It’s been ages since my last post, no? Well, besides from being busy, I’m quite occupied with games ( I will tell about it later days). But I did watched an anime that was quite interesting. If you are more into actions, romance and shounen, then this anime isn’t quite suited to your liking.
They aren’t alive, yet they aren’t dead. They are beings between the live and dead. They live according to what they are created for. They are called Mushi.
This anime mainly tells a story of a certain Mushishi named Ginko. Mushishi is a profession that deals with a creature called Mushi. Mushi are creatures that cannot be seen by human eyes, at least a normal one. Ginko travels far and seeks those who require his attention and help. Not all of them can be helped, but Ginko will aid in any way possible.
There’s no particular arc or ending in this story, but there’s multiple stories in Mushishi. Not even one story will last longer than one episode nor shall they related to each other but a bit of connection. That’s a good point and a bad point for this anime. If you’re busy and could only watch 1 episode at a time, then I strongly recommend Mushishi. One of the unique points of Mushishi is that how each episode managed to show different type of Mushis, how to deal with them and with different events unfolding in them. There’s no repetitive part in Mushishi but Ginko’s introduction of himself (You can even learn how to introduce yourself in Japanese!).
It’s hard to categorize what kind of anime Mushishi is. I took it as an adventure and seinen though. There are jokes, but inadequate to list Mushishi as comedy. It has 47 episodes (3 seasons with one special) so it has 47 stories. Some of them are happy, some of them are normal and some of them are sad. Life didn’t always go the right way, and so do the world of Mushishi.
Each episode have their own moral, for instance there’s an episode where a woman was infected by a Mushi that devours memory, yet she retained the memory of her husband and child. Despite the husband didn’t return for a long time, she still wait for him until a day when she saw him with another family of his own (Cheated!). After that, she soon lost the memory of her husband, but not her child that is loyal to her. We can deduce that sometimes there are things better left forgotten rather than being on our mind to continue to live.
In the end of each episode during the ending part, it is noticeable that each episode has a theme of it’s own. In addition, they’re in traditional style, so it’s a treasure for those interested in Japanese culture. Some of them are nice, but some of them are sorrowful, depends on the story.
The story took place in olden day Japan (probably around 18th century or older, according to the author) which most of the characters are just either farmers, kids or fisherman. Most of them are unable to see Mushi unless they’ve been in contact with any Mushi before. (Based on their way of talking, it can be concluded that they are around 1700 in my opinion.) .There are almost no city shown inside the story, and most of it is just the normal people’s house. They’re your everyday people. Farmers, fisherman, boat rower and so on.
And again, let’s talk about Mushi. Like I said, it’s a creature between life and dead. They’re mostly passive, unless a human interfere with them for example entering their area or disturb their habitat. Most often that they mistook humans as their prey or just make them their host like a parasite would. They are like microorganisms to be honest. Some of them are circle-shape, in clusters and so on. They thrive on a place which is very fertile for them, above the Vein Of Light. Vein Of Light (or Koumyaku as they called it) contain a power that enable any life form to be very healthy and grant them great health. There are a lot of types of Mushis that even Mushishi doesn’t remember them all. There are flying type, smoke type, parasyte, fish, dragon and even human on certain circumstances. Different types show different characteristics of their own. Sometimes, they even eat sound and light! Crazy, huh? Some of them are harmful, some of them are harmless, and some of them are protective. But since the harmful ones usually attack humans, people rarely think Mushi as a good thing.
Mushishi deals with anything strange caused by Mushis. Seldom would they kill Mushi, but if the situation requires it, they will kill the Mushi. Usually they looked like doctors, carrying wooden luggage that contained medicines and tools needed for the job.
So who is Ginko? He is the protagonist, a Mushishi that deals with Mushi. Having white hair and only one eye of peculiar green colour (which is rare in old day Japan), he is easily recognize by everyone. Normally he wears a white shirt, dark brown trousers and quite often bringing a luggage containing all his equipment. To say that he is a reclusive or unsociable isn’t that true. He is a man that prioritize his job and willing to put his life on the line for it. Rarely did he laugh, but he isn’t that bad of a person. He didn’t look Mushi as creatures that exist to harm human, but just another part of the world. Rather than killing it, he is more willing to seek ways that the Mushi can survive if possible. He also quite careful and cautious of what he is dealing with, especially if it related to the balance of nature because he did messed it once and it almost destroy the ecosystem of a mountain. There’s no noticeable lover, but the scribe writer from episode 20, Karibusa Tanyuu do showed some hints despite being so small. People do pair up this two because of their conversation. A Mushishi usually opens a shop, but Ginko remained as a travelling doctor because Mushis are easily attracted to him, causing some kind of misfortune around him. To prevent the Mushis from surrounding him, he smokes a very special tobacco, worked just like insect repellent.
There are a lot of characters in Mushishi, but they had their own personalities. No cliches, but only everyday activities. A good quarter of Mushishi involved children, and they did act like children including the way they talked and behave. No more “Onii-chan, hug me” or loli stuffs. All of them wore kimonos and yukatas because well, they are Japanese, aren’t they? Ginko did wore modern looking cloth, but yet it is still plain and can be easily ignored.
So, how’s the manga? Truthfully the anime version is much way better. At least it was made in 2010. The manga was drawn in 2000, so imagine how different they would look like. Since the author is a female, it looked a bit Shoujo-ish. There’s not much of the manga, and the anime already reached the manga’s end, so there will be no continuation unfortunately.
The anime didn’t try to be extravagant, only in a degree that the viewer will understand the story, and they did a great job on that. The animation is smooth, almost no contraries to the story. The picture was clear and vivid, presenting another world of wonder. There’s no fan-service to attract people or desperate attempt to be popular. Not all characters are likable, especially the villagers, but there are a lot of personalities in the world. It’s not like everyone will think of Ginko as a hero. He did had difficulties sometimes because people are stubborn. Ginko isn’t the perfect character, but he isn’t bad. Not all main characters have to be handsome, strong and have girls smooching his feet(*cough cough* SA- *cough cough*). That’s a plus for Mushishi!
Perhaps the art style would appear to be weird to some people because of the nose IMO, but after a while, it almost can be looked over. There’s no over-spiky, vividly colored hair in all character except for Ginko and a woman who have white hairs. Truthfully, this make it even more unique than other anime because it portrays the real Japan and world. Mushishi also have excellent background, scenery and color. Rarely did an anime will give much focus to the background especially the forest, but Mushishi really did the best in this part.
The music was quite splendid too. No techno, no bass, no drums… Only traditional music instrument except for the opening. It emphasized that Mushishi did took place in old Japan and blended in quite well with the background. All of them mixed very well with Mushishi, and all of them are likable. If you want to, you can even use it as relaxation music. If you want to listen some sample, here they are :
There’s no action in Mushishi. It’s more to storytelling and a good one though.I never feel bored watching it, every single episode. Take your time to watch it, it won’t run anywhere.
*I plan to write this earlier, but laziness and business kept me away from wordpress. And I do intend to keep my words to L-Zerb because I told him I would do this, and I hate people who lie.*
See you again later.