February Anime Challenge: Kino no Tabi: The Beautiful World Week 3

Anime Challenge – February 2018

Kino no Tabi: The Beautiful World - February 2018 Anime Challenge

Genre: Action, Adventure, Slice of Life, Psychological
Aired: Apr 8, 2003 to Jul 8, 2003

Konnichiwa Minna. Our February anime challenge is Kino no Tabi: The Beautiful World, the anime that won the 2017 South African Anime Awards. It is a mystery and psychological fantasy that premiered last year in October and was produced by the anime house, Lerche.  The anime is based on the Kino no Tabi light novel series written by Keiichi Sigsawa. There was also a Kino no Tabi series in 2003, two Kino no Tabi visual novels, manga adaptations and two anime movies.

If you have suggestions or comments about your impressions of the series, please feel free to share them on our FB Page! Have a super sugoi week and enjoy the challenge!

Week 1 - 05 to 11 March

It’s a beautiful world

Episodes to Watch: 1 to 3

In Kino no Tabi -the Beautiful World- we meet Kino, a traveller with a talking motorcycle named Hermes. They travel the world and meet different cultures, staying no longer than three days at every destination, believing those three days is more than enough to learn almost everything important about a place. She carries weapons for protection: a .44 revolver called ‘the Cannon”, a .22 automatic pistol named ‘the Woodsman and a collection of knives (one of which can fire .22 bullets from its hilt!). Prepare to go on a sometimes whimsical, sometimes humorous and sometimes dark adventure in a beautifully crafted world where sometimes what you see is not what you get and you may find yourself learning something at the end of an episode that may be as profound as a Studio Ghibli movie.

Put on your biking hat and your driving goggles. Strap in your weapons, check the bike’s oil and let’s go exploring.

Week 2 - 12 to 18 February

World of Consequences

Episodes to Watch: 4 to 6

In the first episode, ‘A Country Where People Can Kill’ we immediately find Kino and her motorbike (called a motorrad in the series), Hermes, in a narrative. They are camped out in a forest at night, and she expresses her feelings that she travels the world to find answers to the questions that are within her. She gets quite philosophical about journeying, stating that she is discovering the beauty of the world but, also that while travelling, she knows she will endure hardships and at times, even sadness. She admits that she can stop travelling, but travelling is fun even if she is forced to kill on the road. This statement sets a tone for the episode and a valuable lesson about consequences of one’s actions is weaved into the plot of the episode.  We will not spoil the first three episodes by going into detail about what happened but be sure that each episode will make you think. Each episode is, in a way, a social commentary or philosophically crafted idea that will make you ponder upon it, you may just grow a little wiser.

Week 3 - 19 to 25 February

Goodbye, Cruel World

Episodes to Watch: 7 to 9

In the series so far we have met various characters, which include a talking dog, a prince and most of the episodes are about Kino, but Episode 6 ‘In The Clouds” is very different. Rather than focussing on Kino and Hermes we meet another person and see her story. This is something that makes Kino no Tabi quite unique as we get to explore the world Kino inhabits from quite a different angle. In the episode, a group of travelling merchants are camping out deep in the mountains. With them is a slave girl and when we meet her, we see how she is taunted by the merchants’ children and treated like dirt by most of the merchants themselves. The slave girl takes this treatment with grace since we can clearly see that she was taught from a young age to respect others. In the episode, she has no ‘voice’ (meaning no-one listens to her), she is just a possession that they can treat however the way they see fit!

The merchants pick herbs and add it to their food. When the merchants sit down and start to eat she realizes that some of the ‘herbs’ they used in preparing their meals are actually poison. She also realizes that it is too late to warn the merchants as they all had some of the food. She decides to eat the food with them, to share their fate as it is too late to warn them, but one of the children, a boy,  throws a stone at her, and her food crashes to the ground. She is indecisive as to what to do since everyone is dying and she cannot save them… What happens then is rather profound but we are not going to spoil it for you. If you have not watched episode 6, you must have a crack at it. The ending is quite beautiful. The episode will as usual leave you with a sense of learning something from it.

Week 4 - 26 to 05 March

Journey to the End

Episodes to Watch: 10 to 12

Last week’s challenge was episodes 7 – 9. Episode 9 ‘Various Countries’ was a fun episode with four stories as we visit four places in one episode! The first little story ‘Tale of Two Bandits – Can You imagine’ tells the tale of two bandits. The younger one wants to attack Kino and Shizu for loot, and the old bandit stops him, telling him a very interesting tale…. In tale number two ‘Country of Accruing Virtue -Serious Killer-‘ Kino speaks to a terminally ill ex-president about his country’s virtue point system. The story is perhaps one of the anime series’ darkest stories and to find out what happens, you should definitely give it a watch, as this tale definitely falls under the Editor’s Choice category. The third tale of the episode ‘Country of Cooking -Original-‘ has a much lighter tone than the second one as a group of chefs mistakes Kino for a famous wandering chef and get her to cook for them, while Hermes hope that her ‘unique spicing’ will not kill the poor chefs. The fourth tale we will not spoil for you but it is definitely a super sugoi story. The fourth tale is titled ‘Ti’s Wish -Get Real!-‘ and focuses on Ti.

Finished watching. Go back to the anime challenge page and choose another challenge to watch