Anime Review ー Kamisama no Inai Nichiyoubi

Kamisama

Kamisama no Inai Nichiyoubi (The Sunday Without God) is an anime adapted from a light novel of the same name by Irie Kimihito (Story) and Shino (Art). The anime is directed by Kumazawa Yuuji, produced by Madhouse Studios and is 12 episodes in length, plus an un-aired 13th episode (special). Kami-sama started broadcast in Japan on July 7, 2013 and ended on September 22, 2013.

First Impressions

A

I first came across this series with how I normally come across new seasonal anime, the seasonal chart. After looking into it, it got me interested. The story seemed different and from the looks, it gave off a 07-Ghost vibe. The idea I had in my head about what was going to happen was so completely different from the overall result. Due to this being a spoiler-free review, I won’t mention a very heavy spoiler. However, if you have watched up to episode 3, something unexpected took place near the end… that is about as much of a spoiler that I will express.

Story/Plot

“God abandoned the world on Sunday. As a result, nobody in the world can die or reproduce. A little girl, Ai, is the gravekeeper for a village. She has prepared 47 graves for the eventual deaths of every member of the village. Later, a man who identifies himself as “Hampnie Hambart, the ‘Man-eating Toy’,” which is coincidentally the name that Ai’s mother left behind as the name of her father, arrives in the village and slaughters everybody. Just what is going on?” (Source: MU)

The story is pretty ordinary. It still follows the typical premise of the, “I want to save the world!” theme. And so we have our character go on a journey to do so and they meet/help many people along the way. Granted, there aren’t many with this theme out there that have little action and fighting going on between characters. Probably due to the fact that most that follow this theme are filed under the shounen genre, while this is not. While action solves the problems the majority of the time in shounen, in Kami-sama, it is mostly wishes and blessings. Just for a quick compare, look at Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic. In Magi, Aladdin is trying to prevent the tragedy in the previous world from re-occurring in the current world and thus is trying to save the world from Al-Thamen; same as Ai trying to find a way to save the world from its current fate of being abandoned by God. Different plots, but you see the similarities, do you not? Nevertheless, a plot similar to past examples is alright, and so long as it has its own uniqueness, its fair game. I won’t complain about watching the similar route all the time, and I’ll enjoy watching this new edition to the genre. The story does have a way to draw you in, and it is very mystical.
Score: 7/10

Characters

I love the characters, truly I do… but they are far from original. Ai acts like your average 13-year-old in an anime; energetic, optimistic, happy-go-lucky, and while she might be naive, she is one of those kids who is a little wise for her young age. And in short for the others, Hampnie is you typical lone wolf and shady guy, who actually has a soft side to him; Yuri is the protective old-man, father figure; and last, but not least, Scar, who is a little cold and unemotional. Not characters that we haven’t seen in other anime. I can easily compare Yuri to Sven from Black Cat (They also have the same seiyuu), Hampnie to Gareki from Karneval, and so on. So in terms of characters, nothing new here.

Ai Astin:
A 12 to 13-year-old girl who, like her mother, is a gravekeeper. She takes on the role as her village’s gravekeeper after her mother’s death and digs graves everyday for when the time comes for someone to be buried. Due to what her mother told her in the past, she thinks Hampnie Hambart is her father and thus calls him so.

Hampnie Hambart:
A man who calls himself Hampnie Hambart the ‘Man-eating Toy’, which he states is just an alias. He arrives one day in Ai’s village and “slaughters” everyone and tells Ai to give them a proper burial. Ai believes him to be her father due to what her mother once told her. Hampnie, however, keeps telling her otherwise. He’s immortal and is currently looking for a woman named, Hana.

Yuri Dmitrievich Sakuma:
He is Hampnie’s childhood friend. Yuri wants revenge on him for killing his already dead wife and constantly hunts him.

Scar:
She is a typical gravekeeper; cold and unemotional. Scar has no real name, having been called many things in the past, scar is just the most recent name she has been called.

