A young boy named Kiitarou leads an army of yokai against another army of yokai in a clash called the “Great Yokai War”. The opposing general is a zashiki-warashi (childlike prankster ghost) named Suzu. Eventually, it is revealed that Kiitarou and Suzu are actually good friends, but had gotten into a “fight” about Suzu never doing chores and Kiitarou eating her food. Finally, the other yokai grow tired of fighting and the group happily celebrates and gets drunk together. Kiitarou and Suzu make up as well, and it is implied that they have a mutual but unadmitted crush on one another.
Kiitarou Shounen is a four-minute short, which I don’t bother to do First Impressions of unless they’re either very good or very bad. Luckily, this show is definitely the former. While the plot of this episode was fairly simplistic, what made it stand out to me is the art style, which is absolutely ADORABLE.
The various yokai – and we did get a lot in this first episode, given that it was focused on a “battle” scenario – are so colorful and creative. The show is unafraid to show goofy and even “ugly” looking yokai – we had things with strange numbers of eyes and limbs, a giant foot, a headless horse, and many other strange creatures. I really hope that each of these interesting monsters gets focus in later episodes.
The main characters, Kiitarou and Suzu, have adorable designs as well, and contrasted with both the more goofy monster-type yokai and the elegant designs of the yuki-onna (snow woman) and female kitsune shapeshifter. I also loved the art during the brief “exposition” about the “Yokai War” in the beginning, which was done in the style of traditional Japanese painted folding screens.
Short but sweet, utterly cute, and something I’ll continue watching for sure! Out of 5 Dios: