The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window is a paranormal horror anime series with subtle BL undertones. The main characters use their supernatural abilities to exorcise ghosts and cursed spirits in the living world. Over time, they go from a working partnership to developing a close bond.
With a high-concept story, The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window is often confusing and does not explain its narrative clearly. There's also a lack of romantic content for BL fans. Nonetheless, this anime adaptation takes you on a dark, intriguing, and psychologically thrilling adventure. Despite not being satisfied with every aspect, the series grew on me and I liked it more than I expected.
Around 5 hours
Dark and disturbing
Yes, written by Tomoko Yamashita
No, but it has some implied BL subtext.
Mikado is a bookstore clerk with the supernatural ability to see ghosts and spiritual apparitions in the living world. He was born with this secret gift since birth. However, he hates his powers and has tried his best to ignore the paranormal activities around him.
One day, Mikado encounters a mysterious stranger in the bookstore. Hiyakawa also has paranormal abilities and seems intrigued to meet someone with similar powers. Hiyakawa works as a freelance exorcist, investigating supernatural phenomena and helping others get rid of unruly spirits. He recruits Mikado to work for him in a business that describes itself as "cleaning" and "property appraisal".
Enticed by the high salary, Mikado reluctantly starts working with Hiyakawa on various cases. Mikado is often creeped out by the strangeness in his surroundings. However, Hiyakawa seems unfazed and oddly comfortable even when confronted with the most inexplicable abnormalities. Hiyakawa promises to protect Mikado, using a spiritual contract to bind them together.
Mikado and Hiyakawa often get their work from Hanzawa, a police detective who firmly disbelieves supernatural occurrences. Nonetheless, Hanzawa can't deny that his acquaintances generate results from their investigations. They also keep in touch with Mukae, a chatty and cheeky fortune teller with similar abilities.
Mukae leads them to a dangerous teenage girl called Erika. Lately, she has placed many eerie curses on innocent individuals. As Mikado and Hiyakawa investigate, they discover Erika is part of a sinister crime syndication, operating with despicable intentions. When Erika becomes aware of the pair, they cross paths in a tense and unpredictable showdown.
Anime Series Trailer
Anime Series Characters
Mikado Nobunaga Shimazaki (島﨑信長)
Mikado is a bookstore clerk with extraordinary powers. He can see ghosts with intense clarity, a secret gift that has distressed him since birth. Mikado tends to ignore the supernatural activities around him until he meets Hiyakawa. When they work together on investigations, Mikado starts acquainting himself with the paranormal side of the world.
Hiyakawa Wataru Hatano (羽多野渉)
Hiyakawa is a stranger who introduces himself to Mikado in a bookstore. He works as an exorcist and recruits Mikado to join him in his investigative work. Although Hiyakawa often confronts many scary apparitions, he doesn't seem fazed or uncomfortable. Hiyakawa is an offbeat individual with no living family members and he doesn't socialize with any friends either.
Chika Anzai (安済知佳)
Junichi Suwabe (諏訪部順一)
Soma Saito (斉藤壮馬)
Satoshi Mikami (三上哲)
Hiroaki Hirata (平田広明)
Honda Takako (本田貴子)
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window Anime Review
Anime Review Score: 6.5
On paper, The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window has an exciting plot. This high-concept anime is packed with supernatural mystery and psychological intrigue. However, some elements in the story are executed unclearly. The series can confuse newcomers, failing to explain vague concepts or skipping over crucial context. There are missing gaps in the narrative that reduce my enjoyment of The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window anime.
I know it can be tricky condensing a long-running manga into twelve half-hour episodes. This anime doesn't have that much time to cover an intensely plot-heavy series. As a result, it sacrifices some clarity while cutting corners on character development. Instead of telling the story in sequence like ABCDE, it leaps from A to C to E and hopes viewers wouldn't notice. Yet, it's obvious when The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window skimps on the plot or rushes through relationship dynamics.
Despite feeling lost at times, I still liked The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window more than expected. The first few episodes didn't make the best impression, but the series slowly became tolerable. I got used to the storytelling style, grew fond of the characters, and felt engaged by the dark psychological themes. I haven't read the manga, but I did watch the crappy live-action movie remake. The film never stimulated my interest in The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window. In contrast, the anime was fascinating enough to make me curious about the source material.
The BL content is minimal in The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window anime. Don't expect a full-fledged romance because it never happens on-screen. Occasionally, a few casual jokes or remarks about Mikado and Hiyakawa's close bond are made. There are also several intimate encounters with vaguely erotic undertones. I'm not sure what to make of the ~touching your soul~ aspect or whatever Hiyakawa was supposed to be doing to Mikado. Are these scenes supposed to be BL? If so, they might be too abstract for me to appreciate.
I'm fond of the art style in The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window. The character designs look clean, mature, and easy on the eyes. I also enjoy the brooding atmosphere that the anime achieves visually, capturing a melancholic mood through faded colours. With this being a horror story, it includes some abnormal imagery that depicts the strangeness of the paranormal world. However, nothing strikes me as exceedingly gory or brutal to watch. The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window feels grim and disturbing, but it's moderate in terms of scariness.
Ultimately, the narrative shortcomings in The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window hold this anime back from greatness. I don't believe the story is told cohesively, making the emotional arcs less impactful than intended. While the main characters have complex backstories, they don't seem three-dimensional. Also, their relationship dynamic isn't explored meaningfully, leaving a lot to desire. The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window is acceptable in its current state, but this anime series isn't elevated enough to resonate powerfully.
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window has an exciting plot that will intrigue you with its supernatural bizarreness. However, the narrative isn't always coherent and feels rushed in many places.
The romantic connection between the leads isn't explicit, even though they share uncomfortably intimate encounters. Their close bond is addressed a few times through offhanded remarks and jokes.
This anime has a decent art style with clean and mature character designs. Expect some mildly disturbing imagery that is typical of the paranormal horror genre.
The ending feels rushed, reaching a contrived conclusion that doesn't feel entirely earned or persuasive. I like the psychological themes in the ending, but they don't have as much emotional resonance as intended.
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window achieves a melancholic mood through its effective use of faded colours. The visuals amplify the dark, brooding atmosphere in the narrative.
The Night Beyond the Tricornered anime is watchable and enjoyable, but the series seems far from perfect. You might feel unsatisfied with the lack of story, character, and relationship development.
Anime Series Episodes
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window has a total of 12 episodes. Each episode is around 23 minutes long. It is a long BL anime, and you can finish the entire series in under 5 hours. Occasionally, there are extra scenes after the ending credits finish rolling, so make sure you stay tuned until the end.
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window began airing on October 3, 2021 and ended its last episode on December 19, 2021.
The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window Live Action
Movie Remake 2021 live-action movie Movie review
2021 is the year of The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window! Earlier in the year, a live-action film remake was released. The movie has the same characters and follows a similar plot, except the storyline is a lot more condensed. Understandably, you have less time to condense the narrative in a two-hour movie than a five-hour anime series.
I didn't enjoy this adaptation and felt pretty confused throughout the movie. With that said, watching this remake surprisingly helped fill some of the missing gaps in the anime's narrative. I didn't feel as lost with the story because the live-action movie already provided some prior context. With that said, I preferred the anime over the movie significantly. As flawed as The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window anime might be, it's still more coherent than this film.