Mushi-Shi (TV Series 2005–2006) Poster

(2005–2006)

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10/10
Slow paced nature experience you'll never forget
tobba_lobba18 November 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Well, it's not exactly a nature experience since it's a TV-series. But the thing is that mushishi puts all its' force in depicting beautiful Asian scenery full of life. And at the core of that life are the 'Mushi'.

Mushi are not animals, and they are not plants. Mushi are closer to life than anything else on the earth. And those who gathers lore about the mushi and knows how to treat them are the mushishi.

I actually got the feeling of watching a horror movie when i saw this, the only thing was that there was no horror. Still, the mood was there, but in a kind and gentle way.

The series follows a mushishi named Ginko and his travels and missions in the land. Human emotion is put aside as a theme, and love is more a fact than something that involves you in the story. I don't know if this is something coming from the authors own view of life, but it makes room for a feature where nature is the emotional basis, and it stands strong on the feelings that you get from marvels that lie within the silent whisper of the wind among trees.

You encounter characters that all are affected by these mushi. The first one is a boy who can draw anything with his right hand and it springs to life, another one is a man chasing after a rainbow and even a human that is born from a seed. Many of the stories are built on things we notice in nature around us but find it hard to explain, like shooting stars, the end of the rainbow and the fact that a third of your soul remains within your pillow when you leave bed as it is where all your dreams live.

The series moves in a slow gentle pace, where the music never gets too eager and nothing ever gets too exciting in manners of rush or panic. It might somehow even be sleep inducing, but in a good way, like the swaying of the trees or a cold snowy night where everything is silent but the sparkling fireplace.

Of course, it's up to anyone to have their own thoughts about it, but I think that the series wants to tell us that there is more to life than just being human. If you look around you, and look where there are no cars and high buildings, you'll notice lots of life that fills you up and effects you in ways you never think of. There is beauty in more than just you and me.

I was expecting to find some sort of greater story that would unfold towards the end of the series, but that never came. May happen the stories got more dramatic towards the end, but they never stopped being told in the same way as always. There was never any certain resolution to the series, only the soft mushishi music with its' hypnotical drums, and when you had watched the last episode you knew that everything in the world of the mushi would keep on going as it had ever done before. I never got the feeling of saying goodbye to characters i'd miss, but was happy to have been able to come along on the journeys in this world so full of life and wonders.
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The Thinking Person's Japanese Anime
jpb584 December 2009
Mushi-Shi (2005) from Japan is a brilliantly written and thought-provoking anime series, with lots of surprises in store for you if you are patient and open minded.

With Mushi-Shi you will refreshingly NOT see your typical anime cutesy big-eyed girls having crushes on boys, shallow harem sex stories that get old fast, or violent, senseless samurai blood letting. Mushi-Shi is in a class by itself, a gentle show with class and poignancy. As the teachers used to tell us in school, "You will need your thinking caps for this one."

At first you think you are watching a series about a life force called "mushi", and a traveling man named Ginko who is studying them, but the episodes all have moral tales to teach that transcend the outline of the basic stories. Most episodes are really about the relationships between human beings. The mushi are really incidental and act as catalysts to the dynamics of personal relationships.

For instance, in the incredible "A String from the Sky" episode the story isn't really about the mushi string that captures the girl, flinging her into the sky; the real lesson being taught is the essential trust that has to exist between a man and woman who claim to love each other. The relationship will not survive without that trust. In "One Night Bridge" the episode really isn't about a mushi bridge that appears once every twenty years; rather the story is about a love so powerful between a young girl and boy that even the experience of death cannot truly break the devotion of their relationship.

There are also surprising touches of humor in the stories and the main character of Ginko, both of which help bring some levity to serious situations taking place in most of the episodes.

I watched in both Japanese with English subtitles and then all over again in the English dub, and I ended up liking both equally. Also special mention should go to the beautiful music soundtrack, which was perfect for the series. If only all anime were of such superb quality! Each episode is basically a stand alone segment, with different characters interacting with Ginko, who is the traveling "Mushi Master" out to help them, if he can, extricate themselves from the mushi's influences.

