There are some great romance anime out there and I have a couple of favorites. Kamisama Kiss is probably one of the anime that I’ve watched the most. It is very sweet and has good character growth and if you read the manga the story does get a lot deeper and has a somewhat satisfying ending since right now there are only 2 seasons and so far it doesn’t look like a 3rd is coming since they did a few OVA’s. (side note, I watched this series in dubs and the voice acting is very good).
At the start of the anime you will notice right off that there is a quirky narrator. I haven’t quite seen something like this before in anime and sometimes it gives a nice lighthearted feel to the show. It gives it a bit of an old home video vibe sometimes.
When you meet main character Nanami she is sitting on a bench since she just got kicked out of her home. Her dad gambled away their rent money and now she is out at night without anywhere to go. Her back story is very tragic and she doesn’t talk about it much, the viewer doesn’t get an inside view of her story until almost the end of season 2. You get hints but not the whole story.
She meets a man called Mikage who is stuck up a tree by a dog, she “saves his life” and then in turn he lets her live in his shrine (and makes her a God). Here is a nice message to help others (haha) then you get promoted to Godhood! Not really, but that would be cool.
There at the shrine she meets Mikage’s familiar, Tomoe, who is a Yokia who has been “tamed” by having a familiar contract with Mikage and he serves the shrine. However, he is furious about a human taking Mikage’s place as the God of the shrine, and decides to go on a drinking binge in the underworld.
Nanami is trying to keep up the shrine without Tomoe but is failing miserable so the shrine spirits tell her that she needs to make Tomoe her familiar by kissing him. She goes to hunt him down in the other world and gets into trouble. The manga and anime differ a bit at this point but in the end she tricks a kiss out of Tomoe thus making him her familiar and now he has to serve her.
One of my favorite things about this anime is Tomoe and Nanami’s dynamic. They are both snarky and sweet to each other making mistakes and having misunderstandings. There are some great laugh out loud moments with these two and their banter.
This anime does have a bit of “Oh now Nanami needs Tomoe to come rescue her” which can get a bit old, but there is a nice character growth in Nanami where she recognizes her weaknesses and then is determined to grow and get stronger. She doesn’t want to just sit around and depend on Tomoe as much as he wishes she would. Nanami brings a lot of change to the God world and helps them relate to humans in a new way. She doesn’t always understand the traditions but is willing to learn and break old ones that are outdated.
If that last paragraph was a bit vague I apologize, I’m trying to avoid too many spoilers :).
If you classify this anime it would be considered a reverse harem, in which there is one female character and a group of males are around her who do show romantic interest. The other “romances” are not the main focus of the story arcs which is nice. Otherwise, this would get too “Bella, Edward, Jacob.”
She is kidnapped by a familiar who lost his God and Nanami showed him kindness so then he decides to marry her… Which is a bit awkward. However, you learn a bit about his backstory and it is quite sad. In a later episode Mizuke becomes her familiar and him and Tomoe do not get along very well. In the manga there is a sweet scene with Nanami and Mizuke her familiar when he is afraid that he will be along again abandoned by his new God Nanami. It isn’t in the anime which is disappointing but I recommend the manga if you want to figure out a few of the plot holes that were left in the anime.
Tomoe also has a dark history of blood with him and his best friend Akura-Ou.
This story line hints at the past and Tomoe for some reason can’t remember any of it. All of this is explained in the manga. The anime hints at why he can’t remember, but the manga finishes the story line. He has to face a past where he was more of a killer than a protector.
As the anime goes on the shrine filled with spirits, familiars, and friends. There is a sweet moment that reflects on the fact that Nanami always had to be on her own and care for herself and now she has a family. It is a nice moment for the main character to see her get a unique and loud family. A place where she belongs.
There are a few of what I would call “squee” scenes in this anime and I posted my favorite one and I may or may not have a zillion screen shots of this scene in my iPad…
Sometimes the will they won’t they vibe of the romance can get a bit old and you just want Tomoe to admit that he loves Nanami. The wait is worth it and the sweet moments get you by until the end.
This is a very sweet anime if you like romance. I did wish that they had a third season, but check out the OVA’s and the manga. The manga also ties up the plot nicely. I do have one complaint that the last volume seemed a bit rushed, but I know how sometimes when a manga gets canceled they kind of shove everything into the last chapters.
Hope you enjoy this sweet anime like I did! Happy watching!