Many anime watchers have fallen in love Kaguya-sama: Love is war, and it’s easy to see why. The anime’s unique approach to romance stands out from the soft, slow and overtly romantic shoujo anime of the past. However, many fans are unaware of the piece of Japanese literature from which the show is inspired.

Kaguya-sama: Love is war A romantic comedy featuring a very dramatic cat-and-mouse game between the two protagonists, Miyuki Shirogane and Kaguya Shinomiya, who are forcing the other protagonist to confess their love for each other first. Miyuki Shirogane and Kaguya Shinomiya are both the top representatives of the student body, and often the other representatives get caught up in their shenanigans. Funimation licensed the English dub and the manga sold 15 million copies as of April last year. The manga started in Shueisha in 2015 Miraculous jumpBut it was transferred here jump young In 2016. The 26th volume was released just last month, on June 17. The third season also ended last month with a one-hour episode, and a movie was recently announced. though Kaguya-sama: Love is war It’s not a direct adaptation, but draws a lot of inspiration from classic Japanese literature pieces for the main characters in the anime. In fact, classic Japanese literature that inspires Kaguya-sama: Love is war The earliest surviving is believed to be the monogatari, a form of Japanese fantasy that has been compared to modern-day long fantasy epics.

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The story of the bamboo cutter

Monogatari key Kaguya-sama: Love is war It is said that The story of the bamboo cutteror in Japanese 竹取物語So Romanized Takatori Monogatari. The story of the bamboo cutter It tells the story of a princess named Kaguya-hime who is found in a bamboo stalk and then sent from the moon. Once she becomes an adult, there are five suitors who profess their love for her and try to win her over, causing trouble for Kaguya-hime.

Five nobles are among the many suitors who want to marry Kaguya-hime after she grows up. Prince Ishitsukuri (石作皇子), Prince Kuramochi (車持皇子), Right Minister Abe no Mimuraji (右大卫阿倍御主人), Grand Counselor Ōtomo no Miyuki (头夡夡持皇子), Grand Counselor Ōtomo no Miyuki (贴持皇子). , (中納言石上麻呂). Kaguya-hime is not interested in a suitor, so she gives each of these nobles an impossible task to complete if they want her hand, the dignitaries agree.


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The first noble, Prince Ishitsukrui, was tasked with bringing a stone alms bowl from the Buddha himself. The First Noble decides to bring Kaguya-hime a forged bowl, however, Kaguya-hime rejects the First Noble as it does not shine with holy light. Another noble is asked to bring a bejeweled branch from a mythical island and receives a commission from the finest jewelers in the country. However, the jeweler’s bill is sent to Kaguya’s residence and he too is caught in his lie. A third noble is tricked by a merchant who claims to have a magical cloak of Chinese fire-rat skin, a fourth gives up on his quest, and a fifth noble falls to his death trying to collect his goods.


The Emperor of Japan visits and although Kaguya-hime falls in love, he rejects his request as he is from a different country than her. Although Kaguya-hime rejects many of his proposals, they keep in touch through letters. Meanwhile, Kaguya-hime confesses to her adoptive parents that she is not from Earth and has come to the moon instead, and that she must return soon. The reason for this varies historically. The Emperor sends his guards to protect Kaguya-hime, unaware that the visitors from the moon are her people.

Finally, she climbs to the moon where she belongs. She apologizes to her adoptive parents and those she befriended on Earth, but especially to the Emperor. Kaguya-hime also leaves an elixir of immortality for the Emperor, however, he burns it as he does not want to live forever without Kaguya-hime.


How does this apply to Kaguya-sama: Love is War?

Aside from a few references sprinkled throughout the anime, The story of the bamboo cutteris the main effect of Kaguya-sama: Love is war is on the main cast of characters. Not heavily influenced by the plot, however, the personalities and other characterizations of the main group of characters are directly inspired by characters from the monogatari, according to the official fanbook as well as an interview with the manga’s author, Aka Akasaka.

Kaguya Shinomiya, the protagonist and title character, is of course inspired by Kaguya-hime. According to the official fanbook, Kaguya’s personality is inspired by how the author of the manga feels about Kaguya-hime’s reluctance and indifference towards suitors. Miyuki Shirogane, the second protagonist and main love interest, is based on the fourth suitor who gives up trying to find a certain legendary gem after encountering a storm at sea. However, when he dives into the river to save Kaguya’s hair ribbon despite being unable to swim, it is implied that this is overcoming the obstacle he is based on.


Chika, however, is based on another suitor, who was tasked with finding the jeweled branch. In fact, Chika’s bad habit of cheating during board games is representative of the noble person she represents as Kaguya-hime’s actual branch in Monogatari, according to the official fanbook. As an added bonus, all of her family have names that mean ‘branch’ in Japanese.

Finally, Yu Ishigami is based on the fifth companion out of the main four, who falls to his death from a cliff while trying to retrieve his goal, a crow in a swallow’s nest. It is confirmed that Ishigami’s gloomy personality is based on the nobleman he represents. In chapter 156, it is implied that Ishigami nearly falling down the stairs to his death is representative of the nobility based on his past.

Although there are no significant plot tie-ins, most of the names and personalities in the anime and manga are representative of characters and elements from the oldest recorded monogatari, The story of the bamboo cutter. fans of Kaguya-sama: Love is war Will have to stay tuned between the upcoming movie and the final manga chapters to get more references.

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Kaguya-sama: Love is war Streaming on Crunchyroll, Funimation and Hulu.