Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Mushi-shi The Complete Series|
Genres: Anime & Manga
The Cure Lies in the Curse. — Between this world and the next, there is a point where it becomes impossible to distinguish between plant and animal, between life and death. It is a place man was never meant to tread...This ... more »
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Exquisitely subtle meditation on connection
Bert Rinderle | L.A., CA United States | 12/22/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was a latecomer to Mushi-shi, mostly because I'm very picky when it comes to watching anime. I became intrigued by the series' description, and a short clip sealed the deal. After the first episode, I was completely captivated. Mushi-shi has not only become my favorite anime series, it's one of the best visual works I've ever seen.
The show revolves around Ginko, who spends his days travelling rural Japan in search of "mushi" - beings somewhere between animal and plant, neither good nor evil. In each standalone episode, a mushi has affected a person in a different way, and Ginko must decipher the reasons and concoct a cure.
While the premise may sound tedious, it's anything but. Ginko is a fascinating character: likable yet mysterious; a wanderer with a purpose that unfolds without hurry. The people Ginko meets have their own tale to tell, whether it be a man obsessed with rainbows, a boy who's gained a new sense of hearing, or a girl thought to be a living god. Each episode is memorable due to the characters who compose it, and the series ends up being endlessly interesting due to the inventiveness and versatility of the cast involved. While the people are left behind at the close of each episode, there are new ones to meet.
Besides its unusual structure, Mushi-shi is simply beautiful to experience. The dub is one of the best I've heard; Travis Willingham is perfect as Ginko. The music is minimal and subtle, but evokes emotion in a delicate manner. While there isn't much action in the series, the animation is superb, featuring a delicate and muted palette that's instantly captivating. Much of the series is like watching a moving painting.
The greatest thing about Mushi-shi, however, is its theme: connection between living beings. While each episode is about a person infected by a mushi, under the surface, it's also about how one's decisions affect his or her relationships with the surrounding world, for good and ill. It's no accident that Mushi-shi is set in the country; the show simply would not work in an urban setting, as the connection between human and nature is often explored.
Mushi-shi is totally unlike any other anime I've seen. There are no giant robots, aliens, screaming combatants, devious plans, high-school romances, possessed children, etc etc. It's a mature, quiet, thoughtful, and peaceful show, despite the conflict explored in each episode. I should say that this is probably not a show for children, as it can be quite dark and frightening, and while not explicitly graphic in nature, there are occasional implied acts of violence.
Mushi-shi is not a show to be rushed through, but savored and shared. It is multi-layered without being complex, and was nothing less than a profound journey to experience. This anime is a true labor of love, and I hope you make the choice to travel with Ginko."
Beautiful, engaging and requires little investment.
Patrick Simpson | Virginia, USA | 12/15/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mushi-Shi is a gorgeous anime that is made up of 26 self-contained episodes that don't have anything to do with another, but introduce you to the new types of Mushi that the main character discovers, documents and solves the mystery behind.
It's not "slow-paced," but it definitely has the pacing of a mystery/suspense show like Law & Order or The X-Files, not a shonen-type fighting show. This is a more mature, adult show with nearly perfect animation, wonderful voice acting and music (at least on the Japanese side) and definitely worth a watch. Since each episode is self-contained, you don't have to worry about taking breaks between watching--you won't forget anything you needed to remember. :)
It's also worth noting that the episodes are "out of order" compared to the original manga, but as they're self-contained, it doesn't really matter. The manga also continues after where Mushi-Shi the anime ends, and I'm hoping they make a second season."
The Wonders of Nature Explored and Celebrated
Travis Johnson | Menlo Park, CA United States | 10/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As an avid Anime viewer, I watch a lot of Anime of varying genres. Mushi-shi is the story of nature, from a fantasy-entrenched perspective. In a different existence, there are life forms called Mushi, which are essentially the purest life forms, that live among people. Usually, they go undetected and do not disturb human beings. Occasionally, however, they sometimes can have negative effects, depending on what they require to survive. Some feed off light, while others feed off the gods themselves. Mushi-shi takes place in a much older period in Japan. Ginko, the main character, is a Mushi master, who travels around helping people with Mushi-related problems. Each episode tells the story of a different issue created by Mushi and how Ginko solves the issue. Unlike other Mushi masters, Ginko doesn't simply resort to killing the Mushi, and instead finds ways for people to live with them.
Mushi-shi is not a series that employs action, suspense, character development, or a connected plot. Instead, it uses beautiful artwork, interesting twists, and philosophical messages to remain an impressively unique series. 26 episodes long, this series is long enough to have an incredible diversity in stories told, and plenty of non-recurring characters. It also stays short enough to not overstay its welcome. Any longer, and the series would likely have lost it's value as a series with vague and transparent continual plot.
What Mushi-shi truly has going for it is it's environmental beauty. Everything is serene and peaceful, and the series has a definite air of mysticism to rival any Anime ever made. The Viridian Collection version has Both Japanese and English voice work (with English subtitles) and the special features are numerous and interesting. Mushi-shi is by far my favorite Anime ever made. Watch it if you desire a slower paced series focused more on philosophical virtues and less on action."
S. Zook | Atascadero, CA | 10/31/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I haven't gotten by box set yet since its not release but I have watched the whole series. This is a beautiful anime that you can put any of the discs in and just enjoy. The artwork is beautiful and the people relations are so realistic. There is a little fighting but nothing on a grand scale. Pretty much he wanders around like a doctor helping people with ailments that others don't believe exist. I can not wait for my pre-ordered set to arrive!!! Not a lot of action but not dull or slow paced."