Koyomimonogatari

Monogatari Collection: Koyomimonogatari

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One of the Monogatari series favorite tricks is playing with chronology. Adapting from the original Nisio Isin light novels which are also technically out of order chronologically, the anime series similarly scrambles the chronological order of its narrative arcs. This refocuses the series on the emotional development of specific characters that would otherwise be lost if the story was told in chronological order.

Airing immediately after Nekomonogatari: Kuro, Nekomonogatari: Shiro is the shining example of the Monogatari series’ success. Placing the two side-by-side thoroughly explores Tsubasa Hanekawa’s character growth from a time before the first Bakemonogatari series — and immediately after Kizumonogatari, the first arc in the chronological timeline — to nearly four months later.

Koyomimonogatari is a series of short stories collected into one light novel that span a large amount of time across what viewers are already familiar with, including the recent Owarimonogatari arcs of Ougi Formula, Sodachi Riddle, Sodachi Lost, and Shinobu Mail along with the theatrical release of Kizumonogatari‘s first film.

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Rene Magritte in Koyomimonogatari Episode 1

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“Everything we see hides another thing. We always want to see what is hidden by what we see.”

-Rene Magritte, Belgian painter

The entirety of Koyomimonogatari Episode 1 juxtaposes two things side by side to create another thing entirely – the modus operandi of Belgian surrealist painter Rene Magritte. Visual imagery throughout the episode reinforces the Magritte influence, the most obvious reference pictured above: one of his more famous paintings, The Son of Man. Present throughout the episode is the stone from The Castle of the Pyrenees, the red drapery from in The Human Condition (among other works), and cut-outs of a blue sky found in the likes of The Happy Donor.

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