OP Sequence

OP: 「Oukaranman」 (桜花爛漫) by (KEYTALK)

“The Mysterious Classmate”

「謎のクラスメート」 (Nazo no Kurasumeto)

Takahashi Rumiko’s Latest Work:

Better late than never, Kyoukai no RINNE finally hits our screens, and even if it wasn’t extraordinary, it was pretty solid first episode. I think it’s fair to assume that those most looking forward to Kyoukai no RINNE would be fans of the manga, as well as fans of Takahashi Rumiko in general. She’s one of the most famous mangaka around (Urusei Yatsura, Ranma 1/2, Inuyasha), and this is her latest title. Funnily enough, I planned on reading the manga for Kyoukai no RINNE a while back, but never got around to it, so when the anime adaptation was announced I decided to wait until it came around before I experience my first Rumiko anime. I’ve heard mixed (but mainly positive things) about Rumiko’s previous works, so I was keen to see how RINNE fared, and I think this was a fairly solid first episode. It was nothing extraordinary, but it was never boring either. Brains Base have done a good job here; the animation may not be groundbreaking, but the visuals are pleasant and fitting to the tone of the series.

Bleach Comparisons:

From reading the synopsis beforehand, and watching the episode now, it must be said how many similarities there are between RINNE and Bleach. Sure, Bleach itself is partially inspired by Yu Yu Hakusho, but this felt a little… too similar. The dynamic of goofy yet powerful shinigami and straight-talking human, the black cat character, a main character who can see spirits, spirits turning evil after too long, and another realm where those who have passed on are sent to; all these things are pretty much the exact same, and I don’t know how I feel about that. If I were to critique RINNE on one thing in particular, it would be that it doesn’t have it’s own identity yet. I feel like I’ve seen this done before, so things will need to shake up to keep the story fresh.

A Pleasant Duo:

I thought the two main characters worked well together (similar to how Ichigo and Rukia did in early Bleach), and their scenes, although not hilarious, were smirk-worthy. Mamiya Sakura (Inoue Marina) doesn’t leave much of an impression, but she’s likeable enough for now. Rodudou Rinne (Ishikawa Kaito) is a little more interesting, with a nice balance of serious and silly moments throughout the episode. I can definitely see this duo working nicely together. As for what they achieved in this episode, it was mainly to do with Sakura’s friend’s rogue calls, which led to the discovery that their teacher has a link with a deceased high-schooler who keeps repeating the same phonecall over and over. Cue some payments of yen, and Rinne pulls out some semi-intriguing spirit devices, and the problems are solved. Honestly, the results weren’t as satisfying, especially for a first episode. Thankfully, the scenes in the spirit world were much more appealing, so I hope that RINNE plays to its strengths that have been shown here.

Overview – What’s Next?:

I’ve heard that the manga takes a long time to get to a real storyline, which I think is worrying. This episode lacked any hint of long-term plot direction, but I’ll keep checking it out to see where it goes. This wasn’t a great first episode, but it was not bad by any means – it was just a solid introduction to a story that has yet to find what makes it unique.

Note: There are currently no plans to cover Kyoukai no RINNE weekly.

Full-length images: 14.


ED Sequence

ED: 「Toki no Wa」 (トキノワ) by Passepied (パスピエ)



  1. I guess they will run with GOTW(Ghost Of The Week) style at least for a while. But so far it looks like it’s gonna be entertaining and I feel more than happy to have a rock solid entertainment. It definitely has classic Rumiko anime vibe and I guess that’s a good thing. Some things should never change.

  2. I hear Takahashi tends to be rather old-school in certain matters (not just in Rinne’s old-school plot and artstyle). For example, I heard that when she was penning Inuyasha, she turned a planned female villian into a gay male villian because she “couldn’t bear the idea of Inuyasha hitting a girl”.
    Now compare to newer anime like Index, where Kamijou Touma WILL punch a(n evil) girl to save the world… (~_~)

    PS. Is Takahashi still the richest mangaka in Japan, or has she been surpassed by others already?

  3. god what da heck with this animation .. the first thing came in my mind was
    wat is dis some kind of inuyasha ? dey just change their hair color .. screw dis
    anyway iddnt seen da anime yet so yah time will tel

  4. This series actually has more in common with “Noragami” than it does with “Bleach”, mostly due to the tracksuit-wearing perpetually-poor supernatural main character who does odd jobs for loose change.

    While the stories were a little more varied earlier in the series, after 7 years of the manga it has become solidly a ghost-of-the-week series with absolutely no overarching plot or end goal. Which is why I’m glad the anime is adapting the earlier chapters where we got at least a little variety, and hopefully they’ll do some original stuff like add some sort of overall conflict to resolve for the finale.

    And the show’s “identity” is basically this:
    1. Rinne finds some spirity work that could get him some money or stuff.
    2. The situation behind the spirit’s earthly attachment ends up being really silly
    3. Rinne ends up only breaking even by the end due to how much he had to spend on tools, or due to some loophole that keeps him from getting a reward

    It is also unique among Rumiko Takahashi works because of how dang MELLOW everyone is. Even the romantic rivals have moments where they’re like, “I shouldn’t be a jerk to my rival, because that would make me unappealing to my love interest”. After the incessant relationship abuse in “Urusei Yatsura”, “Ranma”, and “Inuyasha”, it was refreshing to see characters treat each other in a civil manner. Too bad the whole “status quo is god” aspect is still as strong as ever.

    1. I’m usually good with whatever-of-the-week long-running series, but JFC I had to drop this pretty far in since I was just so bored of absolutely nothing happening.

  5. I Agree that this show more or less like noragami than bleach. The different feeling is that they are duo, Rinne is classmate, and a lot of hilarious stuff introduction like doraemon.
    It’s definitely not an original, but the story as it self is pretty interesting. The Stuff like phone string spirit,spirit net, or “Kasha” is very much appealing to me. And i like how Rinne always using small change of money to use some of the stuff.

    1. Sakura’s main trait is giving deadpan snark. While it’s true she doesn’t really do that much, she’s the “straight man” of the series and just kind of stands around leaving a running meta commentary on how ridiculous everything is. This was characterized in episode 1 with her comment that Rika could just change her phone number, wondering how Rinne could afford a haori if he couldn’t afford the uniform, and commenting that there was no point in hiding the ghost when everyone already saw it on the way over. She’s kind of the inverse of previous Takahashi heroines in that she doesn’t really emote over ANYTHING, to the point that it becomes a running gag that whenever Rinne does something questionable, he worries that Sakura is mad at him or is getting the wrong idea, but he can’t tell because she doesn’t react.

      She’s gone OOC Is Serious Business once that I recall, in a scene that the anime version might get to:
      Show Spoiler ▼


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