Kannazuki no Miko

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
The Shrine Maidens of the Godless Month

It was one of those days for the innocent Kurusugawa Himeko: Wake up late on your sixteenth birthday, rush to get ready and get to school... Then an ancient evil wakes up with designs on world destruction, a couple of anthropomorphic robots trash the school dormitory, and life as you've known it is over.

On top of all this, Himeko is also the Hi no Miko (Priestess of the Sun) one of a pair of miko (shinto priestesses), destined to summon the Sword God Ame no Murakumo no Tsurugi to defeat the evil god Yamato no Orochi.

Himeko is taken in after the destruction of the dormitory by her friend and fellow priestess Himemiya Chikane (the Tsuki no Miko, or Priestess of the Moon), and tries to get on with her life as much as possible even as the two girls attempt to learn the ritual which will summon Ame no Murakumo and come under periodic attack by the eight "necks" of Orochi, henchmen of the evil god, who run the gamut from serious (Tsubasa) to traitor (Tsubasa's younger brother, Oogami Souma, who fights on the side of the Priestesses) to downright goofy (Nekoko, the catgirl, who levels a fifty square kilometre region of coastal Japan for the lulz.)

Though Kannazuki no Miko attempts to fool viewers into believing that it could be a schoolyard drama (which it is, to an extent), and then a mecha action show, the truth is that it is, essentially, a love story. (Actually, a rather simple Love Triangle, wherein Himeko has some feelings for both Chikane and Oogami Souma, but initially believes that those two are a couple, while both of them hold romantic feelings for Himeko.) The strange blend of seriousness and humor in the series makes for a very "love it or hate it" reaction from viewers.

As a point of interest, the term Kannazuki in the title is the name of the tenth month in the old, thirteen-month Japanese calendar, and literally means "The Godless Month". (Japan now uses the Western calendar, with all-new month names.) In mythology, this is the month where all the gods of the pantheon gather for their yearly meeting in Izumo -- and thus, for the purposes of the series, not out in the world to keep Orochi from making a nuisance of himself.

As a humorous aside, playing on kannazuki as the 10th month, Kannazuki no Miko began airing in October. Whether this was intentional or not is unknown.

After the original Geneon release of Kannazuki No Miko went out of print, Sentai Filmworks reissued the series in 2009 under the title Destiny of the Shrine Maiden.

Tropes used in Kannazuki no Miko include:

Chikane: Even if the Gods of Death would block my way, they absolutely won't stop my love for you.

    • Which makes her raping of Himeko to ensure that she is the one that dies, thereby playing along with destiny, even worse.
  • Shrines and Temples
  • Shrinking Violet: Himeko.
  • Shout-Out
  • Solar and Lunar: Chikane is associated with the moon, Himeko with the sun.
  • Sparkling Stream of Tears: Not always, but pretty common.
  • Tall, Dark and Bishoujo: Chikane
  • Taken for Granite: Souma, if only temporarily.
    • Also all of the Necks of Orochi except for Souma and Tsubasa, courtesy of Chikane.
  • Title Drop: Invoked by Chikane at the last episode.
  • Touched by Vorlons: Ties in with the reincarnation aspect, the two priestesses being initially selected by the gods.
  • Triang Relations: Himeko believes her friends Chikane and Souma are in a serious relationship, and is somewhat oblivious to the fact that those two are willing to lay down their lives to protect her.
  • Troubled but Cute: Tsubasa.
  • Twelve-Episode Anime
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: Souma.
  • Verbal Tic: Catgirl Nekoko sports the standard "~nya!"
  • Virgin Power: Chikane and Himeko are supposed to be virgins, which was more of a pre-requisite in the anime but a full on condition of retaining power in the mangas, leading to the whole rape scenario.
  • Wham! Episode: Episode eight.
  • Strike Me Down: Chikane's involves joining the Orochi, slaughtering most of its members, take in its powers, and deliberately make Himeko angry so Himeko would hate her and kill her. This is because Chikane's previous incarnation killed Himeko's previous incarnation in order to seal the Orochi. Chikane believed that was unfair, and was determined to be the sacrifice this time around.
  • Yuri Fan: Himeko's favourite manga is a yuri by Reiko.