My first official anime review, considering my Ao Haru Ride post was more like a rant on what I wanted to happen. I will try and give you as much detail on the show’s story as I can without spoiling anything. As with everything, this is all my opinion and I hope you enjoy!
Inari Konkon Koi Iroha follows a young girl, Inari Fushimi, who is an average clumsy girl who has a crush on a boy in her class, Kouji Tanbabashi. Inari struggles with trying to get Kouji to notice her. One day she comes across a young fox who fell into a river. Being the nice girl she is, Inari jumps in and saves the fox. Come to find out, the fox pup is named Kon, and is one of the familiars of the deity of the local shrine, Uka-no-Mitama-no-Kami, or as she is usually referred to as “Uka”. As a gift Uka grants Inari one wish, which results in Inari gaining a part of Uka’s power. The rest of the series follows Inari as she tries to deal with not only her feelings for Kouji, but also her struggle to try and control the power Uka gave her.
The characters the story follows includes Inari, of course. Uka, her two friends Keiko and Maru, Kouji, Inari’s older brother Touka, and the manager of the Basketball Club Kouji is a part of, Akemi. There are also a few minor characters who play a part in the story such as Uka’s brother and a few other gods.
Inari is pretty much your average female heroine. She is clumsy, often referred to as not very bright, and often got lost in the shrine as a child. However, she is different in one way from many current anime heroines, at least that I know of, because she is in Middle School, not High School. Which I find kind of interesting because so many heroines are typical high school girls, and Inari is kind of separated from this stereotype. Even if it is only by a few years. Inari is pretty much an average heroine, but she does do very well in her role and always has a certain determination to her that I find refreshing. Sure she’s average but I do think she is a good character for the position she is given.
Kouji is one of the major male characters, although he is rivaled by Inari’s older brother for the male lead. Kouji is, of course, your average middle school boy. He plays basketball and is pretty clueless about girls. But he does have a certain back story to his character that gives him a certain level of depth. When his father passed away when he was young, Kouji brought it upon himself to become a father figure to his younger brother. That’s always a nice thing to see, even if some say it is becoming more and more common.
Uka, the local shrine deity, is not exactly what you would expect from a god. She’s an otaku who likes playing video games, even some times playing with Inari’s brother. She makes her familiars turn into televisions and other electronic devices so she can play these games. Despite that Uka has also watched over Inari since she was young, and sees her as worthy of giving part of her own divine power. This is of course seen by the rest of the god’s unimaginable crime and causes a lot of issues for the story. She finds her friendship with Inari to be very important to her, no matter what the other gods tell her. I’m afraid if I dwell too far in to Uka’s character I might give something away, so I’m going to stop there for now.
However, my favorite character would probably have to be Inari’s brother Touka. He is of course a high school student, and a pretty smart one at that, who is very protective of his younger sister. He does not like Inari going into the shrine because, unlike most normal people in the series, Touka is able to see Uka and her familiars as well as other gods and so on.
He develops a friendly relationship with Uka and they play games together, although he disliked her strongly for a very long time. Let’s just say they get a little more….friendly in the manga, but I digress. I will admit my favoritism towards Touka mostly stems from the manga, as he is struggling to get into a good college and is super stressed. I could really relate to that as I was too experiencing something similar. His parents also say he is suffering from “Middle School Syndrome” although he is well into high school.
The other characters are your average anime stereotypes. Keiko, Inari’s friends, is a tomboy who I often felt like was made a girl at the last second because they wanted another girl to fall in love with her. She just seems very…manly to me. I don’t know. Maru is an otaku who is sometimes just kind of there for the purpose to give Inari friends, which is fine because she and Inari are fairly close. Akemi is…um…I guess originally she’s like the love-rival for Inari, but that is later revealed to not really be a problem anymore. The rest of the cast is just your regular people thrown in to build some story and have more people for Inari to change in to and random shenanigans happen. It isn’t a bad cast, I just believe that some character should have been given some more screen time to show more character to them.
The openings and ending of the series are pretty good. They aren’t some of my favorite songs, but the opening did gain a place in my playlist for anime soundtrack music. The animation style is actually very well done, and pleasant to watch. Good job Production IMS!!
Overall, Inari Konkon Koi Iroha is an anime with an okay story that sometimes feels like it is progressing very slowly. Problems are not solved with epic battle scenes, but through what can only be described as “minutes of running up a hill”. The show really is kind of slowly paced, which can be kind of relaxing at some points, but frustrating as others. It also has a few funny moments that did make me laugh out loud.
I does not have a place in my Top 20 Anime list, but maybe does in my Top 30. I would recommend it if you were looking for something slowly paced and if you are into things about gods and people gaining special powers.
The raiting I give to Inari Konkon Koi Iroha is a solid C. It’s average but still a good show altogether.