Key points for Monogatari Series Watch Order Guide:
- I break down the Monogatari Series for you, catering to both new audiences and fans eagerly anticipating the Off-Season and Monster Season releases this year.
- I’ve outlined a straightforward watch order based on the release order of the light novel volumes. It’s a simple guide for newcomers, including exceptions like Kizumonogatari.
- If you’re considering a second watch, I recommend a chronological order for a deeper narrative understanding. The series shines on repeat views, and this order enhances the experience while acknowledging the complexity of the Monogatari storyline.
So first off, I intend for this article to be helpful for both new audiences wanting to get into the series and existing fans who are just looking to recap before both the new seasons drop this year. Yes, Off-Season and Monster Season are both coming out this year and I am sure it will bring a lot of people back to the series. So yes, I will be going over both the chronological and the release watch order for the Monogatari series in this article.
Before I get into the watch order, I think a bit of introduction to the Monogatari Series is required for the new audiences. If you have watched the Monogatari Series before, feel free to skip ahead. So let’s get started.
Introduction and Things New Watchers Should Know
About the LN
The Monogatari Series is a series of light novels or LNs written by Nishio Isshin. Or as it is stylized, NISIOISIN. The LN volumes are grouped into “seasons”. Each volume covers a particular arc. And a season is, of course, made up of volumes/arcs related to each other. The volumes are not always in chronological order and that is done on purpose. Even the latest Off-Season has a few volumes out of chronological order. Each volume or arc has a different title ending with the suffix “-monogatari” for example Bakemonogatari, Nisemonogatari, etc.
Since the anime can’t change its name every few episodes, the anime just takes the name of the first volume that will be covered in the following 12 episodes. The 12 episodes can have anywhere between 2-4 arcs. Depending on the length of the volumes covered, of course.
About the Anime
All of the anime adaptations are made by Shaft. They vary in length based on how many arcs they are covering. As for the plot, the series is about a bunch of characters who experience some complex supernatural events. It all started when the main character, Araragi Koyomi helped a vampire in Kizumonogatari, becoming a vampire himself in the process.
If you are new to anime, do not watch this series. Only pick up the Monogatari series after you are at least a little used to Japanese. Because the series is full of jokes and puns that only work in Japanese. Yes, even the character and arc names have these jokes. And on top of that, the series is also very out of pocket at times. So get a little used to anime and Japanese before starting this. Also, fair warning, this series may require multiple watches to get the nuances of the plot. But I promise, it’s worth it.
Release Order – Recommended Watch order for people new to the series/first watch
So now that the long introduction is out of the way, we can get into the watch order stuff. The release order is what it says on the tin. It follows the sequence of the LN volume releases. For the most part, the anime releases also coincide with this but Kizumonogatari is an exception to this rule. As in the LNs, Kizumonogatari came out much, much later. It is a collection of 3 movies and I am going to place it where the anime was released, instead of the LN release. So here goes:
- Nekomonogatari: Black
- Monogatari Series: 2nd Season
- Owarimonogatari: Season 1
- Koyomimonogatari (optional)
- Owarimonogatari: Season 2
- Zoku Owarimonogatari
- Off-Season (coming soon)
- Monster Season (coming soon)
Looks intimidating at first, But remember as I said, these are all of variable lengths. Some are just 4 or 5 episodes. Kizumonogatari is 3 movies, Zoku Owarimonogatari is just 1 movie. So it’s not terribly long. Somewhere around 60-70 episodes worth of content I’d say.
Let’s now move on to the more complex watch order.
Chronological Order – Recommended Watch Order for Rewatches of the Monogatari Series
As the heading says, this order is only recommended if you are rewatching the series and want a better understanding of the narrative. This series really starts to shine on repeat watches so I do recommend doing a 2nd run in this order. If the series caught your interest enough, that is, of course. So let’s get right into it.
- Kizumonogatari (all 3 movie)
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 1
- Nekomonogatari (Black) Ep 1-4
- Bakemonogatari Ep 1-2
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 2
- Bakemonogatari Ep 3-15
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 3-4
- Nisemonogatari Ep 1-7
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 5
- Nisemonogatari Ep 8-11
- Kabukimonogatari Ep 1-4 (2nd arc covered in the Monogatari Series 2nd Season anime)
- Onimonogatari Ep 1-4 (5th arc in the 2nd Season anime)
- Owarimonogatari Season 1 Ep 8-13
- Nekomonogatari (White) Ep 1-5 (1st arc in the 2nd season anime)
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 6-7
- Owarimonogatari Season 1 Ep 1-7
- Otorimonogatari Ep 1-2 (4th arc in the 2nd season anime)
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 8
- Otorimonogatari Ep 3-4
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 9
- Koimonogatari Ep 1-4 (last arc in the 2nd season anime)
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 10
- Koimonogatari Ep 5-6
- Tsukimonogatari Ep 1-4
- Koyomimonogatari Ep 11-12
- Owarimonogatari Season 2 Ep 1-7
- Zoku Owarimonogatari Ep 1-6 (or the movie version)
- Hanamonogatari Ep 1-5
I did not include arcs from Monster Season and Off-Season here. We don’t know the episode count or things like that for the anime adaptation of either of those. But just looking at this, you’ll probably understand why this order is best saved for a 2nd watch. The complexity aside, watching in this order will also take a bit of tension away from certain parts of the series. You don’t have to worry about that on a 2nd watch so…
That is all for now!
That is all you need to know about the watch order of the Monogatari Series. If you are confused, you are meant to be confused. This is a very convoluted series and it will take a while to get used to its weirdness. But that’s also its charm because there’s nothing else quite like the Monogatari series. Well, let me know what you guys think in the comments. And forgive me if I spelled a name wrong or something. See ya!!
Also, check out the news on the Monogatari Series: Monster Season and Off-Season here!