Caleb likes to think he's Jiraiya, a ninja/author. In reality, he's never thrown a punch in his life. His pen serves as his lone weapon.
How to Watch the Monogatari Series in Order
Have you always wanted to watch Monogatari but you don't know how to start? If you're a big anime fan, then you know that the Monogatari series is immensely popular. It's based on the Japanese light novels by Nisio Isin, one of the best writers in my opinion. With a total of 24 novels, many fans might not want to invest a lot of their time to finish all of them. That shouldn't be a problem because the anime adaptations are excellent, as long as you know the correct Monogatari watch order.
Since SHAFT adapted the light novels into anime, Monogatari had become even more popular. In many ways, it's a unique anime show because of the sheer number of characters you must keep track of, each of whom has a special story to tell. Despite having a common theme, it's fun and exciting to each character's story unfold within the same universe and find the link between all of them.
If you've followed the anime adaptations since day one, then you probably enjoyed it without any problems. SHAFT released each series in the intended order. That means anybody who's looking to get into Monogatari can do the same. Still, it's worth noting that you can follow this series in multiple ways. This guide is meant to help you find the best Monogatari series watch order depending on how far into the story you are right now.
Monogatari Series Release Order
As noted earlier, beginners will do well by watching the series according to the release order. Those who followed the series since 2009 took this route, because there really wasn't any choice. But what's great is that it still works, even after the release of the new series.
For first-time viewers of Monogatari, this is the easiest way to get started. You can't go wrong with it because you won't find yourself lacking any information as you progress through the series. While some might say that it's ideal to start with the origin story, Kizumonogatari, beginners might end up getting confused. We'll discuss this in detail later. For now, here's the release order of the Monogatari series.
4. Nekomonogatari Kuro
5. Monogatari Series Second Season
10. Owarimnonogatari (Part 2)
11. Zoku Owarimonogatari
Monogatari Series Chronological Order
One of the best things about the Monogatari series is the fact that it has tons of rewatch value. Only a handful of anime can match it in this regard. If you've finished all of the series for the first time, you might feel excited to watch everything again. This time around, however, you may want to mix things up a bit to improve the flow of the story.
For viewers who are already familiar with the plot and characters, the best way to watch Monogatari is by following the chronological order. Doing so fills any gaps in the story and provides you with a better viewing experience.
- Nekomonogatari: Kuro
- Monogatari Series – Mayoi Jiangshi
- Monogatari Series – Shinobu Time
- Owarimonogatari (First Season) – Shinobu Mail
- Monogatari Series – Tsubasa Tiger
- Owarimonogatari (First Season) – Ougi Formula, Sodachi Riddle, Sodachi Lost
- Monogatari Series – Nadeko Medusa and Hitagi End
- Owarimonogatari (Second Season)
- Zoku Owarimonogatari
Recommended Monogatari Watch Order by Nisio Isin
I'm a huge fan of Nisio Isin, and I'm sure plenty of people who read light novels look up to him as well. His light novels are engaging, immersive, and fun to read. If you have the time, I recommend reading all of the light novels.
Nisio Isin also has his own suggestion for the best order to watch the Monogatari series. It follows the release order of the light novels, which means this is the order in which the author intended them to be read. As a fan, I couldn't help but give this a try, and I liked it. That being said, however, I know that this order isn't for everyone, especially for those who are just getting into the Monogatari series. If you want to give it a shot, though, then here's the watch order.
1. Bakemonogatari (2006)
2. Kizumonogatari (2008)
3. Nisemonogatari (2008-2009)
4. Nekomonogatari Black (2010)
1. Nekomonogatari White (2010)
2. Kabukimonogatari (2010)
3. Hanamonogatari (2011)
4. Otorimonogatari (2011)
5. Onimonogatari (2011)
6. Koimonogatari (2011)
1. Tsukimonogatari (2012)
2. Koyomimonogatari (2013)
3. Owarimonogatari (2013-2014)
4. Zoku Owarimonogatari (2014)
1. Orokamonogatari (2015)
2. Wazamonogatari (2016)
3. Nademonogatari (2016)
4. Musubimonogatari (2017)
1. Shinobumonogatari (2017)
2. Yoimonogatari (2018)
3. Amarimonogatari (TBA)
4. Ougimonogatari (TBA)
5. Shinomonogatari (TBA)
When is the Best Time to Watch Kizumonogatari?
Whether you're about to start watching Monogatari or you're already a few seasons in, it can be confusing to determine when you should watch Kizumonogatari. By now, you probably know that it's a prequel, so there's a natural inclination to watch it first. But again, you should consider your unique circumstances to figure out when to watch it. Here's a quick guide.
Between Bakemonogatari and Nisemonogatari
This is Nisio Isin's suggestion, and it makes a lot of sense. It works simply because Bakemonogatari paints a picture of the Monogatari universe while Kizumonogatari gives you clues about the stories that will unfold later on.
If you prefer following the chronological order, then Kizumonogatari is the first series to watch. Is it recommended? Not really, in my opinion. Despite being a prequel, it doesn't provide a solid foundation for the entire series if it's the first thing you watch. The style is also different compared to the rest of the series, which might surprise and turn off first-time viewers.
Between Owarimonogatari and Koyomimonogatari
Following this order provides the most seamless viewing experience. You won't feel lost since no story arcs are broken up, allowing you to understand the story clearly.
3 Tips for First-Time Viewers of Monogatari
1. The Bakemonogatari series has 15 official episodes, but you can only watch the last 3 episodes by getting the Blu-ray version.
2. Many viewers stop watching after a few episodes because of the text that appears on screen. While it's great to pause and read the text, it's unnecessary. Rest assured that you can enjoy the story even without reading them, so don't worry too much and focus on watching.
3. The arcs are meant to be viewed in a shuffled order. This is the reason why so many people get confused when watching Monogatari for the first time. But by following the recommended watch order for the Monogatari series, especially for beginners, you should have an easier time consuming the content and understanding the beautiful story of this one-of-a-kind anime.