First Date Review: Hanamaru Kindergarten

Topic started by gia on Jan. 11, 2010. Last post by gia 4 years, 8 months ago.
Post by gia (3,032 posts) See mini bio Level 13


Vital Statistics

Title: Hanamaru Kindergarten
JP Title: はなまる幼稚園
Studio: Gainax
Director: Seiji Mizushima
Based On: Yuto's manga of the same name

Release Information

Licensor: Crunchyroll
Airs: Saturdays
Episodes to date:


The Story

A simple formula: Kodomo no Jikan - Fanservice - Child abuse - ~4 years = Hanamaru Kindergarten.

Okay, it's an oversimplification, but it'll get you to the right overall plot. A precocious and energetic kindergartener, Anzu-chan, is waiting for her mother on the street, and Tsuchida, a recent graduate and new kindergarten teacher, spots her alone. Wanting to make sure everything's okay he talks to her, and she immediately decides he's "hitting on her."  And then he turns out to be her teacher, of course; cue introductions of the rest of the cast.
 
It's that simple!

The Review

But this isn't KoJika, and the hitting on doesn't lead to serious contemplation of Tsuchida being a pervert...mostly. Anzu also doesn't come from an unusual (and arguably dangerous) home setting, but is rather the daughter of a young woman who married her high school art teacher. So it's no surprise Anzu may develop a crush on Tsuchida, who of course turns out to be her art teacher.

I won't spoil other aspects of the plot, but another big difference: while Anzu is absolutely adorable, it's her mother who's a bit over-the-top, and definitely amused me.

 ...To my currently five-year-old daughter.
 ...To my currently five-year-old daughter.
We also get introduced to a cast of secondary characters...Anzu becomes pals with stoic Hii-chan and shy, timid Koume-chan, both of whom are adorable and I'm already totally in love with Hii-chan's cat pajamas. Insert "cat's pajamas" joke here. Of course, Tsuchida also has several co-workers, including the sweet (if generic, so far) Yamamoto-san, as well as three other female co-workers...they make quite a thing about how unusual a male kindergarten teacher is, and even cite that only 1 in every 50 teachers in Japan is male...I couldn't tell if they were only talking kindergarten, though; it seems a bit low-ball to refer to all teachers, once you start adding in high school and/or university.

All in all this looks like it could be a really cute, fun comedy. So far it's not ecchi at all, unless you count a semi-almost-kinda upskirt (it was a long skirt so you didn't actually see more than a bit of lower-thigh). Unless, of course, you count seeing up the "skirts" of all the little preschoolers, but I personally don't find a big fat diaper very titillating. If you do, well...don't tell me about it.

Anywho, it's Gainax, so I'm sure there'll still be some euphemism, and quite possibly some out-and-out fanservice, as we go on, but I'm actually surprised at how non-fanservicey it seemed, given what I was prepared for. So if Kodomo no Jikan made you uncomfortable, I think you'll still be okay with Hanamaru Kindergarten.

Once again it's Gainax, so I need hardly tell you that the animation is good-- not at Gainax's peak levels, of course, but very strong. I'll tell you one little item that I noticed that made a big difference to me: when Anzu is waxing philosophical about being hit on as shown on TV, Tsuchida reacts WHILE she's speaking, rather than after. It's a small touch, but an appreciated one nonetheless.

The voice acting is strong and the ED theme is decent musically, but the really cute visuals pick it up a lot. You'll recognize Gainax's touch a bit more there than other parts of the series, probably, although it also made me think a lot of Junko Mizuno, especially palette-wise.


And I think that's about that's about all I can say about Hanamaru Kindergarten for now. It's really cute, with a lot of potential for silliness, but nothing particularly deep or ground-breaking but some characters that I think people will really get into.

