OP Sequence

OP: 「X-encounter」 by 黒崎真音 (Kurosaki Maon)

「SHAMAN*CLAN -約束-」 (SHAMAN*CLAN -Yakusoku-)
“SHAMAN*CLAN -Promise-“

The many reoccurring themes that keep popping up in my posts – dolls, scissors and spirits. Yes, this is another show about how people have the abilities to see and vanquish evil spirits from the world. A different spin on it would be that our main character, Tsuchimikado Harutora (Ishikawa Kaito) does not actually have this ability despite being born into a family that should. On the other hand, Tsuchimikado Natsume (Hanazawa Kana) does and when they were young, Natsume and Harutora made a promise that binds Harutora as Natsume’s tsukaima. Fast forward a few years, Harutora is off on summer vacation and bumps into Natsume who has come back from Tokyo to visit. , Their meeting is short, but Harutora clearly states that he cannot see spirits (which means he cannot help fight against them either). The story also introduces Harutora’s friends whom include his crush, Hokuto (Kanemoto Hisako) and his classmate, Ato Touji (Kimura Ryouhei). The episode starts off by showing a slice of Harutora’s life up until this point – it’s rather laidback, average and he doesn’t feel like he’s missing out on much. Unfortunately by the end of it, he’s already captured by Direnji Suzuka (Sakura Ayane) and thus, life as he knows it will never be the same. Bum bum bum~

Let me just get this off my chest – there is a lot of blushing going on in this series. At first it’s actually quite cute when you see teenagers innocently flirting, but man, I’ve never seen a guy blush that much before. Perhaps it’s also the style of art, but I can’t say that I love the rosy cheeks everywhere. Talking to females should not be an uncommon occurrence… only an unexpected kiss should warrant that much blood rushing to your face. Or you know other areas… but let’s not get into that! The show comes off as a harem to me due to the large number of females that seem to pop up in a single episode. Not to say that that’s a bad thing, but I’m hoping that there’s more depth and complexity to the show other than Harutora getting used by different characters. Unlike Unbreakable Machine-Doll, I can’t seem to find anything particularly noteworthy about Harutora that makes me either love or hate him. He’s not exactly a standout protagonist by any means (yet?) but perhaps that will change with time. One thing about Harutora that I find unattractive is how he’s not determined to even prove to himself that he can be a “spirit see-er”. He’s come to accept the fact that he’s not special and therefore life is all that it has to offer. Yet on the other hand, other people like Hokuto believe that he can be different. If you throw in the fact that Harutora likes Hokuto, that’s all the more reason to thrive for something, isn’t it? Instead, he yells at her and she runs off… not smooth and definitely not the guy that I would want in my pants. No offense Houkuto. It’s one thing to have the typical “deeply-misunderstood-troubled-past” man, but it’s another to have someone who’s unwilling to accept help.

Tokyo Ravens has possibly been one of the weaker openings I’ve seen all season. I hate to admit that, especially with the long streak of great shows I’ve been watching. I believe the beginning is meant to set the story up and give the audience a slice of what Harutora’s life is like. Unfortunately that also means that the first half of the episode was a little slow for me and the lack of interest in characters makes it hard to me to relate or care. The second half shows a bit more of what’s happening in Tokyo and outside the world of Harutora. This is what ultimately the story is about but the episode doesn’t exactly suck me in except with the short tease at the end – and that extremely sensual use of a chocolate banana (Arrested Development anybody?). I’ll be waiting to see if the story develops into something more and even the big guy has expressed interest in it. I’m expecting to see some strong character development ahead and a lot context as to what Harutora is getting himself into. If anything, the ED has just jumped to the top of my list of favorite ending songs this season. I love Kyoukai no Kanata’s as well, but I honestly cannot resist this one – it’ll be on repeat for the next little while.

TL;DR – @RCCherrie: First kiss in the first episode?! Yes please! Oh and I like the ED =) surprisingly a lot. Not what I was expecting but still resembles a harem under a facade of spirits and supernatural events…. I’m on the fence.

Full-length images: 04, 12, 17, 18, 24, 27.


ED Sequence

ED: 「君が笑む夕暮れ」 (Kimi ga Emu Yuugure) by 南條愛乃 (Nanjo Yoshino)



  1. Albeit the OP was a bit spoiler-ish, the first episode was rather fun to watch.

    I do agree that there was a bit too many “blushing” moments, but seriously, how can I guy be that dense…

      1. Ideally they shouldn’t be.

        Especially when the first episode dwelt in the MC being vehemently against the notion of him becoming a shikigami… but lo’ and behold, in the OP, he’s seen as one.

        It’s going to be interesting to say the least on how the anime will adapt this as the first chapters of the manga are more on the light side of things… almost to the point of being episodic (at least up to where the English scanlation has stopped). Hopefully they can balance things out like Hataraku Maou-sama…

        Can’t wait for the reveal of the fox character… ;3 3 more episodes to go…

    1. Judging from the manga the amount of blushes will increase 100x fold by the time this show is over. Also his girlfriend’s name makes me think wistfully of Fist of the North Star every time they say it so for that alone it gets 3 episodes.

