Final Review: Haiyore! Nyaruko-san


DISCLAIMER: Anime reviews on this blog will attempt minimal to no spoilers unless other noted. If a review seems dull or shallow, it’s because I’m trying to make sure not to go into too detail for those who are actually interested in the show before or after reading the review or those who have yet to finish the title. If you want further details, there are usually tons of reviews that can be found elsewhere on the internet. Furthermore, anime reviews in general are the sole opinion of the author writing it and thus differ across the users. There is no such thing as a “right answer” only a majority agreement. You are free to have your own opinions and thereby free to state and/or argue/debate in the comments section below or on the Fansub TV Forums. The review is not necessarily meant to serve as a recommendation but rather a personal opinion of having completed the series.

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san is based off a light novel inspired by Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos. It premiered during the Spring 2012 anime season and was available for viewing on CrunchyRoll via simulcast. Haiyore! Nyaruko-san also received two short flash anime adaptations in 2010 and 2011. The staff of the series has changed to receive slightly higher quality animation. The series is also very notorious for the vast amount of otaku references ranging from anime to video games as well as other random trivia. In a season light on comedy, it was a nice change of pace and gave the series a nicer niche. Haiyore! Nyaruko-san is brought to us by the staff of MM! and Amagami SS+.

So the story…there isn’t one. It’s a romantic comedy show with heavy emphasis on comedy. Nyaruko and Cthuko are both really fun characters. Hasuta is new to the cast as he did not appear in the flash animations. Speaking of which, I was disappointed to see an absence of Atoko and Nyarue as they were some hilarious characters in the flash animation. Putting that aside, the TV series involves Mahiro Yasaka getting caught up in Nyaruko’s wild antics after Nyaruko falls for Mahiro via love at first sight. That’s really the series and unfortunately, there is a big dip in the series when it begins to go on a huge “romance” tangent that felt completely unfitting for the series. Luckily, the show seems to realize the pitfall and quickly unwinds itself. Furthermore, while mostly the subber’s fault on this aspect, the references were not clearly conveyed to the end viewer. Regardless of referencing Cthulu mythos or not, the series is really not fun for many don’t know it or lack general otaku knowledge. It’s one of those parody/slapstick shows where you really need to understand references to get the punchline and enjoy it to the fullest. That said, I had a blast having known a fair amount.  I would say at the end of the day, I actually preferred the short 5 minute flash animations over a lengthy TV series. A lot of times, the show kept going on and on when it was obvious it could have ended at various points. Also, the “countdown” timer on the shorts made it much more interesting to watch.

Art was pretty much as expected given preview images. Generic and rough is all I can really say, probably the lowest quality in a long time. XEBEC’s animation is also fairly subpar, especially when compared to Upotte!!, which ran this season and Rinne no Lagrange, which aired last season. Fluidity is okay and visuals are the prettiest but at leash flashy enough to match the series.

Music? OP was memorable and hilarious, but not something I would listen to on a long term basis. ED theme is more passive and catchy that could be memorable. I’ve said this in many reviews already this season, but with many good themes this season, this isn’t on the high end. Background music is good and filled with crazy-like fun. Sound effects are okay. As for seiyuus, Kana Asumi drives this show to the deep end with her non-stop speed talk as Nyaruko. She never ceases to amaze me as to how fast she can really speak. Eri Kitamura also amazes me as a female seiyuu who can have a lower voice than Romi Paku or Yuu Kobayashi. Very well done as Mahiro.

Enjoyment? The show can only be fully enjoyed by having a solid anime/video game knowledge, especially in mechs and Cthulhu knowledge. If you lack these, you probably didn’t understand what half of what Nyaruko was talking about. Putting the jokes aside, the show itself is not very interesting. Lack of suspense and tension unlike the flash animation where at least some big block was going to come crashing down on the Earth with an interesting counter on it every week.

Overall, Nyaruko starts off fun but loses steam fast. 20-30 minutes an episode is too much for a slapstick show like this. 5 minutes is enough. What they should have done was 5 minute episodes in this kind of quality rather than flash animations. While Nyaruko is unique for the whole Cthulhu mythos, the slapstick and supernatural aspects are better elsewhere, including Pani Poni Dash!, Seitokai no Ichizon, and Hayate no Gotoku! The animation is also a big drawback from it being anywhere close to eye candy, especially as a 2012 title.

Story and Character:

  • Premise (0.5/1): Cthulhu mythos is a big plus. Otherwise, generic sudden girl appearance/romantic comedy.
  • Character Personalities (1/1): Love Nyaruko and Cthuko. Hasuta is a boring character compared to Nyarue and Atoko.
  • Character Development (0/2): You expected character development in a pure slapstick title?
  • Character Usefulness/Presence (1/2): Main cast is small and certain secondary characters recur quite frequently. Introduction of new “main” characters in the final episode almost never a good idea. Heck, I don’t even remember the loli princess’s name right now.
  • Pacing: (0.5/1): Nothing to say. 20-30 minutes is a bit long for an episode. 10-15 minute episodes would be more appropriate. Poor downturn in the middle of the series.
  • Reasonable/Plausible (0/2): This is Nyaruko, nothing is and nothing will make sense.
  • Conclusion (0.5/1): Ended on a high note in terms of comedy given the poor downturn midway through the series. Final episode returned to good old Nyaruko. New character is a negative though.
  • Total: 3.5/10

Art and Animation:

  • Backgrounds (0/2): Generic and not detailed.
  • Character Designs (1/2): Expected. Slightly lower quality than the flash animations, which is surprising.
  • Fluidity (1/2): Lots of wacky motion in this series but there were a number of quality dips. While some intentional, others do not seem like they were.
  • Visuals/Special Effects/Flashiness (1/2): It’s there.
  • Art and Animation “Expectation” (0/2): Poor from XEBEC. Upotte!! and Rinne no Lagrange easily surpass it’s quality by miles on end.
  • Total: 3/10

Sound and Music:

  • OP/ED/Insert Themes (2/3): OP is comical and ED is okay.
  • Background Music (2/2): Good and memorable enough to fit Nyaruko fun.
  • Sound Effects (1/2): Incredibly generic and not very memorable.
  • Seiyuu (3/3): Very strong cast. Kana Asumi is a goddess at speed talking. Eri Kitamura does quite well in male roles.
  • Total: 8/10


  • Amusement (2/2): Nyaruko and Cthulhu fun. References were great if you understood it.
  • Weekly/Next Episode Anticipation (1/2): The show got boring really fast due to acid trip down romance path. Show does seem to unwind itself though.
  • Presentation (1.5/2): Presentation wise it’s fine. Again, romance is not fit for this show. Subber’s fault for not bringing out comedy references, so I won’t hold that against the show since it’s there.
  • Re-watchable (0/1): Not really.
  • Recommendation (0.5/2): If you like slapstick and/or Cthulhu fun. Pani Poni Dash!, Seitokai no Ichizon, and Hayate no Gotoku! are better choices though.
  • Value (0.5/1): It’s an underrated show but far from a gem. Again, Cthulhu mythos uniqueness as of time of this writing.
  • Total: 5.5/10

Preliminary Score: 6/10

Final Score: 5/10

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