The STORY of Itazura na Kiss is a simple one: girl falls in love with boy, girl stalks boy, girl breaks him down until he eventually loves her back. I didn't have too much of a problem when Irie decided he loved Kotoko, too... but I did feel like it was because she just wouldn't let up. Other than that, this is a simple slice-of-life shoujo that follows these two characters from the time they're 18 - 28. It's nothing impressive, and sometimes I wanted to smack this anime for being the antithesis of feminism in many ways, but it was just cute enough and just funny enough to keep my attention.
The ANIMATION wasn't great. A lot of the characters had very strange faces, but I guess that's a good thing because I didn't confuse any two people. I don't remember there being a scene I was impressed with, though, because I don't think the scenery was particularly beautiful. It was just realy average.
The SOUND... my biggest qualm with the sound is that there would be this really depressing and intense music that you would think would be in an anime like Attack on Titan or something, when all that was happening was just a slight panic in their ordinary lives. I felt like the music was way out of place and also way too loud sometimes. The OP was cute and the ending song was nice as well, nothing special.
Their voice acting was... okay. I liked Kotoko, but she sounded like any other shoujo heroine and those voices tend to grate on my nerves because they're so high pitched. Irie had a voice fit for him, as did Kinnosuke. I think the voice I liked the most was Jinnko's because, seriously, what the heck was happening there? Is she a smoker? Everything she talked, I laughed but I think that was the intention.
The CHARACTERS were, just, I don't know. I've said before that Kotoko is like feminism's worst nightmare. She tries so hard to be the perfect girlfriend and wife to Irie, whatever that means, and I feel like she never really knows herself because she is constantly pursuing him. She doesn't take the time to figure out her own dreams, she always morphs them to whatever he's doing and that was really frustrating. She also has basically no character development and she is the main character. ... What? However, she is funny, earnest and hardworking and I really like those qualities in a person.
Irie also didn't do much for me, but I think he had the most character development on the show. At first, he is a total jerk and I really did not see the appeal about him whatsoever, but Kotoko liked him. He's smart, attractive and good at everything he does. AKA: BORING. He's also extremely cold, calculating and rude. Towards the end of the series, this changes and he does find a dream and treat Kotoko better, but I have to say that even then I didn't like him that much.
Kinnosuke was just like a male version of Kotoko, but at least he had some character growth after he grows up. There were other minor characters, too. They were all decent, but nothing really stood out. I did like that they had a man dressed as a woman and he wanted to be accepted. It wasn't really something to laugh at, and that was really progressive.
My PERSONAL ENJOYMENT was probably about the same as this rating for once! One thing I had a huge problem with was how many times people hit each other in this thing. Look, I'm not going to say that men can't hit women if the women are being horrible, because that's ridiculous and antiquated. I'm an equal opportunity hitter. However, I really just think that people shouldn't hit people at all. I mean, the dude on the honeymoon hit his wife (she deserved it), Irie hit Kotoko (she didn't deserve it) and then that moustache dude hit Matsumoto (she didn't really deserve it either, but then she punched him in the face, so it was okay.) Why the heck was there so much hitting? It wasn't shocking, if that was their intention, it was just really, really annoying.
OVERALL, I would recommend Itazura na Kiss to shoujo lovers and maybe a few shounen lovers, too. In general, I prefer shounen, but I did find myself liking this enough to continue because it made me laugh. I had qualms with it, like Kotoko's ceaseless pursuit if Irie, the way Irie treated Kotoko (even after they were married!), and all the hitting that was going on, but I was still able to enjoy it.
"In my three years of high school, this year has been the most fun."
"In my eighteen years of living, this year has been the worst.'
Bwahaha. It's funny!