  2. I think you and I have the same opinion on this Miss Cherrie. This could turn about to be fairly decent, and it seems to be interesting. Though, it could spiral down hill very quickly and be an anime that’s just a huge clusterfuck. I’ll say this right now. That blonde woman’s face was scary as shit, and she obviously has more than just a few screws loose. It’s also sad that I find Ato Touji significantly more interesting than Harutora. He’s just your run of the mill dense protagonist. It’s sad since Natsume and Hokuto are really cute girls. (Kana Hanakawa’s voice on Natsume was just super cute.)Last thing, for some reason, I find ED’s like this one the most enjoyable. More laid back acoustic sounding ED’s generally catch my attention. It may be why to this day I still love Life is Like a Boat by Rie Fu. Well, I’ll stick around for three episodes and see what direction this anime is taking.

    1. Better leave it till episode 3, I think. If the pace from the first episode keeps up, the 2nd episode will also be part of the “prologue” arc. Which means things won’t get exciting/funny until the third episode. Basically when the fox/others gets introduced.

  3. The first episode wasn’t that impressive relative to other shows that executed better. But I think it did enough to keep my attention and want more. It set up the setting, characters and plot pretty well. It didn’t have any plot holes like other shows did so in that respect it did well.

  4. I kinda like it. I still need to confirm following after the next episode, but I don’t see a reason to quit. the animation was good and lively, when necessary it changed mode to fitted to atmosphere.CG stuff?it looked good to me. characters design also unique. I like that “robot-model” although animation around him was a different, it didn’t interrupt the flow and fitted well to the atmosphere.
    but clearly it neither perfect nor great debut.
    I think you’ve said that right – we need more depth and complexity, especially on the characters. yet it was decent enough for first episode. considering the fact it’s gonna be 2cour..no need to be hasty (same goes for NnA of PA Works this season).

    that kiss scene..was a hell big surprise. I was caught so off-guard here.

    I think this show has potenital, we saw “sparks” of everything – pace, characters, story, fantasy elements and comic touch. if they put it all together in the right combination..this show can turn into “surprise of the year/season”.

    you too are full of surprises – cover next episode?great!that may help..cause this kind of anime still need to be examined. so Thanks (:

    1. Well the CG was better than Unbreakable Machine doll….
      This show is going to be two cour? I didn’t realize that. I might stick around longer if that’s the case. I have a feeling this show is sort of like Ginga Kikoutai Majestic Prince where you have to stick around much longer than usual to start truly enjoying it.

      1. oops I misunderstood.

        but I honestly cannot resist this one – it’ll be on repeat for the next little while.

        somehow because of this I thought you’re still going to blog only next episode anyway..dont even wure I thought so…S: my bad
        I am aware you’re already full of 2 series for this season (and 2 great ones 😛 ), keep doing you best as always (;

  5. Is it just me or do the blush lines on this show look like someone got punched in the face?

    And OH NO! That evil lady kissed him! This will definitely effect our relationship even though it’s insanely obvious that he’s being held against his will by a giant spirit robot!

    And just so many cliches…I’ll probably stick around a couple more episodes, but I don’t think this one is for me.

  6. I wasn’t sure what to expect being new to the series, but it seems that 8Bit successfully completed it’s “dense male lead” trifecta (other two shows being IS 2 and Walkure). Perhaps that has become a studio specialty.

    JMO, but I find Ato Touji much more likable than Harutora. That’s not to say Touji is fascinating character who can carry the show by himself, but at least he’s not so boring/bland and of course, romantically dense. Also agree w/ Cherrie regarding the excessive blushing as well.

    Not ready to make any “official” watch list decisions yet, but I’m going to need something better in the next couple of episodes to avoid dropping this show. It’s not bad, but for me there are too many other shows which I rank higher after the first episode and my watch list is over-booked as it is.

      1. Because NTR is “cool” now. The past two season of anime had at least one show with NTR moments, reversed or not. Not to mention, this season is chock full of anime that have these moments too.

        Whether they be light hearted or serious, only more episodes will tell, but as far as I know Nagi no Asukara and Valvrave, which starts back tomorrow are both serious in that department.

  7. Natsume’s name is written as 夏目. 夏目 can be used as a male name, ie. Meiji-era Japanese novelist Natsume Soseki(夏目 漱石).
    Which explains why Suzuka assumed Natsume was a boy.

    PS. I get the feeling Touji knows a lot more about the onmyoujis than he’s letting on.

    1. Natsume is usually a family name, like Souseki you mentioned and our beloved yuujinchou Natsume and his granma. But this time it’s first(personal) name, a bit unusual and probably people can’t tell if it’s a boy’s name or a girl’s, and that’s what the original novel author intended, sinceShow Spoiler ▼

  8. …only an unexpected kiss should warrant that much blood rushing to your face. Or you know other areas… but let’s not get into that!

    Please educate us Cherrie-sama. What is this ‘other areas’ you speak of? ^^

  9. After reading the manga, I’d say that this show is definitely worth a second episode to help decide whether to drop it or not since it gets more action coming up in the next few episodes before it turns into a very much slice of life show

  10. So…first blush is after his friend points out he’s drooling. He must have bad circulation.

    Also, Kimura Ryohei sounds completely different in this role. Pretty surprising actually….

