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Manga / Tamamo-chan’s a Fox!

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This foxy high schooler is a literal fox.

Fushimi Tamamo, a transfer student from Kyoto. Hobbies: Collecting acorns, nuts, and pretty stones. Talent: Fortune telling. She looks just like any other high school girl... or so she thinks.
—From the first page of the manga

Tamamo Fushimi has just transferred from Kyoto. Like many high school girls, she goes to school, studies, hangs out with her friends, and has hobbies she enjoys. Unlike many high school girls, however, Tamamo is a divine messenger, a white fox from the Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto who has taken on human form because she was curious about high school life.

What Tamamo fails to realize is that she isn't very good at taking on human form. She fools adults and cameras all right, but her classmates can see her true nature plain as day. Fortunately they're happy to pretend they don't notice and Tamamo remains oblivious, even as her classmates regularly leave her offerings in her shoe locker and greet her with prayers or as she turns into a statue when frightened.

Such is the story of Tamamo-chan's a Fox! (O-Inari JK Tamamo-chan!, or High School Inari Tamamo-chan!) by Yuuki Ray, a Yonkoma about Tamamo's life in school and her friends' efforts to keep her secret from being revealed. The manga was serialized in Monthly Comics REX from 2017 to 2021, and compiled into six volumes.

Released in English by Seven Seas Entertainment.


