My experience in the Langley pretty much coincides with with your saying. Whenever I get matched up against a Hosho im always very confident that I will gain air superiority before a games halfway point. I've even had a lot of games where its me vs two hosho's and by playing more defensively and baiting fighters I have come out ontop quite easily. That said I think you really must push the IJN CV's playstyle to the limit when dueling another CV. The times I have almost been destroyed and put out of action for most the game is when they rush me with all of their squadrons and constantly push me with their TB's. I have to spend most my time keeping my fighters close and position myself closer to the frontline where I can get some AAA help from other ships.
The only problem with IJN CV's playing like that to beat me in the langley is they do eventually lose all their squadrons that game unless they get some luckily and skillful torp strikes. All it really does is neutralize CV support on both sides for that game.
This is coming from someone who has only experienced T4 CV play so keep that in mind, but I think the style identities of both navies should stay as they are. IJN can very effectively TB any ship if they are proficient and their fighters are enough to allow their bombers to escape, they are much more like interceptors then fighters.
USN on the other hand can very effectively gain air superiority but is not efficient at bombing, especially when its against IJN CV's as they have superior AA at an earlier point, coupled with their fighters its enough to safeguard the CV against the USN CV's.