 P.S. I LOVE HII-CHAN.
 P.S. I LOVE HII-CHAN.
Post by Sigue (860 posts) See mini bio Level 8
I enjoyed the parts where the children aren't the focus. I'll be giving it an episode 2, but I can see the children getting really annoying (although that might just because I dislike children to being with).
Post by Slim (238 posts) See mini bio Level 3
I'll check it out. I figured this would be some lolicon crap with no jiggle but it looks like I was wrong ... again.
Post by JJOR64 (2,074 posts) See mini bio Level 16
This seems like a fun show to watch.
Post by gia (3,032 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@Sigue: I could see Anzu being potentially annoying. Koume will probably wind up kind of a non-entity...but I can't help it, I just totally love Hiiragi O_o
Post by AHR (115 posts) See mini bio Level 8
Staff
I liked it!  I really like the dynamic between the three girls...hyperactive, shy, and mature.  Good combo!
 
Anyone cringe/LOL at the mega-Electra complex issues going on when the dad goes to kiss Anzu goodnight, and she's like, "I don't need you to kiss me anymore dad, I have a boyfriend now!"  
 
o_O.......
Post by Slim (238 posts) See mini bio Level 3
Thanks for turning me on to this Gia. Looks like a good slice of life!
 
 
Post by Konanda (796 posts) See mini bio Level 17

Hmm, maybe I'll give it a shot but I have the feeling Anzu-chan's hair is just going to bug the hell out of me. Having been blonde as a little child and grown into a light brown (on the more medium side) and having seen pictures of the transition. I can say, it doesn't work like that! I mean ya there is bits of blonde mixed with the brown (I still have small little pieces of blonde now at 20 [maybe like 3% or less]) but the only way hair can be like that is dying it and those are some messed up parents if they're dying the girls hair that young.   
  
Her character design is really the only thing bugging me. Although if that ending is anything to base an opinion of this show, I have to say that is approaching the tolerance I have for super saccharin things.

Post by Slim (238 posts) See mini bio Level 3
@Konanda said:
"

Hmm, maybe I'll give it a shot but I have the feeling Anzu-chan's hair is just going to bug the hell out of me. Having been blonde as a little child and grown into a light brown (on the more medium side) and having seen pictures of the transition. I can say, it doesn't work like that! I mean ya there is bits of blonde mixed with the brown (I still have small little pieces of blonde now at 20 [maybe like 3% or less]) but the only way hair can be like that is dying it and those are some messed up parents if they're dying the girls hair that young.   
  
Her character design is really the only thing bugging me. Although if that ending is anything to base an opinion of this show, I have to say that is approaching the tolerance I have for super saccharin things.

"
The show is nothing like the ending. It looks more like Potemayo then anything.
Post by mediaright (75 posts) See mini bio Level 5
I haven't seen the ep. 1 yet, but needless to say: Gainax + Seiji Mizushima (Director of FMA, Gundam 00, etc) can't equal anything all that bad.
Post by gia (3,032 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@AHR: Eh, in anime we hardly bat an eye. I should make a list of female characters with brother and/or daddy obsessions someday ;)
 
@mediaright: Yeah, plus, Gainax's adaptations are usually pretty strong. He Is My Master, Mahoro-Matic...maybe they're not FLCL or Evangelion, but they're fun.
Post by gia (3,032 posts) See mini bio Level 13
@Slim: Missed your comment the first time-- the Potemayo comparison is very apt. Although I suspect it won't have QUITE the level of awesome that Potemayo has because they're human girls instead of strange and inexplicable baby-ish creatures. ;)
Post by John_Martone (2,992 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@gia:
Epic screen caps
Post by gia (3,032 posts) See mini bio Level 13
\@John_Martone: Why thank you, my good sir.
Top Editors
Top Posters
gia
13 posts
Konanda
6 posts
JJOR64
4 posts
John_Martone
3 posts
Slim
3 posts
Sigue
3 posts
Matte
3 posts
rein
2 posts
Strongbadman47
2 posts
sunflower
1 posts
Mandatory Network

Submissions can take several hours to be approved.

Save ChangesCancel