Kaze No Stigma ( Stigma of the Wind)
Synopsis: Four years ago, Kazuma Kannagi was defeated by his cousin Ayano Kannagi for the right to be the successor of Enraiha, a sword passed down in the Kannagi family. His defeat, along with his lack of talent for En-Jutsu, the fire arts, the Kannagis’ specialty, resulted in his banishment from the family. Now, Kazuma returns as Kazuma Yagami, a skilled master of Fū-Jutsu, the wind arts.
Genre: Action, fantasy, supernatural, seinen
Status: Anime – Completed (Apr to Sept 2007)
Light novel – 9 volumes, ongoing (as of 04/2007)
Thoughts / Review: TO START OFF… The opening theme is “Blast of Wind” by Saori Kiuji. I’m not really too fond of this opening song, I think they could’ve chosen a better one that suits the series more, but that’s just my opinion. The ending themes are “Hitorikiri no Sora” by Saori Kiuji and “Matataki no Kiwoku” by by Ayumi Fujimura, Yuka Inokuchi and Shizuka Itō.
Kaze No Stigma is orginally a light novel series by Takahiro Yamato and illustrated by Hanamaru Nonto started in 2002 and is still ongoing. The anime adaptation began airing this April 2007.
JUST A QUICK 411… There’s also quite a number of vocabulary used on this one. I’ll try and write down the gist of the basic terminologies with the help of wiki. EN-JUTSU – the fire arts. Those who practice this are called En-Justushi, who can call upon the flame spirits. ENRAIHA – the sacred sword with fire properties that is wielded by the Kannagi clan and passed down from one generation to the next, wielded by the successor as head of the clan. It can be summoned whenever the successor needs it. FU-JUTSU – the wind arts. Those who practice this are called Fu-Jutsushi, who can call upon the wind spirits. They are capable of using the wind for reconnaisance or tracking targets. CHI-JUTSU – the earth arts. SUI-JUTSU – the water arts.
Now off to the story and main characters…
ON CHARACTERS… YAGAMI KAZUMA is the lead character. He was a member of the Kannagi clan but was later banished from the family by his father after he was defeated by Ayano in a fighting ceremony as successor of the head of the Kannagi clan. Four years after, he returns as a very skilled Fu-Jutsushi under the name Yamagi Kazuma (dropping his former last name of Kannagi). It was later learned that he is also known as a Contractor. He is entered into a contract with the Wind Spirit Lord and is thus able to control/summon all the wind spirits that the Spirit Lord has control over. His eyes becomes blue when he is using this contract. KANNAGI AYANO – skilled En-Jutsushi, deemed as the successor as the head of the Kannagi clan, can summon the Enraiha. KANNAGI REN – Kazuma’s younger brother, also a highly skilled fire mage. KANNAGI GENMA – Ren and Kazuma’s father. One of the most powerful fire mages in the Kannagi clan. KANNAGI JUGO – current head of the Kannagi. Father of Ayano, cousin of Genma. TACHIBANA KIRIKA – head of the metropolitan police department’s special investigation unit regarding incidents that involve Jutsu. She is friends with Kazuma.
MY IMPRESSION… The 1st episode introduces a bunch of terms relating with jutsu and the like. Basically, the first 4 episodes is a story arc in itself. You kinda have to watch at least the first 2 episodes in order to have get a better grasp of the story. Watching the 1st episode in itself wouldn’t interest you that much and would be a quite confusing in the story as there are “holes” and much of the stuff on why he changed his name and is now a Fu-Jutsushi is not explained much. A bit more of the basic backstory regarding Kazuma’s banishment from the clan is tackled in episode 2. Again, you should most probably watch at least the first 2 eps before you give your final judgment whether you’d continue watching the series or not.
I like Kazuma. I think he’s kinda cute… Haha. I’d be lying if I’d say he wasn’t one of the determining factors that I keep watching this series. Besides this, I also found his character quite intriguing and he has that mysterious side, and I like his sarcasm. It’s also quite fun to watch him tease Ayano around and watch them bicker about. Also, I like watching the development of his relationship with his brother Ren. Kazuma can be quite cocky and seems to not care at all and sometimes can be tactless in choosing his words, but you’d learn that he has great concern for others, though he doesn’t show it, especially regarding Ren. Speaking of Ren, with that blonde hair and lovely eyes, he does remind me a bit of Ruka-pyon in Gakuen Alice. 😀
While watching this, I was mostly reminded of the Nickelodeon cartoon series Avatar: The Last Airbender as they kinda have the same premise, being able to manipulate fire, wind, water and earth elements as part of their abilities. This is initially what made me curious to try watching it in the first place since I’ve been following the Avatar series in Nick. Anyway, this also reminded me of Darker than Black due to the usage of terms like “Contractor” and Kazuma’s eyes turning blue whenever he uses his contract, but of course I cannot really compare this with Darker than Black as Kaze No Stigma runs with a different story. It also has it’s share of cool action and fights, but not that much.
So far, I’m still watching this series. It has enough elements to keep me interested but not enough to get me “hooked” to be eagerly anticpating what happens next, unlike the way I eagerly follow Darker than Black or Lovely Complex. Personally, I’ll probably only be watching this to see more of Kazuma and the character development-side of the series.
Don’t expect too highly of this series if you’re the kind who’s looking for more of something like Death Note or Darker than Black. If you put those high expectations aside, you just might find the series quite interesting and entertaining to watch as well.
That’s my two cents about it… I’d love to hear what you think of the series too. 🙂