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Hinako Note – 01

OP Sequence

OP: 「あ・え・い・う・え・お・あお!!」 (A • E • I • U • O • AO!!) by 劇団ひととせ[桜木ひな子(M・A・O)、夏川くいな(富田美憂)、柊真雪(小倉唯)、萩野千秋(東城日沙子)、中島ゆあ(高野麻里佳)]

「とくぎは、かかしです」 (Tokugi wa, Kakashi desu)
“My Talent is Being a Scarecrow”

I think I may have found a partial replacement for the slice-of-life void that last season left in my heart.

General Impressions

Sometimes for a slice-of-life, you don’t need anything too fancy and all you really need are a solid cast of characters that have their own unique personalities or traits. In Hinako Note’s case, it takes this philosophy to heart and finds its strength through its characters and their interactions with one another.

With a rather plain character taking the lead in the form of Sakuragi Hinako (Ichimichi Mao), I thought I would be turned off by someone who gets so badly flustered when dealing with people that they literally turn into a scarecrow. But by the end of the episode, I found myself rather drawn to her with the strong attitude that comes out of her when she’s around friends as well as loving how perfectly she plays the role of the straight-man in most comedic sequences. Something that really filled me with hope for the show since uninspiring leads can really bring down a slice-of-life. In addition to Hinako we also were introduced to three other girls who covered just enough of the personality spectrum to keep the episode feeling fresh and alive. From the quirky Natsukawa Kuina (Tomita Miyu) who eats pages from books as snacks to the adorably tiny but “grown up” Hiiragi Mayuki (Ogura Yui) we even had a moderate character right-between the two with landlord and resident tall girl Ogino Chiaki (Tojo Hisako) showing up right at the end for a tiny bit of extra exposition and flavor. All of whom, at least in my opinion, did a great a job at really selling me the ”story” of Hinako Note.

Now, even with my high hopes of trying to convince as many people as possible to watch this show, I have to address one thing — I’m sure some people may find this show boring. Seeing how I’ve been doing this episodic-blogging thing for quite some time now, it occurred to me throughout the episode that it felt somewhat long even though it felt like there wasn’t a lot going on. And after reflecting on that for a bit, I realized that without an overarching story goal (for the moment at least) things could get stale real quick if the characters (or the writers in this case) don’t bring their A game to every episode. And sure, it might be a little early to be making any assumptions, but this was something that I had to bring up since the last thing I’d want is someone to get caught watching a show they’d eventually find boring.

Overall, I really enjoyed Hinako Note. With the hopes that the story will really latch onto this theater thing and run with it, I think all the other pieces for a successful slice-of-life or school-life show are all here. Great characters with great dynamics between them and enough variety that there shouldn’t be too much trouble when it comes to the gag department. In any case, I’ll catch you guys around next week where we’ll hopefully meet some more characters and get to see more of Aki!

P.S. This show has an amazing opening and ending sequence.

 

ED Sequence

ED: 「かーてんこーる!!!!!」 (Kaaten Kooru!!!!!) by 劇団ひととせ[桜木ひな子(M・A・O)、夏川くいな(富田美憂)、柊真雪(小倉唯)、萩野千秋(東城日沙子)、中島ゆあ(高野麻里佳)]

End Card

April 8, 2017 at 1:09 pm
17 comments »
  • April 8, 2017 at 4:53 pmZaiden

    This came just when Nyanko Days had left a hole in the heart of the anime community. Second Takaii on highly recommending this.

  • April 8, 2017 at 5:31 pmJeffers

    I was looking for a kanna kamui replacement after kobayashi maid dragon finished airing and I think I have found a 50% PARTIAL replacement (because no one can replace kanna as the cutest character of the year at the moment)

  • April 8, 2017 at 5:46 pmraxar

    CGDCT anime of the season. Reminded me of GochiUsa with the cafe. Also we have Gabriel’s VA(as Kuina) and Hinata(ro-kyu-bu)’s VA(as Miyuki) here, probably won’t be a great anime for everyone but CGDCT anime always get a welcome in every season for me.

    I’m a bit bothered(curious?) with Miyuki’s height though, she’s not that short, but when she’s buying the taiyaki she..get shorter? Though since this is a comedy I probably shouldn’t point that out hha.

    • April 8, 2017 at 11:45 pmTakaii

      I’m waiting for the tall/short jokes.

  • April 8, 2017 at 5:54 pmDekajiri

    Looks like a pretty jaunty SoL show. Had some nice visuals for Hinako’s various horrified faces. A worthwhile timewaster (if there even is such a thing)

    • April 8, 2017 at 11:45 pmTakaii

      There are such things!

  • April 8, 2017 at 6:34 pmGoerg

    The ending was so cute….my sugar level…

    • April 8, 2017 at 11:45 pmTakaii

      IT WAS SO GOOD RIGHT

  • April 8, 2017 at 8:11 pmArche

    Way, way too many moments where I just wanted to pause and focus on all the faces the characters make

    • April 8, 2017 at 11:46 pmTakaii

      The art in this show is actually quite good.

  • April 8, 2017 at 11:03 pmDelon

    Love the OP and ED and the ED is AMAZING.

  • April 9, 2017 at 5:01 amvaans02

    Is that Cocoa and Mocha’s long lost sister?

    Moe anime of the season. There’s always at least one of this in every season.

    • April 11, 2017 at 4:47 pmPsyId

      let’s piece together the mystery so they can met finally their respective sisters.

      - Sakuragi Hinako > Hoto Moka’s long lost sister
      - Natsukawa Kuina > Konata izumi’s long lost sister
      - Hiiragi Mayuki > Hakamada Hinata’s long lost sister(now when you think of it, i felt sorry for mayuki because hina is still elementary school but she is an actual big sister)
      - i have no idea whose sister Ogino Chiaki is
      - one last girl in the op > Wakasa Yuuri’s long lost sister

  • April 9, 2017 at 11:18 amArsene Lupin

    Haven’t watched this yet, but is it an actual slice-of-life show?

    I have to ask because it’s a term that’s used incorrectly a lot, and genuine slice-of-life shows are pretty rare. The last one I remember seeing was Aria: The Origination. Frequently I see people slapping the SoL label of comedy series (IE anything 4koma-ish) or a genre I can only describe as “Moe,” which is exactly like a 4koma comedy, only without much humor. The former I’m interested in, the latter I’m very much not.

  • April 12, 2017 at 12:12 amHanabira.Kage

    Hmm…this episode was nothing to write home about, and I can see them harping on a handful of traits for each character and leaving them as incredibly one-note. I know this is still the first episode, which is why I’m not writing them off right here, but this is a very real danger for this show. That said, the art and animation are really good; it’s hard to believe these are the same guys who animated Rokka no Yuusha, which came off (to me at least) as rather unpolished though not entirely horrible-looking.

    • April 12, 2017 at 12:15 amHanabira.Kage

      Just to clarify: I meant that I can see them harping on a handful of traits for the rest of the series. It’s still okay to play a single trait per character for laughs in the first few episodes since it’s still early, but it feels like the writer could easily continue doing so for the rest of the season, and that’s definitely not okay.

  • April 12, 2017 at 4:28 pmChoya

    I just got around to watching this show. I’m getting a kick out of Kuina’s quirks and Hinako finding her way as she formulates a troupe in the big city. I needed a cute SoL like this