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Inari Kon Kon: The Complete Series & OVA

FUNimation // Unrated // July 28, 2015
List Price: $49.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by Neil Lumbard | posted December 30, 2015 | E-mail the Author


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Inari Kon Kon Blu-ray Review


Inari Kon Kon is a Japanese anime series
based upon
the manga which was written and illustrated by Morohe Yoshida. The
series
revolves around a girl who is given the gift of transformation from a
spirit
god after she helps to rescue the life of a young fox spirit who almost
drowned
in a river.


The girl's name is Inari Fushimi. She is granted
one wish
from the god after saving the fox spirit. She wishes to become another
girl in
her class named Sumizome (a girl who she thinks is more popular with
the boys,
including her school crush Kōji). Inari quickly realizes that she
doesn't want
to appear as the girl and wants to just be herself.


However, the spirit god Uka-no-Mitama-no-Kami
(called
"Uka" for short) cannot reverse the wish that was granted to Inari.
Instead,
Uka can help Inari get back her normal appearance by giving her some of
her
powers. Inari is given divine powers from Uka which she can use while
still
remaining a human being. This allows Inari to transform into various
people and
animals at will. She can maintain her normal appearance while also
being able to shift into her brother, classmates, and others by using
her new
powers.


Over the course of the series, Inari must learn
how to
control her powers and eventually how to return to her normal self.
Inari also
becomes close friends with spirit god Uka and with a small fox spirit
who
spends time with Inari. She becomes friends with her classmate Sumizome
and
continues to hang out with her other friends.


Inari Kon Kon largely becomes a
slice-of-life anime
which focuses on Inari's relationships with friends, classmate crush
Kōji,
spirit god Uka, and her older brother Tōka (who for some reason can see
the
spirit gods). The question remains: Can Inari return to being a normal
human
girl?


The series is a largely sweet natured one. The
series
characters and storyline is charming. The series has a nice energy to
it and
it's a nice slice-of-life style of storytelling which is much more
focused on
the characters and their journeys than on the concept. The series
central idea
actually isn't explored as much as one might expect based on the start
of the
series. Even so, the overall quality of the show is notable and the
series is
entertaining.


While the end of the series felt a bit rushed, the
series
did manage to be an entertaining and generally satisfying series from
beginning
to end. The additional OVA episode was also a charming side-story
centered
around Inari's fox spirit friend. The OVA episode takes place following
the finale
of the series and it is a highly enjoyable additional episode of the
anime.


The series was adapted by anime studio
Production IMS. This is an exceptionally well animated program. The
animators
involved in this production have crafted a beautiful anime with
exceptional
production qualities. The series has excellent background art, rich
creativity,
and strong character designs. The overall quality of the art is quite
high.
This is certainly a strong effort which shows a lot of promise for the
art done
by Production IMS.


Written by Touko Machida, Inari Kon Kon excels at
character-based storytelling and it does have some fun at times with
its unique
concept. The series writing has strength in the strong characters and
their
journeys. The comedy sprinkled throughout is a bit lackluster and
doesn't
usually work well, but when the series is focused on the dramatic
elements of
the story these episodes are usually quite entertaining and are
well-crafted. The music for the series is by Takeshi Senoo (Aria).
The score is quite lush and serene. It is a wonderful addition to the
production.



Directed by Toru Takahashi, Inari Kon Kon excels at
being a fun and engaging slice-of-life anime with a solid pace. The
series has some
great episodes and some average ones but it's entertaining throughout.
The
style of the series is quite impressive throughout.

Inari Kon Kon manages to be a solid
production with
good storytelling, animation, music, and direction. The series doesn't
entirely
excel at its original concept but it does excel at being a stronger
than
average slice-of-life genre production. Fans of anime series which are
more
character-focused and drama-based will appreciate this charming anime.


The Blu-ray:


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Video:


Inari Kon Kon is presented in 1080p High
Definition
with a strong MPEG-4 AVC encoded presentation. The
series is presented in the original 1.78:1 widescreen aspect ratio.
This is certainly a beautifully animated series and the high-definition
presentation looks excellent. Clarity is strong throughout and the art
is
colorful and vibrant.


Audio:


Inari Kon Kon is presented
in Japanese 2.0 stereo Dolby TrueHD.
The series did not receive an English dub so no English audio option is
included on this release. This is a strong lossless audio presentation
with
excellent dialogue clarity. The music score by
Takeshi Senoostyle=""> sounds beautiful.
The included English subtitles are excellent.


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Extras:


style="">This release is a Blu-ray + DVD Combo Pack.


Includes textless opening/closing themes,
promotional videos,
and trailers for other Funimation releases.


This release also includes several comedic
mini-episodes (15
min.) done in a unique animation style and featuring the spirit fox
characters.


The release also includes the OVA episode produced
after the
end of the series. It is a strong episode and one of the best
inclusions on
this release.


Final Thoughts:


Inari Kon Kon is a fun and enjoyable
slice-of-life
anime with a fun concept. The series isn't perfect but it has strong
characters, storytelling, and animation. This is a worthwhile anime
which fans
of charming anime series creations will find entertaining. The Blu-ray
release
is strong with superb PQ/AQ and a nice selection of extras.


Recommended.



Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema. He aspires to make movies and has written two screenplays on spec. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.

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