Sumimura Yoshimori is a Kekkaishi – an inheritor of the power to battle demons, using barriers called kekkai. His family is charged with protecting the grounds of Karasumori high school, a building which magnifies the power of demons who enter it. Helping him are his spirit-wolf companion Madarao, and next door-neighbor Yukimura Tokine, the daughter of a rival clan. Years ago, Tokine was injured protecting Yoshimori, and now he is determined to become strong enough to keep her from being hurt again. Of course, he'd rather bake his exquisite cakes than have to fight demons at all, but fate has something else in store! As a shadowy demon organization moves to steal Karasumori's power, can Yoshimori overcome legions of demons, a centuries-old family rivalry, and a grandfather who just can't understand his love for baking?
**This review contains some minor spoilers** When fifty-two epsides isn't nearly enough, that's a sign that what you're watching is something really special. Kekkaishi was a show that I started watching basically because I wanted to watch an anime as it aired, on Cartoon Network. So (more or less) every Saturday at 11:30 p.m., I dutifully watched the show. Prior to the start, I read some reviews -- some said it was distressingly formulaic, while others said it was surprisingly innovative. What tipped things in the show's favor was that the manga had won a prestigious award in Japan -- hopefully, I wagered, if the source material is good, then so is the show. Unfortunately, things don't get off to a great start, because the overall setup of the show is rather formulaic. The show follows the exploits of Yoshimori Sumimora, a hot-headed young kekkaishi, who fights ayakashi (demons, essentially) using barriers that he forms around them, and then destroying them. His partner is the level-headed Tokine Yukimura, a year-older girl who is a member of a rival family. Already, I'm sure you can see the archetypes at work here. Yoshimori is hot-headed and impetuous, and Tokine is constantly berating him for his inability to think things through (she's also constantly slapping him, in typical say-his-name-innocently-to-get-his-attention-then-let-him-have-it anime fashion). But the two characters share an interesting dynamic: while Tokine is far more precise and efficient in her use of kekkai, Yoshimori far outstrips her in sheer power, which means the two make for a potent team when they're working together at top capacity. Yoshimori also bears the psychological scars of getting Tokine hurt when she was a child, and has vowed to protect her at all times for the rest of his life. The early going of the series is rather arduous to get through, just because many of the episodes consist of the same basic formula -- Yoshimori screws up because he doesn't think things through, and everyone gets on his case. I didn't mention them earlier, but other prominent characters are Yoshimori's grandfather, and, later on, his older brother, and another partner -- all of whom get on Yoshimori's case. Not that he doesn't deserve it, but the slow development of the characters means we're getting the same "lesson" every episode, especially towards the beginning. Don't let this turn you off, though; even Yoshimori gets his moments to shine, and Tokine has moments of humility. And as things move along, Yoshimori becomes more and more competent without losing what made him so endearing to begin with. Speaking of the characters, one of the ways in which the show combats the formulaic early episodes is by giving us quirky and interesting characters. Yoshimori, for instance, loves to bake, and one of his dreams throughout the show is to bake a perfect cake that Tokine will love. The scenes in which Yoshimori is wearing an apron are some of the funniest, and best, in the whole series; an early story in which he helps out a ghostly patissier pass on to the other world is one of the best. Tokine is the closest thing this series has to a Mary Sue, but even she gets some interesting development; her intense fear of cockroaches is hilarious, and as the show goes on, we see the depth of feeling she has for Yoshimori is what causes her to act so severely towards him. Other characters have their quirks as well; Yoshimori's grandfather and Tokine's grandmother are constantly at war with one another, which leads to some interesting confrontations. The students at the school they both attend are rendered memorable by their quirks as well; for example, there's a student who keeps a book filled with information about all of the students at the school. Why does he keep this book of information? Who knows! But it's funny, and memorable, and is a good example of how this series manages to make even the most minor characters make an impact. The overarching storyline of the series is also highly interesting, and there are some very good mysteries that are planted throughout the show. Individual storylines all seem to be heading to something bigger, and there are some great action scenes toward the end of the series, though the series is never quite as epic as it could have been. The animation is solid, but nothing special; the same can be said of the music, although I do love the opening theme, which stays consistent throughout the entire run of fifty-two epsides. Speaking of which, time to come back to the point I made at the beginning of this review -- this series is simply too short. I don't want to talk too much about the ending of the series, but