Hentai Ouji to Warawanai Neko [Overall Review]

henneko_1-11

Animation Company: J.C.Staff
Airing Date: April 13th 2013 – June 29th 2013
Genre(s): Slice of Life, Romantic comedy, Supernatural
Summary: Yōto Yokodera is a perverted schoolboy who is unable to express his true feelings freely. After hearing about the wish-granting Stony Cat, he decides to try and make an offering to lose his facade, only to meet Tsukiko who wishes instead to be more discreet with her feelings to become more adultlike. Who’d have thought the rumors of the wish-granting Stony Cat turns out to be true; transferring the facade that Yōto wishes to lose into a classmate who needs it more and making it difficult for Tsukiko to show even the slightest of emotions on her face. Being on the same boat, they both search for ways to remedy the situation.
Trailer(s): PV1, PV2

Story/Plot: 8/10

 If you asked someone to describe the plot HenNeko in word it would be this: convoluted. It’s not a bad plot, in fact I actually quite enjoyed it, it’s just that at some points in the series the episodes would lose momentum and any sense of direction established in a previous episode would be lost… by the end there was, of course, an established narrative (thank God) and we were treated to an amazing finale, but that doesn’t make the ‘filler’ episodes any better. I of course say this to remain impartial, I enjoyed every episode of HenNeko and if the plot had carried through every episode I would have given it 10/10 in this section… but alas, it was not to be so. And that’s not J.C.Staff’s fault, I mean, it is the light novels that establish the narrative. But it is here that one of HenNeko’s greatest faults comes to light, the rushing of some story arc’s. Volume 3 of the light novels is reduced to two episodes in the anime. An entire light novel compressed into two episodes. Now I’ll admit, it wasn’t that bad, I mean, even though the novel was reduced to two anime episodes, those two episodes remain true to the novel and, whilst rushed, provide one of the best arcs in the anime so far.

 To conclude, HenNeko has a someone disoriented plot, never truly knowing what it wants to do and adding new elements in a somewhat erratic attempt to ‘do something new’ with the plot. That being said, the erratic nature of the plot and the content that was provided were top notch, providing me with some of the best comical moments I’ve seen this season. HenNeko is true to it’s genre’s, romance, comedy and some slice of life; yeah, HenNeko truly delivers.

Hentai Ouji to Warawanai Neko Episode 7 Image 0018

Characters/Development: 8/10

 The characters… were great! Each had their own personality, some relying solely on their own respective anime tropes, others creating their own personalities and developing in their own ways. Characters that I didn’t like in the beginning (Tsukiko…) became my favorite characters merely episodes later… if that’s not a perfect example of great character development I don’t know what is.

 With that in mind, let’s look a Tsukiko’s character and use her as the basis for this explanation: Tsukiko, in episode one she was this adorable loli who captured my heart with her food addiction and general cute demeanor… and then they took her away, long gone was moe Tsukiko, instead replaced with this seemingly emotionless ‘shell’… it would be an understatement to say I was heartbroken. Three episode later I fell in love with the new dandere Tsukiko and couldn’t comprehend ever not loving her. How did this happen? Character development. We were shown a snapshot of Tsukiko’s past, exposed to a fresh take on her cuteness, overwhelmed by how funny the new Tsukiko could be and heartbroken whenever she faced hardships… A potent mixture of good writing and good characterization made this possible and this method of developing characters would later be applied to all of the characters (hence why I only used one as an example).

 The only reason this section doesn’t score a 10/10 is because of the disappearance of character development for some characters later on in the story. Azuki Azusa’s character development was amazing in her first arc and we fell in love with her character. In every subsequent arc however, she was reduced to a character who knew nothing other than how to love Youto… what happened to her depth? It was done for comedic purposes and that can blatantly be seen, but still… it’s just a bit annoying, you know?

Animation Quality: 9/10

 J.C.Staff have provided yet another beautiful anime for viewers and art appraisers alike, a feast for the eyes… well, whilst I might be overeating a teeny weeny bit that doesn’t mean that anime doesn’t look great, it does. It’s well animated, character designs are true to the light novels (and are also well drawn) and the artwork is pretty darn amazing. The bright color pallet was a refreshing (and quite frankly enjoyable) thing to see after watching an episode of Shingeki no Kyoujin which, whilst also looking amazing, has a somewhat more subdued art style (color pallet wise) and airs before HenNeko. That is all.

Hentai Ouji to Warawanai Neko Episode 12 Image 0014

Original Soundtrack (OST): 9/10

 I loved it. It suited every scene perfectly, offering a wide range of soundtracks for every possible situation. Sad music for sad scene, upbeat music for the more comical; and not only that, the OST was actually pretty darn amazing! Oh! And have you heard that ending? It is amazing! I really enjoyed HenNeko’s OST and, in dramatic scenes especially, it really stood out.

Overall Score: 8.5/10

 Whilst I would personally love to give Hentai Ouji to Warawanai Neko an 11/10 I cannot, it just wouldn’t be objective, y’know? 8.5. An average. I think that’s fair. HenNeko has proven to be my favorite anime from the season, far surpassing the other romantic comedy (Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Come wa Machigatteiru) in both quality and romance… yes, romance. There were two kisses in this one season! TWO?! What is this? Sometimes there isn’t even a single kiss in these types of anime… not  even hand holding!

Recommendation: YES! It’s a must for every romantic comedy lover out there…

 All that aside, HenNeko is a must watch for the Spring 2013 Anime Season… if you enjoy romantic comedies, that is.

Hentai Ouji to Warawanai Neko Episode 12 Image 0029

Chris

I'm just a normal guy, chillin' on the internet in search of a place that I can call my sacred hang. What more can I say?

You may also like...

%d bloggers like this: