Sunday, April 7, 2013

Anime Review: Mushi Shi

Mushi  Shi is a beautiful and engaging anime with no continuous plot; Even so, it somehow manages to keep us wondering what will happen next.

Plot: "They are neither plants nor animals. They differ from other forms of life such as the micro-organisms and the fungi. Instead they resemble the primeval body of life and are generally known as "Mushi". Their existence and appearance are unknown to many and only a limited number of humans are aware of them. Ginko is a "Mushi-shi" who travels around to investigate and find out more about the "Mushi". In the process, he also lends a helping hand to people who face problems with supernatural occurances which may be related to the "Mushi"." Anime News Network

I finished this series about a couple months back but was too lazy to review it.  This was a very enjoyable series and it's available on Netflix as of now.  I highly recommend it to anyone who's interested in thoughtful stories about the supernatural.


What's amazing about Mushi Shi is the fact that although there isn't a continuous plot, it's still intriguing enough to keep us wanting more.  There is a very mysterious air about the story; it revolves around the beings called "mushi" and how they affect their environment, sometimes in very grotesque ways.  With no narrative thread, it's like you're watching a new adventure within each episode; it's quite the refreshing change.  The only downfall is if an episode's story happened to be dull, there isn't much else to think about outside of that micro-plot.


The animation is truly beautiful; its lush environments and soft lighting draws you in as it has a dream-like effect.  Much of the scenery is pensive and thought provoking; true to Japanese artwork, great detail is often placed on a single object as small as a flower.  Expect to see vast expanses of luscious scenery and typical shots of Edo or Meiji period Japan.

The movement of the characters flowed nicely and I noticed that there aren't too many action scenes; you're left to appreciate the richly illustrated backgrounds.  The story takes center stage in this anime.


The music is delicate and pretty.  There's a lot of traditional Japanese string instruments incorporated and it's my wild guess that it could be a Koto or Shamisen.  Chimes are also heard quite often, mixed into in the music.  It brings with it a peaceful and tranquil feeling to the setting.

The voice acting was well done.  I feel that as long as the main character Ginko's voice is good, nothing else really matters as there's only side characters left.  I'm sort of a sucker for Colonel Mustang's voice actor so you could say I'm somewhat biased.  But besides that, I think Travis Willingham was a good choice to portray Ginko because his voice has a very deep and serious tone which matches Ginko's character very well.

RATING: 9/10

I liked this series a lot, even though the plot was not continuous.  I've never seen an anime quite like this one because it mixes traditional Japan and the supernatural.  You would think that this would be a common formula for anime series!  Maybe I haven't watched enough anime...

If you're looking for a laid back yet mysteriously intriguing anime, Mushi Shi is the perfect choice.

Just for fun, while I was taking pictures outside one night, I thought it was so cool that some of the pictures looked like they had mushi in them. lol

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