Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun is a manga that is beloved by a bunch of my friends in real life and online, so when I heard it was getting an anime in 2020, I let my curiosity get the better of me by reading it before seeing the adaptation itself.
Excuse me if the review is poorly written compared to my other ones, I just wrote this on the fly without preparing well like the others (since I wanted to avoid spoiling much detail to the story). These are just brief thoughts.
It started off well with a quirky and entertaining start but then regressed into a pretty uninteresting story that felt shoddy in terms of consistency. There were a few plot conveniences that popped up as the story progressed, and the direction itself was pretty uninteresting too for me.
The comedy was hit-miss for me too. Some jokes were alright as I found it a bit cute. Other times, you get 'comedy' like the anklet. I wasn't entertained one bit by those kinds.
The pacing is fine, and I admire that there is an underlining narrative for this manga (which I expected no real story at the start). But, the actual story and execution of it left me severely underwhelmed so far.
The cast for this manga was pretty average for the most part, with some
highs and some lows too to balance it out.
Hanako-kun himself was alright. Not a big fan of his characterization but at least, his personality and humor kind of kept me interested in him somewhat.
I appreciate that the ghost himself at least had something that felt refreshing,
since a majority of the others, just bored/annoyed me personally.
Kou Minamoto doesn't have the most unique personality in the world but he did receive some solid characterization for a lackluster narrative, so fair play to him.
However, I did not like Nene. Her personality annoyed me more than charmed me, and her characterization was very lackluster too. Nothing special at all about her, other than her 'cuteness' which I saw none of personally.
And the rest of the cast was super forgettable for me personally.
The story wasn't beautiful, but I'll admit that the art was.
The characters looked really well-drawn, with cute and charming designs mixed with a creepy atmosphere too surrounding them. It's very interesting.
I normally try and best not to go with expectations in mind whenever I see an anime or read a manga, but due to how much I've heard about how amazing it was, I couldn't resist.
And I'm more disappointed in myself, for letting them get to me than by the manga itself.
Due to my expectations, the lackluster experience of this manga stung me more than I wished. This manga started well but ended up being underwhelming and even full of issues itself when I caught up by the end.
Overall, it's a manga that I can see why many would love, and I could also see it receiving rave reviews for its anime adaptation in Winter 2020. But sadly, the manga could not capture my interest and I've lost a lot of hype that I initially had for the anime when the announcement came.
Hanako-kun's manga was not bad, but just disappointing once I caught up.
Score 5/10 (weight story and characters more).