Kino’s Journey – the Beautiful World – Episodes 1-12 Review

3.5rice

“The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.”

–Kino

Summary:

Kino’s Journey: the Beautiful World (Kino no Tabi -the Beautiful World-) follows Kino, a traveler, accompanied by a talking motorcycle named Hermes, and his many adventures. This is a mystical world of many different countries and forests, each unique in its customs and people. Kino only spends three days and two nights in every town, without exception, on the principle that three days is enough time to learn almost everything important about a place, while leaving time to explore new lands.

 

Review: 12733-200 12733-200 12733-200 12733-200 / 5

Let’s have an anime about traveling, hitting the open road with nothing but your steampunkish style and talking motorcycle best friend to keep you company! Ah the fresh air! The flowers! The gasoline! Fill up and let’s go!

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*flashy putting-on-coat move not required but extremely encouraged*

The world is beautiful, and so is this anime! If you’re looking for some gorgeous settings filled with color and life, this is it! While the CGI can feel a little wonky at times, the animation is really some of the best I’ve ever seen in a show. Very nice!

This anime falls into a slice of life with sci-fi twists, which is super interesting! While most slice of life shows will primarily use a humorous tone, Kino’s Journey prefers the strong and silent vibe, with some brief outbursts of satire like we see here:

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Shaddup, sir!

With that being said, there are some real problems in regards to realism and consistency. I don’t have a problem with a talking vehicle, that’s cool. But when we’re introduced to a talking dog? I’m not sold. Are there more talking animals? Clearly Motorrads are just a thing in this universe, but what about like cars and stuff? This isn’t really explored with any great detail. What’s worse is the logistics of the story itself. How does Kino get the money to travel? As a person who just got back from Scotland for six months, I can tell you that sh*t’s expensive. Kino doesn’t really work and while it appears he can kill people (skills attributed by his ‘master’), we don’t know how he acquires the means not to have a steady job and form of income. Because of this, I wasn’t sold on the concept: inconsistencies mean bad realism; bad realism means poor immersion, and likely, a poor experience. Sad face.

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Another inconsistency is in a far more lethal part of the show: characterization. why are Kino’s eyes three different colors? We go from green to blue to purple, without any suggestion that Kino wears contacts. I know that they’re saying Kino’s a girl and blah blah blah, but like, she should have consistent eye color throughout the series?

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As for the plot devices, the whole “maybe this girl [Kino] is Sakura / my  name is a flower but can be made of with puns / I forget my name / this isn’t the country where I was born” thing. It seems like a cheap tactic pulled out of the sci-fi genre, but it doesn’t enhance the series at all. Other than this point, the plot was good, though there were plenty of holes which could have been explored in further detail, such as Kino’s master. Other than that, the pacing was decent, particularly with the treatment of Ti and Shizu. Their (platonic) relationship developed organically, and left me feeling pretty satisfied with their character arcs.

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A shorter review today because of the holiday. HAPPY EASTER! But don’t worry: more is in store, my lovelies!! Link, Jamage and I have some new things coming your way! Check out this gif of how excited we are:

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Watch on, Annime-niacs!

Annie

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