Featuring a beautiful and intelligent girl with a secret anime and manga obsession is pretty much a cast-iron way of guaranteeing a lot of male viewers with a similar passion, and thus that's exactly what Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu brings to the table with no qualms. Having said that, it's rather odd that the series' male lead isn't similarly anime obsessed, although I suppose at least that gives the show a different angle from the aspect we've seen in the past from shows like Genshiken.
Anyway, whereas episode one left me liking the series opener somewhat while still remaining broadly undecided about the show as a whole, I have to confess that episode two has left me smitten. This instalment covering Haruka taking Yuuno around Akihabara is about predictable as it comes, and if I were to ask most of you to write out the expected major plot points before watching this episode (don't worry, I won't be setting homework this time) you'd probably be able to guess about 90% of them without trouble.
However, predictability doesn't always have to suggest that an episode is poor, and in this particular case the obvious progression of the episode doesn't really matter at all. Why not? Because the episode as a whole is just so damn adorable, that's why. I complained last time around that Haruka had been made way too clumsy considering her supposed intellect, but in this episode we see a much more balanced character who is both less irritating and far cuter as a result, thus achieving its aim of making her the kind of girl we'd all like to take home to our parents and marry.
In essence, that's all there is to say about this instalment of Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu - It's all about establishing the dynamic of Haruka and Yuuno's relationship, and letting Haruka show her true colours, and in that sense it works perfectly. I'm still not entirely convinced that the series will manage to keep this premise running successfully for its entire duration, but sticking with the present right now, this particular instalment has given me the most consistent anime-generated smile I've had all week, and that can never be a bad thing.