  • All Animals Are Dogs: Some of her classmates have noticed that Tamamo, her sisters, and Anpu seems to act more like a dog than a fox.
  • Asian Fox Spirit: Tamamo and her sisters are divine messenger fox spirits of the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto.
  • Asleep, Not Meditating: During a field trip to a Zen monastery Tamamo falls asleep almost immediately after getting in position to meditate. The nun supervising the session applies the traditional "Zen stick" to a few of the students.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: In one scene a group of students are praying to the 1-3 Shrine (aka Tamamo’s desk). One student asks to be ‘showered in riches’. He is immediately hit in the head by said ‘riches’.
  • Beach Episode: Chapters 14-15 see Tamamo, Mikki and Nakki head to the beach, with Reiko-sensei as chaperone. In chapter 83 they go again, and bring Tenko and Osaki along.
  • Beast Man: Leaving aside Tamamo and her sisters, in their true forms, Kagachi is a humanoid ferret, Mitarai is a humanoid raccoon, and Anpu is a humanoid canine (probably a jackal, given she's based on Anubis).
  • Birthday Buddies: Mikki and Nakki share their birthday.
  • But Now I Must Go: Once Tamamo graduates she and Tenko return to their shrine, but they return to the ten-year class reunion.
  • Chekhov's Gag: At the start of chapter 15 we get an instance of random people praying to Tamamo as a gag, one of whom prays for rain for their field. The end of chapter 15 ends the beach trip with a sudden bout of rain, prompting Mikki to remark that guy just haaad to wish for rain for his fields, didn't he?
  • Crossover Cosmology: Tamamo works at a cafe for visiting gods from foreign lands, and at the end of volume 4 Anpu shows up as a foreign exchange student, spending much of volume 5 trying to recruit Tamamo into her pantheon.
  • Cuddle Bug: Anpu likes to greet (most) everyone with a hug, she's measuring them for mummification.
  • Dartboard of Hate: Tenko pins Miura-sensei's photo to her archery targets.
  • Demonic Possession: Neutral version. Because of Nakki's potential as a shrine maiden, Inari Okami hijacks her body for Tamamo's parent/child meeting, presenting herself as Tamamo's mother, which's helped by the fact that in possession, Okami looks like an adult fusion of herself and Nakki.
  • Distant Finale: The final chapters take place during the lead-up to Tamamo's ten-year class reunion, showing what everyone's been up to and Nakki hand-delivering Tamamo's invitation at the Fushimi Inari Shrine.
  • Eldritch Location: Tamamo's current home is located deep in a grove, but the house itself exists in a separate space that can only be reached if guided to it.
  • First-Name Basis: Tamamo eventually concludes she's close enough to Kagachi and Mitarai to address them by affectionate diminuitives of their first names (Muu-chan for Kagachi, from Muuko, and Ma-chan for Mitarai, from Mami). While Kagachi doesn't mind it, Mitarai keeps telling the oblivious Tamamo to stop calling her that.
  • Footnote Fever: Most pages have a note at the side with info on something relating to that comic, some of which are from Tamamo or her sisters, and a note at the bottom commenting on the comic.
  • Foreign Exchange Student: Anpu, who joins Tamamo's second year class from Egypt in chapter 63.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Kagachi and Mitarai's presence in the school is hinted at in chapters 23 and 25.
    • Tenko mentions she is a regular at the cafe Tamamo works at in chapter 57, which hints at the supernatural aspect of the place.
    • In chapter 63, Mikki notes there're a lot of supernatural beings around the school, and Nakki wonders if there might be more they don't know about, setting up for Anpu's arrival at the end and the much later reveal about Miura-sensei.
    • A footnote from Anpu in chapter 75 states that the Morals Committee girl smells like Muu-chan. Chapter 80 reveals that Muu-chan is her long-lost pet ferret.
  • Fox Folk: The fox spirits' humanoid forms resemble humanoid foxes to those who can see past the illusion.
  • Friendless Background: The Public Morals Committee girl doesn't have any friends, and she's a bit tsundere about wanting some.
  • Glamour Failure: Tamamo and her sisters' glamours only work on adults, or adults at heart. But much to the photography students' frustration, this is not the case with photos of them. Photographs all show them to be beautiful young women with no hint of their true nature. Kagachi and Mitarai have stronger disguises, however, the various traditional Japanese methods of seeing through a glamour (smearing one's eyebrow with saliva, looking through a hand-sign called "fox's window"...) are effective.
  • God Job: Tamamo and her sisters are just divine messengers, but Anpu is a full-blown goddess, and she tries to convince Tamamo to join her pantheon. She refuses.
  • Grail in the Garbage: When Tamamo's friends are looking for things to sell at a flea market Tenko brings out a bunch of lost national treasures and magical artifacts including the kotenmyo hiragumo that she considers worthless, while hanging onto some cowrie shells and acorns.
  • Hime Cut: Tamamo's baseline hairstyle, possibly representing her being a divine messenger and/or a Fish out of Temporal Water. Her sisters don't have the full cut, with Tenko not having straight bangs and Osaki having short hair and bangs.
  • Interspecies Romance: Regardless of them being immortal bipedal fox spirits, any boys that see past their illusions have no issue declaring how attractive the three sisters are. Especially Tenko when she shows up to be a teacher in Tamamo's school. A boy even tells her up-front that he is in love with her and asks for a relationship with her. Tenko is flattered by that declaration but turns it down due to them being a teacher and a student... for now.
    • Osaki became smitten with one of the boys in volume two when she went shopping. She was in a hurry until she almost tripped but Motoki, the baseball jock, saved her. She still has a crush on him in volume five when Motoki sold his old glove to her. Osaki admires his scent and becomes jealous when Anpu came into the picture asking for his assistances. By the way, Motoki is oblivious to her feelings towards him.
  • Invisible to Adults: With the exception of Reiko-sensei, every adult Tamamo encounters sees her as a human with silver hair and red eyeliner. On the flip side, the only student who doesn't see Tamamo as a fox is the Public Morals Committee girl. Meanwhile, Kagachi and Mitarai normally appear human to everyone, being better shapeshifters than Tamamo and her sisters. Unless ancient methods of seeing past illusions are utlilized.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mitarai is bad-tempered and kind of an asshole, but she can be kind.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Occasionally someone will anger either Tamamo or Inari Okami, and the person will suffer some backlash for their wrongful actions. A frequently occurring example is the girls' homeroom teacher becoming seriously ill after taking some of Tamamo's food or otherwise upsetting her.
