First Impression – Kuzu no Honkai

Misery loves company?

Most of my high school years I had an awful track record of falling for people who liked my friends, so this anime felt relatable on some levels. None of them were my teachers though, so Mugi and Hanabi seem to have it pretty rough.

Mugi and Hanabi are a pretty nice couple right away. They seem to compliment each other well personality-wise, and since both of their love interests seem to be kind of in to each other (or at least, Hanabi’s Onii-chan seems like he’s into Akane), they definitely can sympathize with each other’s loneliness. The physical intimacy is probably nice as well, though it’s interesting how Mugi denied right away that they’re not friends with benefits. I guess the lack of sex is a big part of that, but this seems more like a relationship of emotional support and affirmation that chasing after the same person for so long is okay.

Hanabi seems to have a lot of history with Narumi, stemming all the way back from her childhood. So it makes sense that her love for him seems pretty deep-rooted, since he’s been in her life for a pretty long time, so much so to the point where he even acted as a surrogate family member for some school events. So far there hasn’t really been an “aha, I see why she fell for him” moment, but like the anime stated, there doesn’t have to be a reason for falling for someone. This seems like the kind of love that grew over Hanabi’s lifetime with Narumi. I hope that Mugi’s thoughts come in more often as the anime goes on, since his voice isn’t nearly as prominent as Hanabi’s. There were a few flashes of things, but it should be interesting to see how his feelings for Akane began, and why they formed.

I’m quite taken with how introspective the characters are, and how the anime goes into a lot of the character’s thoughts instead of just the lead’s. Seeing Hanabi’s perspective of things is kind of a given, since she’s part of the main couple, but I’m glad that Noriko isn’t just the stereotypical annoying third wheel who won’t let her childhood crush go. She knows that there are problems with her perspective, which makes her so much more interesting. Sanae should also be an interesting character to see, just simply from how the second episode left off. Her love for Hanabi seems like it wasn’t based on “specs”, but something deeper, so that should be interesting to find out about.

It’s also interesting on that note about how with Noriko’s existence, Mugi probably could have had a substitute Akane for a long time now. It makes sense that he chose Hanabi though, since he does seem to care for Noriko and probably wouldn’t want to hurt her by giving her a non-real relationship. But it also makes sense because as mentioned before, Hanabi seems to really understand his position in general. Like the girls who asked Hanabi for love advice, a lot of people have different ideas about relationships like taking in consideration a partner’s “specs” before other things, so having someone with the same ideals is probably comforting for Hanabi and Mugi.

Seeing this must still be painful though

I’m really enjoying Kuzu no Honkai. The manga panel thing is cool, but the way that it’s approaching the topics of love and couples is really interesting. I thought this might be more painful to watch, since Hanabi and Mugi are only in a relationship of convenience while wistfully watching their (maybe hopeless) love interests from afar, but they seem to have a pretty stable relationship regardless of loving other people. I’m glad that these characters aren’t (yet at least) as miserable as I thought they might feel. I also like Hanabi in general, just because I’m so used to shoujo heroines who are more like “oh no, I’m jealous, I’m an awful person because of this”. In opposition, seeing Hanabi just talk down to Noriko was super refreshing, and even despite having Mugi as a partner you kind of want to cheer for her feelings for Narumi because she’s sincere about them. I just hope whatever backstory Mugi has for his feelings is just as sincere.


University student and the one at Metanorn who's known for wearing glasses. Likes blood, insanity and plot twists, but also plays otome games and adores cute romance anime. It balances out... somehow.
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6 Responses to “First Impression – Kuzu no Honkai”

  1. ProtoSovereign says:

    Finally, I thought noone was going to blog this so I was going to wait for the season to finish before watching it. But since you’re clearing it karakuri I’ll get right to watching it ^^ . Show ▼

  2. Highway says:

    I really enjoyed the first two episodes. Like with Fuuka, I’ve read ahead in the story farther than this, but unlike with Fuuka, I’m not annoyed by this story. I’m not supportive of Hanabi’s continued crush on Narumi, especially since it seems like she has to put so much effort into maintaining it, rather than just fall in love with Mugi or someone else. That’s what strikes me about it. She’s in this natural process of actually liking someone else, but because she’s putting so much effort into convincing herself that she wants to be with Narumi, there’s not the space to admit how she feels for Mugi. It’s somewhat the same for Mugi, although I get more of a feeling from him through these couple episodes that he is keeping up appearances for Hanabi’s sake, and if they hadn’t agreed to be substitutes for each other, he’d be plenty happy with them being together. Although there are a few times where he’s the one who reminds Hanabi of the separation.

    One thing that struck me was the clean and shiny art. It doesn’t feel out of place, but it feels like it pops out a little more than the usual show. I like the look when I notice it.

  3. zztop says:

    Kuzu’s anime will fully adapt its source manga, which is scheduled to end this March at 8 volumes.

  4. skylion says:

    I’m really enjoying this one, as well. IT’s nice to see such deep internalizations and how they react to their own feelings before acting on them. A good writer can do a whole series on this idea…

    The manga panels are perhaps in support of this?

  5. Namaewoinai says:

    If the previous show would humorously force to do this, this one will somehow do…this!

    Anyways, this show is something like this…she is somehow in love with her “brother” but her “brother” seem to have a interest on the other teacher…so the girl want to play “love” with her classmate who some “in love” with the other teacher
    WHOA…so this show is about playing about love and that means…

    Show ▼

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