Kozuguru's (very in-depth) Guide on How To Watch The Monogatari Series

Posted by Inna Savchenko on Sep 2, 2019, 1:51:50 PM

If you identify as an anime lover or an otaku, you have surely heard of the Monogatari series. The Monogatari series is a series of anime titles that illustrate the strange events that occur around the main character, Koyomi Araragi. Most people have heard of Bakemonogatari, the most famous of the Monogatari series. However, most people are lost after watching Bakemonogatari due to the Monogatari series’ abundant list of titles. Thus, we have created a step-by-step list of which titles to watch and in what order for you to most enjoy the series (note: this list is NOT in chronological order of which the events occur, but rather the most optimal order to enjoy the series, similar to how Star Wars should not be watched in chronological order).

1. Bakemonogatari

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Everyone has heard of Bakemonogatari. It aired in Japan from 2009 to 2010, which marked the beginning of the entire series. This title includes four arcs, which are, in order, “ひたぎクラブ (Hitagi Crab)”, “まよいマイマイ (Mayoi Mai-mai)”, “するがモンキー (Suruga Monkey)”, and finally “つばさキャット (Tsubasa Cat)”. These arcs include the first encounters of Koyomi Araragi with the main heroines of each arc (except Tsubasa Cat, which is explained later) which are extremely relevant for the upcoming titles in the series.

2. Nisemonogatari

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Up next is Nisemonogatari. After the conclusion of Bakemonogatari, Nisemonogatari aired in 2012. The title revolved around the oddities that occurred around Koyomi’s sisters, Tsukihi and Karen Araragi. There are only two arcs in Nisemonogatari, which are “かれんビー (Karen Bee)” and “つきひフェニックス (Tsukihi Pheonix)”. In this title, we see the significance of family to Koyomi, which proves to be greatly influential to the upcoming arcs.

3. Nekomonogatari

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The third title we recommend watching is Nekomonogatari, specifically Black. Nekomonogataritakes place during Golden Week, which was directly before the events of Bakemonogatari. Nekomonogatari acts as the explanation of the Bakemonogatari arc “つばさキャット (Tsubasa Cat)”. Although chronologically misleading, watching Nekomonogatari after Bakemonogatari is recommended because of the mystery-unravel tone that Nekomonogatari holds. However, PLEASE be careful not to watch Nekomonogatari: White. White is a completely different title, covered in the following section.

4. Monogatari Series: Second Season

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This is where things get really confusing. Although this section is titled Monogatari Series: Second Season, each “arc” within this title holds a different name and is often regarded as different anime series. But don’t worry, we got you covered. The first title to watch within Second Season is “猫物語(白)(Nekomonogatari: White)”, also known as Tsubasa Tiger. Next comes “傾物語 (Kabukimonogatari)”, otherwise known as Mayoi Kyonshi. Third, we recommend watching “囮物語 (Otorimonogatari)”, or Nadeko Medusa. Fourth come “鬼物語 (Onimonogatari)”, or Shinobu Time. Last is “恋物語 (Koimonogatari)”, or alternatively, Hitagi End. Second Season is the events that occur directly after the events of Bakemonogatari, and generally the same heroines star in each arc. The difference is that Shinobu gets her own arc, and Suruga doesn’t get one (but she will appear again).

4½. Monogatari Series: Second Season + α

This one comes after all of the Second Season stuff, and is often referred as “花物語 (Hanamonogatari)”, or Suruga Devil. This was aired a year after the regular Second Season was aired, which is why Suruga Devil gets its own section. This revolves around Kanbaru, when Koyomi has already graduated from school. This is the arc that Kangaru didn’t get in the regular Second Season. Yes, this is chronologically after the rest of the Monogatari series. However,, we recommend watching this at this timing because if you watch it last, Kanbaru will seem like she is the most important heroine, which sadly, she is not!

5. Tsukimonogatari

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Tsukimonogatari takes place after Koimonogatari (or Hitagi End). In this title, the town that Araragi lives in has began stabilizing, which signifies the decrease in the oddities that occurred in the town, which also means the nearing end of Monogatari series. Tsukimonogatari also serves as the arc that Yotsugi, another heroine, didn’t get in Bakemonogatari or Second Season. Don’t worry about the series ending, though: there is more content to come.

6. Owarimonogatari

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Oh, boy. Owarimonogatari generally takes place between two arcs of Second Season: Shinobu Time and Hitagi End. This title revolves around the oddities that Ougi Oshino, a mysterious girl with eyes dark as midnight brings up to Koyomi. Ougi was important in the past titles that we covered as well, but this title goes in-depth into the oddity that is Ougi herself. Watching this title near the end prepares viewers for the final “battle” of the Monogatari series.

7. Kizumonogatari

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Kizumonogatari is a trilogy of three one-hour movies. The events in Kizumonogatari take place before the rest of the Monogatari series--it gives an explanation for the significance of Koyomi and why he is the main character of the Monogatari series. Due to its relevance to Shinobu, the all-mighty vampire, the three movies in Kizumonogatari are all titled with a name related to blood: 鉄血 (Tekketsu), or Iron Blood; 熱血 (Nekketsu), or Hot Blood; 冷血 (Reiketsu), or Cold Blood. Two of the trilogy in Kizumonogatari was in theaters from 2016 to 2017, and the final movie of the three will be in US theaters in April.

8. Owarimonogatari, 2017

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This Owarimonogatari is the continuation of Owarimonogatari. This final arc goes in-depth about Ougi Oshino and uncovers the mystery around her. This is scheduled to air in the summer of 2017.

 

This concludes our guide to watching the Monogatari series. It’s long, we get it, but trust us, it’s worth it. Also, please keep in mind that this list is the order in which we recommend watching. Everyone has their own way of enjoying anime, and if you have your own way, knock yourself out!

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