Alis Color:
Alis is Ai’s classmate during the Gola Academy arc. He has an ability called, Buzzer Beater, which gives him perfect aim. Like Ai, he too wants to save the world, but unlike her, he wants to do so by destroying it.

Dee:
She is a ghost that follows Alis around. Known to grant people their wishes and is called, Whisper or The Western Witch.
Score: 7/10

Art & Animation

The art is beautiful! Its bright and enchanting and fits the mood perfectly! Every time I watch Kamisama no Inai, I get captivated by the landscapes and all the backgrounds. Animation is also nicely done, but with that being said, there isn’t anything grand that helps it to stand out, catch my attention, or is even worth a mention aside from the gorgeous landscapes. Nevertheless, this attribute is a strong point in the series and you can tell that is wasn’t something cheap.
Score: 9/10

Sound

A

Like the art, gorgeous! The soundtrack is very well done and even though I haven’t heard any other works by Mizutani Hiromi, he has now deserved a spot in my list of my all-time favorite composers. The tracks sound either eerie, enchanting, or light-hearted and are very soothing to listen to. In regards to the opening and ending, they are amazing. The opening, Birth, is very dynamic and catchy. Lately I have found myself quite addictive to it, and the same goes for the ending, Owaranai Melody wo Utaidashimashita. The moment I heard them both, I found my season OP/ED favorites! Voice Actors do a marvelous job and are well-suited to their characters. Noto Mamiko’s smooth and delicate voice goes great with the unemotional and yet formal Scar; Aki Toyosaki’s adorable voice suits little Ai; and of course, characters like Yuri ALWAYS go great with Fujiwara Keiji, who I swear almost always plays that kind of role in just about every anime he is in! Always great to hear him though.
Score: 10/10

Enjoyment

This was one of my all time favorites of the season! Every week, I anticipated the next episode and I was never really let down with my personal expectations for it. At first, I had a certain idea of how the series would play out, but I was completely wrong. I had no idea that I entered into quite an emotional thrill ride. In all honesty, I love watching anime that has enough drama to make me cry, since I tend to bottle all my emotions up inside me, it acts as a good release for my feelings. While I have watched many dramatic anime, only a few have made me cry; and when I say cry, I don’t just mean that I tear up… I mean that you could fill buckets with my tears! The only anime I know of that has made me cry would more than likely be Air, CLANNAD, Rainbow: Nisha Rokubou no Shichinin, Sukitte Ii na yo., Wolf’s Rain, the Rewrite visual novel, and the Refrain arc in the Little Busters! visual novel. Overall, that is actually quite a small selection out of all the dramatic anime out there. While having said that, Kami-sama only made me cry my eyes out in episode 3. While it was just then, it was more than enough to be memorable, aside from me tearing up on every other episode.

This series did keep me interested to the very end, I loved all the characters, and found the majority of them likable. Ai is certainly being added to my list! I was a little disappointed with the ending. I get that it left many confused about what happened, the conclusion was pretty much just left hanging there. Although, while I might understand the situation, there are many others who do not, so I feel as though this could have been executed better. They could have made the fact that “it was all due to Ai’s wish” a little more obvious.
Score: 9/10

Concluding Thoughts

A

Kami-sama no Inai Nichiyoubi is a very interesting series. While the plot has a tendency to draw you in, it has a pretty bad habit of being a little slow. Especially since there is more talking if anything, and that tends to give off the illusion of extended duration. Nevertheless, this series is not listed as action nor shounen, so you wouldn’t be watching if that much was expected. Aside from the slow pacing there is only one more thing some may find a little irritating about this series. As I have mentioned before, this series ends in a major cliffhanger. Not only that, but it is very confusing. Now, there is an OVA scheduled this winter, and so I will update this entry when it airs. At least, that is if it is not a side story and an actual sequel.

Anime Rating: 8

Very good. Everything was portrayed nicely, but it gives off a feeling of something missing. Its considered entertaining and one can get enjoyment from watching it.

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