Anime Academy

H2

h2-2
Genre: Comedy/Drama
Company: Shogakukan
Format: 41 episodes
Dates: 6/1/1995 to 3/21/1996

Kunimi Hiro was one of the most promising talents at pitcher during his junior high years. Alongside his childhood friend and catcher, the two were a dominant tandem that even the best batters feared. But alas, an elbow injury abruptly ended his dreams for a trip to Koshien… or so he had thought. As it turned out, the doctor who diagnosed him with a career-ending injury was a sham. Now he will have to convince their high school principal, who loathes baseball, to let them form a real team to represent the school.

summary by Soundchazer

 

Reviewed: 03/14/2005 by
Grade: 78% av-Soundchazer

Highs: Interesting story; likeable characters

Lows: incomplete! Incomplete! INCOMPLETE!

Let’s get one thing straight… H2 is not a hentai or ecchi anime. The only reason for its name is that both girls (Hikari and Haruka) and both boys (Hiro and Hideo), the main characters in the story, have first names that start with H. This is one of those playful things that Adachi Mitsuru, the famous creator of Touch (one of the four cornerstones of ’80s anime) likes to do from time to time. Adachi has made most of his career out of creating some incredibly rich stories revolving around sports, and this one is no exception.

Just like Touch, H2 centers around baseball, the author’s favorite sport. The first noticeable thing is that the character designs are far smoother than a usual Adachi production, which is a welcome sight. This has always been the Achilles’ heel of those manga that have made the transition to television screens. H2 is one series that doesn’t need the “three episode cushion” to help the viewer adapt to the quirky designs.

H2 hits the ground running, presenting from the start several situations at the same time and in different layers. Romance, growing pains and sports are intertwined in such a natural way that you never feel confused but are required to pay close attention to avoid missing details of what is going on. Unfortunately, the middle section of the series devoted too many episodes to the baseball aspect of the story, which is perhaps the least appealing of the three aspects. And by the time we go into the best and most intimate moments, the anime abruptly ends. Granted, the ending was wrapped up efficiently, but you get the impression that it was forced to do so because of cancellation. The odd number of episodes leads me to believe that perhaps this was the case.

In the end, H2 is a lot like going to a fancy restaurant only to discover that its forte is the dessert. You end your evening on a high note but can’t help feeling that the overall experience was not as good as what you paid for.

 

H2 can be downloaded legally in the United States HERE.

 

 

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