I rented the series from Netflix. Although the rating there is TV-14 I disagree with this completely. There is nothing in Mushi-Shi that children ten years of age or older couldn't watch. No sex, hardly any violence, the language is clean except for a "damn" once in a blue moon. Compared to most other anime out there Mushi-Shi is very clean.

I have watched my share of anime series by now, but I could easily throw all the others out after watching Mushi-Shi. It's that phenomenal. It deserves its high rating on the IMDb. It is intelligent and boasts beautiful animation. Don't miss this wonderful series!
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9/10
Extraordinary yet subtle
jess_davis19 October 2006
Mushishi is an episodic anime comprised of 26 parts. Each episode stands alone from the rest and often the only common denominators in the stories are the presence of Ginko, the main character, and occasional appearances of his friend, Adashino-sensei. Ginko is a Mushi-shi (or bug master, if you'd prefer a literal translation) who travels around the far reaches of Japan examining and documenting various species of mushi. At the same time he helps those who come into contact with these entities: it seems many types of mushi are parasitic in nature and there are unfavorable results when they cross paths with humans. Throughout the series we're shown many magnificent creatures as well as a few intriguing glimpses into Ginko's past.

Mushishi is an extraordinary series. It was refreshing in that it was so serene to watch – the art is beautiful, the atmosphere is peaceful, and yet the series was able to create excellent tension when it was called for. The stories within it are intriguing and one is left with a sense of wonderment when all is said and done.

However, I was left yearning for more from the series. I found myself so interested in the characters that I wished for more plot – perhaps an arc or two that consisted of multiple episodes. There were a few opportunities in the show where they could have done just that, but instead they chose to remain true to the manga. As a result, you have to be patient while watching the series and enjoy it for what it is; its pacing is so different from other animes that you might be more familiar with.

This series has easily become one of my favorites, and I hope it receives more recognition outside of Japan – recognition that it so plainly deserves.

9/10
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10/10
if Kurosawa could drawn...
atlantinn4 January 2008
describing the meaning of mushi-s without emerging some false ezoteric- extraterrestial blabla is almost impossible, probably thats why this masterpiece of anime remained quite unknown. each episode is a different hymn of life. amazingly visualized, breathtaking beauty of life, as it flows mysteriously and appear in different manifestation, like animals, plants, and mushis creating a wonderful and complex ecology. a scratch on the balance of lifeforms symbiosis results strange, unusual phenomenons, that can be cured by the Mushi-shi, a kind of para-doctor who is destined to smoke (thc) in order to keep mushis away from himself. and the atmosphere! it just picks you up from the world around for 23 minutes, and shows some real values using the average, common people to show the greatness of humans, and mushis, and above all: life. cheesy, cheesy, but if you watch, you wont have other options than agree:)
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10/10
Metaphysical Ticket To Ride
Olga30 April 2008
MUSHISHI?! How on Earth did I end up here, smack bang in a middle of this wide-eyed& reason-free land taken over by some mysterious creatures, called sweetly but completely unlikely, errr - "Mushi"?.. Not exactly Fullmetal Alchemist, or Ghost In The Shell, I knew that before I even started watching, ahem, MUSHISHI, but I thought I'll give it a go (too scared to watch El Orfanato tonight anyways, what with all the April's rain beating against the window panes, and all). Half way through the first episode (23 minutes or so each, btw, including the obligatory long sing-along intro) and I knew I was caught hook line and sinker on the simple but haunting beauty of the whole thing. Watched 10 episodes by now, head filled with strange yet strangely believable, and, um, highly desirable world of Mushishi, with its magical scenery, just-so characters and non-judgemental story lines delivered with quiet ease and confidence by someone who knows what they are talking about. Unmissable.
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9/10
Mushi-shi is a pure masterpiece
Nadia Evans17 February 2011
Being a huge fan of Anime i was looking for a really interesting anime to watch. i stumbled upon Mushi-shi on amazon and bought the set for reasonable price. I could not have been happier with the result. Mushi-shi is one of my now all time favourite anime series. It's only flaw is that there is not enough of it! The stories portrayed in the series are heartwarming, creepy or just plain intriguing. It kept me going back to the DVD player every day just to see the next episode. The animation and audio is all very stunning and adds a tranquil feel to it. Mushi-shi is a pure jewel and also emits all the right messages about nature and life. Anyone looking for a gripping anime with great stories. Watch Musih-shi!
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9/10
Mindbogglingly Spectacular! :p
Deepak Puthraya11 April 2012
I was in search for an anime that was finished and was short that is when I stumbled across this spectacular anime.

