Inuyasha: Final Act – Review

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Inuyasha: Final Act – Review

***SPOILERS***

Inuyasha: Final Act - 15I was first introduced to Inuyasha through Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim segment back in 2002. Being new to anime at the time, I found the series enjoyable, but as I got current with where things were in Japan, combined with reading the current manga at the time, eventually, I grew weary of the series and was relieved when the manga ended in 2008. That being said, when Inuyasha: Final Act started airing in 2009 to pick up the stuff the original Inuyasha anime series did not get to, I started watching more out of a sense of completing things and nostalgia. Considering it has taken nearly five years for me to complete the series, nostalgia isn’t all it is cracked up to be.

Inuyasha Final Act - 02With twenty six episodes to play with, there was way too much manga material for Sunrise to successfully get in. Sunrise cannonballs into things with no setup, cutting a lot of stuff from the original manga, but then adding their own stuff in at times.  Since this series is all about deconstructing things to bring the story to an end, little time is wasted in removing one character after another.  As such, the death of Kagura feels way too rushed, which caused it to lose some of its impact. After characters are removed, they are pretty much forgotten, save for Kouga and his crew, who get a brief cameo in the final episode after their part in the story concluded.

Inuyasha: Final Act - 03To be honest, I just got bored with the series. I had no problem with cutting things, but the rapid pace early on caused some problems for me, then Sunrise changing stories to suit their own purposes caused more problems for me.  I found I no longer cared because everything seemed so tedious. When I tried to finish marathoning the series this past March, I found I just couldn’t work up a lot of enthusiasm because watching it was kind of tedious. Even when I finished the last few episode here recently, I couldn’t help but think, “spin on” as I resisted the urge to hit the fast-forward button on my video player.

Inuyasha Final Act - 26But that doesn’t mean I think the series is a bad one. While it may not have jazzed me, it is full of traditional shounen cliche stuff, and if you like that kind of thing, you’ll enjoy the stuff you see out of these episodes.  Plus, the series did do one thing that I lamented the manga series did not do. It allowed Kagome and Inuyasha to kiss after he rescued her from the Shikon no Tama, and actually have a long, if static, kiss. I still think they should have kissed when Kagome returned to Inuyasha’s world and time, but we can’t have everything.  And we did get to see how everyone turned out in the three years since Naraku was finally destroyed.

Inuyasha: Final Act - 10So, what would have made this better?  That’s a good question. It is difficult to accomplish this, based on Takahashi-sensei’s source material, which often dragged as she seemed so reluctant to end the manga, even though it was begging to be put out of its misery for quite a long time. However, I would have liked for there to have been a bit more time taken on moments such as Kagura’s passing, and a little less on Naraku’s never ending existence. However, if that last bit was done, would it make things worse?  I can’t say, and we’ll never know at this point. Then again, maybe I’m just too old for classic shounen stuff.

Still, I have finally finished the series and I am glad for that. I can’t say that I regret watching this series, and I’m sure that those who enjoy traditional shounen fare will enjoy it.

Inuyasha: Final Act - 04

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2 Responses to “Inuyasha: Final Act – Review”

  1. Ochan30 says:

    You hit the nail on the head as far as the Inuyasha being dragged out to the point of caring about the characters. It kind of interesting you mention Shonen-style because I’m experiencing a similar feel with Naruto ending. The difference being that I feel Naruto in it’s ending phase managed to be more engaging in it’s last 20 or so volumes that Inuyasha which felt Rumiko Takahashi was taking her sweet time. Connecting this back to the anime I feel the anime improved upon the manga by going at a faster pace.

    One additional point I want to bring out about “Shonen” style. There seems to be three type of Shonen writing styles:

    Shonen Sunday- Establishes a lot of great character building and pacing in early episodes then drags thing out by having key events happen every 10 or so volumes with no end in sight as long as the series is “popular”- i.e. Detective Conan, Ranma, Inuyasha

    Shonen Jump- Does the same thing as above but eventually gets in an “battle arc” pattern. Tends to address major plot points faster and have tighter arcs. Depending on the generation will also have mileage may vary runs. -i.e. One Piece, Naruto, Kenshin, I think Negima even fits in this category

    Shonen (other)- The rare kind which has a tighter arc structure, gets to the point, and tend to have a more fulfilling experirnce -i.e. Fullmetal Alchemist, Attack on Titan seems to be going in this direction.

    Back to Inuyasha I feel that this was the last time I was in love with Rumiko Takahashi’s works. I still adore his classic stuff and cherish her storytelling abilities but Inuyasha towards the end brought up an issue that was beginning to crop up towards the end of Ranma in terms of how she handles long arcs and continuity. One of the other reasons I’m not jazzed about Rin-ne and if it does get an anime version is that by this point her humor has turned very predictable. Overall I’m glad the anime got a proper ending but it also felt like the end of interest in Takahashi.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      I got bored with RIN-NE after nine volumes. I gave them to my young nephews. I need to follow up on how they liked them.

      BTW, where would you put Fairy Tail?

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