a psycho little girl appears out of thin air and he says “Nah, it can’t be her. She is just a girl.” Very reasonable answer, right? Then the scene changes and he is mysteriously bound with chords in a warehouse. The girl is dressed like a bride and wants to have sex with him. Then another girl (which of course also digs him) is mysteriously freed and summons her Ayakashi to defeat the evil girl. And then the protagonist gets all powerful (a thing he could do anytime he wanted, but didn’t) and saves the little girl because “She is just being used.” Yes, she is just being and the hundreds of people she has turned into mincemeat are no longer an issue. The girl simply fades into thin air again and the protagonist returns home while caring the other girl on his back, and feeling her legs all over his body… Did you like any of that shit? It all happened in just 15 minutes. Imagine how it goes from there. Villain women trying to seduce the protagonist instead of simply capturing him and stealing his powers. Characters standing still in plain sight when fighting with Ayakashi that move like the wind and cut people like butter. The edge!Just like Elfen Lied and Tokkou, this series tries to pass off as serious by implementing as much splatter and insanity possible. It even tries to play it mysterious by having secret organizations, the amnesia routine and lost old friends in the background. Which of course is like having a naked woman talking about the injustice in the world. Are you going to listen to her or look at her hooters? An insult to one’s intelligence! Just play the damn eroge and skip this entirely.


Ayakashi is a load of garbage that will make you want to delete your memories so you won't be embarassed with how you wasted your time and instead be left with the intriguing proposition that you drank until you blacked out. Don't watch it. Really, just don't. I can't stress it enough. I made the mistake because the first few episodes are promising, and then went through the rest in the hopes that there might be one moment where it stops making me want to cause internal bleeding in my brain. There wasn't one. Allow me to explain. Under the definition of ill-executed generic rubbish, you will find the poster for this series. It starts out rather promising, but at a certain point the production team just said "screw this, let's go get some drinks since we ran out of money". What we're left with is more a collection of concept art than actual animation - including choppy animation and just a sliding layer over a background. The soundtrack manages to be both cringeworthy and forgettable. Characters whose development is haphazard at best and mindbogglingly stupid at worst. And the story, dear god is that a trainwreck of cliches and oh god I wish I had never seen it. Story: You know the thing where they say that if you put a million monkeys in front of a million typewriters and give them a million years, at some point they will write the complete works of Shakespeare? Well, give twenty monkeys five typewriters and a couple of weeks, and you would probably get a better team to adapt the visual novel. I'm not sure the source material was good, but it couldn't have been this bad. There are plot twists which are rather nice which save this from being an utter failure, and there were some nice concepts. My guess are that all of these come from the visual novel. But just like they don't make Batman movies by copying comic book dialogue word for word, then... oh who am I kidding, the best thing the writing staff could have done was learn the value of the copy and paste functions. Oh, and the last three episodes were obviously written by a particularly untalented fifth grade special ed class. A bunch of normal fifth graders could have done better. Just putting that out there. Animation: The high point of the series is subpar. The concept art is cool, because hey, magic monsters with scribbly things on them is awesome. But animation is not a collection of still shots, so this feels like something that was produced in the mid-90s. Really, I'm not expecting top-of-the-line stuff here, but in the age where there are computers, I don't want "animation" to be a picture moving over a background. Is that really too much to ask? In this series, yes. Now really, I wanted to give it a higher rating because some of the monsters and stuff were rather nice. But I tried giving it four and a half out of ten and just thought "oh who am I kidding?", as the four I gave is obviously too generous and probably because I am rationalizing how I wasted my time with this crap. Sound: The sound for Ayakashi cannot be properly described without the use of four letter expletives. I really don't know who to blame for this. Was it the mediocre voice actors? The bad composers? The guy who decided to reuse crappy melodies over and over? The special effects guy? For a better world, I would recommend all of these guys get shot in the face. The only redeeming factor in any of these things is that I have heard worse. The bad part about this is that in most of those cases, it was for parody purposes. Characters: The writing is terrible, the dialogue mediocre, and you can just imagine some douchebag going "hey, this character needs more character, let's have her say 'peace' a couple of times, you know, like a, uhh, thing!" and the other guys just went with it because they're tired of him being so loud and talkative since he's been drinking. I cannot say I liked even one character. I actually hated some of them actively. Do you know how hard it is to get me to actually hate a character in an action series? I cheered for Joffrey in Game of Thrones, and I couldn't get myself to like a single character beyond "they're not a terrible copy of other characters that this has obviously ripped off". Overall: There's bad. There's so bad it's good. And then there's Ayakashi. I would write more specific things, but really, you don't want to watch this, I don't want to remember it, and hopefully, I will manage to forget this ever existed. I really wish it was worse, because then it would be funny. Unfortunately, even that isn't going for it.


