I said in my previous blog on Megalo Box that Hinamatsuri is one of my favorite new anime this season. Aside from the beautiful animation and great central cast, the show is fucking HILARIOUS. That’s not a term I use lightly when referring to anime, as a show needs to be really truly funny to make me laugh, but Hinamatsuri has already wrangled up more than a few bouts of heavy laughter from me. The show’s sense of humor is so dry and tight-lipped, but almost every scene has put a big, dumb smile on my face, and I love it. If you haven’t seen Hinamatsuri yet, I implore you to do so. Episode 3 just aired earlier today, and it may have been my favorite yet. And it should be said that I don’t typically read manga, as is the case here, so my analysis is based strictly on what we’ve seen so far in the anime.
Hinamatsuri places its central focus on the character of Nitta, a Yakuza who lives alone in his penthouse apartment where he spends his time collecting rare, expensive vases. One night, for no reason at all, a metal capsule appears in his apartment containing a young girl, Hina, who is revealed to be an incredibly gifted psychic. After she threatens to break all of his prized vases, Nitta reluctantly allows Hina to stay with him in his home. He soon finds out that she may be of surprising use to him. It’s the relationship between these two characters that the show has been spending the bulk of its time on, and we’ve been able to see the beginning of a familial relationship take shape. Nitta has become a father figure to Hina, though he chooses to ditch her in the second episode to try his best to get lucky. Hina, though spoiled at first, begins to try her best to be a good daughter to Nitta in the third episode, though we’ll have to wait to see if she actually succeds.
This father/daughter relationship is fun to watch as it grows and develops, but there is another character that I have yet to talk about who acts as Hina’s foil in the show; this being the character of Anzu. Anzu, like Hina, is a psychic who appears in the city in a silver canister, though she seems more cocky and sure of herself than the stoic Hina. When we first meet Anzu, she is trying desperately to hunt Hina down and bring her back to wherever they came from, which culminates in a brilliant psychic showdown that had me rolling. It’s in the third episode, however, that we really get a feel for Anzu’s character.
After failing to retrieve Hina and finding herself unable to return home, Anzu resorts to theft to take care of herself. After she pisses off one too many store owners, she’s taken in by a community of homeless men. At first, the men are apprehensive and look down on Anzu, but after she sings (kinda) a song for them, they realize that she’s just like some kids they know in their own lives. The relationship between Anzu and these homeless men is downright precious, and really solidified this show as one of my favorites of the season. But the reason I’m writing this right now is to discuss the differences between Hina’s home life and Anzu’s new life, as they couldn’t be much more different.
Nitta spoils Hina in every way imaginable. She gets whatever she wants to eat, goes wherever she wants to go, and can essentially do whatever she wants to do, so long as she doesn’t blow up Nitta’s apartment or break his vases. And until the end of episode 3, she acts very much like the spoiled brat you would expect the daughter of a wealthy Yakuza to be. Anzu, on the other hand, and in spite of the fact that she was cocky and self-centered upon introduction, is adopted into essentially nothing when compared to Hina. She has to work all day picking up cans just to make enough to eat, and she spends all of her first-day earnings on booze for the guys in the camp. However, she quickly builds a strong relationship with her adopted homeless family and learns that she can earn what she needs to survive through hard work.
Neither of these characters are living their lives “wrong”, per-say, but it becomes clear how a difference in one’s surroundings and those who raise them can have a profound impact on said individual’s life. I haven’t even mentioned the hilarity that is Hitomi’s character arc so far, but you’ll have to watch the show to enjoy that to its fullest extent.
This was just a short rant about some of the reasons why I’m so in love with this show. It wasn’t necessarily as in-depth as my previous blogs, but eh, who cares? Hinamatsuri is a fantastic anime, and one that you definitely shouldn’t miss.