In this first episode, we follow the story of Rokusuke, a brewer’s son, as he bears a cask of his newly completed golden sake back home for his ill father. He encounters a group of Mushi-shi, individuals who study beings known as Mushi, as they prepare for a ceremony. Confused but intrigued, Rokusuke blends in and soon discovers the shining sake that inspired his father’s work… and therefore inspired the brew he currently holds as well. Rokusuke learns of the danger and benefits of his new sake from Ginko, the series’ lead character, and as with previous episodes the audience is left with a compromise and some food for thought.
Mushi-shi was one of those anime I stumbled across in university several years ago, and I fell in love with the meditative pace and the folktale-style stories that featured creatures neither benign nor malevolent. Episodic and tranquil even when dealing with dire circumstances, it quickly became a favourite of mine. When I learned of a sequel series I jumped at the chance to review it and the first episode does not disappoint. Like reuniting with old friends or picking up a conversation years later as if no time had passed at all, Mushi-shi (Sequel Series) continues its tradition of meditative stories and soft-spoken, thought-provoking concepts enhanced by beautiful backgrounds and beautiful music.
I look forward to more of Mushi-shi, and to what new things are brought to the table. Mushi-shi might not be everyone’s cup of tea but if you enjoy intellectual, beautiful, serene storytelling, this one is for you! This is especially true since knowledge of the previous series is not required – definite bonus points.