Sep 24, 2015
Mixed Feelings
In all honesty this series is about as basic as it gets. Its an episodic comedy anime. And just from that you pretty much know exactly what to expect.

As far as story, the series is....pretty mediocre. As I've already said, the series is very episodic. This can be fine in shows like Mushishi or Death Parade where you have an overarching character story that shows the progression of each character throughout the series. However, no such story is present in Rin-Ne. Or at least its not all that prominent. Sure there is sort of a romance plot, but by the end of the first season it's pretty much stayed in the exact same place as it has been for the entire series thus far. For the most part you could watch episodes out of order and get the exact same experience. The show is episodic down to a formula at times. At first everything is normal, then someone puts in a request to the prayer box or a main character comes across a spirit or a character from the other world comes in and causes chaos, Rinne and Mamiya try to resolve said problem (or Rinne tries to do it on his own), while Juumonji and Ageha try to interfere because they don't want Rinne and Mamiya to get too close, and then at the end all is resolved and in the next episode we're right back in the same place. Now this isn't to say that this show doesn't have at least some continuous episodes, they're just few and far between.

As for the comedy, it can be pretty hit or miss. The series has some decent jokes, particularly in its rare moments of slapstick. My favorite episodes have to be the ones with Masato because his reason for hating Rinne and the ways he tries to get back at him is hilarious! But unfortunately a lot of these jokes are often ruined with this narrator that always has to explain the joke, even going as far as to explain plot elements that we already know about (seriously how many times do you need to say that normal people can't see Rinne when he's wearing his jacket?). In the end this becomes really annoying and often feels like the narrator thinks the audience is stupid and can't figure things out on their own. There's also a runnng joke where Rinne's grandmother doesn't like being called a grandmother and does this ear thing to any character who calls her that or does something to remind her of her age. Moderately funny at first, but incredibly overdone by the end of the season.

Apart from Rinne, characters are either 1 note or entirely bland. Although not perfect, Rinne has an alright amount of personality. The series does a deent job of capturing the duality of his life through his constant struggle to maintain a normal student life and how his job as a Shinigami is a constant deterrant to any form of normalcy and how this "job" is so demanding that he can barely afford to live. How he is affected by his relationships with others is handled fairly well as well. His resentment towards his father is more than understandable because he's a neglectful crook who steals from his own son at every chance he gets. His feelings towards Mamiya are totally reasonable because of how her mere existence plays off of his duality. It's easy to see how she can be attractive to him because he can relate to her as, due to the fact that she can see spirits, she (sort of-ish) is going through the same duality as him. Therefore she can both be an escape for him as well as a way of remaining connected to his life in the other world. Bottom line, he doesn't have to hide anything from her. He understandably wants to be connected to both his human and Shinigami side, as these are integral parts of his very being and Mamiya is his only option for retaining both connections simultaneously without alienating anyone.

As for the other characters, the majority of them have "personalities" that are based solely on a few running jokes.

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Reviewer’s Rating: 6
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