The Anime Primer

Capsule Descriptions of Anime: H

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Haibane Renmei   Hakkenden   Happy Lesson   Hellsing   Here Is Greenwood   Hikaru no Go   HoiHoi-san   Howl's Moving Castle   Humanoid   Hyper Police


see .hack//SIGN

Hagane no Renkinjutsushi

see Full Metal Alchemist

Haibane Renmei (variously translated as Ash Wings Alliance, Charcoal Feathers Federation, or variations on these)

Haibane Renmei is a mysterious and low key story about a girl (Rakka) who wakes up in an unfamiliar but seemingly normal world, except she now has pale grey wings and a halo. Unable to remember her past life or even her name, Rakka is welcomed into a community of other winged and haloed girls. Are they angels? None of them know what they are, so they simply call themselves Haibane (grey wings). The nearby town is populated by normal people, who seem to view the Haibane as little more than beggars. A high wall surrounds the entire district and no-one, Haibane or human, knows what lies beyond; only the crows and some mysterious visitors to the town are able to go beyond the wall. In the early episodes Rakka spends her time making friends and finding out about her new world, but her carefree days come to an abrupt end halfway through the series when one of her new friends mysteriously disappears, leaving Rakka bewildered and grief-stricken. From then on the series has a much darker tone, as Rakka looks into her soul and wonders how she ended up in this walled place (a refuge or a prison?), and tries to learn the secrets of the inscrutable Haibane Renmei (Haibane Union), the monastic order which regulates their lives.

The series is by Yoshitoshi ABe who also did the character design of Lain, who Rakka resembles. 13 episodes.

Licenced by Geneon in North America, by MVM in the UK, and by Madman in Australia.

[Entry by Shez]

DMOZ Open Directory Project

Hakkenden (a.k.a. Dog Warriors)

Adapted from a "200 year old classic", this is a story about a group of warriors drawn together by a common bond. Each reluctantly battles in a quest to break a curse dating back to a moment in history when a clan leader attempted to save his people by marrying his daughter off to his dog but, following a bungled rescue attempt, the happy couple are both killed! A little slow to start as much exposition is used to set out the background to what eventually happens later on but worth working through. Released originally by Pioneer LDC.

[Entry by Chika]

Happy Lesson
Happy Lesson: the mama-teachers

Most ordinary boys Chitosé Hitosé's age can only dream of a harem of beautiful women. Many of them are at that rebellious phase in thier lives, fighting their parents at every step. Imagine his surprise when in one fell swoop, Chitosé suddenly finds himself living with a harem of five beautiful women, who all want to be his mother!

Ordinary boys of Chitosé's age might for at least part of the day replace the annoyances of family life with the annoyances of school life, but even here, Chitosé finds no reprieve, as his "mothers" are also his teachers!

Throw in a cute younger sister, an idol older sister, an "evil" genius, and the class representative who wants his head on a platter (or a string tied around his heart), and it's a safe bet that Chitosé Hitosé's life is anything but ordinary.

A harem comedy that turns the genre on its head, Happy Lesson is a fun-filled romp of an answer to the question, "What is family, anyway?"

Available in North America from ADV.

[Entry by Abraham Evangelista]

Haré Nochi Guu

see Jungle wa Itsumo Haré Nochi Guu

Haruhi Suzumiya

see The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

Hellsing: Alucard

Great Britain's secret weapon against things that go bump in the night is a paranormal division called Hellsing, which keeps a vampire named Alucard as its ace agent. He is very effective in dealing with the targets, but he's also snarky, sadistic, and has the hots for his "Master", one Integra(l) Hellsing. This tale of vampires as vampire hunters has it all: a buxom young vampire who angsts about losing her humanity, a kickass butler with killer floss, a division of the Vatican dedicated to wiping out monsters, and of course the aformentioned Alucard and Integra. Some of the animation quality is atrocious, but overall the series is dark, cool, and leaves you cheering for more. 13 episodes, subbed and dubbed.

Parental Advisory: Extreme violence (blood, gore, torture, and Alucard doing really scary stuff), swear words up the wazoo (bleeped out on TV, mostly), and lots of sexual tension.

