Katana Maidens: Toji no Miko

TV (24 eps)
3.025 out of 5 from 1,128 votes
Rank #5,419
Katana Maidens: Toji no Miko

Since the ancient times, the Kannagi priestesses have used their swords, or Okatana, to exorcise the creatures known as Aratama that brought chaos upon the world of man. These maidens were known as Tojis. They are a special task force within the police. They are allowed to have their Okatana on their person because they are government officials, but they mostly consist of middle school and high school girls who go to one of five training schools throughout the country. Though they mostly live normal school lives, if they are given a mission, they take their Okatana and unleash their powers, fighting to protect the people. This spring, the top Tojis from five schools across the country have been gathered for a customary tournament where they will use their abilities and fight for the top position. As the many Tojis trained and prepared for the upcoming tournament, there was one girl who was even more determined than the others on improving her swordsmanship. What lies before the end of her Okatana? 

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The Point of a Sword image

Episode 1

The Point of a Sword

The Distance Between Them image

Episode 2

The Distance Between Them

Innocent Sword image

Episode 3

Innocent Sword

The Burden of Resolution image

Episode 4

The Burden of Resolution

A Night of Mountain Hunting image

Episode 5

A Night of Mountain Hunting

The Space Between Humans and Disgrace image

Episode 6

The Space Between Humans and Disgrace

Heart Ache image

Episode 7

Heart Ache

Day of Disaster image

Episode 8

Day of Disaster

After the Festival image

Episode 9

After the Festival

Resolve for Tomorrow image

Episode 10

Resolve for Tomorrow

Gleam of Moonlight image

Episode 11

Gleam of Moonlight

A Single Sword image

Episode 12

A Single Sword

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Toji no Miko is an anime about girls wielding magical Katana against monsters that are created by making those Katana, dont question it. The story starts out with Kanami and her childhood friend Mai travelling to a tournament. Kanami is a duel freak and really good at fighting with a Katana, her  friend, less dominantly placed on the key visual for this series is not as good. The series starts out with it's first episode feeling quite dumb and convenient. While the second episode does something to amend it a little it just feels like an oversight to let your series full dumb so soon. Eitherway, the series mostly focusses on Kanami and her not rival Hiyori who due to an incident at the tournament are forced to work together. Along the way they meet other girls and fight side by side. However regardless of this Kanami is the focus character for most of the series and other characters quickly feel pointless beside her. Despite it's presentation this show is not a show about katana maidens fighting side by side but more so about Kanami growing as the series goes on. Hiyori functions both as a plot device and as something else to this series. The series has 24 episodes of which one half feels like an entirely seperate season from the other. Of the main group of reoccuring characters the main character is an average looking boyish girl of average height, Mai is a more heavy chested feminine black haired girl of equal height, while Hiyori is a classic beauty of average height with no chest at all, Added to that are two token loli characters in the form of Sayaka and Koaru and finally but not last it's our token engrish speaking blonde heavy chested and tall Eren. The antagonist leader is another Japanese beauty top heavy type. We have a very boyish top heavy girl, a long haired ponytail busty girl, a snow-owl like emo-looking girl and a pink haired battle-crazy girl making up as the next most important characters. A large cast which surprisingly has at least some character establishment worth something and there are moments of character growth.The first ''season'' suffers under a poorly establised uninteresting villain. However this is patched with an emotional arc for antagonist Yume to some extent. Regardless the plot movies in a manner that doesn't feel very intellible for this first half but with only a sub-plot to increase your expectations it all comes together in a moderately satisfying albeit very shounen way. Kanami's progress through this arc leaves her a bit distant from the rest in multiple ways. The second season introduces a more interesting villain dynamic which ultimately betrays your expectations by just not going anywhere interesting at all and in the end the series somewhat suffers for it by feeling dumb once the grey morality is dealt with and it's seemingly black and white all over again. Yomi's arc tries to do what Yume's arc did for the first half of this anime but sadly the scenes have too much time tagged on them and scenes are lenghened to the point of killing them. This arc suffers mayor character decline however with a lot of characters starting to feel more pointless than in the first half. Combine with this the strangely inconsistent level of threat that the main villain poses and it just doesn't feel quite right on top of all the other detractors I mentioned before. The voice acting, Action and music all work together well enough even though their not notable and the action scenes are quite regularly short. While there's a large cast ultimately it feels kind of pointless as only the main character really feels important. The growth of characters in power and the balance between them feels lazy. The writing overall feels like it takes lazy directions and some scenes just feel poorly chosen or overextented. Together the second half panning shots and characters stating either the obvious or observations on screen isn't rare. The ending gives closure but again it feels overextended in quite a few places and it just doesn't seem to fully satisfy.  Overall, it had a lot of interesting idea's and a lot of subplots that could have potentially been very interesting with a potentially very interesting development in the second half with grey morality and humanity questioning itself and the direction it should take but it all consolidates into a very simple black and white situation that doesn't feel like it's earned. This series biggest problem for me is that nothing feels earned. The power ups don't feel earned, the villains victories don't feel earned and the a lot of characters don't feel like they earned their right to stand beside the main character Kanami as equals. Add to that a plot that just dumbs itself down and we have a could have been. This anime could have been good but it settles for ''okay but quite dumb and flawed''.

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