Gugure! Kokkuri-san – Anime Review
Synopsis: Kohina Ichimatsu, the self-proclaimed doll, called out the fox ghost Kokkuri-san with a suspicious incantation! But it was a story of the past where Kokkuri-san was able to answer any question you had. Nowadays, it relies on a certain search engine, but is actually bad at anything digital. He was going to possess Kohina, but got worried about her living all alone and devotes himself to do chores as if he was her mother. On top of that, the dog ghost Inugami who is infatuated with Kohina and the old good-for-nothing supernatural raccoon dog Shigaraki decide to root themselves with her as well! (Official Crunchyroll Synopsis)
Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Linny: Gugure! Kokkuri-san is a comedy about a strange little girl, who claims to be a robot/doll, haunted and raised by a group of equally odd and misfit Japanese mythical beings. Its wacky premise is a solid indication of just how peculiar the series’ comedy is, and a subtle indication early on that the show is most likely best enjoyed by those well familiar and fond of the outlandish, and potentially controversial, brand of anime humour.
Tom: There’s a lot of strong, dark humor oozing from within Gugure! Kokkuri-san. Every episode features rather disturbing or dark subject matter, either in the events of the show proper or related through a character’s origins. Keeping it comedic, the series paints everything in an absurd and hilarious way but if you stop to think about things, it’s morbidly dark. The show never lets its darker subject matter take over however and become depressing or morbid, rather it’s always rolling with laughs. That said, there are times when jokes go too far and may exceed your comfort zone.
Linny: Some of the more potentially upsetting content ranges from extremely dark jokes, like Kokkuri-san threatening suicide when Kohina refuses to call herself his friend, to the presence of unnerving characters like Inugami-san who has the looks of an older man/woman but claims to be much younger, and has an extreme infatuation with Kohina. All of this is played in a comedic tone and there is no graphically explicit content ever, but it only cements the fact that this show should only be picked up by more well versed audiences. Also, the show always makes it clear that none of the other characters condone Inugami’s wayward behaviour and almost always ends with Inugami being severely punished for it.
Tom: Prepping you for the atmosphere of the series is a perfectly ridiculous opening sequence packed full of gags that are, unfortunately, untranslated on Crunchyroll’s service (Although HIDIVE offers a translation for the credits in all its absurd glory.) The series is then brought to a close with a beautiful piece of music, immediately followed by a ridiculous next episode preview gag that remains a joy throughout all twelve episodes.
Linny: Gugure! Kokkuri-san is a comedy that goes for shock value and often gets it right. It will constantly keep you on your toes and laughing more often than not as it throws all sorts of bizarre and improper gags at its audience. And while Kohina is a rather…eccentric child and definitely not your standard cute kid, she still manages to melt your heart. Add in the three bizarre mythical beings living with her and raising her, and you get a comedy that’s extremely unique and over the top. My only caveat would be that this isn’t a show for anyone who’s new to or uncomfortable with the more potentially offensive styles of anime humour. Otherwise, for anyone seeking an outlandish anime comedy, by all means, do (Hi)DIVE right in! (Okay! That was a terrible pun I know but I couldn’t help myself.)
Tom: Gugure! Kokkuri-san may sometimes go a tad too far, stepping into dark humor that is libel to be more offensive than funny. But those moments are rare, and overall the series stands as one of the best comedies from 2014. It remains one of the strongest anime Linny and I have seen in the past five years and a personal favorite of mine.