This anime comprises of 26 episodes each stands alone from the other. Ginko the Mushi-shi travels around japan encountering Mushis.

Mushis are creatures that are neither animals or souls, they are living things between them. Not everyone can see them, Ginko and a few others can see them. Mushis can be good and could be bad. Ginko helps people who are facing problems with Mushis.Every encounter Ginko makes with a mushi is breathtakingly fascinating.

I suggested this anime to a couple of my friends and they all asked me "It doesn't have a story-line as such. does it? Then how is it fun?"

I can only tell you that if you don't watch this you are just going to miss a great amount of fun.

Every time I watched one episode I would be persuaded to watch another and then another. The art is extraordinary, music is spectacular, and the stories is just Brilliant. Its not just about the Mushis or the Mushi-shis, Its about Human emotions and love.

A must watch anime. If you decide not to see this you just missed "Serenity"!

My rating : 9/10
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7/10
Relaxing little anime
siderite6 December 2007
Mushishi is a strangely calming anime. It takes place in almost feudal Japan (they seem a lot more liberal and have access to some technology like microscopes and the mushishi talks about genetics in one episode) and follows Ginko, a man that can see the strange lifeforms that are all around us, called Mushi.

In the end the episodes are rarely tense, with no or almost no violence. The mushi themselves are not perceived as evil that must be killed, but as a part of the ecosystem. Unlike most mushishi (a sort of mushi hunter/doctor), Ginko, the lead character, seeks only to restore the balance between normal life and mushi life.

The anime itself takes place for only 26 episodes, all self contained, you could watch any of them in any order without losing any continuity. The manga is of course much longer and you can read it online.

The calm music and the elements of traditional Japanese life and history are most welcome for a leisurely time when you want to relax and take your mind of things.
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10/10
Beautifully-crafted, yet utterly simple.
Anonymous Sir24 July 2013
If you're looking for an anime with quick-paced action and loads of screaming and fan-service, look elsewhere. If you seek an engrossing anime with meaning and a certain "sentimental" charm, Mushishi is the deal. While there's nothing totally wrong with the former type of anime, Mushishi really sets itself apart from the others - with a very melodic and abrupt opening, calm atmosphere and music throughout the show, as well as minimal dialogue that is quite monotone.

The story is a very interesting one that explores the world inhabited by creatures dubbed "Mushi", which surround us and are much more complex than any standard organism. We are introduced to an enigmatic man nicknamed "Ginko", who is a self-proclaimed "Mushi master" and seems to possess a considerable understanding of these perplexing creatures. Each episode is standalone and the series does not have any discernible ending, but this is a huge part of the charm of the series and that allows it to be easily picked up from any point. In each episode, Ginko meets individuals who have been affected by the Mushi in some way.

The dub is surprisingly great and lacks the melodramatic and over-the-top voice acting that other anime tend to have, so I would definitely recommend it just as much as the original. This is a great watch for viewers of virtually any age. What's more? It's great for stress and insomnia.
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9/10
A perfectly executed masterpiece.
noiseissound9 April 2011
I'm about three episodes into Yuki Urushibara's masterpiece, "Mushishi" and I must say, its incredible. The show itself does not have much of a main plot, but focuses on each episodes individual story- an episodic format much like that of hit-TV series, "Supernatural."

The animation is completely stunning- its almost ethereal green colour pallet is captivating, and was what originally got my hooked. Packed with interesting characters, and a perfectly suited soundtrack that could lull anyone into a blissful sleep, Mushishi has proved itself to be very strong artistically.

But Mushishi is more than just your typical pretty looking anime combined with a nostalgia inspiring soundtrack, it actually has some really interesting content, and a creative idea. Despite the episodic nature of the show, I still find myself compelled to keep watching the next episode.

Mushishi has me hooked, even my girlfriend who is not exactly an anime fan, it thoroughly enjoying it. Its got a quirky style, but is pretty accessible to anyone, and I encourage anyone with Netflix to pick it up.

