First Look: Toilet Bound Hanako-kun

Alternative title(s): Jibaku Shounen Hanako-kun
Manga Adaptation by Lerche
Streaming on Funimation

Premise

If you visit the third stall of the third floor girls’ bathroom, you might meet Hanako-san. Hanako will grant you a wish but at great cost… or so the rumors at school will tell you. Nene will do anything to have her wish granted and decides to see if the rumors are true.

Jel’s verdict: This Show Deserves a Better Title

Do you like weird and stylish supernatural comedies based on Japanese folklore that feature a cast of terrible but lovable characters? I sure do, and that seems to be exactly what we’re getting here. Hanako-kun scratches a lot of itches for me. The writing is great, the art style is stunning, and it delivers a lot of heart without too much mood whiplash. Most importantly, the two main characters have good chemistry and seem very capable of carrying the series on their shoulders.

I do have some concerns. We are told there are seven mysterious wonders in the school, with Hanako being the first. That means we have to meet them all, and I’ve seen enough anime to know that could make the plot too rigid or, in the worst case, rushed. I don’t want this show to be a monster/new character of the week scenario, I’d prefer they stay focused on the relationship between Nene and Hanako.

It’s too early to say if that is the direction Hanako-kun will go. All I know for sure is that I loved this first episode and it could end up being my favorite show of the season. Hopefully it will avoid the potential pitfalls along the way.

Marlin’s verdict: Don’t Flush Yet

The first thing to hit you out of this show is that it has a really cute art style that endears you to it instantly. While this does prevent it from getting the sultry feeling of Dusk Maiden of Amnesia, a cult GLORIO favorite, it gives it a very fanciful feeling that suits the supernatural setting. Additionally, like Dusk Maiden there looks to be a cute supernatural romance that might be able to carry the show on its own merits. It even has some decent jokes to back it up, we’ll just have to see if it’s able to keep up the same energy. The mermaid at the end has me slightly worried this is actually some kind of battle show in disguise, but for now I think it’s at least worth the 3 episode test.

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