A Bunch of Weirdos till the End!

It’s been a damn good year for comedy anime.

Gugure! Kokkuri-san was one of those shows that flew under many radars, but was enjoyed and appreciated by almost all who were watching it – or so it seemed, having me spend the past few months wondering if I had missed out on something big here. With that in mind I decided to marathon it all in time for this finale, and I’m glad I did. By no means was it groundbreaking or anything that new, but it was a damn solid show that knew what it was doing, and wasn’t afraid to make some out-there jokes along the way.

Considering how many hilarious anime we’ve been fortunate to have this year, this one doesn’t quite reach the top of the list for me. I probably only laughed out loud about six, maybe seven times during the entire run, which isn’t ideal, but then again a lot of the gags just didn’t do it for me. But don’t let that sway how funny you may find it to be – comedy is subjective as hell. What may seem side-splitting to one may just fly over the head of another.

If there is one aspect that I felt Kokkuri-san excelled, it would be in its production – especially the directing. It’s simple, sleek, and effective. The visuals by TMS Entertainment were crisp and colourful, the eye-catches provided great transitions, and the delivery in the jokes (even if I didn’t laugh for most of them) was always on point. For that, I give it credit.

My reason for not enjoying the comedy comes down to something very simple: the characters. If I had to sum the cast up in a word, it would be iffy. They were a collection of hits and misses for me, and for the most part the misses got more focus than I would have liked. The two obvious exceptions to that are Kokkuri and Kohina. I wasn’t sure about Kokkuri when he was first introduced, but he quickly grew on me. His doting nature, his love for housework, and his relationship with Kohina all made him a great one to watch. Kohina, though, was the star of the show. That little girl was straight up hilarious at times, sympathetic when it mattered, and was the anchor for the series as a whole. Her doll-act, her ridiculous smile, and her love for cup noodles were three recurring gags that never fell flat, and for that I’m grateful. It’s nice to see such a young main character carry a show as well as she does.

But for all the good, there is bad. Or this in this case, creepy. Nearly every recurring character was a bit of a freak, unlikeable and occasionally charming at the same time, but simply too overbearing for me. Inugami is perfect example. I just never got him, never enjoyed his disturbingly over-the-top love for Kohina, and was genuinely glad whenever he was absent from an episode. The doll-collecting Tama never did it for me either, less because of her creepiness and more because I simply never found her character that funny. And then Tengu – probably the most unsettling of all. You could call it bold to have a character like him included, but I’d call it offensive, and done in poor taste.

Out of the supporting cast, Shigaraki and Yamamoto-kun were the most entertaining for me. Shigaraki was certainly the most believable in his scummy ways, and had some really endearing qualities to him – the scene at the orphanage really proved his character’s worth. Yamamoto-kun was… well… an alien. It was the most random thing ever, and yet the funniest part of the whole series. I only wish we saw more of him, because most of my laughs came from him.

Whilst I found some of the characters and their jokes to be crude and lacking in taste, I was never disappointed when things occasionally went serious. There were moments throughout when the mood shifted – whether it was Jimeko replacing the flowers in Kohina’s vase every day, Shigaraki’s monthly donations to the orphanage, Kureha waiting under the maple tree for her love to return, or Kokkuri helping the a deceased father move on, all those moments were spot on. I would have been happy to have gotten more of them instead of say… Inugami and his obsessive tendencies, or having Tengu even existing.

As a whole though, Gugure! Kokkuri-san was a comedy worth a watch. I wouldn’t consider it the best of the year, but that says just as much about its competition as it does about its own merits. This was incredibly easy to marathon, but I imagine it was also a fun watch from those who tuned in every week to see what mischief these weirdos would get up to next.


  1. Im watching this series since 1st episode, kokuri is not a bad series have a nice background history, if they tell us Kohima history (why she being a Doll and his promise to Kokuri-san) in a gender of slide of Life/Drama they will be a great history like Usagi Drop. Some episodes have touching parts they made me like this series, but sometimes the comedy do not fit with the history. At end i don’t if a comedy with serious parts or a serious history ruined for hilarious moments of comedy (im thinking in editor like Mitsuya Maeno from the anime/manga Gekka Shoujo Nozaki-kun ruining a good history). Well thats my opinion. But at end i can said i like it.

  2. Kokkuri-san was standard fare comedy, but it was never lacking in humour every week, always something that caught me. Loved the bits of seriousness thrown in too, such as the periodic changes in Kohina’s artwork, Shigaraki’s quiet doting on Kohina, and plot lines like the one in the finale involving the father and his daughter.

    IMO this show had many more hits than misses and made for a fun watch. Kokkuri-san certainly isn’t a perfect anime comedy, but it did everything it set out to do right. For a show centered slapstick humour you cannot ask for more than that.

  3. This was a fun series. Though some of the gags and Kohina’s surprisingly deep and grim view of life were a bit disturbing, I got a chuckle out of them. What surprised me was how they managed to sneak in a few gags in even the more serious moments of the show like with that tree spirit and in the christmas part of the finale. They also did a good job of casting Hirohashi Ryou as Kohina. She somehow sounds cute, serious, and pitiful at the same time. The show also needed more female Kokkuri and maybe a few more female Inugami as well. Also can’t get enough of Kokkuri, Inugami, and Tama’s mascot forms. Shigaraki was also cool for being a likeable jerk. Wished they touched more on Kohina’s bully because she sounded like a nice girl. Here’s hoping for a second season. Also anybody know who voiced the little girl in the first part of episode 12? She sounds so familiar but I can’t read kanji.

  4. Agreed on the other characters, they easily could have lopped off a chunk of them and probably wouldn’t have missed much.

    The tree episode and this last episode were some of the better ones for me; weaving comedy and a bit of drama from time to time was welcome, and they could actually excel at it. Every other time, just the way they flip your expectations over (i.e. expecting Kokkuri-san to get locked out/arrested in the first episode) is welcome enough.

    But sheesh, looking back, there was no need for the massive cast, especially for one-off gags like the creepy pedophile tengu what’s-his-face.

  5. I thought that the series was mostly only good when the humor/plot involved just Kokkuri and Kohina, since they’re the only two characters that actually, you know, matter. Their interactions with each other were the most sincere.

    Most of the rest of the cast were just excuses for random slapstick humor or creepy rape/pedophilia/sexual harassment “””jokes””” that I want absolutely no part of.

    1. Much agreed. Though Shigaraki had enough positives to make him likeable imo, and then Yamamoto-kun was something else entirely. Most of the others are much as you describe, and I did not enjoy much – or anything – that they had to offer.

  6. @ Samu – if you’re looking for another one to marathon fast, I recommend this season’s short, Danna ga Nani wo Itteiru ka Wakaranai Ken. Shorts never get enough love, and they’re really easy to watch. I’ve always looked forward to this 3-min short each week.

  7. i laughed at most of the jokes, and it looks like they put their budget for voice actors (they are all famous and have been long in voice acting industry) but still got another budget for visual and story telling!

    season 2 puhlease!

  8. Nobody really liked the tengu. Unless he was there that episode could have been easily the best one 🙁

    It looks like sometimes this series tried too hard to be funny only to finally result irksome.
    Best char the lovable jerk Shigaraki.


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