Somali and the Forest Spirit

Alt title: Somali to Mori no Kami-sama

TV (12 eps)
4.08 out of 5 from 6,621 votes
Rank #691

In a world where the ruined human species has been driven almost to extinction by the monsters that now dominate the land, a forest golem is surprised to find a human child sitting alone in the woods - dirty, barefoot, and in chains. The golem takes little Somali under his protection and the two begin a journey together, traveling through beautiful and dangerous lands where the small girl's humanity must be kept hidden for her own safety. The golem hopes to find Somali's parents alive somewhere, but the chances of this are slim; and besides, as far as Somali is concerned, she has already found herself a beloved father.

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First time writing a review on the site, yet I feel like I must write this in the hopes that more people can stumble upon this gem of an anime. I'll begin by saying that calling this a masterpiece is an understatement, this is perhaps one of the best anime to come out in recent years, and one of the best I've ever watched. Without being too spoilery, the story follows the journey of a human girl with a Golem, a creature from the forest whowants to help her find other humans; in a world inhabited by monsters where humans have been brought to the edge of extinction. Despite dealing with some strong issues from time to time, the story itself is one of love and self realization, where both Somali and her Golem companion learn to care for each other and grow as individuals, bonding throughout their journey in a way that I can only describe as wholesome, adorable and entertaining; a wonderful Father-daughter dynamic I've seldom seen before. Most of the characters they encounter are relatable in some way, they all have something special and nice about them which makes you able to grow to love and care deeply for them from the first time they appear on screen (with a few exceptions of course, no spoilers...) The animation is beautiful and the world they travel through is outstandingly gorgeous, the great variety of creatures and the stories of those they encounter along the way paints a rather harsh yet powerful sense of how the world they are in operates, leading you to root even further for Somali and her monster Dad to succeed in their quest. Overall, it's a wonderful story which I think everyone should experience at least once; it made me cry, laugh, scream, it created such a wide array of emotions which few works of fiction have ever managed to accomplish. Perhaps the only down side is that it felt a bit too short, I would have loved to accompany Somali and her Dad through a couple more episodes... Anyway, I loved every moment of it and I can't recommend it enough, the closest to a perfect anime I've seen in a long time. 10/10

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