Katanagatari is one of NisioIsiN’s most underrated works, but it’s barely mentioned alongside the more popular Monogatari Series.
Monogatari Series gained popularity, especially after the anime adaptation produced by Studio SHAFT of NisiOIsiN’s supernatural mystery novels in 2009. Since then, there have been a few other titles by the author that have come to attention. , with beautiful anime adaptations.
Series written by NisiOIsiN, with anime adaptations including the Fall 2021 series, Pretty Boy Detective Club, as well as a main series by the as-yet-unmentioned author – Katanagataria series that is not actually related to similarly named parts of the Monogatari Series, but has some elements that characterize a quintessential NisiOIsiN work.
Katanagatari Set in Edo Japan, a lush landscape with a vibrant sword fighting style. Shichika Yasuri, the last head of the Yasuri Clan, practices a form of fencing unique to Japan – Kyotо̄ryū; a swordless fighting style. The user uses their own body as a blade, but the Kyotо̄ryū school is hidden deep in the mountains of a Japanese island.
Shichika lived on the island of Fushо̄ with her sister Nanami, until a strategist named Togame arrived, claiming to be searching for twelve unique swords called “Deviant Blades”, crafted by the legendary swordsman, Shikizaki Kiki. Sent by the shogunate, Togame considers Shichika’s power to be a valuable asset but does not want to follow their orders blindly, having great ambitions of his own. Together, Shichika and Togame embark on an adventure that travels across Japan in search of the Deviant Blades, but must face the overwhelming power of the various enemies they encounter.
The name Katanagatari also follow the same trend as the names in NisiOisiN’s most famous work, Monogatari Series. In Japanese, the word “monogatari” means “story”; however, the author manipulates different aspects of the word by using similar words. The first installment in the Monogatari Series is Bakemonogatari, a compound word containing “bakingmono”, which means “monster”; and “monogatari”. This actually makes the title look like “Monstory” in Japanese. This trend continued with many other words for different parts or stories in the Monogatari franchise, such as “nisemono”, which means “imposter” or “forgery”; “
“Katanagatari” is an interesting play on words as “katana” is clearly a reference to the classic Japanese blade, while “-gatari” sounds like it evokes a trend that preceded it with the Monogatari series, giving it quality of the “story” meaning, but it’s a deliberate deception. The word “katanagatari” all together sounds like it might refer to the act of collecting swords, especially because of the part” -gatari “evokes the concept of assembling or collecting. Given Togame’s mission to collect all twelve Deviant Blades, this interpretation of the title fits a lot more closely than a more obvious combination of” katana” and “monogatari” to create something close in meaning to “Sword Story”, which would also make a lot of sense.Like any other NisiOisiN work, Katanagatari is filled with dialogue, with a Some scenes are dedicated to a unique form of display.In that sense, “Katanagatari” refers to a story about a sword collection.
The best elements
Some number one factors of Katanagatari are some of the same strengths found in several other NisiOisiN works, mostly interesting and lively dialogue, complex relationships between characters and solid world building that make it quite immersive albeit with a slow start. The series also boasts 45-minute episodes instead of the standard 23-minutes, which makes it a larger investment than most other anime series with less than 12 episodes. The cast of characters is particularly strong, with the best character of the series being Togame. As the two main characters travel across Japan to meet the owners of different swords, the author’s creativity is on display, as some of the Twelve Deviant Blades turn out to be something out of the ordinary. are blades.
Over and above the actions shown by Shichika and Togame’s journey, another factor makes Katanagatari Especially good is the fact that it also develops their romantic relationship against the backdrop of Japan’s vibrant history. The animation style is very unique, especially when it comes to character design. While it may not look quite like other anime in its class, Katanagatari boasts an avant-garde art direction that makes it stand out, like a more recent anime series like Rank of Kings. Overall, Katanagatari is an excellent anime both in terms of visuals and animation, as well as plot and characters; however, it may have been affected a bit over time.