For my full review and more, checkout my blog at velocithesaurusraptor.blogspot.com
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10/10
Boring you say ?,
residentgrigo3 January 2015
I find Mushishi NOT to be boring but i view it as the MOST boring anime(but not sure if manga) ever. The sheer commitment to no service of any kind to the reader/viewer has to be admired ! There is only deep storytelling and the beauty of nature nothing more. The mangaka had a vision to tell and did't care about the reader one bit. Ether you get on the slowest train if all or you go home. A friend of mine i now forced to watch the series described it as gently walking through a forest. I couldn't describe it better. 10/10 and the best Mono no aware of all. The new Mushishi volume is identical to the two sisters episode 11 and 12(or special if you like) from season 2 by the way.
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10/10
A fascinating entry
john-davis322413 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Mushi-shi is a captivating entity in the realm of anime that shows that slow-paced films can be absolutely fantastic if you do everything just right.

With fantastic visuals presented by a lesser known anime company ARTLAND, the world of the mushi-shi is brought to life with a truly intellectual perception and drive the contents of its unusual mystery to a level of great integrity and appreciation.

Mushi-shi is smart, well-written and interesting to watch, succumbing its viewer with the profound elegance that the mushi-shi are, neither human nor plant, they are life in its purest form and as the world will go on, we will one day discover that the cure lies in the curse.
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9/10
Go watch it now.
oddfacade28 January 2013
I gave this a 9/10 because there simply aren't enough episodes. There's certainly a proper amount according to most animes, but the stories contained in these episodes leave you begging for more! Each episode is so satisfying to watch, so magical to see, and they're wonderfully fantastical explanations of some real-world phenomena.

My favorite episode is definitely "Strings from the Sky," which has more thematic elements than most full-length movies. Each episode is longer than it really is--the timing and pace keeps the viewer's attention, but it makes 22 minutes seem so much longer, without dulling the experience of watching. I almost cried at the end of the aforementioned episode, and I'm not the type of person to cry in -any- visual media production (but they would've been tears of amazement--not of sadness.).

Again, the only reason why I gave this a 9 instead of a 10 was because I'd like to continue watching new episodes forever, and this one does have its last episode.

It's a great time while you're watching, and this is actually one of the few animes which I'll gladly let the opening music/credits play. Everything about this anime is beautiful--the art style, the music, the ambient sounds, the stories, the characters, etc. The only bad thing I have to say about this anime is about what must inevitably happen to all animes (even Inu Yasha and Naruto): it must come to an end sometime.
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10/10
Terribly beautiful
auraluna816 April 2018
The stories pull you in with their calm sounds and imagery, but there is a sense of something unsettling just beneath the surface. It makes you feel like you've been in the forest. It's been a while since I've seen it, and I keep searching for it after it was taken off Netflix. So it has stuck with me, in a good way. Watch this when you're feeling disconnected from nature, or anytime to enjoy the art of this creation.
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10/10
Unbelievably Briiliant
emmygirl1024129 November 2017
One of the best anime I have ever had the pleasure to watch.

I would preface this with a simple, "Brilliant", if I didn't have to write more lines...

One of the best anime I've seen in my entire life, I'm looking for the DVD version now, bc I need it.
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9/10
Fantastic and Outstanding Show
oliviercouriol26 August 2017
"Mushi-Shi" is a Great show, really this show provides very little insight into anything. If you love a beautiful graphics and great soundtrack in anime I recommend this Mushi-Shi anime to watch, I've ever seen like this!!! If you haven't seen it yet, do it now... because it is wonderfully written and well-thought.
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10/10
Beautiful
serpentseye27 May 2017
I absolutely love this :) it leaves you feeling the same way some Studio Ghibli does. It's gentle and full of wonder, yet a little dark in places but beautifully spiritual. I love the artwork, the landscapes etc. really nice.

I totally recommend it.
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10/10
An absolute masterpiece.
Mantis Lord (Mantislord000)15 December 2016
A mind-blowing, and beautiful anime series. Not very typical in terms of what most would expect from an anime, yet it has proved itself to be a masterpiece nonetheless. The pacing is slow, and there isn't a lot of action, yet it turns out to be very gripping and suspenseful nonetheless.