  11. Oh well that kiss… “that escalated quickly”
    So we have rogue “great general” class magician, a magical prodigy, her childhood friend NOT aspiring to be mage and his mid-youth wannabe girlfriend. What a delicious double love triangle…
    Oh and then there is question WHY the blonde goth with a penchant for licking things would need to dabble in the forbidden magic?

  12. Manga reader here.

    I actually quite liked this first episode, although the real meat of the introduction in Tokyo Ravens will come next episode. So far, I’d call it a decent adaptation, and I like that some characters, like Harutora, look more mature in this art style than in the manga, and closer in line with the light novels’ art style.

    I like the characters in this series. Pretty much all of them. Speaking from what I know. Harutora might not seem like much at first, but he’s reliable and surprisingly good at common sense and getting along with others where it counts. Natsume’s insecurities are tastefully explored, and there’s slow, but good development and growth in her character, although she tends to fall back to her obvious failings a lot. Touji is Touji, and he’s cool and a trustworthy bro. Hokuto is… well, I’ll hold back on saying anything extensive about her for reasons, but her genki-ness is contaminating.

    Now, I think you’re misunderstanding something about Harutora when you say he’s being unwilling to accept help and encouragement. It’s not quite like that, I think.

    Like he said, he’s already accepted he has no talent, and is mostly at peace with it. He doesn’t want the help or encouragement to become an Onmyouji because he doesn’t need it. He’s not going to do anything with that support, so he doesn’t feel willing to accept it, and he’s probably already become painfully neutral to the idea of becoming an onmyouji even though in the past he might’ve really wanted to become one. And he does honestly enjoy his mundane everyday times with Hokuto and Touji.
    Though, I said he was mostly at peace with it. Not entirely.

    But his attachment/regret isn’t to the idea of “becoming an Onmyouji” itself.
    It’s to failing to fulfill his promise with Natsume and hurting her because of it.

    I’d be lying if I didn’t say that after the introductory arc, he doesn’t become more enthusiastic about becoming an Onmyouji in and of itself, but he still treats it much like a burden, even though he shows his determination in being one at times, it’s never centered around his desire at becoming one, but around being able to protect others, and especially, support Natsume using his skills as an onmyouji.

    That said, what he did to Hokuto was not cool. Though, in a way, it’s understandable and humane he got impulsively upset about it, and he did realize he did wrong immediately after the fact.

    Wow, this post became longer than I was intending to.

  13. Best part of this episode was definitely that ending theme. It reminded me a lot of Sankarea’s ending and I’ve already listened to it over a dozen times. Overall the episode was kind of bland; story was so-so and the characters just didn’t connect with me. Looks like the next episode will be nice since it “may” be getting to some real action as opposed to the action Harutora got at the end of the episode. Oh, and the character designs…I actually liked them despite their chronic blush (which could be a medical condition, now that could be a sly trick for amping up the drama by the directors!). This blushing also affected nearly all of the female characters, sans Lukeage, in Gargantia as well. Must be an epidemic in Japan or something.

  14. Among the three action animes that I’ve anticipated this season(Kill La Kill, Strike the Blood and Tokyo Ravens) this is my most favorite of all. I hope you continue to blog this.

  15. I’m a manga reader but I won’t spoil. Just wanted to leave here a little Q&A.

    Q: This didn’t impressed me much, but there’s something about it that… dunno. Help me: should I drop this series now?
    A: Not now. Watch ep#2 even if you didn’t like ep#1.

    Q: Ecchi?
    A: if you’re talking about the usual in your face, visual fanservice… let me say it’s irrelevant, pretty much close to zero. “Devil is a partimer” level. Like, each arc has 2 or 3 scenes, nothing more than that.

    Q: I meant bath/shower/suimswit episodes…
    A: Oh, sorry bro, my bad! For those you have to hope for a 2nd season 😀

    Q: Shonen gimmicks?
    A: CHECK

    Q: Is the source material worth my time?
    A: The first arc is solid. The rest is nothing special, or rather, there’s too much material going way off the point, it feels like a side stories collection or something. Rewriters need to cut most of it to make it meet expectations.

    1. So pretty much another anime featuring magic or something supernatural & highschoolers.We seem to be getting a few of them this season and none of them stand out.Since it’s a 2-cour,I think 3-4 more eps should be enough for a test run.

  16. Here we go again: Another LN -> Anime adaptation. I expect “detail loss” and “fan rage” a lot this season now, what’s with this, Log Horizon, Golden Time and UMD to lead.

    Oh well.

    1. And you’re probably the one who perpetuates a lot of those arguments here in the first place Moondoggie. You are hands down the biggest shitposter on this entire website. Fuck off.

  17. Episode 3 has a really cool twist. Episodes 4 and 5 somehow slowed down the pace. I hope you continue watching this at the very least. If you’re not a loli/semi-loli fan, you might actually find this a lot better than Strike the Blood.

    The Story You Don't Know

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