The Way of the Househusband: A lighthearted watch to keep you warm this winter
If you enjoy the character trope where an intimidating-looking person ends up being a big softie on the inside, Gokushufudou (The Way of the Househusband) should definitely be on your watchlist. Adapted from the online manga series of the same name by author Kousuke Oono, The Way of the Househusband is a delightful anime for a casual watch.
The first season of Gokushufudou was released on Netflix in 2021 and the second one was released just last week.
The anime follows the story of Tatsu, a legendary former yakuza member who leaves behind his life of violence and becomes a family-oriented stay-at-home husband. Once known and feared as the "Immortal Dragon", Tatsu's indomitable fighting spirit proves to be a transferable life skill when it comes to the way of the househusband.
As the name promises, the story is basically just Tatsu manoeuvring through life as a househusband while being as badass as possible. The bite-sized episodes consist of Tatsu facing new challenges in his day-to-day life and giving his all to get rid of his enemies.
Tatsu's daily life is living proof that regardless of the size of your enemy, you should always give it your all. Otherwise, those beads of water on your window will give way to a full-on mould infestation. Flower arrangement, cooking, getting the best deals, proving yourself to the local women's association – Tatsu takes it all seriously to become an outstanding homemaker.
You might think that the same old quip of a big, gangster-looking tattooed-up guy attempting to intimidate people only to turn out to be doing something wholesome might get old. But Gokushufudou is made more entertaining by its charming side characters and myriads of cute animals. Featuring characters from Tatsu's yakuza days, many of whom had also gone straight and are trying to survive a life of mundaneness with their fiery and passionate temperaments, they often have much conflict to settle. Only now, they do it in the way of the househusband.
The motionless animation style might appear jarring at first. The fact the characters move in a rather stiff way instead of the fluid motions we're used to seeing, especially with how advanced animation has gotten these days, may feel like you're playing a game on low FPS. This style choice was intentional and was chosen to resemble manga panels. As you keep watching, you realise that the sudden frame changes work pretty well with how the punchlines of the jokes are delivered. Not to mention, it also lets the amazing performances by the voice actors shine through.
The episodes are divided into bite-sized segments of different stories, so it doesn't feel like the story drags on. In between the comedy and the wholesome moments, time flies by when you watch Gokushufudou. It might not be an anime that keeps you on the edge of your seat, but it works as a great palate cleanser if you want to watch something different and light.
Plus, with only 15 episodes shared between the two seasons and a 16-19 minute runtime per episode, it's a quick watch as well. The upside of the episodes not being interconnected is that you can pick up right where you left off without needing to rewatch anything.
If nothing else, you'll have to admit that the animators' dedication to drawing adorable cats only every other episode is definitely respectable. That, at least, deserves a watch, right?
Zabin Tazrin Nashita is fitting comfortably into her role as an NPC in some random protagonist's story. To interact, find her at [email protected]