[RR] Katekyo Hitman Reborn Review

“Zero to Hero”

Hitman Reborn lasted much more longer then we thought. Aired on 2006, the series ended on Sep 25 2010, airing for almost 4 consecutive years. It is not exaggerating to say that Hitman Reborn is pretty much a veteran, especially in regards to the shounen genre, excluding the comparison of The Big Three that is.. since those three are quite incomparable. Anyhow, as Hitman Reborn had been airing for 4 years, is it good? Did it leave a lasting impression for all of you? And most important of all, did you enjoyed it?

Hitman Reborn’s story revolves around a teenage boy attending Junior High whom everyone calls “Tsuna”. He is known to be bad physically and academically and top of that, he is unpopular and had no friends. His life however, takes a sudden and extraordinary change when ‘Reborn’, an infamous hitman from the Vongola mafia family, takes a flight to Japan and trains Tsuna into becoming the 10th boss of Vongola.

One main flaw in Hitman Reborn’s storytelling is the plot inconsistencies, not much planning can be seen in plots department. That’s the sole reason why Hitman Reborn’s story changed so much drastically over the years. First, we have normal everyday school life with humors and styles that could easily turned into a harem show. Then, the actions come in and the anime finally became what it is more intended for.. shounen. It is at this time where arcs like the Kokuyo Arc and Varia Arc (no more underwear transformations! Yaaay!) emerged. And for the most recent one, it now turns into a bizarre arc which even involved time traveling on a large scale. Ironically, it seems this franchise gotten more known just when the actions started kicking in. And I myself, also prefer the more technical and bizarre plot too, with all those time traveling, guardians, rings, boxes and deathperation flames, in contrast to the former harem-y situations.

Hitman Reborn is very good at character developments. Out of all the characters, Tsuna is probably developed the most. From one who had no friends to someone who has his own mafia family (although he denies it), from one who is physically weak to someone who can fight bravely, from a wimp to a 10th generation mafia boss. Basically, he turned from zero to hero. For the other characters, I found them a bit annoying at first but after learning more about them, I grew to love them and each of their special traits the characters possesses.

Hitman Reborn has a big character cast and I can’t help but find that some of them are nothing more then just plot devices. Besides, some of the characters could even be removed and the show would have been perfectly fine too. Especially when it’s nearing the end, there’s the main character and his guardians, the Varia, the Arcobaleno, Mukuro/Chrome and the rest of the gang. In a way, it’s like Nanoha. After some epic fights, the bad guys are defeated but they usually don’t die. Then after a while, the bad guys return and help the protagonist. Rinse and repeat and that explains the huge character cast. Having so many characters made viewers lose focus on the main characters, namely Tsuna and his guardians. Nevertheless, Hitman Reborn still has some good characters. I eventually found myself liking all the guardians and some of the supporting characters like Xanxus and Squalo.

For an anime that started in 2006, it has quite a decent level of art and animations. Though I found their battle animations looking a bit stiff at some points but that is nothing to fret about as most of the elements are illustrated thoroughly. The art styles is well designed and the characters and settings did not lack too many details from the original artwork.

Hitman Reborn has a lot of great openings and endings. One of my favorite is LM.C’s BOYS & GIRLS. I also like LM.C’s 88, CHERRYBLOSSOM’s DIVE TO WORLD and Ame Ato by w-inds. The voice acting is good too. I think the only voice acting I don’t like in this show is Gokudera. He sounds too forced, especially when he had to shout during battles, doing tsukkomi or when he had to show sincearity in his voice. I do like Mukuro’s distinctive “fufufu” and Hibari’s “kamikorosu” and Squalo’s “VOOOI!!!” Lastly, I applaud Ryohei’s with his ‘extreme’ voice acting. Kiuchi Hidenobu certainly did a fine job in delivering the ‘extreme’ qualities with his voice much needed for Ryohei. Both the sound effects and background music are good but seems reused a lot as you watched the more later episodes.

Now that this anime had ended, some people found that it’s good since they don’t want Hitman Reborn to turn into another Naruto/Bleach. Yet, some miss the show and wish for more. Well certainly, Reborn had a good run and it did a good job coming so far. If you don’t like the beginning of this show, give it a chance. The plot starts to build up later on and that is when this show starts getting more interesting and exciting.

Rating
Story: C-
Character: B+
Art: B
Animation: C+
Sound: A-

Final Score
7/10

This review is part of the
Reviews Recollection Project.

