Kamichu!- roughly translated this means god who is a middle school student. It’s also the title of a delightful little anime from Geneon. The story centers on Yurie Hitotsubashi, a typical junior high student, who wakes up one day to realize that she’s become a god. It sounds really strange but the story is anything but. It’s sweet, funny and full of heart. The animation is gorgeous and the characters, Yurie and her friends from school, are wonderfully real.
The artwork as well as the story itself remind me of the works of Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli. There is a gentle quality to the anime that warms the heart. Yurie herself is a shy, adorable young girl. Her best friend Mitsue Shijo is a practical, down to earth girl that always seems to have the best advice for Yurie. Matsuri Saegusa befriends Yurie once she learns of her new god-like powers. She and her sister run a Shinto shrine in their hometown. Her sister, Miko Saegusa, a shrine maiden, is the only one other than Yurie who can see spirits and other gods.
With the help of her friends, she slowly learns to deal with her new god-like abilities as the story progresses. She also struggles with more everyday problems that often plague teenagers. She has a crush on Kenji Ninomiya, the president of their school’s calligraphy club. The problem is that he doesn’t know Yurie’s alive, at least not at first. Other characters include Yashima, the local deity at Matsuri and Miko’s family shrine. He helps Yurie adjust to becoming a god while secretly longing to be a rock star himself. All of the characters are endearing in their own way. You’ll find yourself being drawn into their simple yet inviting world as you watch. Kamichu! is one of those rare animes that slip into your heart and win you over without trying. I strongly recommend this anime to fans of all ages. It is truly a treasure.
Kamichu Yurie with her friends Matsuri and Mitsue