Before I start my review, I will state something:
YES, I am guy and no, I don't have a girlfriend (so I'm single lol) who forced me to watch this. Also, this review will include my perception on Axis Power as well.
Here's my opening act...what do you get when you have a bunch of good looking lads who embody the very stereotype of their countries and live like ordinary people with political, economic, and even social problems? Well, this anime is the answer to my question.
Hetalia, even the anime title, itself is quite synonymous to the actual plot with the Heta- part meaning, "useless/pathetic" (in a cute, innocent way) and the -lia part derived from the Japanese way of saying, "Italy." So literally, the anime begins with the Italian boy shouting, "pasta," which introduces us to the fluffy, cute parts of the world and meeting each guy that embodies the country's stereotype. Thereby, there is no real plot or even a sense of direction for a main plot, but that's why there are many directions to go with and Himaruya, the creator, never fails to impress when it comes to being creative. It's just as I mentioned above, a bunch of handsome men experiencing the ordinary life while battling through political, social, and economic hardships. You can go from watching an episode of Italy being pathetic in a cute way with musclebound Germany coming to his rescue, egotistic America and a rather shy Japan being friends with each other, or even the fishy Nordics and their systematic way of making their products...the possibilities are ENDLESS!
However, the art...not the best, but not eye-wrenching too! It does match Himaruya's earlier art styles, but his recent artwork has been improving and well, the men go from good-looking to jaw-dropping gorgeous devils such as in Beautiful World (the newest season), which I have yet to watch. Overall, the way he draws his characters have a sense of naivety and maybe an ounce of, "seinen" quality, but that is expected for the target audience is typically girls.
I would recommend this anime if you are:
-a history buff (no worries the kick ass narrator in the anime will help you along if you don't get the references in each of the 5 minute episodes)
-into stereotypical jokes/gags
-into guys for their personalities and yes, LOOKS for the fangirls alike and at heart
-in an anime fix, but need something short and amusing to watch
-did I mention that each anime episode is ONLY 5 minutes?! So don't freak out if there are hundreds of episodes you have yet to watch cause you'll surely catch up
I, for one, will say that I am so glad to have found an anime so short and amusing and with such a popular fan base, this one will definitely be a standout in my book because of Himaruya's witty creativity to come up with a plot full of men embodying their country stereotypes that once again, I have mentioned, live like ordinary people with political, economic, and even social problems.
I would rate this anime (up to World Series) a 9.2/10. Now, I bid you, my fellow, reader of my review, fangirls, and everyone else, au revoir, sayonara, hasta la vista, and adieu.