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3 thoughts on “[RR] Katekyo Hitman Reborn Review

  1. I actually completely rejected this show at first, it seemed too much like a 10 episode anime that doesn’t make sense nor lasts. I ended up giving it a second chance and by god, I’m glad I did. Also, I only thought that the anime had 25 episodes making development seemingly impossible… I realized that they was little over 200 around end season 2.
    I also quite loved the story, though the beginning seems to linger on and seems like a comedy, they introduce most of the main characters later on, I absolutely love the way Tsuna developed and the complete difference between him and other Shonen manga/anime protagonists. The first season was definitely not as exciting as the rest but the first season (and 3rd I think) where both the life outside of battle arcs, and seeing that, it made me hope that the battle arcs finished. As much as battle arcs are awesome, the two different parts of this anime are both loveable and why would I wish the worst?
    The anime itself is probably my favorite one in a long time. I’ve watched literally over 130 minimum different anime’s, this one is in my top 3.
    In short, definetely a unique anime in my opinion, I love all the good characters, the antagonists where well done enough to the point that I always really wanted to kill them myself… Until I heard most of the back stories behind them…. Then I felt bad :P

    • The beginning parts bored out the hell of me too but the beginning parts is actually something important too, it serves as an introduction to the characters, and since KHR’s cast is so big, it certainly does take a long time.

      Yea, I think it was just around the Varia arc where there’s another “slice-of-life comedy” arc. After that, it’s one huge ass “future arc” straight to the end. Tsuna’s development is really good, you can see him getting stronger, both physically and mentally, but he’s still the same old Tsuna deep within. I wouldn’t say KHR is one of my all-time favorite anime myself, but it is a good show which most shounen fans should check out more indeed. That reminds me, I think it’s about time I go check out the manga.

  2. To be honest, I’d have to disagree with you about the lack of planning as far as plot goes. The thing I loved the most about the series was how the authour dropped so many seemingly unimportant plot devices that later become the basis of entire arcs in completely mundane places, for example, Lambo’s 10 year bazooka. At first it seems like a comic element used solely for the purpose of turning Lambo into an adult, until you find out five seasons later that it’s the basis for the entire catastrophe in the future. Included in this particular element is the appearance of Shoichi in some random filler episode involving Lambo. Little did we know then that the single event of allowing some random side character to look after Lambo would essentially create the largest and most iconic arc in the series. Another example of this would be the Dying Will Flames. Initially, they just seemed like convenient and rather strange plot device that you just kind of accepted. Then the authour goes and turns it into a whole elemental type thing and it kinda just goes from there.

    I’d also like to add that I loved the plot structure of the manga. They introduced a lot of characters (admittedly, the Shimon family was a little bit too much), but there was plenty of time to get invested in each and every one of them. The ending seemed rather fitting, and I liked the incline and decline of the story as a whole; it made it seem like one big story with really long chapters rather than a general series with separate arcs. The Kokuyo Land arc was when plot elements began to reveal themselves, then it was soon followed by the Ring battle arc, which was the rising action to the Future arc. The Future arc had some rising and falling action within itself, before the final battle occurred as something of a climax. The falling action consisted of the Shimon arc, which was followed by the conclusion, the Representative Battles arc.

    Another thing that caught my eye about the series was its non-conformity. First of all, you have the element types. Rather than going for the stereotypical fire, water, air route, the authour used types of WEATHER. It’s unique enough to attract people tired of the typical elements, while still retaining the familiar feeling of classic elements. Secondly, the way the elements are portrayed (especially with the roles of the Vongola guardians) don’t make the main character’s element seem superior. Sure, he can open boxes of all elements, but he also doesn’t get a real box weapon of his own until half way through the Future arc. Sure, he’s the sky that envelops the other elements, but the roles of the Guardians are equally as cool and really fitting. Third, the Dying Will Flames seem like the dumbest power in the world at first, and they stay that way for all of the first season and a good chunk of the second. Yet somehow, by the end of the series you think it’s the coolest power to ever happen.

    Finally, the series has a weak, spineless, useless protagonist who becomes stronger, which is not unique in and of itself. What’s unique is the fact that he stays true to his character. Reborn puts it really arc in the little speech he gives to Tsuna during the Future arc. He basically says something along the lines of, “Goals like ‘saving the world’ and ‘returning everyone to the future’ aren’t like you, Tsuna. You fight to protect your family. Never lose sight of your goals.” Not only that, but him wanting to destroy Vongola and getting the inheritance anyway is super cool, and if you think about it, it makes sense. Tsuna doesn’t want to bear the burden of death and killing and hurting others, not because he’s noble but because it’s unfair. It’s just so faithful to his original character.

    But I digress. Now that I’ve written an entire essay on the series, I bid thee adieu.

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