Honey & Clover

ハチミツとクローバー / Hachimitsu to Clover
What do you want to do with your life? Where do you want to go? How will you get there? What brought you here in the first place? Honey and Clover, a slice of life josei anime, addresses these types of questions. It tells the story of five friends in an art college and their lives and relationships throughout college (and some of them beyond that) as they face various obstacles. The show does a masterful job at exploring the lives and personalities of these five students and the people around them.

Although I used to prefer shows with super captivating plots where there are distinguishable heroes and villains, Honey and Clover changed my views on that. There isn’t a grand overlaying plot to this series, and yet somehow, I was just as enamored with it as those other shows, if not more. The characters are just regular college students trying to make the most out of those precious years while searching for direction in their lives. They don’t have incredibly bleak pasts, though they’re not without their troubles. Each character has various predicaments that most people would face in that stage of their lives. Takemoto, the protagonist and narrator, is surrounded by highly capable, successful peers, while he seems to be the most “average” of his friends. He is the most directionless of the group, unsure of how to proceed after college. He quickly falls in love with Hagumi, an extremely talented painter who has body of a child.

Despite her abilities, she is shy and suffers from childlike social anxiety. Then there’s Morita, the most eccentric one. Though he appears to be manipulative, greedy, lazy, and just plain odd, he is surprisingly one of the wiser ones of the friends. His life outside of school is mysterious, and he often has long periods of absences where he inexplicably wanders off and comes back with only a large wad of money and extreme fatigue. We also have Mayama, the first to graduate and get a job, who harbors feelings for a disabled woman who’s had a dark past in regards to relationships. Finally, there’s Yamada, who is in love with Mayama. Even though he constantly rejects her, for some reason, she continues to try.

Opening Theme:
#1: “Dramatic” by YUKI
#2: “Fugainaiya” by YUKI
Ending Theme:
#1: “Waltz” by SuneoHair
#2: “Mistake” by THE BAND HAS NO NAME
#3: “Split” by Suneohair

Insert song:
Eps 01: “Hachimitsu” by Spitz
Eps 02: “Hachigatsu no Serenade” by Suga Shikao
Eps 03: “Tsuki to Naifu” by Suga Shikao
Eps 04: “Hakou” by Suga Shikao
Eps 07: “Tamagawa” by Spitz
Eps 10: “Sakana” by Spitz
Eps 13: “Sorosoro Ikanakucha” by Suga Shikao
Eps 14: “Y” by Spitz
Eps 15: “Yoru wo Kakeru” by Spitz
Eps 18: “Yubikiri” by Suga Shikao
Eps 19: “Ougon no Tsuki” by Suga Shikao
Eps 22: “Tsuki ni Kaeru” by Spitz
Eps 23: “Room 201” by Suga Shikao
Eps 24: “Spica” by Spitz

[May 25, 2005] Waltz / Suneohair
[Jun 29, 2005] Dramatic / YUKI
[Jul 20, 2005] THE BAND HAS NO NAME / II
[Sep 07, 2005] TV series Hachimitsu to Clover Original Soundtrack
[Aug 09, 2006] “Fugainaiya (ふがいないや)” – YUKI
[Aug 23, 2006] “Split (スプリット)” – SuneoHair
[Jan 17, 2007] Honey and Clover COMPLETE BEST

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