Licenced by Geneon in North America, by ADV in the UK, and by Madman in Australia.

[Entry by Dot Warner]

Here Is Greenwood
Koko Wa Greenwood: Hasakawa and his dorm-mates

Hasakawa has the worst luck: He's late for his high school entry exams, then he's late for high school, and his older brother has married the woman of his dreams. As he heads to school, he figures things are looking up, until he finds out he's been put in "GreenWood", the dorm notorious for its weird residents. Having a roommate who looks like a girl is the least of his problems ...

Previously released on VHS in North America by Central Park Media; the North America DVD licence is held by Media Blasters.

[Entry by Catherine Johnson]

DMOZ Open Directory Project

Heroic Legend of Arislan

see Arslan Senki

Hikaru no Go

Hikaru was your typical hot-blooded youth who had no interest in Go until he met Sai, a go-obsessed spirit who died before he could achieve his fondest wish: to play the "hand of god", the perfect move. After being possessed by Sai, Hikaru begins taking interest in this strange "old man's game" (as well as gaining the rivalry of Touya Akira, another go prodigy), and discovers that he's surprisingly gifted, even without Sai's help. Basically, it's go as a sports anime, a premise that works surprisingly well, understandable even for people who don't play the game. The series contains 75 episodes and a handful of specials.

[Entry by Dot Warner]

His and Her Circumstances

See Kareshi Kanojo no Jijyo

HoiHoi-san (a.k.a. Ichigeki Sachuu! HoiHoisan or One-Shot Insect Killer! HoiHoi-san)

In the future insects have become resistant to chemicals so Japanese robotics companies have turned to producing small pest-killing robots. Being Japanese they're small cute pest-killing robots. Meet ID-3 HoiHoi-san, six inches of heavily-armed insecticidal sweetness you can buy nice outfits and weapons upgrades for at your local pharmacy (all major credit cards accepted).

Based on a manga and a later PS2 game, this ten-minute anime was made to go with a manga collection released in 2004. Squeaky boots, plasma beam rifles, matsuri doll outfits and exoskeletal carnage, what's not to like?

[Entry by Robert Sneddon]

Howl's Moving Castle

Although only 18 years old, Sophie Hatter lives like a much older woman. One day during an outing in the town, she attracts the attention of two powerful sorcerers, the bishounen Howl Jenkins and the well-preserved Witch of the Waste. Becoming a pawn in the conflict between them, Sophie is turned into an old lady. Seeking to break the spell, Sophie leaves her home and makes herself a job as the cleaning lady in Howl's castle (think steampunk RV).

Based on Diana Wynne Jones' novel of the same name, Miyazaki's version of Howl's Moving Castle incorporates a wartime context for the pseudo-European setting and provides Howl with the motivation for fighting the act of war rather than in a war. Unlike Miyazaki's other work, which focus on young characters, Howl's Moving Castle explores issues of maturity and aging as Sophie and Howl come to terms with adult responsibilities and the Witch of the Waste faces up to her true age.

[Entry by laurie cubbison]


Fairly retro feel here in a story about the creation of a scientific genius, referred to as a "humanoid". The planet on which this happens is also the resting place of other and greater technology, power which the planetary governor wouldn't mind getting his hands on. The story seems to revolve around the development of the humanoid, some of which is voluntary, indeed resonant of Key the Metal Idol, and around the deeds of the governor as he realises his folly ...

[Entry by Chika]

Hyper Police

It is the distant future, normal humans are considered an endangered species. It is the time of the monsters/half-breeds. This is the story of a 6-year old cat-girl by the name of Natsuki Sasahara. She works as a bounty hunter with various other monsters. However, the company that she works for is having financial troubles, one of her co-workers has a crush on her, one is trying to eat her, and those are just her partners ... Can she survive when times are tough? Can she get her own Bounty Hunter license? And ... can she find a pair of undies that she doesn't have to cut out a portion for her tail?

[Entry by Bill Martin]

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Any images on this page are copyright their respective creators or licencees, and are used under Fair Use (review) provisions of the Copyright Act. All reviews on this page are copyright their respective authors, and are used with permission. The compilation copyright for this page is held by Rob Kelk.

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