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Horimiya has ended but not the feelings that the winter season left behind for us.
The anime which did really well and gave us a refreshing and out of the ordinary romance story compared to other series, had a lot more to give than simple romantic relationships and wholesome moments.
Why is Horimiya so relatable?
Why does it differ from other anime in this aspect especially considering relationships and romance?
In today’s blogpost we will cover those questions, with 5 sad truths that made Horimiya so relatable.
Please be aware that this post will contain spoiler, read at your own risk.
With the first sad truth we shall start and it’s something we also see in the very beginning of the anime, actually it is the whole start of the plot and how it unfolds.
As we see, especially our two main characters have a drastic change in behaviour, in Miyamura’s case even appearance, when they are both alone. None of them want other people to know about their other side.
We see why they do not want that secret to be exposed, with each character having a justified reason.
And not only Hori or Miyamura, also Yoshikawa, Ishikawa, Remi, Sengoku and most other characters in the series are hiding a part of themselves which makes you wonder what would they think if they ever saw this side of me?
In Yoshikawa’s case when she was obviously jealous as Kono made her romantic approach on Ishikawa, realizing most of the things she wants but does not speak out loud are not in her grasp and if she decides that she wants something it is already gone. Not her jealous feelings seem like a different side, since every human has those feelings which are normal if treated in a proper way but also the way Yoshikawa acted out those feelings as she herself mentioned that she was disgusted by herself doing things behind the scenes to avoid that Kono would come closer to Ishikawa, a side that only she knows since she hides those feelings deep inside of her. Nobody would have known that she hid the fact that she wasn’t actually dating Ishikawa or that she purposely said mean things in that sense, since the Yoshikawa everyone knows is energetic and happy-go-lucky.
But it’s not limited to Yoshikawa, beside the main characters we also have Sengoku who is also hiding his cowardly self, scared of most things and not as amazing as he seems to be. A side that only Remi knows and secretly loves about him as she mentioned that he started to change toward the end of the anime but that she loves both the new and old Sengoku, yet he tries to be much more manlier and strong for Remi without Remi asking for it.
The latter also hides many things she could have said to Sengoku, many of her feelings and the way she acts when alone or around Sengoku and Kono, who knew her for a long time now look past her cute and happy act, Remi is a very smart and observant person who is not unaware of the things happening around her it is quite the opposite in fact.
All of those characters have a side they do not want to expose, as it is human nature that we adapt to the environment around us and put on the facade or personality we need to distinguish between work, school, friends, family and more.
The sad reality is that sometimes we even lie to those around us, those who are close and maybe like Remi or Yoshikawa just cannot express the true feelings that we are desperately hiding inside of us waiting for somebody to notice, that is hiding a little part of yourself that nobody shall ever see.
It is nothing new to hear that we should leave the past behind us and just focus on the future ahead, or use the past to learn from it and correct our mistakes to step into a new light.
But that is easier said than done and that very example is represented in two characters especially: Miyamura and Tanihara.
Apart from their connection and the past they overcame becoming closer, leaving their dispute behind there is still a conflict that each of them are fighting on their own respectively.
Miyamura, whose present self is no longer the same as he was in middle-school, learned how to interact with those around him, considering people as friends and even getting himself a girlfriend who he cherishes dearly as she does the same in return. Still there is never an episode where he doesn’t think back of the past or get anxious about it, even in the opening we see the correlation of Miyamura’s past haunting him until his graduation day of highschool, obstructing him to be truly happy despite the fact he overcame the difficulties and made friends with Tanihara who was one of his problems in middle-school as well.
Nissa wrote a whole analysis on that, if you are interested check it out, I won’t go much deeper into that topic here.
We also have Tanihara who seemed to hate Miyamura, but we also see that he is not just living his life as if nothing happened but still let’s the past replay in his head. He used to bully Miyamura and tried to continue that when he saw him in highschool as he was walking with Hori but due to some events both of them became more involved and started to hang out as friends after talking it out. Tanihara still used to dream about the incident that happened in middle-school and was even frustrated why he was actually bullying Miyamura in the first place as he simply didn’t like him for no apparent reason. He is aware that the things he did to Miyamura were in no way justified and doesn’t know where to start to redeem himself, or how he should apologize to him causing him to have nightmares and being scared to encounter Miyamura in some cases (also due to seeing Hori being a threat he considers both of them dangerous).
In our lives we cannot always do things right, leading us to mistakes towards ourselves but also towards others. Sometimes other people can forgive what we cannot forgive ourselves, as the past is nothing that can be overcome overnight. We struggle with ourselves to become a better person in the future.
But simply letting the past go even when we are now at a better place, Miyamura and Tanihara show us, it’s not that easy to just pretend the past never happened.
Another thing that we often experience in our lives is that no matter how good or nice we are, people simply cannot fall in love with us, or like us in a way or another.
Winning someone’s heart can take some time, but in some cases no matter how hard we try it just doesn’t spark or click.
“A matter of heart”, as we can say since some things cannot be solved by logic or forcing kindness on a person.
In Horimiya again this parallel is represented by Kono Sakura, who has a crush on Ishikawa after an encounter.
Kono being a quiet, cute, reserved and responsible person who cares dearly about the people around her is in no way not appealing, on the contrary even Sengoku mentioned that the ones who rejected her was simply dumb/blind to not see the good qualities in her.
