A teenage boy has now moved in the home of his mother's friend, because she had died a while back. It just so happens that the Yakuza family has four beautiful daughters, but one daughter, Hibari, who is more beautiful then the rest of the daughters, is actually a boy. Hibari just can't keep his hands off our hero and so their crazy yet happy lives go on.
As a vast medium with countless titles to choose from, it's a sad fact that there are many great anime that fly under the radar, either due to lack of buzz or the inevitable marching forward of time. This series isn't one of those hidden gems, though.
Stop!! Hibari-kun! ran for one season from May 1983 to January 1984. Right from the start, it becomes obvious to viewers why this series hasn't survived into the modern age.
First and foremost is the incredibly problematic subject matter. This series is oozing with heteronormativity, homophobia and toxic masculinity, which for the time was more or less the norm. Nowadays,
it's cringeworthy at its best and insulting at its worst. The idea of a homosexual boy who cross-dresses to get the attention of other guys is not only offensive, but dangerous. LGBTQ+ characters are routinely treated as punching bags, including not only Hibari - who is called a pervert by everyone in the series - but several supporting characters such as three stereotypical gay bikers in episode 22 and a Klaus Nomi lookalike in episode 30, get bashed and abused (without lasting injury, of course). There's also a bit of racism too, including a tastelessly stereotypical Native American character in episode 26. In every way, this aspect of the series is a time capsule and hopefully remains a time capsule.
My second point of complaint is the humor. Now, I know that humor changes across time and culture and not everybody laughs at the same thing, but very seldom did the jokes land on their feet for me. The jokes were very redundant, so much so that you could boil 90% of the show down to three jokes:
1) somebody says something stupid or outside the norm and the people within their general vicinity fall over in reaction to what they just heard.
2) somebody asks a normal question, and the person answers by shouting or generally hamming it up.
3) Hibari says something that upsets his father, a conservative yakuza, who then has a near-heart attack and hallucinates white alligators.
The show in general is very absurd and over-the-top, but being absurd and over-the-top alone does not make great comedy.
How does Stop!! Hibari-kun! do in the characters department? As you might expect from an episodic '80s comedy anime, the characters are one-dimensional. Some are even zero-dimensional. No characterization is given to Tsubame at all, besides being one of Hibari's sisters. That said, not all the characters are bad. I quite liked Mr. Ozora's two henchmen: the big lovable oaf Seiji and the cool-as-ice Sabu (the latter voiced by the incomparable Norio Wakamoto). However, unsurprisingly, many of the characters in the show are incredibly annoying.
When it comes to art, I can't be too hard on Stop!! Hibari-kun! While the art shows its age and it looks average even by 1983 standards, it's not ugly and it gets the job done. I would give Stop!! Hibari-kun! a 5/10 when it comes to animation. Not horribly pretty, but not shabby.
What about the music? Much like the art, the music is pretty standard. Aside from the earworms that play during the opening and closing credits, none of the music that plays is memorable, but none of it is grating.
What is the final verdict on this one? Well, to put things into Fantano terms, I'm feeling a decent to strong 3 on this one. There's not much I say in its favor. I didn't care for the slapstick, nor did I care for the incredibly problematic nature of this show. If somebody wants to see an '80s anime, I would recommend they go see the more well-known titles, like Urusei Yatsura or Kimagure Orange Road. (Note: These titles aren't completely free of homophobia, but it's definitely dialed back and it only comes up every once in a blue moon. It's most certainly not front-and-center like it is in Stop!! Hibari-kun!)
I can't say it was all a waste. I now know the Japanese word for "alligator," which will come in handy if I'm ever on the bayou with somebody who only speaks Japanese.
When i first starting watching this anime. I had my doubts about the art seeing as it was made quite a while ago but i gave it a shot and wasn't disappointed.
The story was great though i didn't feel as though it had a real plot maybe a collection of episodes instead. It revolves around a teenaged Kohsuka who has now moved in the home of his mother's friend, because she had died a while back. Its just so happens that the Yakuza family has four beautiful daughters, but the one daughter, Hibari, thats more beautiful than the rest is actually a boy. Hibari
just can't keep his hands off Kohsuka and so their crazy yet happy lives go on.
Art was good nothing spectacular or anything but back then it was considered great.If this show was to get a makeover to 2009 artist redoing the character design it would definitly be a one hitter.
The music was okay and can get annoying sometimes. Though there is a different song for a situation so you know when something is coming on based on the music playing.
The characters were the best part of the whole series. Hibari was the most unique and one of a kind with his interactions with everyone in the show. Hibari also reminded me of Jun watarase of Happiness so for those who love jun should definintly check out this anime.
Overall i enjoyed this series very much. It had the perfect combination of romance, comedy and genderbender and was a joy to watch.