Back in 2020-2021, Jujutsu Kaisen gained lots of recognition for being one of the best new gen Shounen animes. Itadori Yuuji, a paranormal enthusiast who is a member of the occult club at his high school, eats Sukuna’s finger, a top tier cursed item that must be sealed at any cost or it will cause immense damage. After eating, Itadori miraculously survives and awakens the malicious demon, Sukuna within him.
Upon eating this and surviving, Itadori is captured and under the Jujutsu (sorcerer) law, is set to be executed. However, he was given a second choice – to live, and help the sorcerers capture the remaining fingers of the demon Sukuna and only then will he be executed. Itadori agrees and he begins his new journey as a Jujutsu Sorcerer.
Right from the start, Jujutsu Kaisen established itself to be a contender of one of the best new gen Shounens out there thanks to the action scenes that greeted viewers almost as soon as the anime began. Well, it’s Shounen, so this aspect (action scenes) is arguable the most important aspect of the anime and make no mistake, Jujutsu Kaisen didn’t disappoint with its epic and fluidly crafted fight scenes – it was well animated and not just a battle of muscles, but brains and strategy is also integrated as shown in the Itadori and Toudou vs Hanami fight – which is personally, my favorite fight sene along with Gojou vs Sukuna.
Character-wise however, it can’t be said the same way as the action scenes. Character here feels somewhat mainstream and too generic. Take Itadori for example, he’s your average weak-at-first Shounen main character who undergoes a training arc to get stronger as the plot progresses. And the character development of the main characters isn’t really apparent.
In comparison, let’s take a look at Naruto from the ever-popular Naruto series. It’s very generic – Naruto is really weak at the start, a delinquent even and can’t even perform the simplest of jutsus yet as time progresses, he goes through a training arc with various different senseis to accomplish a certain goal he has in mind – bring back his dear best friend back to the right path.
The side cast however, is another story. They’re very memorable, and it seems that they’ve got lots more “personality-defining-characteristics” compared to the supposedly main trio – take Toge Inumaki for example, who communicates by speaking “food” and a literal panda who smashes and bashes and of course, Toudou, Itadori’s so called best friend who’s a Jennifer Lawrence simp which makes the comedic aspect of the anime stronger.
Audio and visually, they did a great job – there’s no doubt about that, it’s mappa. Take a look at all the other series that MAPPA has animated so far such as Kakegurui, Kakegurui xx, Banana Fish – they are visually astounding as expected and Jujutsu Kaisen is no different. A nice thing that I noticed is how exaggerated some of the art styles were at times, when the tone and vibe of the anime changes.
During the comedic scenes, characters were drawn in a hilarious and cute manner, with completely different background and it adds a little spice to the already fearsome and sharp looking characters that the anime has to offer – as if each character has an alter ego if you’d like.
Overall, Jujutsu Kaisen is a good Shounen with great audiovisuals, epic and beautifully choreographed fight scenes (and some Bleach references) yet just like with any other anime, comes with flaws and in this case, the held back potential of some characters. Despite its flaws, it still offers a great experience for viewers who wishes to feast their eyes on elite graphics and great action scenes.
Score – 8/10
Title: Jujutsu Kaisen
Director: Park Seong-Hu
Voice Actors: Nakamura Yuuichi, Enoki Junya, Uchida Yuuma, Seto Asami, Suwabe Junichi