After the long wait the anime adaptation of the hit slice of life high school romance manga Hori-san to Miyamura-kun or now commonly known as Horimiya, has finally began airing. The series has quite a bit of history too. It was first written and illustrated by HERO as a web manga series and was then compiled into ten volumes by Square Enix’s Gangan Comics between October 2008, and December 2011. Afterward, Daisuke Hagiwara adapted it into the manga named Horimiya, with an all-new art style from 2011 to date. The original series was also adapted into four OVA episodes that aired from 2012 to 2018, with two more to come.
An Honest Introduction
Horimiya follows Kyoko Hori and Izumi Miyamura, two high school students with seemingly polar opposite personalities, one popular, friendly and intelligent, the other gloomy, lonesome and dull. These two usually have no reason to relate with one another until one day Hori’s younger brother is escorted back home by an oddly dressed stranger. After having a conversation with said stranger, Hori finds out he is the very same Miyamura. Contrary to how she’s seen in school, Hori is a simple girl who prefers spending her time taking care of her home and younger sibling. And contrary to how he’s seen in school, Miyamura prefers the punk aesthetic and enjoys having various piercings and tattoos. After finding out about each other’s alternate lives and consequently sharing something in common, the two then slowly begin to form a bond.
As I’ve mentioned in one of my previous articles, I really enjoy romance anime that doesn’t stick to played-out gimmicks and tropes to be popular, and Horimiya is one of the said titles. Even after being adapted multiple times, the series is more or less the same throughout as a calm, simple, and straightforward anime about two characters and their experiences together. There are no exaggerated plot lines, nonsensical drama, or unnecessary fan service here. The anime simply portrays the love between teenagers in the most straightforward and realistic way possible.
A Gradual Bond
That being said, not much happens during the first episode. It quickly introduces viewers to the two main leads, and their personalities then shifts to their daily lives together and their efforts to hide their secrets from the rest of the school. The episode also shows Hori and Miyamura’s relationship gradually develop. Though it admittedly skips a bit of fluff here and there from the earlier chapters of the manga, that hints that both of them have spent at least a reasonable amount of time as friends, contrary to what the anime shows, whose pacing may or may not confuse some viewers.
After exploring the series, I’ve come to realize each adaptation of Hori and Miyamura’s story has its own unique structure, so it’s not much of a surprise the anime follows suit. Other than that, I must say that Horimiya’s animation from Clover Works is rather impressive. The character designs are faithful to the manga and are highly expressive, especially when each character’s faces transition from one emotion to the other flawlessly. The characters’ hair, eyes, and environment are also brightly colored, further adding to its already warm and sunny aesthetic.
The anime’s opening song “Iro Kousui” by Yoh Kamiyama, also noticeably captures this aesthetic quite well and leaves a great first impression on viewers. All in all, the first episode of Horimiya was a great introduction to a great romance series, and hopefully, the anime will continue to do justice to its stellar source material.
If you haven’t seen Horimiya, its available to stream right now on Funimation.
Have you seen the first episode of Horimiya? What do you think of my impressions? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.