Watch or Drop? Rules
Rules modified for the Autumn 2021 season.
- The anime must be new (not a sequel or spin-off).
- I’ll watch as much as it takes to make a decisionas to whether the anime will be added to the watch/review list or dropped and forgotten. For good.
Horimiya Anime First Impressions:
The Horimiya anime is a high-school romance slash slice-of-life anime with characters that are actually fairly well written and interesting (at least so far). Hori and Miyamura have some fairly good chemistry as these first few episodes take us through friendship and into somewhat stronger emotions and with the exception of the members of the student council, most of the supporting cast have so far been pretty delightful.
The student council members may be taking a few clichés too much to heart. So far the pace has been pretty good and it never really feels like we’ve come to a halt and visually it is pretty pleasing.
Miyamura has been fantastic. When I first saw him in the classroom in the standard outcast otaku mode I had a moment where I was almost ready to just accept that this was going to be as standard as they come. However, from the moment he first makes Hori’s acquaintance in casual mode on he’s proven a fairly entertaining lead character. Hori has been a little less impressive so far because she’s currently stuck in the dense romantic lead trope, however there’s plenty of scope for her character to grow and I’m hoping the series utilises this as it continues.
The visuals in the first 3 episodes have been spot on. While this isn’t an animation marvel full of dynamic action, the use of colour and framing in this anime has so far been very nicely composed and it really adds to the overall impression of the characters and the story.
Finally, as I mentioned in the first impressions, the pace has been well used. We’re not rushing but we go from the characters meeting to a decent friendship within one episode as well as introducing the supporting characters and have Hori confessed to by one of the supporting characters. From there we just keep flowing forward and it feels very natural and is keeping me interested in where things are going.
Alright, it is a little generic. If you’ve seen boy and girl who both are a bit different at home to the way they appear at school who meet and become close before then this anime isn’t exactly treading new ground. Admittedly, it is doing its own version of this story and doing it well, but if originality is what you are looking for you probably won’t find it here.
The only other negative I have so far is Ayasaki who is apparently a member of the student council but is being shoved into some kind of role as a rival/antagonist even though there’s really not a lot of room or need for one in the story so far.
Maybe she’ll grow as the series continues or maybe she’ll remain the low point, however first impressions of her aren’t great as she resorts to tears in one scene to avoid accepting responsibility for her actions and then pretty much declares she’s going to ‘take’ Miyamura like some kind of possession even though she’s had like 2 encounters with him. With some more thought and better writing she could be a half-decent character but as it stands she’s the weak link in an otherwise pretty solid opening 3 episodes.
Fine, if pushed I’ll also mention that there’s a joke in episode one that just lands completely flat due to the subject matter and the fact that it is a comment from a teacher to a student that just seems completely out of place. However, outside of that mis-fire most of the humour lands provided you don’t dislike the usual anime girl slaps or flicks boy in face when she’s embarrassed or annoyed.
This was probably a super easy one to start with given it charmed me right from episode one. I am actually disappointed it isn’t finished already because I’d have loved to just binge the whole lot in one sitting. So yes, I’ll be watching the rest of Horimiya once the season is over and I’m looking forward to reviewing the whole series.
Update: Series review of Horimiya
- Episode 1 Review from Olive St Sauver
- Episode 1 Review from Kila Panaretou
- Episode 1 Review from Neru (with spoilers)
- Episode 1 Essay from The Otaku Exhibition
Images from: Horimiya. Dir. M. Ishihama. Cloverworks. 2021
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9 thoughts on “Watch or Drop? Horimiya Anime”
I feel similarly, though for me “pretty good” doesn’t outweigh “a little generic”. It’s fine, but even if Horimiya sometimes goes against expectations, it doesn’t evoke as much excitement as I would like.
That is fair enough. It is generic though for me so far it has been fun.
I got huge Tsuki Ga Kirei vibes early on… It feels (felt) stock-ish and trope-ish, but you could see there was more to it than that. For example, the complete failure to follow-up on the “creepy otaku” angle, while also showing his friendship with Ishikawa.
Like that show, it’s also slow paced and indirect, and I kinda like that. Real life is slow paced and messy.
But that’s kind of a problem from the POV of an anime fan… Taken as a whole, the culture/community prefers fast(er), neat(er), and clean(er). The result is a very good show that’s flying under a lot of people’s radar.
Though there’s been a lot of positive comments around it on twitter and I picked this title for my first taste test of the season because it was the highest scored non-sequel or franchise anime on MAL for the season. Hopefully that means it is reaching an audience because from the first few episodes I found it pretty delightful.
I doubt anybody else will agree, but I personally am getting some 3D Real Girl vibes from this show (having recently rewatched and reviewed it).
The set-up is similar (nerdy guy, cute girl) they both keep upsetting the other without knowing it, someone else is trying to break them up, etc. not to mention the same comedic-style animation.
This is not to say I’m not enjoying it as I am, the differences are enough to make it worthwhile, it’s just an observation that both shows are cut from the same cloth for me. 🙂
Similar set up to be sure but from 3 episodes I am definitely enjoying the characters here more.
Seasonal favourite for me.
As for Ayasaki: my take for the first three episodes: agree with you. For what is yet to come: she gets better but as of now hasn’t become a good character. I don’t mind her, but if the show forgot she exists so, probably, would I.