Story: Episodic, without any type of overall link between the different encounters of the protagonist other than the protagonist himself and the occasional explanations about some of the phenomenon throughout the show (and some characters). Yet, each and ever episode contains its own individual story that all prove to be very gripping, and often somber. Each episode presents different characters from all around the regions Ginko travels to, and each has their own issue that is Mushi-related. Many of these stories are somewhat uplifting, yet often times very tragic and thought-provoking. The layout isn't one that I would usually be in to, yet it proves to work masterfully so. The many twists and turns the episodes take leave the viewer at the edge of their seat and constantly engaged even if the show isn't super fast-paced and action-packed.

Art: The artwork is often very beautiful. The scenery is amazing and certain sequences just look incredible. Many of the human characters are hard to distinguish at times, so there is less emphasis on human faces and more so on the surroundings and Mushi. Which ultimately ends up looking good nevertheless.

Sound: Good usage of sound. Lovely intro and outro music, very somber and alluring. The voice acting was very suiting for all the characters. The sound ultimately creates the type of atmosphere the show would intend for with each given situation.

Character: Ginko is an amazing protagonist. A very mysterious and intelligent wanderer that truly shows how much he values life and learning. He isn't infallible, yet overcomes many obstacles with a realistic approach that doesn't leave the viewer with a huge sense of disbelief. The pragmatic ways he approaches each obstacle makes him a lot more enjoyable, and the way he perceives the world and challenges around him are at many times very compelling. Well-written character with quite a bit of depth. The other characters introduced can be very brash, other times tragic, or many other things across the spectrum which works well for each of the scenarios and situations in each episode. Most of them are also very compelling in their circumstance and have a lot to offer for the message that the episode in question is trying to convey.

Enjoyment: For me, it was hugely enjoyable. Very thought-provoking and beautiful. The pacing was wonderful. I didn't find myself counting down the minutes before each episode was finished because of how engaging the show can be. Many of the episodes had me dwell on them for a good time afterwards. There are many moments that are hugely emotional, and many that are quite philosophical.

Overall: Fantastic and outstanding show. A masterpiece. Wonderfully written and well-thought. A true gem in the anime world, as well as the world of entertainment in general. Whether a fan of anime or not, one could find so many reasons to adore this series and be captivated by it.
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7/10
Beautiful and Intriguing Animation which makes me Sleepy
Mayank Agarwal2 January 2015
It's one of the most beautiful anime i have come across, the water color style usage is very similar to what we see in Studio Ghibli movies, it goes perfectly well with the rich flora and fauna theme.

The anime don't have a central plot instead each of the episodes focuses on the mysterious beings called Mushishi, these creatures are intriguing, creepy and beautiful at the same time. Each one of the episodes deals with super-natures beliefs and are very interesting.

The episodes have hardly any dialogs instead relies on great background music,the whole style is so calming it actually makes me sleepy most of the time. Mind you it's not dull just very soothing.

Whats the biggest plus point for the anime is the only negative it has - the extra calming effect, took me ages to finish the anime as i could never get myself to watch back to back, instead cherished each individual episode.
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10/10
Subtle yet full of mystery
blackmamba9997122 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Mushishi is basically a ghost spirit story of the most unique kind. A man named Ginko travels Japan searching for the most interesting and original spirits that dwells in folk lore. During his trek he meets up with people who succumb to a spirit by accident or intended just by listening to their stories. For old tales like this I find it to be refreshing in every way. The movements of each character to the way eyes meet in the conviction of each person's mannerism.

A plus is the music that matches each story. Light tinkles to heavy burden drums when the situation is needed. I found the layout of the Japanese countryside is breathtaking for its ability to match moods to each of the story tellers for Ginko to listen. Plights of despair or simply ill gotten scenarios for Ginko to figure out with his wooden back pack of medicine. Plus his lit cigarette to keep away spirits from him.

Mushishi to me is back to the basics of simple stories with an acid edge of danger thrown in to those country folk that have no idea what a spirit does or why they exist. To them it's all part of the grand scheme of things for simple minds to not figure out in order to keep their quiet life balanced.

