Ani-Monday: Jujutsu Kaisen, Higurashi, Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon

Ani-Monday is back after a lengthy hiatus!

What is happening, everybody?

Today I’m going to be covering a few of the new anime that I watched this past week and touch on whether they are worth your time.

Along with this, I’m also including a video review of all of these anime/episodes at the bottom of this article. So after you read this, I implore you to check that out (and subscribe to the channel, if you feel so inclined.)

Anyway, let’s sit back, relax, and get into this week’s anime

(P.S: LOOK OUT FOR POTENTIAL SPOILERS!!)

Jujutsu Kaisen

Episode 2 of Shonen Jump’s hot new series hit the web last Friday, and it sure was a BANGER!

The first episode introduced us to Yuuji Itadori and laid out the events leading to Itadori swallowing a special-grade cursed object (a.k.a an old severed finger) and becoming possessed with a powerful curse known as Ryomen Sukuna.

Although Itadori’s body is taken over by this curse initially. It soon becomes clear that he is very much able to suppress and control the curse, only to let it out when he wants.

This ability is put to the test in episode 2 when Itadori/Sukuna faces off with Jujutsu sorcerer Gojo (soon to be your favorite character and mine.) The fight is very brief, but sports some of the best fight scene animation I’ve seen since Attack on Titan. Gojo toys with Sukuna until Itadori regains control, proving to Gojo that he has a talented new protégé on his hands.

However, due to Itadori’s actions, the committee of Jujutsu sorcerers sentences him to death. But, Gojo gets his execution suspended. Because they want to use him to absorb all parts of Sukuna before killing him and the evil curse along with him. Itadori is given a less-than-ideal ultimatum: Die now, or become fully possessed with a curse and die later.

This series has the potential to become the best anime of this season and perhaps the year as well.

I’ve been keeping up with this manga for a few months. So I was really stoked for the anime adaption to drop. So far, it has not disappointed. Studio MAPPA is bringing its A-game with the smooth character models and INSANE animation for the fight scenes. This series gets a full recommendation from me if you’re a fan of Shonen, or even if you’re not. This is some awesome stuff.

When They Cry (Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni GOU)

As a fan of horror, I’ve noticed there are only a select few horror anime over the years that have caught (and kept) my attention. But the one series that is at the top of that short list is Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni. Which is based on a visual novel series.

This anime follows Keiichi Maebara, a high school student who moves to a small rural town called Hinamizawa. Soon, he befriends many of the students there, including Rika Furude, Rena Ryugu, and the Sonozaki twins Mion and Shion.

Everything appears to be calm and normal. Until, Keiichi is made aware of a incident in which a construction worker hired to build a dam through the town is murdered in the most vicious of ways. The fact of which his friends seem suspiciously dismissive. What follows is a cavalcade of deception, violence, and the supposed presence of an evil spirit over the town.

Given my first statement here, you can imagine how excited I was to hear a new Higurashi project was in the works.

Upon watching the first episode, I thought it was going to be a shot-for-shot remake for the first season of the original series. However, the second episode reveals that it is actually a sequel to the series’ third season. A season that, admittedly, I have not seen yet.

As much as I enjoy Higurashi. I’m going to hold off on watching any more of the new series until I’ve properly consumed the original series in its entirety.

Aside from the story, the new animation style threw me off quite a bit. I wasn’t sure if I liked it. But by the end of Episode 2, it grew on me a bit. So, I don’t think that’ll be a hang-up for me going forward.

If you’re a fan of the Higurashi franchise and you have seen all of the original series, then you’re gonna want to check this out.

Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon

A series more than 20 years in the making, Yashahime is a direct sequel to the popular Shonen series InuYasha.

Having grown up on the original. This is another series that I was excited to see drop given how much I loved its predecessor.

Episode 1 was essentially just an epilogue of the original series. It focused on what the main characters were doing after defeating Naraku. Before properly introducing us to the new main characters at the end of the episode. Those being Towa (daughter of Sesshoumaru), Setsuna (twin sister of Towa) and Moroha (daughter of InuYasha and Kagome).

The first half of Episode 2 mainly showed us Towa’s backstory; living alone in the woods with sister Setsuna. After a raging forest fire causes the two to get separated. Towa’s eye mysteriously begins to glow and a portal suddenly opens, flinging Towa into the modern era.

Towa is found by Sota Higurashi, Kagome’s little brother. Who ends up raising Towa after they fail to locate Setsuna and return Towa to her era.

Now 14, Towa is living a (relatively) normal life as a high school girl. But, despite losing most of her memories from childhood. She just can’t shake the feeling that something (or someone) is missing.

These first two episodes give us a couple things to work off of. First, the time-traveling element from the original series is still going to be a major plot device for this sequel.

Secondly, the three new main characters all seem to possess what is referred to as “Rainbow Pearls” in their eyes. Which are coveted by demons, much like the Shikon no Tama in the original.

But two BIG questions remain:

1) How is it possible that none of the new characters seemed to know each other when their parents did?

2) Where is everyone’s parents? Aside from Episode 1 (and part of the OP). There haven’t been any signs of InuYasha, Kagome or any of the original mains. There are some theories as to why, but time will tell whether those hold any water.

In summary, I enjoyed the first two episodes, and I can’t wait for the next one. I can’t even really say if this series will be good or not. Right now, I’m just riding the wave of nostalgia. And it feels so good.

That’s it for this week’s Ani-Monday!

What anime have you been watching lately? Have any recommendations? Leave them in the comments below OR the YouTube video comments. You might see your suggestion in a future Ani-Monday!

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