When anime is made that targets a certain audience it seems to have a mixed reaction; this, of course, if it does reach its intended audience. Ultimately, though, what is the difference between one within the 'shounen' genre and another? People seem to appreciate longer-running series, it seems, which makes sense considering one develops impressions over so many episodes, but they may also simply like remakes/completely adapted series, of which the latter is also sensible, but this seems 'whole' too, despite its short length.It is, though, typical of this genre... so, what's the difference, yet again, about, say, FMA and this? There are even superficialsimilarities, e.g. when it comes to a similar artificial arm, although not when it comes to the background narrative. It is similar in its conflicts... even the overall narrative, if one takes into account proportionally the fewer episodes... but, clearly, people prefer one much more than they do the other, which I don't quite get...Perhaps, then, it hasn't reached its intended audience? If one watches this straight from its identically named series about samurai and their horror... one might indeed get a different, possibly inferior impression... and they are different, but then I doubt they were ever intended to parallel each other (although, as the samurai one was made just a year before, I assume many thought it was about to copy it, but no, even the colours, besides the narrative, are entirely distinct).So... what one can only compare it to, if indeed comparisons are needed, is others of this genre... the ayakashi in the samurai version are slightly more subtle, perhaps congruent with their mythology, and while both have an element of romance, it is approached differently... also, while the ayakashi are handled distinctly in this one too (kind of like chess pieces), in both (as Mononoke explicitly distinguished) they impose a malign influence.But, effectively, this series is more similar to other shounen than a seinen-type that the samurai tales exhibit... it involves this kind of mindset, where, like in a video game, someone at the end needs to be defeated; although, to be sure, what distinguishes this from FMA, HxH, or even KHR, is that in these the villain isn't entirely so, or at least isn't throughout, but that may be due to the length of the series, where time is spent developing all kinds of characters. Perhaps the latter could be the more simplistic, comedically similar to Ayakashi (although in its twelve episodes it had more drama than comedy, with KHR spending the first fifty or so episodes mired mostly in comedy, then changing to drama, although Lambo was comedy throughout). Of these four, I think HxH turned out to have the most subtle villains, with the Chimera Ant arc turning any shounen narrative inside-out.Was, though, Ayakashi affective? If compared to, say, Mononoke... well, that would be too steep a hill. Graphically astounding, with a mind-bending narrative... but Ayakashi was never intended to be like that, even with its identical number of episodes. Even Mononoke's prequel, the samurais' ayakashi, had a mostly casual story centred around ghosts, and not until the last arc did it 'evolve' into its sequel. So, I suppose, if this Ayakashi had a proper sequel, it might have had potential like all the other shounen consisting of hundreds of episodes.As it is, though, it fulfils a certain kind of genre, but doesn't go beyond it as HxH does. Is the drama 'powerful', perhaps? It is kind of comparable to Inuyasha, which is also about yokai, practically equivalent to ayakashi mythologically (although in Inuyasha only one side mostly controls them), but again, that had close to two hundred episodes, and throughout it developed the drama well... but sometimes repeated itself, which is what can happen in such a long-winding narrative. Ayakashi doesn't do that, but still, the drama doesn't contain quite as much pathos... Inuyasha had this existential element to it, this idea that death could be around the corner, and even different kinds of such states, but Ayakashi only played with it momentarily, and not quite as effectively. Also, in Inuyasha hair colour meant something, and while in Ayakashi there are all sorts of colours (Inuyasha being more realistic in this aspect), I didn't get how they related to anything. Perhaps different hues of blue indicate forms of relationships, but there were some that didn't fit any sort of pattern, so I wonder whether they were mostly random.What I did notice, that seemed to differ from most other anime, is the characters' expressions, where at some points they appear exaggerated (more so than is expected in this medium), and while they still made sense I thought they might have perhaps landed the series a source of unexpected comedy... since normally two serious characters in the middle of talking down a classic villain do not look at each other and smile (or was that a giggle?) - sort of breaks the mood, but then again difference is what is interesting.So, in the end, it doesn't break many moulds... but, if one is in this kind of mood, and one doesn't compare it with others due to their similarity in names and not genre, it can be entertaining. Not as deep as any of the aforementioned, but could still be considered amusing (this is, by the way, solely about this series specifically and nothing else made in relation).

See all reviews

Related manga


See all characters


See all staff


Custom lists

See all custom lists