But Ishikawa as well who used to like Hori for a very long time was rejected by her not because he was someone bad, but since she was simply not interested in him romantically while as friends she also cherishes him dearly.
As Kono started her pursuit of giving Ishikawa sweets and becoming more bold when it came to her indicating her feelings for him, at the same time Yoshikawa and Ishikawa started to become more aware of their own feelings for each other.
With Kono still being adamant to confess her feelings, being true to herself and make it clear that she likes Ishikawa, Ishikawa himself mentions that she is a nice girl, she is good in baking and more compared to Yoshikawa, but the one he is interested in in the end is Yoshikawa.
Sometimes we cannot help who we love and like, and sometimes even when we dislike someone but cannot grasp why despite trying our best to like them it’s still a matter of heart and feeling who we like.
No matter if one person seems like the better choice in other people’s eyes.
Loneliness is a big topic in Horimiya, even visually we see that feeling being represented with colors and auditory with a representative sound.
A feeling so familiar yet strange, a feeling that every human experienced at least once in their life.
But despite loneliness that can be detected in some cases most of the time people struggle with it deep inside nobody aware of the hidden pain tugging inside.
We get to see a variation of loneliness that the characters carry with them.
Hori being the oldest sibling and with her parents always away due to work, grew up becoming rather independent and relying on herself. When she fell ill for the first time we get to see her vulnerable side as she was struggling with that deep-rooted loneliness since her childhood, when her parents didn’t even give her the special time back then so for her it was common to be alone until Miyamura was there for her and suddenly the loneliness that she subconsciously tried to push away gushed out of her.
With Miyamura we have someone who was lonely from the very start, not in a sense like Hori was since she still had friends who surrounded her but Miyamura didn’t have anyone around. The feeling of loneliness was so familiar to him that he never considered what it would feel like to have many people around before meeting Hori, as Shindou was his only friend in middle-school and they aren’t able to meet that frequently since they attend different highschools. Miyamura struggled with constant loneliness and even deceived himself that it wouldn’t bother him anymore if he was alone or not but in the end all along deep inside he knew that it was.
Additionally we have Kono who hangs out a lot with Remi and Sengoku due to the student council yet feels like she is always left out in a sense, may it be due to them being a couple or just generally when they ask her for advice as she feels like that’s the only thing she is good for.
Speaking of the student council, the former problem with Remi hiding her true feelings, we can see that there is a sense of loneliness as well, as she sees Sengoku slowly changing despite her liking him the way he was even with his little flaws. When she narrates the way they met and that she was fond of him, she doesn’t seem to give off the feeling of a sweet everlasting romance that started from that point, but rather talking nostalgically and with a hint of missing the old Sengoku she fell in love with.
Last but not least we have Honoka who appears to hate Miyamura in the beginning but we get to see that he reminds her of her deceased brother. Coping with the death of her brother who used to get along with her very well, the strong underclassman of Hori and Miyamura is fighting with the loneliness of having lost someone very dear to her as she sees Miyamura every day resembling that very person.
Loneliness cannot be simply defined and is a complex feeling as we can see in those characters that we have a variety of that feeling and most of them represent someone out there who may have experienced the same, making us think which of this loneliness is my own?
With the last and obvious sad truth we see that one of the things we probably do often in our daily lives but still struggle with it the most is communication.
Each human is individual and different, we may share similarities some more than others but in the end we communicate with each. May it be through words, gestures, letters, chats and so on we are always connected in a way.
Still it always happens that no matter how hard we try, there are misunderstandings and we often conclude after a dispute or later on when we re-analyse the problem, there was a lack in communication or miscommunication.
In Horimiya especially in the beginning where Miyamura and Hori start to see each other more often we see from a viewer standpoint that both of them enjoy each other’s presence yet each of them thinks about the possible concerns and outcomes of problems that could occur.
In some cases there are incidents that could have been solved if someone would have just started explaining or maybe the other one trying to resolve the matter by speaking up, but just like in real life we humans tend to make assumptions about what the other person probably could think instead of asking them directly in most cases, or we are afraid to know.
Hori for example thinks it is obvious that she likes to be around Miyamura while Miyamura thinks she is probably pitying him and at some point they won’t meet anymore. That again results in Hori thinking that Miyamura may see her as pushy and therefore she doesn’t want to force him to do things with her in the beginning and Miyamura thinks again she is getting tired of him.
If neither of them would have spoken up this would have continued despite that both of them shared the same thought of wanting to stay with the other person.
We also get to see that with Yoshikawa and Ishikawa.
Even with Yanagi when he confessed to Yoshikawa, if it wasn’t for him clearing the misunderstandings that he caused most of the characters would have had the wrong impression of him and Yoshikawa would have thought he wasn’t serious about the confession he made in the beginning.
Same goes for Remi who tends to say things in a round-about-way, which mostly Kono or Sengoku need to clear up so other people wouldn’t misunderstand her actual good intentions.
Sometimes talking about a matter a bit longer than needed can resolve it than letting it sit in our heads and becoming a far worse misunderstanding. Often we get into disputes, discussions or become angry but in the end the longer we try to get across that what we really mean (if we mean well of course there are always people who mean harm as well), and try to make the other person aware of that what made us act or talk the way we do, the easier it becomes in the future to resolve matters just like Hori and Miyamura became much better in understanding each other towards the end of the series.
What do you think made Horimiya relatable for you?
Leave a comment and let us know!
Until then, spring started again…