Title: Love Hina
Genre: Romance, Comedy, Harem
Anime Rating: 6.5/10
Manga Rating: 9.5/10
Summary: Keitaro Urashima is determined to be accepted into Tokyo University, the hardest Japanese University of all to get into, because of a promise he made to a girl when he was young… a girl whose name he can’t even remember. After failing to get into Tokyo U twice, he is kicked out by his parents and goes to live with his Grandmother at her hotel, but it seems it has been turned into an all girls boarding house. What’s more, much to his surprise and to the tenants disgust, Keitaro is made manager of the boarding house.
Review: So this will be another one of the rare anime vs. manga posts that I will make, but I felt that it is a must. Quite a few people that I met have said Love Hina was poorly done and didn’t really do well in the romantic comedy aspect. After their rants I asked if they had read the manga (which I had) and they said no they watched the anime. After the constant talk about how bad the anime was I decided to check it out for myself… they could not have been more right. Sure the anime did have the same plot, characters, general scenes, and comedy, but it did miss out on a lot of what the manga had. The anime tended to lean toward comedy where the manga had a great balance between romance/drama, comedy, and fantasy. There were plus sides to the anime however, like the introduction of Kentaro, a sly rich boy who happens to have a very similar name to the not-so-great Keitaro. Although Kentaro played a minor role in the anime, he did bring something fresh that I didn’t get to see in the manga. That being said I still feel that the anime was lacking quite a bit. Keitaro’s sister didn’t play as large a role, whole chapters were missing, and to compensate the anime made quite a bit up to speed up the series. Love Hina was 123 chapters and needed to be that long to have any effect on the reader. I actually grew attached to Keitaro, Naru, Motoko, Kitsune, Mutsumi, Shinobu, Su, Sarah…*deep breath*… Seta, Hinata, Haruka, and Kanako. The anime really didn’t give any credit to the supporting characters which is quite sad considering they played a big role in the romance between Keitaro and the girls. The final problem was the art style. In the anime almost all the characters looked a little on the chubby side, even Motoko the athletic swordsman. Love Hina the anime had a decent soundtrack if you like high-pitch, fast-pace singing. It also took into account main chapters like the Christmas special, and the relief trip to Kyoto. Just like most animes the small details got lost in transition, enough to make me feel like it ruined the whole experience.
Final statements: Do yourself a favor and pick up the manga for Love Hina instead of the anime. Even the people who don’t tend to like manga because it involves reading it is well worth it. For the manga: high priority read. For the anime: Low priority watch.