‘Monogatari’ is unlike your typical anime series. It is more on the hipster side of anime with its quirky twists, smart dialogues, and unusual tone; something like ‘The Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind’. This uniqueness is either an instant turn off or it just grabs the attention in the first few minutes itself. I’m assuming you belong to the latter because you’re out here waiting for a new season.
Most harem anime series have shallow “full-of-themselves” leads but not this one and that’s why I sometimes wonder if this even qualifies to be labeled as a harem. It just feels like it’s something much more than that. Shaft Studio is known for adapting unusual methods for the narratives of animes shows and ‘Monogatari’ is the finest example of that. It heavily relies on its dialogues to portray the entire plot of the anime. This can even cause a lot of discomfort to viewers who are seeing something like this for the first time. It takes time to understand the true purpose of the anime and especially for the ones who are used to watching anime that solely rely on action/adventure for portraying their own purpose. Most people won’t even be patient enough to get past the first three episodes.
But those who manage to stick around for a while will realize that anime shows with so much richness in style and substance are really hard to come by. Even the events of the show are not placed in chronological order but that too works in the favor of the show. What you see in the first few moments are the developed versions of the main characters, which actually allows you to gain more insight into the lives of these characters in a more sensible way. A huge credit for this also goes to the animation style and the voice actors, who did a great job with the character mannerisms.
‘Monogatari’ is, in the end, something of an acquired taste that only a few will have the patience to appreciate. If you end up going through all 15 episodes of the first season, then it is very less likely that you’ll still hold it in a negative light. Apart from all the creativity in the supernatural storyline, ‘Monogatari’ is just a looming story that revolves around two people who have already discovered their soul mates. Now instead of portraying a “happily ever after” story where the two drive off into the sunset, the anime actually brings forth their uncertainties towards their future together. Many a times, the downsides along with the upsides of being in a relationship are portrayed, which adds a much deeper, complicated element to the romance part of the show.
‘Monogatari’ is definitely a must watch for all fantasy/romance lovers and anyone who patiently makes it through the first season will not be anything less than impressed by the anime. But for someone who is slightly new to the world of anime, figuring out the right watching order can get a little tricky. So for anyone who is thinking of starting it now, you can refer to our watch order list below and follow the show in a chronological order that will help you understand it better. Here’s the list of top ‘Monogatari’ episodes you must watch:
15. Kizumonogatari (2016-2017)