Natsume’s Book of Friends 3
Alex: Natsume has had two seasons before this, and this marks the end of the third, with the fourth season announced for January. There are two other reviews on Natsume, one by me and one by Mimi. If you’re interested, Season 1 is here, and Season 2 is here. The general consensus on the series is that it’s utterly, utterly heartwarming and a real heart-puller at times, and something which is gonna go down as an anime classic.
Series 3 is where they slightly change the formula. If you look at the formula as a “Youkai and I”, revolving around Natsume and the Youkai, this series revolves more around the “Me and the Youkai”, as in Natsume takes the central focus in the majority of the stories, unlike the Youkai. You even get treated to several backstories of Natsume, dating to the time before he had Nyanko-Sensei to help him with the youkai, and how he’d deal with them on his own, and they’re some of the best ones.
You also get a return of one of the most loved characters in the Natsume anime, the Kitsune spirit. Natsume’s meeting with the Kitsune spirit almost marks the end of Natsume’s solo development, being on his own and being afraid of the world. You even have a few school episodes in this series, focusing more on Natsume and how he interacts with his friends outside of Youkai problems. Not to say that you don’t have any youkai problems involving his friends, you even have an example where Tanuma gets possessed by a youkai, and is able to see the world that Natsume can see.
Examples of that is just what the series is brilliant at. It’s beautiful, and well…it’s almost art. There are strong episodes, weak episodes, but these 13 installments into the Natsume Yuujinchou franchise are episodes which will help cement the series as something that’s stored in every anime watchers heart.
Alex’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)
Liam’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)