suffice it to say, the vast majority of the story has yet to be told. The last third or so of the series is one big plotline, and that gets wrapped up nicely (save a bizarre sequel hook featuring some secondary characters that makes no sense unless they're planning a sequel series), but the vast majority of the storylines introduced in the first two-thirds of the series get no resolution whatsoever. This is especially disappointing, but also sadly inevitable, when you consider this series' chiefest strength -- its world-building. The world of Kekkaishi is one that feels complex and lived-in, with a cast of dozens (probably well over a hundred, but I'm not gonna sit down and count them out to confirm), and several interweaving plot threads. Kekkaishi has managed to create a world that we don't want to leave, and inhabit it with characters that we want to spend time with. While the series can be frustrating at times, it's ultimately worth it for the characters, the setting, and the plot(s) -- even if none of these aspects get any kind of resolution. I want this series to be longer. I have no idea if further seasons are planned, or if this is it; regardless, I've recently bought the first three volumes of the manga, which evidently has a much longer storyline than the anime. I can't wait to dive back into the world of Kekkaishi, revisit these characters, and see what else awaits them. This is a great series that is well worth your time, if you're willing to put up with a tepid beginning and a slightly disappointing end.
Story Kekkaishi is about two school students, Yoshimori and Tokine, whose family has guarded a sacred ground which resides on the ground underneath their school for the past 400 years. Yoshimori and Tokine families are rivals in this task as both believe that their families are the “legitimate heirs” however they both have a soft side for each other since childhood. Both clans use kekkai, which is a form of supernatural power which erects an energy barrier, to capture and destroy “ayakashi” which trespass and absorb the energy on the sacred ground. Animation The animation for this anime was pretty standard. The characters models were pretty good and the fight scenes were pretty well done. Sound The sound is something that generally that compliments the animation. Kekkaishi music almost goes unnoticed but when you’re watching it the music though unnoticeable at first it does a great job of bring the characters a life and helps share the emotion with the audience. The opening song was great I enjoyed listening to it multiple times however the endings, in my opinion, left something to be desired. Characters The story did a great job of portraying the characters in general. The audience feels like it has a deep connection with the characters and wants them to triumph. The story does go into the character’s past which displays how they became the person today which is nice. Each character has their own quirk which is a nice touch without going overboard. Overall Overall I believe that Kekkaishi is an anime definitely worth watching. The characters, music and story alone are slightly above average however in combination it creates a great anime. The comedy is light hearted and the action is abundance but neither was overdone.
There are some aspects of this anime like demons and monks and such that are not original, but they throw in enough originality to make it good/interesting.The character personalities are distinctive and not too bland. I dont think there is enough interesting progression though, such as techniques. They use that same cube looking technique way too much. It would make sense though if there is a new season that comes out, because it would give them room to improve more i guess.One thing that kind of bugs me, is they spend so much time on this shiso guy that is half ayakashi and then he dies so easily, which in itself is interesting, but i think if they have a new season, bring him back as a spirit or something.The morals in this story are not that interesting. You have a bunch of people spouting what they believe in at each other and its not very stable. It leaves me thinking... "what are they trying to say?" They imphasis things sometimes that dont have a point as if they do have a point. It seems a bit wishy washy.I have to say though, as i rated it a 9, I really liked this anime. The seemingly simple fued between the two kakkashi house holds (girl and boy. grandpa and granny) is actually complex. They really care for each other, but for some reason they have to keep thier relationships distant in a way.. but its good to see that the new generation overcomes this barrier as though it is foolishness a lot better than the old people. There are some things that are cool/cute like the demon dogs.The humor isnt really... laugh out loud... its more like a suttle "hu hu"There is some of that black orginization secrecy stuff that goes on (which they could continue in a new season). It adds some depth to the story, and also adds variation... meaning sometimes the situation will be relaxed school life and sometimes the situation will be a discussion of death proportions... meaning one wrong thing said and it could result in death or a drastic story changer. This anime has a lot of room to improve if it wants to.. which i hope it does.. by continuing.Anyways.. I would say... if you like the first few episodes youll like the rest. So check it out.
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