Random Reviews: Inari Konkon Koi Iroha

Inari Konkon Koi IrohaInari Konkon Koi Iroha
Animation Company: Production IMS
Website: http://inarikonkon.jp/
Genres: Comedy, Romance, School, Supernatural
Airing Date: January 2014
Number of Episodes: 10
Trailers: PV 1 | PV 2
Summary: Fushimi Inari is a shy, not-so-bright middle school girl living in Kyoto’s Fushimi ward. She has a crush on her classmate Tanbabashi, but cannot express her feelings. One day, as thanks for helping a fox pup, the deity Ukanomitamanokami grants her the ability to change her form.

Story/Plot: 8/10

Inari Konkon Koi Iroha Ep 1 Img 0027It is always nerve-wracking when it comes down to one of your favourite manga series being animated. I am happy to say that Production IMS’ team did a fantastic job handling the adaption, which is a great way to debut their new studio! One of the main things that tend to turn shoujo adaptions into train-wrecks is the overwhelming focus on romance (such as Kamisama Hajimemashita that ended up as a train-wreck!). As I have mentioned in my first impression: “Inari Konkon Koi Iroha’s romance serves a lot more as a sub-plot. It’s not (and it shouldn’t be) the main focus on the storyline. As one should expect, Inari has to learn and take responsibilities of her newfound powers that Inari had bestowed her with good intentions in mind, and face the consequences that comes with it when she uses it on the whim.” Luckily for us, that’s exactly what they did. They were able to successfully balance the two elements of the story without overshadowing one over the other. Even though they skipped over a few chapters, the flow was natural and I didn’t even notice until I went back to re-read the manga. Yes they certainly did change a few things here and there, such as settings where certain scenes occurred, but that didn’t effect the story at all. Even when they switched over to the Original Anime Contents, they made it work. They adapted the small tweaks and changes so well that it didn’t throw anything off. In fact, they even made some of the Original Anime Contents’ scenes (which connects to the Canon-Manga Materials) even MORE emotional than it was in the manga and in some cases, I actually enjoyed over the manga material (in particular the event in the finale).

Characters & Development: 8/10

Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha 003I am so happy with how they handled the entire cast. Everyone (with the exception of Uka’s mother) were true to their characters. There are a few annoying characters, but they play only minor roles. When it comes down to fights within the circle of friends, sometimes the characters’ behavior will annoy you- but that’s the part that adds that layer of realism, so it is actually something I appreciate. As for character development, of the entire cast, it’s really Inari and her brother Touka who has the most noticeable character development. Uka was relatively the same as she was from the beginning, but the only thing that really developed for her was coming to understand a bit what being in love is like. Uka does get some character development in the manga, but given where this adaption has been wrapped up, they simply hadn’t reached that point yet. Rest assure the lack of Uka’s character development in this adaption doesn’t ruin it (and like I just said: doesn’t affect it at this point).

Animation Quality: 8/10

Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha 0001Major props to Production IMS who did such a fantastic job adapting the manga’s character designs, and maintain the quality of the series from start to finish! I must say I was quite a fan of their CG Foxes in the finale, they were absolutely stunning. They didn’t stand out like a sore-thumb at all. That said, that was pretty much the only CG in the entire show.

Original Soundtrack: 8/10

For most part of the series, the Original Soundtrack didn’t stand out to me too much. However all of that changed in just one episode, and that was the finale. It is a bit funny really because this is the last episode, but it made it even stronger because of how much it was standing out. Without a doubt the finale contained the most powerful compositions of the entire soundtrack that helped deliver the emotions.

Overall Score: 8/10

Although Production IMS did stray a bit away from the canon materials in the manga, and made some tweaks to scenes or events, I felt they did Inari Konkon Koi Iroha justice. They have renewed my faith in studios capabilities to adapt manga series and make some tweaks and add a bit of original content without screwing up the entire adaption. One of the things that I was so grateful and happy about was the fact they highlighted and stuck to the core element of the show, and that is friendship between Inari and Uka. Too many shoujo adaptions overlook the heart of the show and prioritize romance as if the series revolves around it (when it actually doesn’t). They have done such a beautiful job delivering that story. Even with the tweaks and original anime content- I was satisfied, and that my friends, is a rare experience for me (and I am sure for many others as well). In fact, I really would love to see a second season just because they have done such a great job. That said, it was a very smart move to have only ten episodes because that was all what they needed to cover the first major arc.

Recommendation: Absolutely

Inari Konkon Koi Iroha is a lighthearted show that will warm your heart. It’s fluffy and adorable, but not over the top. If you missed out on it, be sure to watch it at some point. I do also recommend reading the manga, it’s a bit slow but it’s still extremely enjoyable. If you liked the anime, you will definitely like the manga

Eva

Blogging Anime since Summer 2009, & Founder of AngryAnimeBitches Anime Blog

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2 Responses

  1. Noc says:

    I totally agree with all your ratings (although I loved the music all along lol)!! As a manga reader, I really enjoyed this adaption, even more so than the manga at some points! Even though they made little tweaks to the storyline here and there, the general outcome was always the same and the charm never faded.

    To be honest, I was a tad upset with the final two episode because it felt a little *too* non-canon, a little *too* stretched out, but I knew that they wanted to have things end when Inari returned the divine powers and were just trying to make that work so I forgive them. It’s just that I would have done things differently…overall though I really loved the anime, and it from what I read on the ‘net it looks like a lot of people feel the same, anime-only viewers or otherwise.

    I was always waiting for Kon to appear in her human form since she’s been in the opening sequence this whole time, but in the end it never happened haha. Maybe they’ll show her in the OVA? I’m hoping they’ll fit in Inari’s shopping date with Tanbabashi somehow as well, and maybe the study session. Those portions of the story weren’t super necessary for the plot, but I was always a little sad that they skipped them since it was such sweet development on the InaBashi side of things ^^

    The little ‘Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha End’ tag at the end made my heart drop, but it’s still okay to hope for a second season, right!? I’m gonna do it TT^TT

    • Eva says:

      THEY DESTROYED ME WHEN KON STARTED CRYING WITH THAT FOX CRY.
      I ABSOLUTELY LOST IT AND WAS IN TEARS. I DIDN’T SIGN UP FOR THIS!!!! (What a great touch though! Or maybe it’s just me because I am weak when it comes to animals crying)

      I have learned from this experience, that if they drop the emotion bombs and stay true to the characters and the goal that needs to be accomplished- even if it’s over the top (lets face it, it was quite stretched like you said, and over the top hence makes it a bit cheesy) I can still enjoy it despite the tweaks and changes. I feel this sets a great example of how adaptions can make the best of it when it strays a tad off the canon material. That said, I am looking forward to future adaptions by Production IMS, and I hope they will develop a good reputation on doing adaptions.

      I do hope there will be an OVA, or better yet a second season (if it’s are getting a second season, without a doubt we’ll get an OVA). But yeah, it’s quite a (pleasant) surprise to see just how focused they were on the foundation of the story as oppose to the romance. yet despite that, I have to say, the anime really helped me appreciate Inari x Tababanshi’s relationship more in the manga (well even more so with what had happened in the last couple of chapters- SO PRECIOUSSSSSSSSS).

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