A (human) index that likes to code
Also drinks way too much coffee
Published Apr 25, 2021
After thoroughly enjoying Oregairu, I looked for an anime that could replace the empty hole in my heart left by the anime. I daresay that Horimiya is one of the best in the romance-highschool anime genre that has ever been aired on TV.
I’ve repeated this many times over in other reviews, but I do not typically watch romance anime; they’re usually too sappy, or too ecchi for me. However, I have been eyeing Horimiya for a while, especially after receiving recommendations to give it a shot by the online community. For the longest time, I’ve never been able to find an anime I liked enough to also binge the manga.
Horimiya | Source: But why though?
Horimiya is an anime that centers around Hori and Miyamura, two starkly contrasting characters who were able to meet due to a certain incident. In no other circumstances would they have met; Hori is an honors student who was popular and a beauty, while Miyamura was a quiet loner who was distant to everyone in class.
After the certain incident, both Hori and Miyamura stumbled across sides of their characters concealed from the outside world, something none of them have done before; Miyamura has many piercings and tattoos on his body, while Hori was always busy thanks to her housework - these two grew closer to each other as they spent more time with their true selves, leading to interesting and heartwarming events to transpire within the anime.
I loved the opening for Horimiya - it has some kind of tranquility that I cannot really explain.
Yoh Kamiyama - Irokosui | Source: Melodic Star @ YouTube
Horimiya skips all the fluff in between getting to know each other, to actually being in a relationship within two episodes; this seems to be a deliberate choice, given how unlikely it is to maintain the atmosphere in the scenes otherwise. At first, this felt too rushed; however, I later understood that the relationship has to exist to bring out certain elements that the author is trying to convey - for instance, questioning the stability of the relationship, how it feels to have a 5 day no-interaction gap from the significant other, how does jealousy feel, and so on.
The thing about Horimiya is how natural the individuals felt with their quirks, and how that affects the relationships. For instance, Miyamura is highly self-conscious about his piercings and tattoos, and tries his hardest not to reveal them; this causes him to dress heavily no matter how warm the whether is, which many people worriedly remarks on until it becomes “just a Miyamura thing”.
Miyamura's Tattoos | Source: Pinterest
While employing reasonable solutions to problems, Horimiya is able to somehow turn that into comedy, making it one of the only “comedic” anime that I can truly relate to.
For the most part, Horimiya loyally follows the manga. There are some dropped bits here and there, probably to fit the ending of the manga within the (short) timeline of 12 episodes.
One of the biggest dropped events in Horimiya is the sports festival, which will hopefully air in the form of an OVA sometime in the future.
Horimiya isn’t just about a romance between two characters; it is also about the two characters’ interaction with the other people around them. The cast of side-characters helps the audience take a breather to observe a fresh interaction apart from those by Hori and Miyamura, which develops the story, context and scenario. The results of these interactions are then used as a plot device to strengthen a concept later on down the road, or highlight the emotions of a particular scene; a good example of this would be the last episode of Horimiya.
Tooru, Yui & Sakura | Source: Rabujoi
It can be said that the whole series is slowly building up towards the ending of Horimiya; unlike other romance anime, where the series ends after the main character engages one of the possible heroines, Horimiya is about building a rock-solid relationship from interest to engagement. From all the little details in each episode, to all the actions performed by the characters, we see and understand how and why the ending is achieved.
Horimiya is something I enjoyed while highly fatigued; yet, it was able to lift my mood, and conveyed emotions in a way I can only hope to one day feel in my life. Of all the romance-highschool-comedy anime I’ve ever watched, I think Horimiya tops them all, including over Bunny Girl Senpai.
There is probably likely never going to be an anime that can blow my expectations out of the water - after I watched the first few episodes, I realized that I was craving to watch the next episode. After also reading the manga, I daresay that Horimiya is the of Winter 2021.
This must go on top of your to-watch list; I highly encourage you to give Horimiya a watch.