  • The Little Shop That Wasn't There Yesterday: A benign version in a cafe Tamamo works at in chapters 56 and 57. Her friends come and visit her, have a nice meal, and watch as many customers come in ordering foreign foods. When Nakki returns to collect her forgotten bus pass she finds the shop's true form is a small shrine. The cafe was one for the gods.
  • Living Statue: Tamamo and her sisters are the fox statues outside Inari's shrine in Kyoto, they occasionally revert to statue form in class, and can talk to other statues. Anpu is also seen reverting to an Anubis statue at times.
  • Living Toys: In one chapter Osaki transforms herself into a doll and tags along with Tamamo to school, where she finds herself in Reiko-sensei's desk and meets a plushie sewn from Tamamo's shed fur.
  • Love at First Sight: In one scene a group of students are praying to the 1-3 Shrine (aka Tamamo’s desk). One is a boy praying for a girlfriend. Another is a girl praying for a boyfriend. After the prayer, they look up, see each other, and blush.
  • Meaningful Echo: Anpu in chapter 63 introduces herself very similarly to Tamamo in chapter 2, missing out her list of interests.
  • Miko: Nakki has the potential to be a shrine maiden, delivering the words of the gods. Early on, Inari Okami visits her bed to tell her to look out for Tamamo.
  • New Transfer Student: Tamamo introduces herself as a transfer student from Kyoto.
  • Offerings to the Gods: Tamamo's classmates would stick coins in her locker or leave snacks on her desk and then pray for favors in the early chapters, before they started to realize they should Be Careful What You Wish For.
  • Open Secret: Tamamo's nature as an Inari is pretty much common knowledge to the students at Tamamo's school. However, none of them advertise this fact and let Tamamo think she's getting away with fooling them. Similarly, Kagachi and Mitarai's true natures become open secrets among the student body after Tamamo's class sees their confrontation with her.
  • Public Domain Artifact: Tenko has a Fire Rat's robe, known for being impervious to fire, which originally comes from The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter.
  • Pun-Based Title:
    • The "JK" in O-Inari JK Tamamo-chan! is typically taken to mean joshikousei, or high school girl. The Alt Text of an early page states, however, that the "JK" stands for jitsu wa kitsune, or "actually a fox".
    • In chapter 19, there is an equivalent spin-off pun for her younger sister Osaki as O-Inari JC Osaki-chan! where the "JC" means either joshichuugakusei for middle school girl or jitsu wa choroi, or "actually a pushover".
  • Rascally Raccoon: Mitarai is initially identified as a tanuki because of the pattern on her tail and her rivalry with Tamamo, but closer examination of her tail shows her to actually be a raccoon. A footnote indicates that imported raccoons were popular pets for a while, but many were abandoned and became pests.
  • Real-Place Background: The major locations in the series, like Tamamo's house, her school, the alleys, etc., are all real places in Tokyo, as are many of the places the cast visit.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Tamamo and her sisters are somewhere in the range of centuries old, with a footnote in chapter 22 commenting Tenko has two thousand years of firsthand experience to impart, and Nakki in chapter 60 and a footnote in chapter 62 saying Tamamo's over a thousand years old. While Anpu could be over 5,000 years old given the archaeological evidence.
  • Reveal Shot: The final page of chapter 63, revealing Anpu's face as she introduces herself (she's shown from the back on the chapter's title page, but her identity isn't revealed).
  • Running Gag:
    • The homeroom teacher, Miura-sensei, nearly always steals or tries stealing Tamamo's food, and suffers "mysterious stomachaches" as a result.
    • The Photography Club continue many times to get pictures or video of Tamamo but fail.
    • Tamamo turning into statue form when shocked or scared, and her friends ignoring it to keep up their charade.
    • When Tamamo goes on trips, Inari Okami will ask for some gift from the trip. And Tamamo will either forget, not get her a nice enough present, or get her something without the necessary equipment.
  • Secret Secret-Keeper:
    • Since Tamamo's being able to go to school depends on no one finding out her identity, the people who do know, which is the entire student body minus the Public Morals Committee girl, don't let on that they know her secret.
    • When Tamamo's elder sister takes her place because Tamamo's sick, she believes she was a flawless impersonation of her sister, not realizing the classmates see through her illusion too.
    • When Tamamo's class moves up to their second year, Tamamo's fan club makes a point of ensuring all the incoming first years know to keep quiet about her being a fox.
  • Shapeshifting Trickster: Tamamo and Osaki aren't much into the traditional kitsune trickster role, but Tenko is fond of light-hearted pranks, while Kagachi and Mitarai are a bit more actively malicious. Miura-sensei is revealed to be a downright malevolent tanuki near the end of the series.
  • Shout-Out: Nakki getting fox ears has Mikki speculating Tamamo infected her with the T(amamo)-virus.
  • Sick Episode: Tamamo's off ill with a cold in chapters 10-11, so Tenko takes her place at school.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Kagachi towers over just about every other girl at school, and the other students find her attractive too, with the Public Morals Committee girl admiring her legs and another girl telling her she should be a model for the Sewing Club.
  • Totally Not a Werewolf: Tamamo mistakes Mitarai for a tanuki, but she's actually a shapeshifted raccoon. The students figure it out after identifying Mitarai's tail. Similarly, everyone thinks Kagachi is a weasel, but she's actually a ferret, and the Morals Committee girl's long-lost pet.
  • Wacky Homeroom: Tamamo's class in her second year, as it features Tamamo herself, Nakki, Mikki, Kagachi, Mitarai, Anpu, and Tenko as the assistant homeroom teacher.
  • Zen Slap: Tenko arranges for the class to visit a temple to experience zazen meditation. The attending nun (implied to be the immortal Yao Bikuni) sharply applies a stick to cut off a frivolous conversation between two boys. Another blow at the end of the story recalls Nakki to the real world from the spirit realm where Anpu and Tamamo debating faith and salvation.

Alternative Title(s): High School Inari Tamamo Chan, O Inari JK Tamamo Chan