Kyoko Hori: Smart, beautiful, popular, but for unknown reasons, she rushes out of school instead of spending time with the rest of her clique. Izumiya Miyamura: Quiet, introverted, and according to the rest of the class, probably an otaku, though he, too, is hiding something. When the two happen to cross paths outside of school one day, not only do they uncover each other’s hidden personalities, but an intimacy begins to develop between them, a shared bond. But the question is…is that bond merely friendship, or will it sprout into something more?
I like seinen. I like shounen. I like all sorts of genres and types of anime, but most of all, I’m forever looking for a well-done high school romance story. I think I found it. Horimiya‘s first episode does a wondrous job of setting up a typical story in a most lovely and engaging way. One surprising approach it takes is by creating a cast that isn’t particularly edgy and which doesn’t pander to recent archetypes. Hori isn’t perfect. Miyamura isn’t clueless. And Ishikawa, the boy from Hori’s friend group who has a crush on her, isn’t a bad guy. The light and easy feeling from creating such pleasant characters, combined with engaging writing and strong animation, has me already desiring to spend time with these characters each week and to see how they grow as people and in their relationships with one another. The manga has a strong reputation among fans of manga romance series, and that has me excited, too. In other words, despite my pessimistic nature when it comes to such shows (and first episodes of anime in general), I am all in.
Horimiya can be streamed through Funimation.