Title: Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection
Director: Keiichirou Kawaguchi
Author: Kenjiro Hata
U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23 Films
U.S. Release Date: August 18, 2015
Format and Length: Blu-ray / 52 Episodes / 1300 Minutes
Genre: Comedy, Romance, Harem, Action, Parody
Industry Age Rating: 14 and up
Overall Personal Rating: B-
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Could Hayate Ayasaki’s life get any unluckier? Because his unemployed parents are good-for-nothings who waste what money they have on gambling, Hayate had to start working at a young age to help out his family. Although such experience has made him inhumanly fast and tough and skilled at things boys aren’t normally skilled at, it has also left him in an awkward position, as his parents have racked up such a huge gambling debt that they have sold Hayate to the yakuza for the value of his organs. Desperate to pay off the 156,804,000 yen debt before he’s converted into black market organ parts, Hayate strikes on the idea of kidnapping oddball heiress Nagi Sanzenin. Unbelievably, however, even that goes wrong and not only does he end up not kidnapping her, he rescues her from other kidnappers. (Apparently this happens to her all the time.)
But maybe, just maybe, there might be a tiny, dim light at the end of the very dark tunnel of Hayate’s existence, and the skills that Hayate’s had to develop to stay alive will pay off. Because Nagi needs a butler/bodyguard and Hayate could just fit the bill. But he will have to survive the on-the-job training first. Fate can be a harsh mistress, but Hayate may have just signed up with an even harsher one!
Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection is a hilarious rom-com that is full of parodies from well-known shounen series. They also include many parodies Japanese television culture jokes along with references to famous idols and random television shows. Luckily, they give some background information at the top of the screen whenever this happens so you can fully understand the joke. The romance part of the rom-com is pretty one-sided for this season, but I believe it will eventually even out.
With Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection being mainly a comedy series, it does not have a strong storyline. However, the vibrant characters make up for it. Each character has their own interesting personality which gives equal balance between characters. There are a ton of different characters in this series, almost too many and they do not have much development happen. I almost wish they would have made fewer characters and had more development for them. But, that is why three other seasons have been released. Nagi has to be my most favorite and lease favorite character of the series. She is the tsundere character of the series and basically acts like a spoiled brat to get whatever she wants. However, she is adorable when thinking about Hayate. Nagi is also your basic shut-in teenager who would rather read manga, watch anime, and play games than go to school. Luckily for her, she is really smart so that does not affect her grades.
The animation was pretty and the colors were very vivid. The voice actors did a great job and you will probably recognize many of them from other series. There was not a lot of fan-service and when it appeared, it was well done and tasteful.
Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection includes clean opening and closing animations and Sentai Filmworks trailers as special features. This series was released with Japanese with English subtitles as the only language option.
Overall Grade: B-
Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection is quite a long series, but the comedy makes it very easy to watch. Parts of it reminded me of Excel Saga and that made me laugh for a long time. If you enjoy comedies with a little bit of romance added in then I recommend Hayate the Combat Butler: Season One Complete Collection.