If someone were to ask me to sum up Honey & Clover in three words, I would say, "Earnest, thoughtful journey."
We are following the lives of several college students as they go through art school together. All the important people are there--the gentle, finding-himself guy. The eccentric artistic genius. The sweet, talented, naive one. Quite a few more (important) ones! They grow and mature in a way that is almost realistic, but still sort of odd. There are elements that are endearing because they are so realistic, and then there are parts thrown in that make you say, "Where did THAT come from?" *cough*Morita*cough*
I loved almost every one of the opening and closing songs, except the very first (Dramatic by YUKI). That one was obnoxious and had kind of a creepy credit sequence. The standout for me is Supika by Spitz; I've listened to it many times since finishing the anime.
I watched the dub, so that's what I'm judging in the voices. Hagu was perfect in my opinion, and the other ones were definitely believable. Shinobu's voice took a bit of getting used to, at least for the character, but I liked it.
The animation was lovely. Since the characters are all art students, I loved seeing how the animators portrayed each student's different work. The facial expressions were also extremely well-done. It's important that a character doesn't need to always say what they're thinking (or give you an echo-ey monologue of their thoughts) to convey an emotion.
What I appreciated most was that both the platonic and romantic relationships were viewed with equal importance and care. Romance doesn't always prevail over a character's life, but they don't all shove it to the side for other things. All aspects are beautifully mingled throughout the two seasons.
A very admirable work. It lives up to what all shojos/joseis should have--deep characters, delicate storytelling--and isn't boring or yawn-inducing at all!
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