HSDK has the dubious distinction of being my #1 anime of all time. It's the only anime series I've watched more than 10 times now and continue to do so as time goes on. It never fails to bring a smile to my eyes, yes eyes, a task infinitely harder to do than just making me smile with my mouth alone. It's an anime who's sum does not equal it's parts since the only thing I rated at a perfect ten here was it's characters.
Truth be told there's not a huge amount of story here. Boy meets girl, boy gets beaten up by girl, boy falls in love and tries to become a martial artist to protect a girl that really needs absolutely no protection at all. Eventually it devolves into fighting increasingly harder opponents as it progresses, not something most people haven't seen already in an action show.
As things go, this wasn't really much better than your average show of it's time or since. It also didn't really get any worse other than a single episode that always bothered me but ultimately ignored as a fluke (guess the backup crew was called in that day or something).
Nothing to write home about, it was pretty standard fair, didn't annoy me or ruin the flow so it got my standard rating of seven. Just not a category I pay much attention to since ultimately it's anime, not audiome...
Now we come to the part of the show that frequently and totally wowed me. The characters, some typical some not, were a joy to watch and root for. Even the enemies weren't entirely beyond this scope. The best part is that the sheer amount of them and yet they were all mostly lovable.
I think where the show faltered in it's popularity is that it was billed as a Slice of Life/Martial Arts series when it really should have tacked on a bit of Supernatural or Super Powers on the end of it. Really, most of the things these people can do are beyond the scope of reality or at least the documented capabilities of humans in general. But honestly, how often does one go to anime for realism? The one down side of the anime is that the story continues on in manga but the show just kind of ends after the first arc.
While I'd love to recommend this show to just about anyone, being that I'm overly biased about it I tend to shy away from doing so. It's a decent fight series, with a lot of great and diverse characters mixed in with a light sprinkling of romance (and I do mean light). Watch it, enjoy it, hate it, tell me what ya think.