Episode 2 Impressions: Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha

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Inari, Konkon, Koi Iroha is becoming easily the best series of the winter 2014 line-up.  Not necessarily for high action, dark atmosphere, or deadly situations.  Rather for a compelling set of situations that are wrapped up in a simple but heartwarming way.

Summary
e3konkon3Continuing where we left off from the first episode, Inari has been given part of the essence of the shrine deity Uka.  Allowing her to shapeshift into any human form.  At the beginning of episode 2, Inari uses this to infiltrate into Kouji’s house in the form of his friend Hashimo.  There, she discovers how passionate and caring he is as he helps his ill mother.

This breaks to flashbacks of the moment she first met Kouji.  He had carried her to school after falling and injuring herself.  Awkwardly enough while lost in her memories of her first meeting, she cuddles to his back, still in the form of Hashimo..

Following this incident, Inari is whisked away with Uka to the Celestial Plains to an assembly before the ruling sun goddess Amaterasu Ohmikami.  Amaterasu rules against the actions of Uka for bestowing her essence to Inari, but instead of punishment, Inari is given a test to see if she’s able to handle the powers given to her.

Oddly enough, this is as simple as not using her powers for a day.  If she fails, she must remain in the Celestial Plains until her training is complete.  As a side wager, Uka must be married off to another god.  Which being the Otaku she is, does not settle well.

e3konkon1The next day, Inari leaves to Kouji’s basketball game and meets up with Sumizome.  On their way to the game Inari is faced with different minions of Amaterasu who try to trick her into transforming.  While fleeing with Sumizome, they are trapped in a shed where Sumizome passes out from heat exhaustion.  Trying desperately to save her, Inari transforms to escape through a hole and brings help.

After the ordeal, she’s thanked by Sumizome even though Inari blames herself.  Kouji also acknowledges her bravery.  However deep in her heart she knows she will have to leave for the Plains.  She offers up the charm she had been saving to not wish him luck in his game, but rather wish him luck in his future.

While heading to the Celestial Plains, Inari collapses in tears.  Saddened by the fact that not only had she just met Sumizome and finally gotten closer to Kouji but that she had let down Uka.  Though Amaterasu had acknowledged Inari’s sacrifice for her friend, as well as the bond between Uka and Inari.  This gave them a passing grade and a leave to go home.

Back at the shrine, Inari realizes the comforting feeling she has always had at the shrine was Uka’s presence.  Knowing that she’s always been watching.  While embracing Uka, Inari’s brother arrives and strikes Uka demanding she stay away from his sister.

Thoughts
Such a strong episode. While I was a bit frustrated by Inari’s choice to enter Kouji’s house as someone else, it did reveal some cute connections between Inari and Kouji. I guess the idea of shape shifting needs to be played out a bit more, I’m just constantly rooting for her to be honest with him instead.

e3konkon2Finally getting to see the Celestial Plains was a bit scary as I was dreading the show becoming focused on that and not the real world. However it quickly shifted to the test of her ability to resist her new-found ability. Which was in fact cute. Her proving herself through many challenges.

In the end she was forced to use her abilities, which was slightly predictable. Though seeing her charge into that gym was quite heroic and had me cheering her on deep down. It was pleasing to see that rather than having a rivalry between Inari and Sumizome, that instead they found a connection in this episode. I almost thought for a while that she was a planted shape-shifter while in the shed!

The moment of this episode that really got me was Inari’s breakdown in the celestial carriage. The moment she realized that even though she was just getting to know people, that she was going to lose it all. I knew the sun god would acknowledge her sacrifice, but it was still heartwarming to see it all go down.

I’m really enjoying this series and I cannot wait for the next episode. As I stated earlier, it just has a very simple but engaging and heartwarming concept that I can’t stop watching. It goes without saying that I’ll be continuing to monitor this show and bring any impressions back as I watch each one. So stay tuned!

Episode 2: Ordeals, Secrets, Amaterasu

THUMBS UP! PROMISING!

THUMBS UP! PROMISING!

IMPRESSIONS VERDICT:
Fantastic and Heartwarming

Goods:

  • Heartwarming
  • Simple but gripping tale
  • Good cliffhanger

Fears:

  • Inari’s brother having a lackluster reason
  • Still being a love triangle show

Impressions are based on a single episode and don’t necessarily reflect the series as a whole. Unless dropped, we will continue to give updates on thoughts and impressions of the series as time goes by.

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Co-Founder of OtakuSpirit.com and Co-Host of the OtakuSpirit Animecast. A huge fan of anime since the early 1990s, consuming over 800 shows. While he's late to the collecting scene, he's found a lot of joy in filling his DVD/Blu-ray collection as well as collecting figures. Once a week, he posts unboxing and feature videos on anime goods to YouTube.