Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun
- My little Monster
- based on manga
- by Hiro Kaburaki
Shizuku Mizutani rather cares for her grades than for her classmates. However after meeting Haru Yoshida, her personality changes drastically. Haru is a troublemaker who doesn’t attend classes. Similar to Shizuku, neither of them have many friends nor much knowledge about human nature. Haru quickly confesses his feelings towards Shizuku. Moreover, because of the lack of friends, Shizuku is not very familiar when it comes to her relationship with Haru. Their friendship starts to continue as she finds out that Haru isn’t just a violent guy. So she also starts to develop feelings for him but she is not quite sure about them. Both start to discover the true nature of their feelings.
The main topics of the anime series are love and friendship. Especially the love confession between both main protagonists is the essential topic.The series follows the development of their relationship and how they have to deal with it. Friendship also plays an important role in this relationship between Haru and Shizuku. However, Haru has to deal with fake friends who only use him to get money. Also the positive side of friendships is shown as students who were lonely the whole time, start gaining friends. Even though the focus in on both protagonists, relationships and love confessions within supporting characters are also present. The anime series is also filled with some suspenses such as: Will Shizuku accept that she has fallen in love with Haru? Will they come together or will they just be friends?
‘Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun’ contains many funny interactions between the characters., especially between Haru and Shizuku. As already mentioned before, Haru is a troublemaker but he is also very dependent on Shizuku who is kinda annoyed by it. Also Haru’s lack of knowledge of human relationships brings many laughter. The falling in love of many boys with Natsume (a classmate of Shizuku who asks for her help in a re-test) is also very amusing because she feels very uncomfortable in such situations. Haru’s acquaintance Yamaken also brings some laughter especially when he is always lost.
Besides funny elements, many emotional scenes are also included. Firstly, the struggle of love feelings is very dominant. Shizuku seems to not care about love or about others and therefore she doesn’t understand her feelings towards Haru. Also a ‘forbidden’ love confession is shown as Natsume has feelings for Micchan who is Haru’s elder cousin. He is much older then her. Loneliness is a further emotional topic. Both protagonists can be referred to this aspect. Because of being rude and aggressive, Haru is being excluded and scared by his classmates. Whereas Shizuku does not have many friends because she is only interested in studying. Besides loneliness, jealousy is a further but rather typical topic in a romance anime series. Haru is very jealous when someone gets too close to Shizuku, in this case Yamaken who seems to be interested in her. However, the jealous feelings can also be seen by Shizuku as she finds out that Oshima has a crush on Haru.
The anime series contains a variety of characters. Their differences in personality make them unique and divers. We also think that a development of the characters can be noticed. For example, at the beginning Shizuku only focuses on her studies but then she starts caring for others and even asks for their well-being. Another character is Haru who firstly isolated himself from school because the classmates fear him. However, later in the anime he gets more popular and develops friendships.
Kenji Yamaguchi (Yamaken)
Yamaken is one of Haru’s friend even though he uses him more as being a friend. Moreover, he has some orientation issues which means he has a bad sense of directions; however he doesn’t ask for help. Many hints of Yamaken’s feelings towards Shizuku are also shown.
Mitsuyoshi Misawa (Micchan)
Micchan is like a father figure for Haru as he takes care of him. Haru is also the one who gave him his nickname (Mi-chan). Micchan likes giving people advices on life especially to Haru and Shizuku. He shows much kindness to people as he kinda feels responsible for Haru.
The art of animation is very well done. We like the cute depiction of the characters but also their emotions stand out. The background and environment scenes are quite neat and contain many details. We also like the usage of the different colors especially the brighter ones dominate here.
Then opening theme is not bad but a bit kitschy. The song itself (Q&A Recital!“ (Q&Aリサイタル！)) by Haruka Tomatsu is really good and amusing. The opening shows the important characters and does not show any spoilers which is a positive point.
All in all, the anime series is not bad but we think it could have been a bit more interesting. It is the second romance/shōjo series we have seen so far. In comparison to ‘Ao Haru Ride’ is ‘Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun’ much better. However we think that the anime lacks of thrilling moments.