To others like Ginko it is an opportunity to find the strange fascinating as well as keeping a safe distance to observe and not to construe too forward into the unknown world of spirits or ghosts. Mushishi is full of original and well kept stories for the mind to wander later on as if to say... 'What if?" Excellent series, great music, and wonderful content for those who love a good ghost story. Highly recommended to all ages.
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10/10
Mushishi
i_ianchev5 December 2014
"Feeling myself so strongly seduced by both the light and the darkness is something that I never want to forget..." - Yuki Urushibara, author of the Mushishi manga

The Japanese anime series "Mushishi" has a very special place in my heart, so I wanted to dedicate several lines about it since a long time. But it took me a second look at the old series and a fresh first view of the new series to be able to get to the point of writing about it. And now I reconnect with the real idea behind the emotion which pushed me to explore this beautiful and emotional piece of Japanese animation. The true mystery of life is life itself. Something inexplicable, something controversial, but still engaging and profound. The Japanese folklore is truly an amazing source of bright inspiration for the author Yuki Urushibara. And we can clearly feel why.

It is not important how we get it - it is interesting that no matter of our own level of perception, we all, the viewers understand emotionally every chapter, every episode of this journey through the people and their life between the darkness and the light. Each story is standing alone and is yet sufficient by itself. Each character doesn't need a prolonged back story. We see and hear and feel the sensation and connect to the human feelings presented to us.

Mythological creatures called Mushi represent the eons old human beliefs. We as a species have always, are always and will always try to explain the world around us through something magical and inexplicable. Each and every event and experience in our lives (no matter how bright or dark it is) is perceived not through the sense, but via the heart and the soul. The imagery is so simple..., but yet it is enchanting. We as viewers do not know how, but we feel sympathy to the heroes in each story, because they live like us and have experience so similar to the real life that we simply accept through out hearts.

And here we come to the conclusion that this both naturalistic and imaginary style of representing life is an elegant symbol of humanism. We all value the flow of life which sometimes really feels surrealistic. And this thought makes us feel more comfortable living it, doesn't it?
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9/10
You need to watch this one!
abrielmcl26 September 2014
Absolutely one of the most beautiful animes I've ever seen. If you're looking for a lot of blood or sword action, well this might not be for you. It's very unique ,because it's different (and different doesn't mean weird in this case) . Each episode contains a story,they're like tales, which will make you start thinking more.Sometimes, It might be a little confusing and it requires you to focus in order to understand it , but it will never cease to amaze you. Even though this is an old anime, the visuals and the animations are fantastic for the time it was made. And it's one of those few animes which is very similar to the manga version and that's a big plus. Now of course there are some episodes and some things which I didn't really like and that's why I gave it a 9/10, but the stories and the messages Mushishi transmits, are the reasons why you mustn't lose it.If you haven't seen it yet, DO IT NOW!!
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8/10
Beautiful anime.
Asadullah Khan22 August 2014
Well this certainly was a different experience.

Mushishi is a very episodic anime with each episode depicting a case or a problem or something related to the creatures known as Mushi, which are special creatures present everywhere but only a selected few can see them. And a Mushi master, our protagonist, goes in and tries to solve the problems.

I really don't like episodic things but Mushishi somehow managed to make each 20 mins an interesting and beautiful tale, some better than other obviously. That is one hell of a task considering aside from our hero, there really are no recurring characters.

There is a very unique beauty in this anime, regarding nature/life etc, which is more complemented by beautiful art and great soundtrack.

If only it wasn't this much episodic, I most probably would have loved it way more. Still, really enjoyed it.

8.3/10
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9/10
Awesome
daez8883 December 2013
Every episode of this anime make me feel thrill. 1) Because of the Graphics 2) Because of the mystery about the main character 3) Because of the sound effects

If you love a Great graphics in anime I recommend this anime to watch

This anime is full of trivia for Example: About the pillow. Because of this anime I learned the meaning of pillow.

By the way I am praising to the people who makes this anime and manga. because of the effort.

Don't get me wrong this is one of the best anime when it comes in Graphics.

The setting is very vivid and clear. It's like real. And in addition per episode of this anime has a unique story
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